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    Posted by Decker on August 27th, 2012

    Best NHL Off-Season: Wild. The stars were aligned (literally).

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    Posted in Hockey Stuff | No Comments »

    The Wait Continues For The NHLPA

    Posted by kirsch17 on August 15th, 2012

    For fans and players of the NHL this has been a long and stressful summer up to this point. With the CBA still not signed for the 2012-2013 season it has made everyone tense. And with the decision from Commissioner Gary Bettman last week saying that if there is no deal signed before September 15th there will be a lockout things have gotten worse.

    This is a nightmare for both fans and players alike because of what happened in 2004 when the entire league was shut down for an entire season because of the lockout. That year saw a huge loss in money and players, after over 350 of them went to play over in Europe because of this decision. Now with the KHL having many elite teams with elite players (including a lot of former NHL players) it poses an even bigger threat that players will once again leave.

    The NHLPA submitted a proposal yesterday afternoon to the NHL in their offices in New York City. After a two hour meeting which included high profile players such as Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin and Steven Stamkos the NHL and Gary Bettman decided they were going to need another day to digest everything that happened yesterday. So the wait continues, until around noon this afternoon when they will meet again to go over the current proposal which includes the players taking a hit in terms on revenue aspect of the deal. Everyone just wants to start the season on time and everyone hopes both sides come to an agreement quickly. But for now we wait…

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    Posted in Anaheim Ducks, Atlanta Thrashers, Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres, Calgary Flames, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Colorado Avalanche, Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, Hockey Stuff, Los Angeles Kings, Minnesota Wild, Montreal Canadiens, NHL, Nashville Predators, New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Original Content, Ottawa Senators, Philadelphia Flyers, Phoenix Coyotes, Pittsburgh Penguins, San Jose Sharks, St. Louis Blues, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks, Washington Capitals | No Comments »

    An off season to remember

    Posted by kirsch17 on August 1st, 2012

    The New Jersey Devils are in the midst of an adjustment and it is not something the fans or owners want to go through. This has been one of the craziest offseasons for the Devils after playing a season not many thought they could do just yet. The 2011-2012 season saw the Los Angeles Kings win their fist Stanley Cup in their 45 year history. But it also saw a strong New Jersey Devils team force a game 6 in the finals after having their backs against the wall being down 0-3. That team proved to everyone that they deserved to be in the finals after beating the Florida Panthers in 7, the Philadelphia Flyers in 5 and the New York Rangers in the Conference Finals in 6. Everything was clicking for a team many wrote off before the playoffs started, but one player put the team on his back and played his heart out to shut everyone up and prove they were a cup contending team for a reason. Zach Parise.

    The captain of the Devils was a franchise player, a leader and a homegrown guy, after the Devils drafted him in the first round of the 2003 NHL draft (17th overall). That is until he, along with Nashville Predators forward Ryan Suter, shocked everyone by signing 13 year deals worth $98 million with the Minnesota Wild. Devils fans were shocked, their captain and heart and soul guy for years signed a deal with another team, after making it to the finals a few weeks prior. Everyone knew he was going to test the waters of free agency after not signing a contract extension during the regular season, but Devils fans thought he would just test the waters, not dive in smiling.

    But the worst part is Parise isn’t the only guy who left Newark, NJ this summer. Forwards Alexi Ponikarovsky signed with the Winnipeg Jets and Eric Boulton signed with the New York Islanders while defenseman Matt Taormina signed a contract with the Tampa Bay Lightning. And from the coaching standpoint both of the assistant coaches left. Adam Oates left to become head coach of the Washington Capitals and Larry Robinson is now an associate coach of the San Jose Sharks. Yes the Devils signed some guys (including two new assistant coaches) during the summer but the additions don’t add up to the losses the Devils suffered within the span of about a month. The loss of two assistant coaches, a defenseman, three forwards, one of whom was the captain, and losing the Stanley Cup in 6 games…The Devils will have a lot to prove when the 2012-2013 season starts in October.

