- Mike Reiss, ESPN New England Patriots reporter
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NEW ORLEANS -- Patriots player rep Matt Light expressed disappointment that owner Robert Kraft was not present for negotiating sessions in the days leading up to the NFLPA's decertification and the NFL's lockout of players. Kraft was in Israel with Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and others on a business trip.
In a Q&A with reporters this afternoon at the NFL's annual meeting, Patriots president Jonathan Kraft was asked his response to Light's remarks.
"I respect Matt and I appreciate Matt's comments," he said. "We do a lot of things other than just the New England Patriots, and something that is particularly important to Robert is the economy of Massachusetts and job creation -- not just for people in the football industry but across the Commonwealth. This is a trade mission that had been worked on for a long time. Israel is a real center of high tech and a lot of Israeli companies are choosing to pick Massachusetts as their U.S. headquarters. This is about solidifying that and having more companies feel comfortable to come to Massachusetts and create jobs in Massachusetts. It was something he personally had been working on for a long time and he wasn't going to give that up."
Kraft said his father "helped put the whole thing together and it was something very personal to him."
"That being said, I can tell you he didn't miss a [NFL] call, he didn't miss an email, he was up until all hours of the night in Israel and he was intimately involved with what was going on," Kraft said.
NEW ORLEANS -- Patriots player rep Matt Light expressed disappointment that owner Robert Kraft was not present for negotiating sessions in the days leading up to the NFLPA's decertification and the NFL's lockout of players.