Showing posts with label NHL hockey. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NHL hockey. Show all posts

Saturday, April 19, 2014

The Playoff Problem (Redwing77)

I love playoff hockey... ANY playoff hockey.... but I also think it's one of the worst hockey out there.  Why?  Well...  mostly it is due to hypocrisy.

All throughout the regular season, teams play the game and commit penalties.  Sometimes these infractions result in suspensions, fines, and so on.  Ah, but then the playoffs begin and it's all changed!

The playoff rulebook has come into play!

This rule book is the most hypocritical, imo, rules entity in professional sports.  I've watched playoff hockey this year in both the USHL and the NHL and they're both the same.  It takes an act of God to get the refs to raise their arms.  Why?  What happens when the postseason begins that makes a call that is made ALL SEASON LONG no longer required?  If the refs aren't enforcing the rulebook, why do we have 2 refs and 2 ARs on the ice?  Why not just have 2 ARs just to call offsides, icing, and drop the puck on faceoffs and just rely upon the video replay judge and the goal judges to determine goals?  There is no reason for refs if the rulebook is optional.

Yesterday, we saw two overt spears in Corey Perry and Milan Lucic.  Neither resulted in penalties being called.  Lucic's resulted in a wrist smacking $5,000 fine.  Well, the message is clear.  Your stars can spear guys and they'll only lose part of a game check!  NO PENALTY!!!  I'm too used to the NCAA rulebook that states that spearing is a 5 minute major and game ejection.  It's legal in the NHL, I guess.  It's also legal to slash a stick in two pieces if it results in a scoring opportunity (ala Anaheim's short handed goal by Cogliano).

I LOVE the game of hockey.  I LOVE a good, clean, hardfought, physical game.  But I'm also a big proponent of the rulebook.  I believe truly that the rulebook is in place for essentially two main reasons:  1.  Integrity of the game itself and 2.  Player safety.  If the rulebook isn't going to be enforced, then I hope the playoff teams have good insurance and travel policies because someone's going to leave on a stretcher and they'll need a body to fill the void ASAP.

In the NHL, IMO, cheap shots occur when enforcers are handcuffed due to situational concerns and/or the rulebook AND the officials either have lost control of the game or refuse to enforce the rulebook.  Yes, I LOVE games like what we saw with Chicago vs. St. Louis.  I LOVED last year's Finals between Boston and Chicago.  But I LOATHE games where the sport is made even more dangerous than it has to be because the playoff rulebook is in effect.

I'm not sure where the money comes from to pay refs for NHL games.  However, if the playoff rulebook is truly as optional as the rules have been applied thus far, help out the common man in the playoffs.  Simply do not put any armbanded refs on the ice at all and save the money spent to pay them  by passing the savings onto the playoff attendee.  If this sounds ridiculous, then it's time to start using the rulebook again and saving the integrity and health of the players before someone gets seriously hurt.

And I haven't even begun about the USHL.  USHL playoff rulebooks remind me a TON of the clutch and grab style of WCHA officiating back in the early 2000s... even down to the fact that, even when they DO call penalties, it will be a LOCK that neither team will have an advantage on the powerplay... even if they have to invent a penalty to make it equal (which I've witnessed personally).

Save the game.  You don't have to call everything.  You just have to call the same game as you do during the regular season.

T.J. Oshie is questionable for game two

Former UND forward T.J. Oshie is questionable for game two between the St. Louis Blue and the Chicago Blackhawks.
NHL.COM -- The Blues held an optional skate Friday afternoon inside St. Louis Outlet Mall. Ten skaters took the ice, two were injured forwards T.J. Oshie (upper body) and Patrik Berglund (upper body).

For Oshie, it was another day on the ice gearing himself up for a return to the lineup; he's questionable for Saturday. Berglund skated with teammates for the first time Friday; he's more inclined to miss the game Saturday. Each missed Game 1.

"I didn't see them," Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said. "Until someone taps me on the shoulder and says he's a game player, he's out. Our lineup's going to be fluid every day. Every day it's going to be fluid. I told you guys before, we're going to have everybody playing in this series at some period of time, so that obviously means by Game 5, we expect everybody to be ready to go and hopefully nobody gets injured. Touch wood, but that's our expectations."

Blues captain David Backes said a healthy Oshie is good for the team at any point.

