Morning Skate 222: First stop in Calgary

Morning Skate 222: First stop in Calgary

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.comCALGARY You know its a long road trip through Canada when the Canadian customs guy at Pearson Airport gives you the hairy eyeball when you tell him youll be in Canada for nine days covering hockey.So it will be an endurance test for the Bruins mixed in with some cool moments for Vancouver homeboy Milan Lucic, and there will be a couple of very good tests mixed in there. The Calgary Flames are the hottest team in the NHL, and the Vancouver Canucks are the class of the Western Conference with a whopping plus-60 goal differential on the season.The Flames have taken points in nine of their last 10 games, smoked the non-factor Canadiens in the Heritage Classic televised all over North America, and seem to have found their Western Canada mojo. They've put up a 15-4-5 record since Dec. 28 when Jay Feaster took over as GM of the Flames, and it appears the front office transformation was exactly what Calgary needed.Hard to believe there were ever whispers that Jarome Iginla might want out of Calgary given how the Flames are moving and grooving, but things can change pretty quickly in the NHL. Now he's just outside the NHL's top 10 with 25 goals and 57 points this season, and he's been revived by a Flames team around him that's come to life when it mattered most.On to the links:A good recap at Yahoo! Sports of the WhalersBruins alumni game that took place at a freezing cold New England venue over the weekend.USA Todays Kevin Allen takes us through the questions that still remain with the trade deadline slightly less than a week away in the NHL.A side-by-side comparison Taylor Hall and Tyler Seguin of the way into their first NHL seasons. Get used to this as well be hearing a lot about it over the next few days leading up to the Oilers game.A Toronto radio interview with new Maple Leafs prospect Joe Colborne for those Bs fans out there that already miss him.Its a new dawn for the Buffalo Sabres, and much of the Sabres media contingent is pretty giddy at the possibility of money being spent and players being retained. Its pretty much the opposite of letting Daniel Briere and Chris Drury walk away after some great regular seasons.An overview by the Globe and Mail at whos left and whos available on the trade market with a flurry of deals already completed.Pat Hickey was not all that impressed with the Heritage Classic between the Flames and Habs, and its not all that surprising given how one-sided and Justin Bourne paints a pretty vivid picture of what its like to join a new pro hockey team in the middle of the season. After all, hed done it three different times before his writing career got going.

Carlo, Heinen and DeBrusk highlight young B's lineup for preseason opener

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Carlo, Heinen and DeBrusk highlight young B's lineup for preseason opener

The Bruins had already let it be known that Tuukka Rask, David Pastrnak and David Backes wouldn’t be playing Monday night in their preseason opener vs. the Blue Jackets. 

Instead, all three will participate in their first day of training camp practice on Monday morning, and the Bruins will ice a young, prospect-laden group against Columbus at TD Garden.

“[Camp] has been really good,” said assistant coach Jay Pandolfo. “There are a lot of new faces around here, so we’re just getting them to understand how we want to play. I think they did a good job with it and they should be ready to go [against Columbus].”

Here is the lineup of players expected to suit up for Boston’s preseason opener on Monday night: Brandon Carlo, Colby Cave, Peter Cehlarik, Austin Czarnik, Jake DeBrusk, Seth Griffith, Colton Hargrove, Jimmy Hayes, Danton Heinen, Anton Khudobin, Sean Kuraly, John-Michael Liles, Zane McIntyre, Kevan Miller, Joe Morrow, Peter Mueller, Riley Nash, Rob O’Gara, Tyler Randell and Jakub Zboril. 

Carlo, Cehlarik, Heinen and DeBrusk are all serious candidates to threaten for an NHL roster spot, and these preseason games will be a big test to see how roster ready they might actually be at their precocious young age.

The Bruins haven’t said when the first cuts of training camp are expected, but one round of early cuts are expected next week perhaps after Wednesday night’s preseason home game against the Detroit Red Wings.

“We’ll see how tomorrow night goes and then make a decision [on a lineup] for Wednesday, but I think we’ll try to give all the guys a pretty good look and go from there,” said Pandolfo. 
 

Sunday, Sept. 25: Has Connolly found home with Caps?

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Sunday, Sept. 25: Has Connolly found home with Caps?

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while wondering what a crap shot this Presidential debate is going to be on Monday night.

*Brett Connolly has hooked on with the Washington Capitals, and the Caps hope they’ve found a “gem” in the former Bruins winger.

*John Tortorella is putting his Blue Jackets through an absolute boot camp thus far in Columbus. Bold strategy…I wonder how this will play out.

*The Pittsburgh Penguins appreciate the gifts of defenseman Kris Letang, even if Team Canada didn’t for the World Cup.

*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Ken Wiebe has the details on Jacob Trouba asking to get moved from the Winnipeg Jets.

*PHT writer James O’Brien has Saturday night’s World Cup of Hockey showdown between Russia and Canada as another chapter in the Alex Ovechkin/Sidney Crosby rivalry.

*It’s sad to see respected veteran player Clarke MacArthur have to be helped off the ice after a vicious hit in a training camp scrimmage. What a dumb move by a guy that’s never going to crack the Senators roster.

*For something completely different: a good father/son piece on learning to appreciate things that your kids are interested in, and how rewarding it can be in the end.