Wow. I go on vacation for a week and the whole lockout gets solved. I should have done that months ago.
I was really happy to see the NHL didn’t get any smarter while I was basking in the beauty of Myrtle Beach. The league is refusing to let TV networks cover their draft lottery. You know. Because the media is soooo interested in hockey. That’s why ESPN dropped the league — the league was just too popular.
Ed Snider, founder and chairman of the Flyers, says that’s a good thing (login info.). Snider told Marc Narducci “We will have another cable network other than ESPN…ESPN, in the last few years, didn’t do a good job for hockey and, quite frankly, I’m glad they are gone. They tried to take advantage of us, and I’m predicting we will go in another direction.”
That other direction? Public access.
But that’s cool.
Meanwhile, the Wings finally hired Mike Babcock. Babcock, who coached the Mighty Ducks into the Stanley Cup finals two seasons ago, says the Wings will be an attacking team, which is a bit weird of him to say, since he was so conservative in Anaheim. You’ll recall Babcock as the man who coined the phrase “manage the puck,” a euphemism for not shooting it. So as the league tries to invent itself as a run-and-gun, exciting, edge-of-your-seats experience, one of its most visible teams will be managing the puck, which will probably involve paperwork, filing, and coffee breaks.
Larry Brooks has it right. With all teams paying the same, coaches are going to be even more important in terms of landing players. He recommends the Rangers make a hard play for Scotty Bowman, a coach who can whip a team of superstars into shape in a pretty short time (login info.). It’s not a bad idea.
Over in Boston, the Bruins are in good shape in terms of cap space. It seems they’ve been letting players go for seasons. And does anyone else remember that Joe Thornton was pretty pissed at the Bruins organization before the lockout? Is that all over? Did Thornton and the Bruins forget, too? If they’re happy, I’m happy. I’m just asking.
And finally, here’s my nomination for craziest statement of the week. It comes to us courtesy of Karen Price of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Here, she’s talking about the possibility of the Penguins signing Tie Domi: “And Domi is more than a tough-as-nails pest extraordinaire on the ice. He’s also a personality. He’s entertaining and a player whom Penguins fans would come to watch every night.”
Does she mean people are going to watch him fight every night? Or are they going to watch him hurt more talented players behind the play? Or are people going to sit around hoping for another season like 2002-2003, when he put up a whopping 15 goals? Because that my friends, is entertainment.