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    Posted in Florida Panthers, Hockey Stuff, Los Angeles Kings, Minnesota Wild, NHL, NHL All Stars, NHL Draft, NHL Playoffs, NHL Stanley Cup, Nashville Predators, New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Original Content, Philadelphia Flyers, San Jose Sharks, Tampa Bay Lightning, Team USA, Washington Capitals | No Comments »

    Alfredsson returns for the 2012-2013 season

    Posted by kirsch17 on August 1st, 2012

    Ottawa Senator fans can breathe a sigh of relief because their beloved captain Daniel Alfredsson is going to be returning for another season. After taking a few months to think things over, he made his decision official Tuesday, announcing his return to the NHL for his 17th season. After scoring the most goals (27) since the 2007-2008 season (40), in a year in which he had multiple back and other health problems, Alfredsson wanted to make sure his body responded in the right way while training this summer, something that he says happened. Alfredsson has said his goals for this upcoming season are to improve and be more consistent throughout the year, and looking back at his career numbers, he certainty knows how to play at a high level. He is the franchise’s all-time leader in games played (1,131), goals (416), assists (666) and points (1,082). He is also the NHL’s longest serving active captain after receiving the “C” on October 2, 1999. And don’t think the 39 year old forward is going to play for only one more year. He said he isn’t ready to sign an extension just yet to his current contract, which expires after the 2012-2013 season but he said if his health stays where it is now, he can envision playing beyond this season.

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    Posted in NHL, NHL Playoffs, NHL Stanley Cup, Ottawa Senators, Team Canada | No Comments »

    Tampa Bay Picks Up Goalie From Nashville

    Posted by kirsch17 on June 18th, 2012

    The Tampa Bay Lightning fixed one potential problem next year by acquiring goalie Anders Lindback from the Nashville Predators on Friday. The Lightning have not had a strong goalie in a long time but Lindback can provide them some stability in the back end next year. With Dwayne Roloson, who made 31 starts for the Lightning this season, being an unrestricted free agent this summer this was a very smart move for the organization. The Lightning also acquired forward Kyle Wilson and a 2012 seventh-round pick with the 24-year-old goaltender. Nashville got goalie Sebastien Caron, two second-round selections in this month’s draft and a 2013 third-round pick from Tampa Bay.

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    Posted in Hockey Stuff, NHL, NHL Draft, Nashville Predators, Tampa Bay Lightning | No Comments »

    Rounding out the top 5 draft picks in the 2012 NHL Draft

    Posted by kirsch17 on June 15th, 2012

    Next up on the clock at this years NHL Draft in Pittsburgh will be the New York Islanders. In the last seven years the Islanders have only made it to the playoffs once, and they lost in the first round (4-1) in 2006-2007. Needless to say they need some more depth at every position in order to get out of the funk their in. One position they need to fill is on defense. They need not only a defensive defenseman but also a puck-moving defenseman. Ryan Murray will fill one of those spots for the Islanders when he gets picked fourth overall in the 2012 NHL Draft. He is the type of player you can pencil into a top pairing for the next bunch of years. Being the top defenseman in this years draft the Islanders are going to need him. As a rookie in the WHL he tallied 27 points in 52 games while averaging 30-35 minutes a game. Murray is looked at as being a future two-way defenseman in the NHL and will be a solid player in the future, something the Islanders will need to lock down. Look for him to be the first defenseman drafted this year going to the New York Islanders.

