Archive for July, 2011

The Battle of Pennsylvania Part II took place in Philly this time.  The Flyers’ Eric Desjardins started the scoring midway through the first, but the Penguins’ Jeff Taffe tied it up with an unassisted goal 17 seconds later.  In the first minute of the second period, Mario Lemieux gave Pittsburgh its’ first lead of the game at 2-1.  Three minutes later, the Flyers’ young star James van Riemsdyk knotted the game at two apiece.  Lemieux scored his second of the game late in the period to put the Penguins up 3-2 heading into the third period.  But that lead wouldn’t last one minute into the third, as Rod Brind’Amour knotted the game at 3.  Brind’Amour scored again five minutes later to give the Flyers a lead.  Eric Lindros scored on a late powerplay (thanks to a Jordan Staal high sticking double minor), putting the Flyers up 5-3 and giving Philly the win.   (more…)

Here are some tidbits from around the NHL

Kris Draper (PHOTO: Getty Images)

– Kris Draper announced his retirement from the NHL. He is a 4 time Stanley Cup winner (1997, 1998, 2002, 2008. All with Detroit), as well as a 2004 Frank J. Selke Trophy winner. He totaled 364 points in his 19 year NHL career that spanned 1157 games. Also has 2 world junior gold, 1 world cup gold, 1 world championship gold and silver to his name with Team Canada. Congrats to him on a great career, and all the best to him in retirement!

– Nikolai Khabibulin is heading to the slammer after deciding to not appeal his 2010 DUI conviction. The lesson, being on injured reserve for a sore back, not the time to get wasted. On the bright side, 15 days is plenty of time  for him to start a prison yoga gang.

– Penguins signed Right Winger Jason Williams. A very good, underrated signing. He seems to always pop up when you need a goal, just don’t count on him all the time. He’s like Alex Kovalev…. without the huge price tag, stickhandling ability, and attitude.   (more…)

Rob’s Jackets finished the first half in Boston, taking on Andy’s Bruins. Tim Thomas and Steve Mason dueled in the first period, but in the second, Martin Lapointe solved Mason. At 11:40 in the second, Rick Nash took a holding penalty and Ray Bourque made the Jackets pay, scoring on the powerplay to put Boston up 2-0. But the Jackets wouldn’t go away easy. In the third, Andrew Cassels cut the Boston lead to one. Boston’s Dennis Wideman was penalized for holding later in the period and Nikolai Zherdev cashed in to tie it up at 2. Unfortunately for Columbus, two minutes later Lapointe scored again to give Boston another lead. Patrice Bergeron added a goal less than a minute later to seal Boston’s 4-2 win.   (more…)

Chris Osgood has announced his retirement today, and NHL fans should be celebrating his long, storied career.  Yet his retirement promped the debate whether or not he should be a Hall of Famer.  His resume includes being tenth all time in wins (401) in 17 seasons with the Red Wings, Blues and Islanders.  He also has 3 Stanley Cup rings (’97, ’98, ’08), although one of those  (’97) he was not the starter for.

So he should be a slam dunk Hall of Famer, right?

Let’s compare him to his peers, shall we?  Below is a list of comparable goalies from the mid 80’s until present, in different categories.  (more…)

There were a lot of questions for the New York Rangers going into this summer. Many of them were answered within the first few days of free agency, though some are still looming.

What we have:

Glen Sather did what many a Rangers fan thought he couldn’t do; reel in the season’s prized free agent. In bringing in Brad Richards the Blueshirts now have a nifty center to feed Marian Gaborik the puck. Though both the winger and center are oft-injured, the two could make some magic on the ice if they mesh well. Having Ruslan Fedotenko, Richards’ linemate during their Championship in ’04, could help improve their dynamic.

Another free agent brought into New York was Pittsburgh center Mike Rupp. The main question with the 6-foot-5 center was where did that leave 6-foot-6 center Brian Boyle? Apparently it simply meant bringing along a hard-hitting Cup winner (2003, NJ) into the fold, and not the departure of Boyle, who signed a three year contract a couple weeks later.

The last thing Sather did was ensuring the stability of the Rangers ‘core’ by re-signing RFA’s Michael Sauer (2 year, $2.5m) and Artem Anisimov (2 year, $3.75m), relatively good contracts for those who would have otherwise gone to arbitration. The Rangers got away with a lot, considering how well of a rookie season Sauer had in New York. One of the last pieces of the defensive puzzle was a trade with Calgary in mid-June, bringing in Tim Erixon; who was drafted 23rd overall by Calgary in 2009. Since he had not signed a contract with the Flames, Erixon was set to be re-entered into the 2011 draft. Instead, his rights were traded to his father’s former team, with whom he settled an entry-level contract with. With two more years under his belt with the Swedish Elite League, he is considered a top-ten level prospect, and is considered to crack the roster this season.

What we still have left: (more…)

The first game of the night had Rob’s Blue Jackets headed to Philadelphia to take on Dan’s Flyers. Simon Gagne got the party started with an early goal, and the Flyers held the lead through the first period. In the second, Eric Desjardins took a holding penalty, sending Columbus to the powerplay. Rick Nash tied the game towards the end of the man advantage. Kevyn Adams added a goal later in the second to put the Jackets up 2-1. It didn’t last long; early in the third, David Vyborny was called for unsportsmanlike conduct, and Eric Lindros knotted the game back up on the powerplay. Two minutes later, Rod Brind’Amour broke the tie, and it looked like the Flyers were going to win. Until Rick Nash, once again tied it up with 2:12 remaining. The game went into overtime, where Rod Brind’Amour once again broke a tie, and won the game for the Flyers.

Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, Jeremy’s Kings hosted Andy’s Bruins.  The first period was pretty uneventful, but the fun started in the second.  Nathan Horton opened scoring at 3:25 to put Boston up 1-0.  But the Kings struck back thanks to a Nelson Emerson goal, sending the game into the third period tied at 1.  Both teams peppered the opposing goalies with shots (Kings 42, Bruins 34), but both Tim Thomas and Jon Quick refused to budge.  Wayne Gretzky solved Thomas midway through the third to put the Kings up.  Late in the third, the Bruins pulled Thomas for the extra attacker, but Ian Laperriere added an empty netter to give Los Angeles a 3-1 win.   (more…)

On Saturday was a free to the public scrimmage to cap off the Penguins rookie development camp. Approximately 4-5ooo fans attended, which is pretty impressive since there were maybe 1-2000 at regular training camp during Crosby’s rookie year. It’s a nice sign of the popularity heights that the Penguins have enjoyed for a while now.

The scrimmage was two 25 minute games with periodic switches between 5 on 5, 4 on 4, and some 3 on 3 situations. So evaluations and opinions of players can be a little skewed, but then again we also missed the drills and evaluations of the earlier days in the week as well.

By far the most impressive player in the scrimmage was the Pens 2nd round pick this year Scott Harrington. The London Knight showed great skating ability and quite a fervor for jumping up in the play and impressed with puck handling as well.

(more…)