"He's a horse for us, an Energizer bunny that never stops," Backes said. "You talk about fatigue, he's a guy that would have a few days of rest [going] into a series which has a lot guys that have played some big minutes in the last 36 hours. So it'll be hopefully a jolt to the arm if he's in. If not, we've proven that we can win if he's not in the lineup. We'll have to have the same sort of performance again

Saturday, April 12, 2014

NHL Officials not allowed on Social Media

Interesting piece. I can't imagine a world without any of these things. I suppose there's a life outside of the Internet.
Social media is off-limits for all the officials! They are not allowed to have a Facebook or Twitter account as information could easily be misconstrued or deemed to be inappropriate. It is just another undesirable location that the officials could become accessible. After NBA referee Tim Donaghy was convicted on criminal charges and served time in federal prison for betting on games he officiated, NHL officials are "strongly discouraged" from entering casinos while travelling on NHL business. You can forget about reading a book written by any NHL officials until after they retire; unless perhaps it is a children's coloring book! Other than the number on the back of their sweater (no names since '94) the league is most content when their officials are seen and not heard from.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Rogers Unveils Dream Team to Deliver Upcoming NHL Season; Don Cherry in the mix

Finally, we get an answer we were waiting for. Rogers will keep the Coach's Corner and Don Cherry and ron MacLean. This is good news for Don Cherry fans.
TORONTO, March 10, 2014 /CNW/ - Rogers today announced a dream team of broadcasters who will anchor NHL national coverage across all Rogers properties, as well as Hockey Night in Canada. Together, George Stroumboulopoulos, Don Cherry, Ron MacLean, Daren Millard and Jeff Marek will be cornerstones of Rogers's NHL coverage this coming fall.

The team will deliver more than 500 regular season games across 13 networks and 7 platforms, including up to 7 games every Saturday night, plus "Hometown Hockey" every Sunday hosted from communities across Canada, and every game of the NHL Playoffs and Stanley Cup Final.

The announcement was made today by Scott Moore, President of Sportsnet & NHL Properties, Rogers.

"We know how passionate fans are about hockey, and so we've brought together the best anchors to deliver the best hockey experience to Canadians," said Moore. "George is one of the smartest and most versatile broadcasters in the business, and Ron and Don are icons in the hockey world. Along with Daren and Jeff, our new broadcast team brings a tremendous amount of talent, expertise and personality - and most importantly, they all possess a supreme passion for hockey."

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

NHL won't adopt T.J. Oshie Rule

Original NHL logo, used until 2005. A version ...
Original NHL logo, used until 2005. A version of the logo features it in the shape of a hockey puck. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
According to Greg Wyshynski of Puck Daddy, don't count on the NHL adopting the T.J. Oshie Rule. I would say that I like this... It works great for International play.
Puck Daddy -- “Obviously, the one feature that’s different in international competition and the National Hockey League is the ability to use the same shooter in a game-winning shots competition,” said deputy commissioner Bill Daly on Tuesday, before the qualification round of the Sochi Olympic tournament.

“We haven’t even talked about that with our general managers at any point and time, but I would very surprised if the general managers would ever be supportive of that type of concept. It’s tough enough that they don’t like the shootout as it is.”

One of the reasons why the GMs would find the concept repellant: The idea that “shootout specialists” might need to be a consideration on their rosters. Which would be great news for the Linus Omarks of the world, but not something Daly sees the League’s team executives desiring all that much.
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Monday, December 30, 2013

Sid Crosby: Impressive Numbers.

Like him or hate him, Penguins Star Sidney Crosby is an elite hockey player, that has put up some crazy numbers in his short hockey career. Think about this,  (25g-461a—720pts) in 520 games evens out to 1.41 PPG for the All-Star forward. Imagine if he hadn't suffered all of those concussions? If my math is right, Crosby missed  over 100-games due to post concussion syndrome issues. Also, he missed about 20-games due to a ankle injury during the 2008 hockey season.
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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Bettman upholds Thornton's 15-game suspension

The Ruling has come down. The NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman has upheld Shawn Thornton's 15-game suspension.

NEW YORK -- Commissioner Gary Bettman today upheld the 15-game suspension that was assessed to Boston Bruins forward Shawn Thornton by the Department of Player Safety for punching and injuring an unsuspecting opponent, Brooks Orpik of the Pittsburgh Penguins, in NHL Game No. 438 at Boston on Dec. 7.

Commissioner Bettman heard Thornton's appeal at a hearing in New York on Friday, Dec. 20. The original decision was assessed Dec. 14.

The incident occurred at 11:06 of the first period. Thornton was assessed a match penalty for violating NHL Rule 46.15.

Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement and, based on his average annual salary, Thornton will forfeit $84,615.45. The money goes to the Players' Emergency Assistance Fund.

Click here to view Commissioner's complete ruling (PDF)

Sunday, October 06, 2013

Time to ban fighting in Hockey?

After watching the first game of the season between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Montreal Canadiens. I could have predicted we would see more articles like this. I am sure that we will see more of them as the weeks wear on as welll. Wild tough guy Zenon Konopka was interviewed by Michael Russo and he said some interesting things that are worth a look too.
Larry Brooks, New York Post -- The point has been made here repeatedly. These aren’t your fights from the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s or ’80s. Fighters today are massive, weight-trained punchers who do damage with every blow to the head they land.

