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The Islanders and the Virtue of Patience

by Drew Bennett

With almost a week before the 2001 National Hockey League Entry Draft,
rumors are heating up on Long Island about what “Mad” Mike Millbury will do
next. Last year Millbury traded the top prospect in hockey, Roberto Luongo,
to draft Rick Dipietro. Will Mike Millbury be up to his usual self again
this year? Only time will tell…

The Islanders have many options in this year’s draft. They have a solid
nucleus of young forwards (Tim Connolly, Taylor Pyatt, Brad Isbister, Juraj
Kolnik, and Justin Mapletoft), skilled and big defenseman (Branislav Mezei,
Mathieu Biron, and Roman Hamrlik), as well as talented net minders (Rick
DiPietro and Stephen Valiquette) in the fold. The speculation is that the
Islanders will either trade the pick or select Jason Spezza or Slanislav
Tchistov; both offensive weapons.

If the Islanders do trade the pick, it is expected that they will make a
deal for Boston’s Jason Allison or Ottawa’s Alexi Yashin. If they are to
make a trade for one of the two, it will cost the team more than the 2nd
overall pick in the entry draft. Most likely, a deal which would bring
Yashin or Allison to the Island would include the 2nd overall pick and two
of the Islanders young talents. That list would include Zdeno Chara, Mark
Parrish, Tim Connolly, and Brad Isbister. The question that I ask myself
about that kind of a deal is, “Is it worth giving up two of the NHL’s
up-and-coming talents and a top draft choice for a star player who might not
be able to single handedly push the Islanders into the play Read more »

IHL Suing Ft. Wayne Komets

by Andrew Bourgeois


The IHL is suing the owners of the Fort Wayne Komets, which left the IHL two years ago for the United Hockey League, for $292,000 in dues and worker’s compensation. When the Komets left the IHL, the franchise was “suspended” which meant, said the lawsuit, it owes $143,456 in dues for the last two seasons and worker’s comp costs of $148,600.
“It’s money we feel is owed to us,” said IHL commissioner Doug Moss. “Unfortunately these things happen.”
Moss said Fort Wayne is the only former team that’s caused a problem because they’ve cleared up those issues with other teams that have left, such as Kalamazoo, Long Beach, Las Vegas and Indianapolis, in the last couple of years.
“It costs money to operate a team and a league. Other people pay their dues,” said Moss.
The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette reported the IHL is also seeking an injunction against Fort Wayne’s use of the Komet name, logo and uniforms “claiming the team granted the league excusive rights to everything associated with the Komets’ identity.”

The Professional Hockey Players Association is also suing the Komets for more than $33,000 for its players’ insurance fund and $45,100 for a former defenceman Guy Dupuis.
The IHL has also filed a claim as a creditor against the Cincinnati Cyclones bankruptcy.
In AHL news and announcement is expeceted tomorrow on the new realignmnet of its divisions and conferences and Kansas City is exploring the possibilities of an AHL franchise coming to town for next year.


The 1972 Nova Scotia Voyageurs, the 1978 Read more »

Former IHL Teams to Compete in Same Division

by Andrew Bourgeois
The inclusion of the Manitoba Moose into the American Hockey League brings the league’s Canadian content to five teams, but don’t expect the Winnipeg-based team to join the Canadian Division.

The division which once included the Calder Cup champion Saint John Flames, St. John’s Maple Leafs, Quebec Citadelles and Hamilton Bulldogs might be scrapped entirely.
AHL president Dave Andrews had hoped to announce the divisional makeup and tentative schedule for next season, but last-minute differences over the proposed scheme has necessitated more talks.

It is expected, however, the former IHL teams will form their own division.

The Flames, Leafs and Citadelles are reportedly set to join a division with a number of New England teams, possibly Portland, Manchester, Worcester and Lowell, with the Bulldogs bound for another grouping. The Leafs’ schedule is dominated with 12 games each against the other Canadian-based teams, a trend that will continue next season. But while St. John’s won’t likely meet Utah, Chicago, Houston, Grand Rapids and Milwaukee, the Leafs will play the Moose at least four times.

Just as there was back in 1991 when St. John’s joined the AHL, some concern was expressed about travelling to far-off cities like Winnipeg, Houston and Salt Lake City.
However, the league has established a travel equalization fund, cost-shared equally among all clubs to the tune of about $15,000 each.

That’s good news for the Leafs, who had been paying about $65,000 per season in travel subsidies.

“If we find ourselves going to Read more »

German Draft Preview

by Oliver Janz

Top Ten

#1 Marcel Goc

Shoots left
CSB-Rank (European Skaters): #12
Height: 6′
Weight: 188 lbs.
Birthdate: 8/24/1983 in Calw, Germany
Team for the next season: Schwenninger Wild Wings / DEL (under contract till 2003)
Draft chances: It’s all said about him, he’s in the Top 50 for sure. The best german talent ever has the potential to become a NHL-player. A realistic guy, who won’t make problems like a Robert Dome. The strength’ from Marcel Goc (pronounce ‘Gotch’) are his skating, an effortless stride (includes a quick change of pace), he creates opportunities for his linemates and possesses natural scoring instincts. He excited the scouts and fans with his sensational face off average in the international competitions. Will play alongside or against his older brother Sascha in at least three years. For more infos check out the article about him.

Last season stats:


Read more »

Pens ink another young defensman

by Richard A. Plisco
The Pittsburgh Penguins continue to sign young defensive talent. They recently came to terms with 1998 draft pick Robert Scuderi. Scuderi, a New York native, is 22 and stands at 6’2″ 195lbs.

