As we wind down the 2011-12 NHL season, it’s only fitting to take a moment and pay our respects to the “dearly departed” – those teams we know will be golfing in a couple of weeks. Here now is a quick look at each of the teams looking ahead to 2012-13 already, in reverse order of today’s standings. Columbus Blue Jackets What went wrong: Pretty much everything. James Wisniewski’s 8-game suspension crippled the team out of the gate. Coach Scott Arniel tried switching his team’s approach from an aggressive to conservative style mid-season, but the results were too poor to save...Click here to read more.
Tagged: Ron Wilson
It seems these days not a day goes by that there isn’t something about the mediocre Toronto Maple Leafs that’s making the headlines. At first blush, the signing of Mikhail Grabovski to a five year, $27.5 million contract seems rather ludicrous. We’re talking about high-end salary for a streaky scorer that’s never put up 30-goals or 60 points. But is the contract really that far out of whack? Let’s do this arbitration-style, and look at some comparables. Comparable #1: The 2004 NHL Entry Draft – Part 1 Grabovski was drafted 150th overall by the Montreal Canadiens in the 2004 NHL...Click here to read more.
Ken Hitchcock has more than 500 wins, a .590 career winning percentange and a Stanley Cup to his credit. But he’s never won the Jack Adams Award for NHL Coach of the Year. With all due respect to the great work John Tortorella, Dan Bylsma, Kevin Dineen and Mike Babcock are doing with their respective teams, Hitchcock should win his first Jack Adams Award this year. The impact he’s had on the St. Louis Blues has been incredible. To illustrate this, let’s take a look at how each of this season’s coaching changes have played out. Ken Hitchcock Pre-hiring: St. Louis...Click here to read more.
James Mirtle in the Globe and Mail asked an interesting question Monday – which rebuild is better, the Leafs approach or the Oilers approach? Ultimately, the answer to this question can only come years from now, when the young promise on each roster has been fulfilled (or not fulfilled, for that matter). However, as the continued success of the Detroit Red Wings (and continued failure of the Columbus Blue Jackets) suggests, there are franchise factors that can have a major impact on the development of a successful team. Good ownership is one of these factors. Every fan wishes their team...Click here to read more.
Out of Town Notebook: Flames’ Rebuild, Leafs’ Mixed Messages, Ovechkin’s Slump and Unfortunate Injuries
[Every weekend, Canucks Hockey Blog goes out of town as Tom Wakefield (@tomwakefield88) posts his thoughts on what's happening around the NHL.] Photo credit: Calgary Herald So just how big a project is rebuilding the Calgary Flames? Countless articles and endless minutes of media coverage in Canada over the holidays talked about how Darryl Sutter left this team without the young or tradeable assets necessary to build hope for a better future. The bar is being set incredibly low for Jay Feaster. Basically, if he makes a couple of trades for draft picks at the deadline, columnists will award him...Click here to read more.
[Every weekend, Canucks Hockey Blog goes out of town as Tom Wakefield (@tomwakefield88) posts his thoughts on what's happening around the NHL.] Photo credit: rds.ca The more things change, the more they stay the same for the Edmonton Oilers. After almost two decades of uncertain ownership, Daryl Katz’s purchase of the team in 2008 was supposed to solidify their roots for a generation, if not longer. In Katz, Oiler fans saw the embodiment of their dream owner – a life-long fan with the deep pockets to keep the team in Edmonton, and with the desire to ice a perennial winner....Click here to read more.