And, far more often than not, today’s fighters are designated to play that role, whereas in the old days — the days that established the NHL’s so-called tradition and, ugh, code — the best players in the league invariably were the ones to drop their gloves.

Let’s be honest here: It is not called the Donald Brashear Hat Trick.

It simply is intellectually dishonest to claim commitment to reducing the number of concussions in hockey by legislating against checks to the head while blithely permitting players to punch each other in the head. The brain does not necessarily distinguish between punishments absorbed.
What do you think of the call to ban fighting in the NHL? Former UND All-American forward Zach Parise thinks that fighting has a place in the game of hockey and I have to agree with him.
“A lot of times it keeps everything in check,” the Wild’s Zach Parise said. “You can’t just run around and know you’re being protected by the rules and protected by the officials.” [Mike Russo, Star Tribune]
I agree with Zach. I am going to say that Parise is one of the players that would probably face a lot of more scrutiny if the NHL got rid of fighting. Without that deterrent, star players would face more targeted violence from the "Rats" in the NHL.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

NHL Hockey: Time to drop the puck

A little humor to put you in the mood before the season begins.

NHL Hockey: Phil Kessel to re-sign with the Leafs?

It appears that former Boston Bruins and Minnesota Gopher forward Phil Kessel is close to re-signing with the Toronto Maple Leafs. If Kessel had waited till next summer, he would’ve been a hot commodity on the open free agent market.

Getting a sense Phil Kessel's contract extension in TOR could get done as early as Tues. Leafs and Kessel's agents working towards that.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) October 1, 2013
But no one has confirmed it's done yet. So we'll see. If it's done, I would expect it'll be $8M per year, give or take $500K, for 7 or 8 yrs
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) October 1, 2013
Neither Leafs nor Newport Sports (Kessel's agent) is commenting on extension speculation, however, sense is there will be news tomorrow.
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) October 1, 2013

Friday, August 23, 2013

NHL Hockey: Salary Cap Could Rise to $80 million in next four years

After reading this, here, here, and here, I must wonder, what the hell did we have a lockout for? We lost 34 games last season to hear that eventually that the cap will be right back up to 80 million dollars. I don’t think that anyone doubt the source either, Elliotte Freidman is dialed in.—The NHL's salary cap could go up to $80 million within the next four years, according to Elliotte Friedman of CBC Sports.

Speaking on Sportsnet 590 The Fan's "Prime Time Sports", Friedman said some within the sport expect the cap to rise to that level prior to the 2017-18 NHL season.

The salary cap currently sits at $64.3 million heading into the 2013-14 season, a factor that has caused the NHL free agent market to slow down since the initial rush back in July.
Does this make anyone else upset? I am not real happy after reading this, the beginning of last winter was miserable without the NHL. If the salary cap rises to 80 million over the next four years it will also allow teams to balloon their payrolls again. This basically means that the NHL is going to be right back where they were before the Lockout.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Is the Canadian Medical Association Part of the Anti-Fighting Cabal?

Bruins vs. Devils 2/13/09 Prudential Center, N...
Bruins vs. Devils 2/13/09 Prudential Center, Newark, NJ Zdeno Chára is a Slovakian professional ice hockey defenceman and team captain of the Boston Bruins of the National Hockey League (NHL). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
While I reading this article, as a matter of fact, I was rolling my eyes. Where do you even begin with this one? You might as well just go ahead and take hitting out of hockey as well. Or better yet, why not just go ahead and just ban hockey?
Andre Picard, Globe and Mail – Canada’s doctors are delivering a body blow to National Hockey League owners, saying they are too accepting of violence in the sport.

Delegates to the Canadian Medical Association annual meeting on Wednesday voted to “condemn the complacency” of NHL owners.

“The owners have a financial interest in tolerating and promoting violence and we need to be a counterweight,” Dr. Pierre Harvey, a physician from Rivière-du-Loup, Que., told the gathering.

He pointed specifically to an infamous incident from March 2011, when Montreal Canadiens player Max Pacioretty suffered a fractured neck and concussion after a violent hit from Boston Bruins player Zdeno Chara.

Dr. Harvey said it is clear that hockey is a rough game but what doctors object to is violence like blows to the head and hits from behind that lead to serious injuries like concussions and spinal cord injuries.
Seriously, where do these people get off? Hockey is an escape from the reality, for many people, including me. Now we have the Canadian Medical Association acting the National Hockey League. Yikes! This isn’t going to play out well in Canada.

