Looking down a long hallway you see a man walking down the middle of the
hallway with a folded newspaper. He’s wearing a gray and black T-shirt
and black shorts. He’s walking slowly as he fills in the blanks on the
crossword puzzle. There’s another man trying to hurry down the hallway
behind him; but the man in front is so engrossed in his crossword puzzle
he doesn’t realize someone is behind him. As he strays a little to the
right and then to the left, but keeping mostly to the middle, he is
effectively blocking anyone from passing. He fills in one more word as
he exits the long hallway and turns to head to the locker rooms to get
A name, a face, and time for this player?
The Captain, Steve Yzerman, fifteen minutes before he’s supposed to be
on the ice for a practice, which he does make in time.
It is Team A’s day for the practice, which is the team Yzerman is on
this week, while teams B and C have scrimmages.
The players are pretty loose and light-hearted for practices. Take Brett
Hull and Steve Duchesne for example.
Hull takes the blade of his stick and tries to see if it will fit
between Duchesne’s helmet and skull. Duchesne taking exception to the
stick work turns around quickly and seeing Hull gives him a light slash
across the back of his legs. All the time the two are grinning and
Switching between goalies in a drill Manny Legace is a little slow in
going to the net. When Legace turns and sees the puck sailing towards
the net he’s supposed to be defending. Legace dives across th Read more »
As I stood watching the Red Wings out on the practice a doctor walked in
behind me looking for Pete Correia, the director of training camp. He
was there to find out where to park the motor home that contained
everything for a blood drive. The Red Wings had volunteered to donate
blood after their practices, scrimmages, and workouts of the day.
Trainer John Wharton approved of it from a medical stand point as long
as they ate and drank enough between working out and donating their
So after all of their on and off ice conditioning was completed the Red
Wings went out to the parking lot and donated their blood to help
restore the blood banks around the country in the aftermath of Tuesday’s
There were also other acts of kindness from the Red Wings giving a few
moments of their time with the handicapped who were there to watch the
practices and scrimmages.
Young Courtney Bailey, a 7 year old girl from Traverse City, MI, who’s
confined to a wheelchair was there to watch her favorite player, Kris
Draper, and the rest of the Red Wings. As Mathieu Dandenault walked by
getting ready to play in one of the scrimmages, he stopped to talk and
have his picture taken with her.
Draper, who’d been on the ice for Team B’s practice, was walking off the
ice past her and recognized her from two years before and stopped for a
chat. Courtney asked why he hadn’t responded to her letter that she had
sent him. Draper couldn’t remember receiving a letter from her but asked
for her address promising to write her when he got back ho Read more »
Panther Training Camp Reflections
With the Panthers training camp getting the opportunity to move to the National Car Rental Center for the next few days, Panthers coaching staff turned up the intensity of the practices with a few new drills for the team. Working on up-tempo drills that emphasized puck movement, reduced space on the ice, and physical play, several of the Panther prospects had a chance to show off their skills. Hockey’s Future had the chance to ask some questions to a few of the players who will be playing tommorow in the intra-squad game.
Hockey’s Future: Niklas, What has been your initial impressions of the training camp so far?
Niklas Hagman:Well last week I was at the rookie camp and that was ok. I got the chance to get used to the smaller rink and the more physical game style. I have been here three times on the ice and it has been nice to get to know the guys, and go to the ice and figure out the playing style. Its going okay.
Hockey’s Future: What do you feel the adjustments are that you will have to make from playing the Euro style to the North American style.
Niklas Hagman: Of course it is so different here than back in Europe. The rink is smaller and everyone is shooting everywhere. In Finland and in Europe, they try to pass it the open guy. I don’t see that there is too much for me to change the game, but you got to be ready because there will be more hits, and you got to shoot the puck more Read more »
NHL Cancels Weekends Games
The National Hockey League announced today that all games through Sunday, September 16 have been canceled. The regular slate of pre-season games will start on Monday, September 17.
Sound Tigers Attend Norwalk Oyster Festival
The Bridgeport Sound Tigers front office, players, and mascot attended the Norwalk Oyster Festival. Fans were able to meet players, purchase merchandise, and purchase tickets for the upcoming season. The team was on hand at the Big Boy Toy Show Tent.
The oyster festival is a major fundraiser for the revitalization of the Norwalk Harbor area. The celebration is held in Veteran’s Park in East Norwalk. Proceeds from each year’s festival also provide year-round funding for the Norwalk Seaport Association’s environmental Education Programs.
Emile Francis and Norman Poile Honored with New AHL Trophies Read more »
With the pre-season firing on all cylinders, it is time to look into the new rules of play for the WHL. Junior hockey fans are in for a real change this season with new procedures like the “Fast Face-Off” and “4-on-4” regulation play. Yes, this may be the season fans learn to love our gifted men in black and white stripes. This year may put them in better graces with fans due to a host of contraversial rules handed down by the Canadian Hockey League. These rule changes will be in effect during the pre-season and regular season in all three CHL umbrella leagues: the Western Hockey League, Ontario Hockey League, and Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
New Rules Overview:
“Fast Face-Off”- This procedure will essentially give the linesman the ability to drop the puck on face-offs, regardless of whether both centres are ready for the drop. The rule is based on a 5-second line change (per team) and an additional allocation of 5-seconds to prepare for the puck drop. When the team line changes are complete, the linesman will blow his whistle, indicating no more than five seconds until the puck drop will occur. The obvious result of this rule will be that players must quickly get in position for face-offs, knowing the other team may gain control of the puck if they are not prepared. Face-offs are the beginning step in garnering control of the play, thus teams will emphasize the importance of this new rule to their teams. Fans will definitely be divided on their thoughts about this new regulation. Some will love the quicker speed, others will publ Read more »
I had heard thru my little grape vine that Poti was close with the Oilers and thought he would be signed. I had also thought that guys like Ninnima’s back would be ok by today and knew nothing about Sven Butenchans injury. While Poti and Ninnima can afford to miss a day of camp and still make this team, I believe that Sven is put behind some standout performances by other defensemen in particular draft pick Semenov.
