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Hockey's Back: Someone Send the Memo to the Habs


Hockey has finally returned! For the first time in months, the Montreal Canadiens took the Bell Centre ice last night, taking on the Dallas Stars in the first game of the pre-season.

Unfortunately, it seemed as if someone didn't give the Habs the memo, who found themselves on the receiving end of a 6-3 loss at the hands the Stars, led by former Habs Michael Ryder and Mike Ribeiro.

The Canadiens had an especially tough start, going down 0-3 to Dallas in less than ten minutes, and 0-4 by the second period, with Carey Price between the pipes. The Canadiens would rally with three goals of th...

Uphill Climb

For those of you who haven't looked at the Dallas Stars' schedule, the beginning of the season is approaching soon.  Thing is, it's going to be a tough start for the new-look team.

The 2011-12 season begins within the confines of the American Airlines Center, but against the team that The Hockey News picked as the Western Conference finalist--the Chicago Blackhawks.  Not only one game against the Hawks.  Two.  October 7 and 8, prepare yourself for a home-and-home with one of the strongest teams in the entire National Hockey League. 

Not all is lost.  Last season, the Stars romped over not just the Chicago Blackhawks, but the Central Di...

San Jose's Most Wanted

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Public Enemy #1: Corey Perry

 

I'm sure I'm not alone here when I say that Corey Perry is my least favorite player in the NHL. Perry is the kind of player who plays dirty and never has to stick up for himself; he has George Parros to do that for him. You might think I would hate Parros more, but it's his job to fight. It's Perry's combination of skill and dirtiness that makes you hate him.

 

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Top 10 must-see games on the 2011-12 Chicago Blackhawks schedule

As the days march on towards Opening Night, and the bulk of trades and free agency acquisitions have been completed; the Draft and prospect camps are over; and the opening of Training Camps are still a few weeks away; as the weeks left until the new season drop into the single digits, there's one date circled on every fan's calendar to make it through the August doldrums: the date that their team's tickets go on sale. The Chicago Blackhawks have plenty of exciting matchups to choose from this year.

Five years ago, getting 14,000 fans in the seats at the United Center would've been considered a special night. Now, after three h...

New Organizational Direction Taking Hold

Part of the problem with last year's unfortunate playoff miss had to deal with the Dallas Stars' lack of tenacity.  Before the Stars' final stretch of games that ended with a heartbreaking loss to the Minnesota Wild, the team could not win tough, physical, playoff-type games.

Jamie Benn and Stephane Robidas reflect after the loss to Minnesota
PHOTO CREDIT: AP

In the aftermath of that loss, there is a new trend emerging with the Stars' recent moves in the offseason.

Some of the latest additions to the Stars through free agency and the draft may go a bit under the radar for now. &nbs...

Dvorak Adds Needed Veteran Presence

New Dallas Stars forward Radek Dvorak is not the same hockey player he used to be.  

PHOTO CREDIT: ASSOCIATED PRESS

The veteran Czech enters his 16th NHL season as a reliable utility player, and now an asset of the Dallas Stars for the upcoming season.  The former Panther, Oiler, Ranger, Blue and Thrasher has gone through all sorts of team types.  Winning teams, losing teams, teams that made the playoffs, teams that didn't even come close.

The now young Dallas Stars team will come to love that veteran experience.  The former first round pick of the Florida Panthers in 1995 has had an...

Ryder, Souray, highlight free agency for the Stars

PHOTO CREDIT: AP

The Dallas Stars lost Brad Richards to free agency without receiving anything in return.  Not for lack of trying, anyway.  Reports say that General Manager Joe Nieuwendyk repeatedly tried to trade the rights to Brad Richards for some sort of asset, but in the end, it didn't happen.

Richards is now loving life with a new long-term contract with the New York Rangers.

In the meantime, Nieuwendyk had to find a way to restructure his team by trying to find some dependable pieces up at forward and some defensive options as well.  I'll be sure to take you through each o...

Stars Find Their Man

PHOTO CREDIT: Texas Stars The Stars' management clearly was not happy with the job that Marc Crawford did in his two seasons behind the bench. After missing the playoffs during his tenure with lackluster efforts in big games this past season, management forced Crawford to pack his bags. The objective was to find success. The Stars' brass interviewed names like Ken Hitchcock, Kirk Muller and Peter Horacheck. However, the Stars found their successful resume from within the organization. According to several sources, including Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News, the Stars have promoted Texas Stars coach Glen Gulutzan to take over as the bench boss of the parent club. I know w...

The "Oh No" Moment - Brad Richards Will Not Return

Photo Credit: Reuters Somehow, we just knew this day was coming. Quite simply, the Dallas Stars' ownership situation is in such a mess that they will be unable to tender an contract offer to pending unrestricted free agent forward Brad Richards. With this news, we can say that in hindsight, the Richards trade did just about nothing for the Stars. The only thing that Stars' General Manager Joe Nieuwendyk can hope for now is a draft-day deal that could give a team the rights to speak to Richards right away. They might need it. In a report by Mitch Gallo of the TEAM 990 in Montreal, analyst Pierre McGuire would be "shocked" if Brad Richards does not sign with the New York Rangers....

Falling Just Short

The Dallas Stars had a chance. But they failed. Every single one of those Stars were assuredly glued to their locker room TV watching the Chicago Blackhawks duke it out with the Detroit Red Wings. The Red Wings pulled out a 4-3 victory and it opened the door for the Stars to make their unprecedented move to usurp the defending Stanley Cup Champions. And what looked even more promising, the game was against the Minnesota Wild. It was a team that had nothing to play for except for pride. And the Stars had already won all three meetings that year. Things were looking more than good for Big D. It was time to take what was right in front of them. They didn't. In fact, they fell f...