    Trades are known to happen during drafts and general managers will do anything they can do move up in the draft and try and get players that go to free agency in the following week. Probably the biggest player this year that caused the most talk during the trade deadline is Rick Nash. There were so many teams that wanted Nash but he finished the year where he started, in Columbus. The Toronto Maple Leafs have the fifth overall pick but I see them doing a trade instead of picking someone. With Toronto sending the #5 pick, Luke Schenn (D) and Joe Colborne (C) to Columbus for Rick Nash and a 3rd round pick the Rick Nash saga will finally come to an end. By doing this Toronto solves one of their major scoring problems by getting the high-profile Nash. This situation was the best situation for Blue Jackets general manager Scott Howson. Columbus beings their rebuilt in a strong way by getting Luke Schenn to help an up-and-coming defensive core, Joe Colborne to hopefully build into the mold of Ryan Johansen and with the help of recently drafted Alex Galchenyuk everything will soon fall into place. And with this trade the top five picks will be: Nail Yakupov (Edmonton Oilers), Alex Galchenyuk (Columbus Blue Jackets), Filip Forsberg (Montreal Canadians), Ryan Murray (New York Islanders) and the trade between Toronto and Columbus ending the Rick Nash sweepstakes.

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    Posted in Columbus Blue Jackets, Hockey Stuff, NHL, NHL Draft, New York Islanders, Original Content, Toronto Maple Leafs | No Comments »

    More 2012 NHL Draft Predictions

    Posted by kirsch17 on June 15th, 2012

    Since all eyes will be on Nail Yakupov and who the Edmonton Oilers select in the first round of the 2012 NHL Draft Friday June 22nd in Pittsburgh the Columbus Blue Jackets are right behind the Oilers in needed to rebuild their organization. The advantage Edmonton has over Columbus is having the first round picks in three consecutive drafts. With the Blue Jackets coming off of one of the worst seasons they have ever had, the second pick in this years draft is something they need. The Blue Jackets need people in basically every position, a number one goaltender, first line center, more scoring from their second line, and puck moving defensemen. Center Alex Galchenyuk is perfect for the Blue Jackets. He is nearly identical to Ryan Johansen in that they both have similar skill sets. Having Galchenyuk allows the organization to start their rebuild in a positive way. They will probably look for another first round selection, especially considering the heavy defensive depth in the Top 50 picks this year. But look for the teammate of Yakupov to be a Blue Jacket after this years draft.

    The Montreal Canadians have the third pick in the draft this year after having one of the worst years in the last decade ending the season with 78 points. The last time they ended the year with similar numbers was in the 2002-2003 season (77 points). The left winger from Sweden Filip Forsberg will go third overall this year. The Canadians, who desperately need a star on offense, need to look no further than Forsberg. Although he does not have the numbers like other players that will be available people have to remember he is only 17 years old. Given time to develop and get bigger and stronger and adapt to playing in the NHL he will be a great NHL player. This years Swedish star, Forsberg has shown his abilities on the World Juniors Championships stage and in his brief stint with Leksands in the Swedish 2nd Division. Once he builds some muscle and hones his

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    Posted in Columbus Blue Jackets, Hall of Fame, Hockey Stuff, Montreal Canadiens, NHL | No Comments »

    The First Pick of the 2012 NHL Draft is…

    Posted by kirsch17 on June 15th, 2012

    With the NHL draft soon approaching this means it’s time for everyone to start making their predictions as to who will be the first overall pick in the 2012 NHL Draft. All eyes point to Nail Yakupov being amongst the legends who were picked in the first spot: Sidney Crosby, Alexander Ovechkin, Steven Stamkos and Mario Lemieux just to name a few. The 18 year old right winger who currently plays for Sarnia is on track to be the next player everyone will know. Yakupov has been on the top of everyone’s lists as going first overall and I do not see why that is should not happen. He put up stellar numbers this past season for Sarnia: 42 games played, 31 goals, 38 assists, 69 points and +15. Those are numbers of a superstar in the making. With the Edmonton Oilers having the first pick, again, it should come as no surprise if they choose Yakupov. After getting Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in the first round of the previous two drafts, Yakupov should fit right into the Oilers organization.

