The NHL Week That Was…Tracking the NHL award candidates at the quarter-mark…Pavel Bure inducted into the IIHF Hall of Fame…Detroit Red Wings trade rumors…Cory Sarich wants out of Calgary…Jarome Iginla to Montreal?…What will the Oilers do with Ales Hemsky?…A look at the early days of Kirk Muller’s tenure as Hurricanes head coach…The important of Kyle Wellwood.
GRANTLAND: Katie Baker looks at a wild week (three coaching changes, Bobby Ryan rumors) that was in the NHL.
RED LIGHT DISTRICT: tracks the early candidates for the NHL’s 2011-12 awards, with two Bruins and an ex-Bruin leading the charge.
GREATEST HOCKEY LEGENDS: Pavel “Russian Rocket” Bure leads the class of 2012 inductees into the IIHF Hall of Fame.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Anyone else feel the Hockey Hall of Fame should be ashamed of itself for not inducting Bure yet? Pretty sad when the IIHF recognizes greatness over the NHL …er, sorry…”Hockey Hall of Fame”. Since this is the same bunch that snubbed a dying Pat Burns, I guess we shouldn’t be surprised.
NIGHTMARE ON HELM STREET: lists the players linked to the Detroit Red Wings in trade rumors.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: For the life of me, I cannot understand the hard-on some rumor bloggers have for linking Alexander Semin to the Red Wings. That’s not a shot against Nightmare On Helm Street, by the way, they’re only pointing out Semin’s been mentioned as a trade possibility for Detroit. Seriously, why would Wings GM Ken Holland, one of the wisest GMs in the league, look at an overpaid under-achiever like Semin and think, “Hey, he’d be a great fit on our team!” Do these rumormongers think Semin will magically turn into a superstar once he’s exposed to the Wings aura? Do they think Pavel Datsyuk will take Semin under his wing and turn him into a Selke candidate? And if Holland actually were interested in Semin, why waste assets on him this season, when he could be signed as a UFA next summer, when Holland will have over $23 million in available cap space and no stars of his own to re-sign? Honestly, the Wings could do better, much, much better, especially if it appears Zach Parise will test next summer’s market. Now, that’s a player who’d look good wearing the Winged Wheel.
MATCHSTICKS AND GASOLINE: Defenseman Cory Sarich wants out of Calgary. So, any takers for a slow-footed defenseman earning $3.6 million this season?
PUCKBANDITS: noted the Twittescape was buzzing over a rumor which had the Montreal Canadiens shipping Max Pacioretty, Yannick Weber and a first round pick to Calgary for Jarome Iginla.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: What, they’re not gonna trade them to Washington for scoring machine Alexander Semin? Must be because the Red Wings are about to get ’em. Of course, Iginla would go to Montreal, since they fit the bill of “Cup contender” he’s rumored to be interested in joining some day before his career ends. That’s sarcasm, by the way, for those of you who can’t recognize it in printed form. Dr Evil, your opinion of Iggy to Montreal? Sarcasm aside, there’s a very simple reason why this rumor is BS: cap space. The Canadiens are bumping against the cap ceiling this season. Iginla makes $7 million this season and next. Pacioretty and Weber combined make a little over $2.4 million this season. Do the math, kids, and that’s why this deal doesn’t happen.
OILERSNATION: Robin Brownlee wonders where Ales Hemsky, who’ll be an unrestricted free agent next summer, fits into the Oilers future plans.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Maybe they’ll trade him to Detroit, the destination for everyone this season. Or Montreal, where he’ll win a Stanley Cup this season… Actually, Brownlee raises a very good question regarding Hemsky’s future, and if he belongs in Edmonton. Please check it out.
SWEET TEA, BARBECUE AND BODYCHECK: My pal Acid Queen looks at the good, bad and ugly of Kirk Muller’s opening days as head coach of the Hurricanes.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Maybe Kirk will force management to trade Eric Staal or Jeff Skinner to Detroit or Montreal…sorry, sorry, I’ve gone too far now. Please check out AQ’s latest, she’s a die-hard Hurricanes fan and doesn’t shy away from giving her club a good slap-upside when they deserve it.
ARCTIC ICE HOCKEY: Looks at the Importance of Kyle Wellwood via his numbers this season, compared to those earlier in his career.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’m genuinely pleased over how Wellwood has performed with the Jets this season, silencing his critics in the process. I think getting rejected by the KHL last season gave him a much-needed dose of maturity.