SI's 50 Most Powerful People in Sports

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Gary Bettman

NHL commissioner

In his 20 years at the helm, Bettman has ushered the league into modernity, growing from 26 to 30 teams, gaining national TV exposure, expanding the game below the Mason-Dixon Line and upping revenue to a record $3.3 billion last season. But he's by far the lowest of the four major American commishes on this list, and here's why: For all the progress he has overseen, the 60-year-old Queens native is still -- and forever will be -- the face of three crippling lockouts.
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