Scuderi recently completed his college career with the Boston College Eagles. He assisted that team on the way to an NCAA championship. Last season he put up 4 goals, 19 assists, and 42 PIM in 43 games. In 169 career games, Scuderi has accumulated 7 goals, 63 assists, and 96 PIM.

The fifth round pick has demonstrated his durability, missing only one game in his four college seasons.

The Thrashers draft preview

by pbadmin

by Dan Perrault

The Thrashers have a very young and bright future. In the past two drafts,
Atlanta was selecting very high in the first round. In 1999, they
obtained Patrik Stefan, who jumped into the NHL pretty quickly, and
last year, in the 2000 entry draft, Atlanta picked second and selected Dany
Heatley. This year, the Thrashers have the top pick in the draft. What
will they do? Trade it for some immediate help to the team? Or keep it
and select someone who could be helpful in the future. Let’s take a look
at some of the rumors that are going around on what the Thrashers will
do in the next week or so.

Scenario 1:
The Thrashers trade their first overall draft pick to the
2001 entry draft for a young goalie, which they need badly. The Montreal Canadiens are very interested in trading
young goalie Jose Theodore for the first pick. The Canadiens have veteran
goalie Jeff Hackett and promising goalie, Mathieu Garon. This could be
the best possible scenario for the Thrashers who have a lot of young
talent, but need a goalie.

Scenario 2:
Mike Peca. Big trade talks in the last few days between
Buffalo and Atlanta. Peca who hasn’t been getting along with the
Buffalo organization, after many disputes over contract negotiations,
could possibly make his way to the Thrashers, who are weak at center.
Peca is a great defensive forward who plays with a lot of intensity in
his game.

Scenario 3:
The Thrashers keep the draft pick.

These three players are probably players the Thrashers are really looking

1 Read more »

Hockey’s Future Interview with Lance Ward

by Mark Fischel
Hockey’s Future recently had the opportunity to speak with Lance Ward, who played 30 games as a rookie defenseman for the Florida Panthers last season. Ward was given his opportunity to play against Carolina last year, and he quickly found himself playing on the top defensive unit with veteran Robert Svehla. But just as it appeared that unit was going to be together the rest of the year, Lance came down with an unfortunate back injury which ended his season.
Ready to put all that behind him, Hockey’s Future caught up with Lance Ward while he was attending a Panthers strength camp in preparation for a training camp in Thunder Bay next month. Lance was able to reflect on his past season, the perils of re-entering the draft, his upcoming season, and the Panthers entertaining radio announcer, Randy Moller.

HF: At what point in your life did you realize that you would be able to have aspirations to play hockey on the professional level?

LW: As long as I can remember, I’ve always loved playing hockey and that’s why I still play. It’s turned into a job now, but it’s something that I love and I would be doing it even if I weren’t a professional.

HF: Was there any player that you emulated growing up?

LW: No, not really. I grew up watching the Edmonton Oilers and watched guys like Wayne Gretzky and Mark Messier and they were the kind of guys that I was a fan of when I was young.

HF: To this point, what has been your most cherished memory as a Hock Read more »

Maple Leafs Sign Christian Chartier

by Randy Nicholson
Doubtless many Leafs fans were mildly disappointed when the team failed to execute a contract with North Bay’s Peter Reynolds prior to the June 1st deadline. Although the 1999 second rounder had largely underachieved throughout his OHL career, Reynolds had displayed solid physical and leadership skills at the Leafs’ Rookie Camp in Kitchener last fall. Many scouts still believe that Peter’s abilities are best suited to the professional game and that he will yet carve out a significant niche for himself in the years ahead.

Sometimes disappointment can be extremely short lived. On June 5th, the Maple Leafs used the funds that had previously been ear marked for the Reynolds contract in order to ink WHL Defender-Of-The-Year Christian Chartier from the WHL’s Prince George Cougars. The former 1999 Edmonton draftee failed to sign with the Oilers prior to the deadline and was an unrestricted free agent due to the fact that he was born in 1980 (December 29th). During the 2000/2001 season, the 6-1 ft. 215 lb. defender had truly blossomed, scoring 12 goals and 68 points in 63 games while also racking up 99 PIM. CSS reports indicate that Chartier is a smooth powerful skater, an excellent passer and a highly efficient finesse-based defender. The Maple Leafs now possess arguably the two best offensive blueliners from junior hockey last season – the other being Jon Zion of the Ottawa 67’s.

Afte.r this signing, complaints that the Maple Leafs had overpaid for Chartier were quickly overheard around the NHL. This criticism should be welcome news to all Read more »

Canucks draft situation

by Scott McFarlane

The Vancouver Canucks are selecting 16th in the 2001 NHL entry draft.

With this pick they don’t have much of a chance at getting a goalie that will help them in the long run. Dan Blackburn and Pascal Leclaire are two goalies that are highly rated and have been highly scouted. They both have promising careers in the NHL. With the Canucks selecting 16th this year, the chances of either one of them getting drafted by Brian Burke and the Canucks very unlikely.

The only way that the Canucks would have a chance at getting either one of them was if a team like the New York Rangers made a deal. Since the Rangers are in need of a young goalie in their system, this is very unlikely. The Canucks need a team that does not need a goalie to make a deal with a team that needs a young goalie. Rumors are already swirling about the possibility of Jagr going to the Rangers, but there also is the possibility that Mike Peca or one of the Sabres many good young goalies to be dealt. Anything is possible. But the chances of the Canucks getting either Blackburn or Leclaire are very unlikely.

I also think that the possibility or the Canucks trading their pick if a goalie is not available a very likely situation. The Canucks obviously lack penalty killing strength, and a point man on the power play. With the pick they have this year it is possible that the Canucks could deal it for a power forward type right winger. Someone like a Brad Isbister.


Scott McFarlane

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