    The average age of the Oilers during the 2011-2012 season was 27.32 years old so adding Yakupov (age 18) will only make this team more dynamic in years to come once he learns the system. Yakupov has a lot of things this organization needs to become a truly great team, one who does not have the first round picks in three consecutive drafts. Even as a winger he has the ability to control every aspect of the ice. He will help make the top-6 forwards for the Oilers very strong for years to come. Even though the Oilers have some depth at the forward position and are in desperate need of a solid defenseman it would be very hard for them to pass Yakupov up. They would be smart to draft Yakupov and then they can rely on free agency, trades and other picks they have in this years draft to pick up a defenseman. The Oilers can’t pass on the most gifted offensive player in the draft, no matter if they necessarily need him or not. Having him on your team would be a true gift, something the organization was given when their names were pulled out of the hat to be selected first overall for the third year in a row. Expect to see Nail Yakupov walk up on stage and put on the Edmonton Oilers jersey after being selected first overall in the 2012 NHL Draft in Pittsburgh on June 22nd.

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    Posted in Edmonton Oilers, Hall of Fame, Hockey Stuff, NHL, NHL Draft, Pittsburgh Penguins, Tampa Bay Lightning, Washington Capitals | No Comments »

    New Jersey Devils Look to Eliminate the Flyers

    Posted by tfoley36 on May 8th, 2012

    Goalie Ilya Bryzgalov has looked anything but solid in these playoffs. In the series against the Pittsburgh Penguins the offense and high emotions carried them in a 6 game defeat of the Pens. The fire seems to have vanished from these Flyers and they are on the verge of elimination tonight. After Giroux threw a hissy fit after being frustrated in Game 4 Brendan Shannahan decided to suspend him for tonights game. Giroux will be forced to watch from the press box tonight. The Devils came off a 7 game series with the Florida Panthers and have only seem tired in Game 1. A game they took to overtime. Goalie Martin Brodeur celebrate his 40th birthday in style with a Game 4 defeat. Brodeur became the first goalie to win a playoff game in his teens and in his 40’s. After riding their emotions to the win over the Penguins the Flyers seem lifeless and destined to finish their season tonight in front of their home fans.

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    Posted in NHL, New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia Flyers | No Comments »

    Rangers vs. Devils…Awesome or Nightmare?

    Posted by qbert1387 on May 8th, 2012

    Matteau! Matteau! Matteau! No, no, calm down, we’re not there yet. The 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs is heating right now the the Phoenix Coyotes and Los Angeles Kings have already punched their tickets to the Western Conference Final, the Eastern Conference is still up for grabs. The New Jersey Devils are on the brink of eliminating the high octane offense of the Philadelphia Flyers, as they lead that series 3 games to 1. With a substantial lead in the series, and Flyers’ captain Claude Giroux suspended for game 5, the Devils need just 1 more win to move on to the next round. New York City went from lowering their collective heads in shame and humiliation to absolute eruption and pandemonium in a matter of seconds. The Rangers were 6 seconds away from heading to Washington down 3-2, but “Broadway” Brad Richards saved the day tying game 5 with 6.6 left (followed by Marc Staal winning in OT). Instead, Ovechkin and the Caps are facing elimination in front of their home crowd for game 6.

    How incredible would it be to see the #1 New York Rangers against the #6 New Jersey Devils in the Eastern Conference Final? Answer…this is my nightmare. The one team I wanted absolutely no part of seeing in the playoffs was the Devils. How could you say that with teams like the Penguins, Flyers, and Bruins in there? You heard me right. There is nobody I hate more than Patrick Elias, except for maybe Martin Brodeur, or Ilya Kovalchuck. The Devils have been getting consistent goal scoring in the playoffs, while Brodeur looks like the Brodeur of years ago, even though he was barely the second best goalie on the team during the season. A chance to see this rivalry; a tale of these to cities in an Eastern Conference battle of supremacy this year would actually be incredible, but I won’t be excited, more like having heart attacks every second of the day. Each team needs just 1 more win, just 1 more win, and this nightmare becomes reality.

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    Posted in Hockey Stuff | No Comments »

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