Last year at this time, center was a big question mark for
the Bolts. Only two centers, Vincent
Lecavalier and Brian Holzinger, had achieved even moderate success
at the NHL level. Wayne Primeau,
Ryan Johnson and Steve Martins were being counted on to shoulder
a good part of the load, but had limited experience. By the 2001 entry draft, only Lecavalier and Holzinger
remained in the organization. Nobody
knew how much to expect from Brad Richards last year at this time.
How things have changed.
This season, Lecavalier (pending a contract) and Holzinger
return from last year’s Tier One group to join 2000-01 rookie-star Brad
Richards and a handful of others capable of playing both the pivot and
The organizational depth chart at center can be broken down
into four tiers of impact talent:
Vincent Lecavalier, Brad Richards, Brian Holzinger, Vaclav Prospal, Juha Ylonen, Tim Taylor.
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Leading the gro Read more»
Well, my friends, I’m back, with the Canucks new and revised ‘Top 16′ List! Okay, I know that sounds silly, but I only have sixteen ranked prospects, so bear with me. This season is a very important one for the Canucks, and many of their prospects this season will either make big moves, or flounder, like many young players before them. We face many challenges this upcoming season, the largest fish we have to fry is our goaltending situation, we have a fine prospect in Alexander Auld, but he is out for a month, as he is in a walking cast. This leaves the Canucks with three options, option A is the Waiver Draft, which takes place tomorrow. There are three ‘tenders that would help the Canucks remedy their back-up situation. Jamie McLennan, Chris Osgood, and Stephane Fiset. It has become more than likely that the Canucks will end up with McLennan, as Osgood and Fiset are expected to go rather high in the waiver draft. (What an accomplishment!) Although I’m a big critic of getting someone like McLennan, the price (free, for all intents and purposes) is right. Either way, I’m going to be interested in the events that will transpire during tomorrow’s Draft.
We knew it was going to happen sooner or later, but Josh Holden was left unprotected. In five years since being drafted, Holden has been nothing but a disappointment, with a major injury mixed in here or there. He could never catch a break, but he should have been up here by now if he’s all that he was billed as coming out of the Regina Pats program. I hope he is able to latch on with another NHL team, and get a second c Read more»
The New York Rangers faced off against the New York Islanders last Saturday night and 18-year-old goaltender Dan Blackburn was sensational during the game, stopping 38 of 41 shots in a 4-2 loss.
The Rangers had a 2-0 lead after the first period, as Zdeno Ciger and Theoren Fleury were able to score on Islanders’ goalie Garth Snow. The Islanders finally got on the board at 1:35 of the 2nd period, as Michael Peca was able to finally get one by Blackburn. Peca again scored on Blackburn, this time early in the 3rd period while the Islanders were on a 5 on 3 advantage. Mariusz Czerkawski added a power play goal later in the period and Jason Blake scored a shorthanded empty-net goal to seal the win for the Islanders.
The game certainly was a wild one, and most of the game was played with one of the teams on the power play. It was a dirty game from the beginning, and it all started with Islanders goalie Garth Snow take a cheap shot on Eric Lindros. With the puck dumped into the corner, Lindros and Garth Snow both went to get the puck. When they got to the puck at about the same time, the two players collided and Snow threw his elbow into the head of Lindros. Rangers’ Head Coach Ron Low was furious with the cheap shot, as were the rest of the Rangers. As a result of Snow’s shot to Lindros’ head, a lot of scuffles broke out, including Dale Purinton charging Snow while he was in the crease and was fighting with the netminder. The NHL just recently made an announcement about the incident, suspending Dale Purinton for 4 games for his actions during the game. Da Read more»
When the WHL announced a couple of weeks ago that they had for all intents and purposes found the location of the much coveted twentieth team for the league in Everett, Washington to begin play in 2003-04, I thought that through all the specifics attached to the announcement, it wasn’t a bad choice. When Ron Robinson was brought in as commissioner over fourteen months ago it was quite clear that one of his mandates was to bring the WHL to twenty member franchises in specific regions. The target region was the Pacific Northwest to compliment the four existing franchises in a newly named U.S. Division and Everett, its relative location to Seattle, Portland, Kennewick (Tri-Cities), Spokane and the most recent expansion club, the Vancouver Giants fit that mold quite nicely. It’s population (96,000), it’s instant rivalry potential with Seattle and the fact that Snohomish county was going to build a 8000 seat arena complex didn’t hurt it’s chances either. In what had to be a first and undoubtedly a sign of the times, two separate leagues vied for the privilege of locating there. The WHL had to actually present its case as a better tenant to the Everett city council as competition to place a franchise in that city was coming from the West Coast Hockey League. A league comparable to single ‘A’ level of professional hockey if you were using baseball’s designation in relation to it’s quality of play.
As mentioned, the WHL won the day, had it’s twentieth franchise and couldn’t be happier with where it would be situated. One small problem though, the location proved to b Read more»
Monday night the Pittsburgh Penguins fans went to their “igloo” to see the first home game for the Pens this year. Some went to see “Le Magnifique” after his first training camp since 1996, while others went to see the “Arbitration Line” and yet others went to see the young prospects play. The away team, Atlanta Thrashers, showed up at Pittsburgh with an old roster for a preseason game. Here’s the roster for the game:
Eric Meloche-Mario Lemieux-Kevin Stevens
Martin Straka-Robert Lang-Alexei Kovalev
Michal Sivek-Milan Kraft-Alexei Morozov
Toby Petersen-Shane Endicott-Tom Kostopoulos
Hans Jonsson-Ross Lupascuck
Darius Kasparaitis-Ian Moran
Andrew Ference-Michel Petit
Shean Donovan-Bob Corkum-Hnat Domenichelli
Dany Heatley-Tony Hrkac-Patrick Stefan
Lubos Bartecko-Per Svartadet-Brad Tapper
Darcy Hordichuck-Andreas Karlsson-Jp Vigier
Brian Pothier-Jiri Slegr
Frantisek Kaberle-Mike Weaver
Jeff Dessner-Brett Clack Read more»