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Sabres' Pegula to join Bettman, Blackhawks' CEO for college hockey announcement

CHICAGO – Sabres owner Terry Pegula will be in the spotlight at the NHL Draft. It’s not yet clear exactly why.

Pegula will join other hockey executives for a “special announcement” in support of college hockey at 5 p.m. Friday in United Center. The Sabres’ owner, who is being billed as an “alumnus/patron of Penn State University,” will be alongside NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, players’ association executive assistant Mathieu Schneider, USA Hockey Executive Director Pat Kelleher, University of Illinois Athletics Director Josh Whitman and Chicago Blackhawks CEO John McDonough.

Though outdoor games immediately come to mind whenever the Blackhawks are involved, a source says the announcement is not as significant as that for the Sabres. Buffalo is already playing an outdoor game Jan. 1 in New York against the Rangers.

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No further information on Friday's news conference was immediately available.

The University of Illinois has a successful club hockey team but has said money prohibits it from jumping to Division I. Pegula-funded Penn State is in the Big Ten, which is looking to add an eighth member.

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