Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while all armed and ready for tonight’s return of Game of Thrones.
*Funny video as Jonathan Drouin goes undercover in Montreal to see how many Habs fans might know who he is. I don’t think he’ll be able to do this so anonymously next summer after his first season in Montreal.
*Milan Lucic gave the Oilers some major street cred and was a big part of their skill players getting the room to operate, but there is already noise being made about his contract. Did Peter Chiarelli know that the Oilers were probably going to be stuck with an overpriced Lucic in the final couple of years of that contract? Yeah, I think so. But there is zero doubt in my mind that Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl don’t have the kind of breakthrough seasons that they had offensively if Lucic, Patrick Maroon and guys like them weren’t regularly in the lineup for Edmonton. They are a tough team to play against, and that’s exactly what Chiarelli’s blueprint has been for team-building in his time as a GM in the NHL. This is the cost of doing business if you’re the Oilers, and there’s no point in whining and crying about that contract while Edmonton is building toward a Cup contender. If they win, nobody should be complaining.
*It sure looks like John Tortorella is going to be in line for a big pay raise out in Columbus given some of the other coaching salaries around the league.
*It’s an interesting question to ask how the Arizona Coyotes are going to play under new head coach Rick Tocchet.
*Here are four ways that a brand new ownership group could be a very good thing for the Carolina Hurricanes.
*With the retirement of Andrew Ference, here’s a look at other steals in the ninth round of the NHL Draft that no longer exists.
*For something completely different: A fun piece about which missing Game of Thrones characters will return this season. I’ve expected to see Gendry again toward the end, so I’m not surprised to see him toward the top of the list.
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while everybody is working for NHL All-Star weekend.
*Oh, the things that you can hear when an NHL referee keeps his microphone on while barking at players.
*Famous animal lover John Tortorella left his Blue Jackets team prior to the All-Star break because one of his dogs is ailing.
*PHT writer Cam Tucker gives the rundown on the Edmonton Oilers and the sustained success they’re enjoying.
*Jaromir Jagr has been named one of the NHL’s top-100 players, and is appreciative of the honor in the twilight of his career.
*All-Star New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh continues to grow into the role of captain for the Blueshirts.
*Tommy Wingels jumped right into the lineup for the Ottawa Senators, and pushed Chris Neil into healthy scratch status.
*The Hockey News’ Ken Campbell has Doug Wilson ready to join an exclusive club as the general manager of the San Jose Sharks.
*For something completely different: apparently Carrie Fisher wanted Harrison Ford to sing at her “In Memorial” after she passed away.
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while wondering if the Bruins are ever going to poop, or get off the pot.
*John Tortorella wants everybody to know that he thinks there isn’t a chance that Lebron James could play hockey.
*In the interest of self-promotion, here’s my radio hit with Toucher and Rich this morning about whether or not Claude Julien should be fired after back-to-back bad losses against the Islanders and Red Wings.
*How did Shane Doan arrive at an unhappy place with the Arizona Coyotes where he now is open to moving elsewhere ahead of the trade deadline?
*Henrik Lundqvist’s season is entering a crisis level based on what he’s done, and the diminished performance level he’s showing as a more mature goaltender.
*A nice piece with a Canadian hockey hero, Hayley Wickenheiser, who recounts some of the legendary moments of her career through a series of pictures.
*I totally respect the work that Travis Yost does, but stating the Bruins should stick with Claude Julien because their shooting percentage is bound to turn around isn’t good enough grounds to keep a floundering situation intact, in my opinion. You need to check where the shots are coming from and how many of those shot attempts are completely missing the net to get a better grasp on some of the reasons behind Boston’s dreadful 10-year low shooting percentage. That would also explain some of the reason why Julien needs to be replaced coaching a team that’s largely content on perimeter shots to do it for them while also only sporadically showing the effort required from a middle class talent type of team.
*The Lightning are struggling at Joe Namath levels right now without Steve Stamkos in their lineup, and they need that to change.
*For something completely different: congrats to the Boston boys in New Edition for a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.