The best line on the ice was one made up of Green, Laraque and centered by Rem Murray. They carried the play, made big hits, controlled the puck and generally had a free rein whenever they were on the ice. This is one line that I hope stays intact as it can wreck a lot of havoc, and provide the necessary jump to a game when things slow down.
The speed and creativity of the line of Hemsky, Rita and Comrie was apparent, but Mike Comrie needs to slow down a bit and not take on so much. He was all over the ice, and if that continues he’ll wear himself out by Christmas. This line has blazing speed, great skills. (Great high speed pass’s) and good movement. The only thing they really could use is a year’s experience. While I can’t see this line staying together, when it matures in a year or so, they will be awesome.
Red Deer Rebel Shay Stevenson was also a big hitter today, and while he’ll be in Red Deer by the end of the week, look for things from this kid as he develops in the future. The goaltending situation was a bit of a concern, but both Ty Conklin and Makennnen showed that they are both very capable of stopping the puck. Ma Read more »
The pennants hang with their usual luster. The goal posts and ice shine with the brightness of a new season. If baseball has the smell of grass and the open sky, then surely hockey has the shine. This is the time of the season when everyone’s a contender. The loss column is empty, and anything seems possible.
It all seemed like a distraction as the Canadiens stepped onto the ice to begin training camp. Only the brightness of the new season was enough to cut through the dark cloud of reality.
Until eight days ago, the shine might have been accompanied by more hope. At that point the team had made sufficient strides toward competing for a playoff spot. The car finally seemed to be in gear; inching its way up the hill of competitiveness. Now the reality of the situation sets in; with the loss of the team’s leader and number one centerman the Canadiens head into training camp coasting uphill.
Great teams are built through the middle. If goaltending is the anchor, then the centerman is the rudder. As it stands right now the Canadiens depth at center trails in comparison with other teams in the East. Where the Flyers have Primeau, Roenick, Dopita, and the Rangers have Lindros, Messier, Nedved; the Canadiens have Perreault, Juneau, Bulis.
Craig Darby, Benoit Gratton, and Mike Ribeiro fill out the depth chart. Barring any additional help via trade or free agency, Ribeiro may just become the wild card. His offensive game has never been questioned. However, his work ethic and defensive awareness have question marks jumping off the page.
Read more »
Bad days for all of us
New York and Washington were attacked by terrorists on Tuesday morning. The peoples here in Germany and all over the world are shocked, too. In an announcement german chancellor Gerhard Schröder told us that this wasn’t an attack against the USA, they attacked the whole world. In the darkest time of our whole lifes, our thoughts are with the relatives of the innocent killed people and with the helpers in these places of mourning and destruction. We would like to offer our condolences to the victims. Let us remember them and their families in our prayers.
Bad days for hockey, too
Saku Koivu, finnish center of the Montreal Canadiens, has cancer. This announcement shocked the Canadiens’ fans and hockey fans all over the world. Many peoples died due to these illness, others, like well known athletes Mario Lemieux or the winner of this years Tour de France, Lance Armstrong won the fight against it. Saku, we all hope that you will win the fight against the horrible illness and we wish you all the best.
Ian Young, a 32 year old former hockey player died in a car crash near Calgary at the end of the last week. Young played for several german team Read more »
The final installment of the 2001-02 previews, for unranked prospects.
Fedor Fedorovthe former Port Huron Border Cat was selected by the Canucks in the third round of this year’s draft. He re-entered the draft, after failing to come to terms with his original team, the Tampa Bay Lightning. Let me first start out by saying that all Fedorov’s are not created equal. Fedor doesn’t have the talent of his older brother, Sergei, but that doesn’t mean that he’s not a talented player in his own right. Fedor is big (6’4″) and 217 pounds, and uses his size to his advantage. He had a great season in Sudbury, leading the Wolves in scoring, after being relegated to a checking role the season before. A fast skater with great balance, Fedor can open up the ice with his skating ability, much like his older brother, Sergei. He has good basic offensive skills, but nothing to suggest that he’ll be much more than an average offensive contributor at the NHL level. Fedor could possibly become a part of the Canucks future, he’s one of the few solid wingers in the system. He’s already played one season of minor-pro, and has worked hard at improving his game in Sudbury. He might make an impact if he goes to Manitoba this season. He remains unsigned as of today.
Will: Play hard, no matter where he ends up.
Can’t: Shake the shadow of Sergei.
Expect: Hard work, and good results, hopefully in the AHL.
Don’t Expect: An NHL promotion right away. Read more »