Aliu optimistic after meeting with NHL: 'Big change coming'
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Akim Aliu had a positive outlook following a meeting at the NHL offices in New York on Tuesday.

"I want to thank everyone for their support. It obviously means a lot to me," the former player said, according to TSN's Matthew Scianitti. "It's been a tough week, but we had some great discussions with (NHL commissioner) Gary (Bettman) and (deputy commissioner) Bill (Daly). They couldn't have been kinder and receptive to the message we're trying to bring."

He added, "I think there is some big change coming. It's long overdue, and I'm excited to see it come to fruition."

The 30-year-old also expressed his optimism on Twitter.

Bettman and Daly shared Aliu's sentiment, releasing a joint statement that described Tuesday's meeting as a "productive and candid conversation" that is "part of a broader, thorough review and process that the league is undertaking."

The league won't comment further until after the Board of Governors meetings next Monday and Tuesday.

On Nov. 25, Aliu tweeted that now-former Calgary Flames head coach Bill Peters repeatedly directed the N-word toward him regarding the player's choice of music while the two were with the AHL's Rockford IceHogs in 2009-10.

The next day, two of Aliu's former teammates corroborated his more detailed account of the incident. Peters then acknowledged using "offensive language" and said he had apologized to the IceHogs at the time.

However, Aliu called Peters' apology "misleading, insincere, and concerning," adding that Peters had never apologized prior to last week.

Peters resigned last Friday after the Flames opened an investigation into the matter.

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Aliu optimistic after meeting with NHL: 'Big change coming'
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