Also, MMA is one of the most popular sports in North America; there is no way that it’s going to be banned. I wish some of the pointed headed experts would keep their noses out of our business. We live in a gladiator society and demand our sports; we don’t need the nanny state getting in the way.
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Former Sioux Toews: 'Naive' to think PEDs aren't in NHL

English: Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan T...
English: Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews during warm up prior to a National Hockey League playoff game against the Calgary Flames, in Calgary. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I found this article in the Chicago Tribune and I think it brings up an interesting point. I have often wondered if NHL players are using PEDS as well. With the trouble that Major League Baseball is currently happening, it’s only a matter of time before the finger will be pointed at the National Hockey League. Thoughts?
Sports Xchange --- Chicago Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews told Toronto radio station Sportsnet 590 The Fan this week that it is "naive" to think that performance-enhancing drugs are not being used by NHL players.

"I think it would be naive to say that there's no one in the NHL that is trying to get the edge in that fashion," he said. "But at the end of the day, whether you get caught now or not, down the road at some point those sort of things come out as we've seen in Major League Baseball and cycling. v

"Eventually ... someone is going to save their own butt and throw you under the bus. And that's your legacy. That's what people remember: that you're a cheater and you took performance-enhancing drugs.
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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Tuesday at the Links

UND Hockey: Remembering the ‘Old Ralph’ Engelstad Arena [Click to view]

NDSU Football: NDSU player Beck pleads guilty in resisting charge, wants to 'put this behind him,' says lawyer [Click to view]

MEN'S HOCKEY: UND to have hockey TV show this season [Click to view]

Former UND hockey players Tim Skarperud wins Grand Forks men's all-city golf tournament [Click to view]

Should the NHL ditch their “loser point” system? [Click to view]

Hackel: NHL still wrestling with expanded video replay [Click to view]

Monday, July 29, 2013

Shooter: Wild could leave Minnesota?

Over on Kukla’s Korner, there was a blog post this morning making reference to a report that the Minnesota Wild could be leaving Minnesota. Of course, the story was written by Charley Walters, aka. Shooter. If you go to the story, it appears to that the article has already been edited, because if you go the link you will not see the article text that is mention in this blog post... WTF? Hum, interesting.

Reports are out that the Minnesota Wild have recorded a $30 Million loss this past season; according to Charley Walters of out of St. Paul.

Is the State of Hockey at risk of losing their second National Hockey League Franchise?

It has been 20 years, nearly to the day, that the Minnesota North Stars packed up and moved to the sunbelt and became the Dallas Stars; and low attendance and lost revenue during seasons where the team did not play up to the standards of their fan base.

The NHL granted Minnesota the Wild in the 2000-01 Season (though announced back in 1997 that the team would be part of the expansion); and after finally making the playoffs this season after not qualifying for the past four seasons. The lockout may be in part to blame for the $30 Million loss this past season. If the season had started on time than there would have been more revenue generated – but also more money paid out to employees’ and game day crew. Another hit to the books for the Wild would be the $10 Million bonuses’ for each Zach Parise and Ryan Suter. The two big ticket UFA’s from last summer where each awarded a lockout proof bonus.

A short term financial fall has hit the State of Hockey: the questions that remain to be answered is if it is just a case of spending money to make money or if this hit is just the start of a financial mess with economic down times across the country? or may Minnesota lose another NHL franchise in the coming years? Time can only reveal the answers to these questions.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

The Candiens sign Michael McCarron

Also, from the developing news department, the Montreal Canadiens have signed their first round draft choice Michael McCarron to a three year entry level deal, meaning he will forgo his college eligibility and play with the London Knights of the OHL. So, the NCAA vs. CHL debate will heat up even more with this defection. This also means that there were no college hockey recruits selected in the first round of the 2013 NHL Entry Level Draft.

MONTREAL (July 11, 2013) – Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin announced today the signing of forward Michael McCarron to a three-year contract (2013-14 to 2015-16).

In 55 games with the USHL’s US National Development Team in 2012-13, McCarron, 18, collected 34 points (14 goals, 20 assists). Six of his goals were scored on the powerplay and he tallied two winning goals. He led his team with 180 penalty minutes and maintained a +6 plus/minus differential.

The 6-foot-5, 237-pound right winger added five points (3 goals, 2 assists) in seven contests with Team USA at the 2013 IIHF U18 World Championship held last April in Sochi, Russia.

A native of Grosse Pointe, Michigan, McCarron was selected in the first round, 25th overall by the Canadiens at the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. He took part in his first Canadiens’ development camp last week
From the Hockey Writers
The London Knights are run the former NHL player’s Dale and Mark Hunter and in the past they’ve been pretty successful getting top American hockey players to decommit from their college commitments, to go play junior hockey for the London Knights. Last season, the Knights had two former NCAA players and a former NCAA recruit on their roster (Dakota Mermis, Anthony Stolarz, Alex Broadhurst).
This is a big loss for the Western Michigan Broncos.