Barring an untimely injury, Joffrey Lupul will start training camp on a line with Tim Connolly and Phil Kessel.
The keyword being start.
That's not to suggest Lupul is the weakest forward on theToronto Maple Leafs' top-six unit, or that he will ultimately move down the depth chart, but he is certainly in a vulnerable position with the second-line of Nikolai Kulemin, Mikhail Grabovski and Clarke MacArthur all but set in stone---unless the line fails to rekindle its chemistry from the onset. And barring the unlikely scenario of Nazem Kadri or Joe Colborne prying the number-one center position from Connolly, and I wouldn't bet a cen...
[Consol Energy Center, home of the Pittsburgh (#Pgh) Penguins, by www.UprootedPhotographer.com]
I hail from the rolling hills and Three Rivers of Western Pennsylvania. My athletic allegiances are easy to spot given that black and gold(*) are the only two colors I need to represent three pro franchises and their 14 world championships, spanning from 1909 and baseball’s Pirates winning the World Series(**), to the NFL’s Steelers and NHL’s Penguins both hoisting their respective trophies in 2009. I cheer for Pittsburgh.
(*) – Yes, I’m well aware that the Penguins’ current “Vegas gold” is no longer an easy match to the good ol...
The New York Islanders hosted their second prospect scrimmage at the Nassau Coliseum, a game featuring their top young talent in game action in the middle of the summer. Two 25-minute periods were played between the Blue and White teams that were followed by a series of drills in the skills competition. Such drills included the breakaway challenge, hardest shot, rapid fire and a game in which players had to come in on the goalie to attempt to score, and if they failed, they had to retrieve the puck and race back to the blue line. Both sides went simultaneously for that one, and it was the last event of the scrimmage to cap a highlight reel type of night.
Last season was the breakout year for New York Islanders forward P.A. Parenteau. Playing 81 games last season for the Islanders, PA had 53 points, 20 of those being goals.
Signed by the Islanders during the off-season last year, PA Parenteau was coming off a season filled with ups and downs with the Rangers, literally. Parenteau was "the guy" the Rangers would call up if they needed an extra forward for a game, playing most of the season with the Hartford Wolf Pack, now Connecticut Whale.
Right out of 2010 training camp, Parenteau seemed optimistic. This was the first time in his career an NHL team gave him an actual chance in the league, not just using h...
With the huge sprint that started when the clock hit July 1st, a lot of players have landed in new situations or simply resigned with their respective teams.
But there are still a bunch of players that are still waiting for a call from an NHL general manager with a contract offer. Maybe, simply a tryout offer. Just something, even someone saying they are interested!
And it's not like the guys left over are pushovers, there is a bunch of them that are grizzled veterans that teams need in the playoffs. Some guys might sign for cheap, just for another chance to play again.
A few weeks ago, Kyle Busch posted his view on the seeming inevitable realignment of teams in the next couple of years. The NHL’s thought process seems to be focused on cleaning up the time zone distribution of its teams and making the TV scheduling (and the advertising that goes with it) more convenient for fans. It has to be an improvement over the current divisions, right?
I made a case in the comments section of that post for a 16-14 East-West split (below) that made exceptions to the time zone rule in order to maintain current rivalries (Detroit – Chicago) and build new ones (Nashville to the East with other relatively new franchises in Carolina and Florida).
With free agency slowing down and teams starting to finalize rosters, I felt it would be a decent time (albeit early) to take a look at the Atlantic and make a few predictions for some mid-summer discussion.
Best Goaltender – With the addition of Ilya Bryzgalov to the Flyers, the Atlantic division boasts at least four very good goaltenders. Marc-Andre Fleury, Ilya Bryzgalov, Martin Brodeur, and Henrik Lundqvist make up this list. The goaltender that will have the best season next year is going to be Henrik Lundqvist. With another season under the belt of that young defense, King Henrik will be looking at another fantastic season and a Vezina nomination...
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...
There have been many great hockey players who have played for the New York Islanders that were honored in wearing the C on their jersey as captain. The most recent is Doug Weight, who announced his retirement a few weeks back and has accepted a new role with the team as an assistant coach. His leadership and advice will continue to serve well in the locker room and on the ice, but it will be time for someone new to fill the void.
Many feel that Mark Streit would be fitting for the next captain. He's one, if not the most reliable veteran on the team and produces consistently as the team's offensive defenseman who quarterbacks the power play. He arguably has been one of Garth ...
Is it too soon to be worrying about the possibility of a 2012 NHL lockout? Yes, children it is. One may ask themselves, is the NHL really, REALLY dumb enough to endure yet another season without hockey, especially when it appears that they are starting to climb their way back out of obscurity and into the public forum? With the success of American NHL teams in hotbed cities, (Boston, Chicago, etc), the charm of the Winter Classic, and the silver medal for the Americans at the Olympics in Vancouver, it wouldn't make sense to put a freeze on the growth of your product. But hey, we all have to remember that Gary Bettman is in charge of the NHL, and he ...