“I Might Just Be A Hockey Fan In California” is a feature that is posted on Saturdays here at the View From My Seats. There are plenty of things going on in the hockey world (and even the sports world); and you know everyone has an opinion. This is a place for some quick hits of the week that was.
I might just be a hockey fan in California, but:
- Talk about pressure. Not only was Corey Crawford expected lead the defending Stanley Cup champions last season, but now he’s expected to do it again. There’s a huge difference between having a good season and having a good career. Just ask Jim Carey. No, not that one—the other one.
- Am I the only one that is surprised that NHL.com is really re-drafting the entire league? Once again, the line between blogging and mainstream media is further blurred.
- Logan Couture’s contract is exactly the type of deal the current CBA needs in order to work. If he continues to produce at the same level he did last year, then it’s a deal for the Sharks. If he slips into a sophomore slump, then Couture gets the better end of the deal. When his second contract is completed in three years, both sides will have a better idea of his true worth in the NHL. If only someone told us this before…
- Can you imagine Evgeni Malkin during his rehab—and all he hears is about Sidney Crosby’s injury? That man is going to have a Ukrainian-sized chip on his shoulder when the season starts.
- This just in: Tim Thomas is one of the best human being in the entire NHL.
- If David Backes isn’t awarded the captaincy in St. Louis, then every single person with decision-making power should be immediately fired. Don’t make this harder than it is.
- Sooner or later, the Edmonton Oilers are going to have to get better. But looking at that defensive corps, it isn’t happening this year. Whenever you’re comparing your group of defensemen against the second worst team in the league to show how good they are, well…
- Some people have called the Los Angeles Kings the Flyers of the West. Some have called them the Oilers of the South. I’ll just call them stacked…
- Remember when the Islanders organization was getting hammered for their viewing party that featured the ugly Penguins/Islanders game? The organization isn’t getting nearly enough credit in the wake of that near PR disaster. First, they asked MSG to re-air a different game. Secondly, the RELEASED LEAKED those hideous third jerseys. At this point, no one is even talking about the viewing party.
- Earlier this week Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau compared Brooks Laich to a modern-day Bob Gainey. Let me state this up front: I’m a huge fan of Laich. I love what he brings to the game, love the passion he plays with, and strongly think he would be the best captain for the Capitals (Ovechkin included). But until he starts earning Selkes, all-star appearances, and/or Stanley Cups, the comparison is a little insulting to Bob Gainey.
- Dave Scatchard retired this week, which is sad only in that I thought he retired a few years ago.
- One of the more interesting developments next season will be how new Panthers coach Kevin Dineen deals with all of the new pieces in Florida. In an odd way, all of the moving parts may end up helping Dineen in the locker room in the short-term. Unlike most coaches, there is no chemistry or team identity in place. For once, a new head coach truly has a blank slate to mold the team how he chooses. We’ll see what he can do with the opportunity.
- With all of the bad news swirling around hockey players and their individual concussion battles, it’s great to hear that Nathan Horton is recovering nicely from the brutal hit he took in the Stanley Cup Final. He says he’s symptom-free and he’ll be able to start training camp on time this September.
- Shane Doan is not going to be traded at the deadline. If he is, they might as well trade the franchise along with him—because that would be the last straw for the vast majority of fans in Arizona.
- Speaking of the Coyotes, the City of Glendale says they’re “cautiously optimistic” that a deal will be done by the end of 2011. Likewise, I’m “cautiously optimistic” about the lottery ticket sitting on my desk.
- People are so quick to get upset when their team isn’t getting enough love with the national broadcast schedule (NBC/Versus) is released every year. People realize that, in most cases, they prefer their own broadcast teams anyway, right? Sure, everyone would like a little more publicity for their team. Here’s a hint: win. Win games and you’re favorite team will get plenty of love. (Unless you’re in Canada, because Gary Bettman hates Canada. Obviously.)
- Going back to the beginning of last season, the Dallas Stars have lost two-thirds of their top line with James Neal traded to Pittsburgh and Brad Richards leaving via free agency. For a team that didn’t make the playoffs last season, how are they supposed to compete this year? Wait—can Sheldon Souray play wing?
- If the Carolina Hurricanes had someone named Irene or Nevin Shapiro on their team, they’d be getting much more publicity right now.
- No one seems to be talking about the Hurricanes at all. Nothing good, nothing bad, just nothing period. Was Erik Cole that big of a loss that the team will simply fall off the map without him? Obviously they’ll have big shoes to fill, but I’m excited to see if Justin Faulk and Zac Dalpe can do anything with the big team this year.
- Word out of Anaheim is that Teemu Selanne will decide by September 16 if he wants to play another season or hang ‘em up. Glad to see he’s going to give GM Bob Murray plenty of time to work out a contingency plan if the sniper walks away from the game.
- Gary Bettman is a pompous little person that needs to be fired for the good of the game.
Click here for our archive of past editions of our “I Might Just Be A Hockey Fan In California” feature.