In this morning’s collection of notable NHL morning headlines: Jarome Iginla focusing on 500-goal milestone…Flyers put faith in young forwrds…The end of the Sean Avery saga on Broadway…Sharks could be without Martin Havlat for their season opener…The Blackhawks re-sign GM Stan Bowman…Lightning will need young d-men to step up…Is Chuck Kobesaw a top six forward?…Blue Jackets turn to Sanford as backup…Devils to sign Petr Sykora.
CALGARY SUN: Flames captain Jarome Iginla appears to have put his recent back spasms behind him, and is setting his sights on reaching the 500-goal milestone this season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Good news for the Flames. Iginla needs only 16 more goals to reach the 500-goal mark.
PHILLY.COM: The Flyers will look to young forwards James van Riemsdyk (22) and Claude Giroux (23) to replace the offence lost by the club’s off-season trades of Mike Richards to Los Angeles and Jeff Carter to Columbus.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: In my opinion, Giroux has established himself as a scoring star, and van Riemsdyk appears poised to join him in that role this season. If they both play up to expectations, the Flyers shouldn’t miss a beat offensively this season.
NEW YORK TIMES: Jeff Z. Klein on the end of the Sean Avery saga with the NY Rangers, and his options,which could include playing in Europe this season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I doubt Avery accepts playing in the minors, so a loan to Europe may be his only realistic option, as I can’t see another NHL team taking a chance on him. This may well be the end of his NHL playing career, as he’l
l probably end up bought out of the remainder of his contract next summer.become a UFA next summer.
MERCURYNEWS.COM: The Sharks are hoping Martin Havlat will receive medical clearance to compete without restrictions following an examination today on the shoulder he had surgically repaired in May. If he does, Havlat could be in their opening night lineup.
CHICAGO SUN TIMES: The Blackhawks yesterday announced the re-signing of general manager Stan Bowman to a three year contract extension.
TAMPABAY.COM: With veteran blueliner Mattias Ohlund starting the season on injured reserve, the Lightning will look toward their other blueliners, including young Victor Hedman, to step up and fill the void.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hedman has made slow but steady progress in his development. This season could be the one where he makes his most substantial improvement.
NBC SPORTS PRO HOCKEY TALK: Joe Yerdon noted the strange move by the Colorado Avalanche of employing Chuck Kobesaw, whose offensive production has declined in recent years, as a second line winger.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s a gamble on the Avalanche’s part, as they’re evidently hoping Kobesaw can regain the scoring touch he lost in Minnesota. We should know by month’s end if this will be worthwhile.
COLUMBUS DISPATCH: The Blue Jackets will turn to Curtis Sanford to fill in for injured backup Mark Dekanich.
NJ.COM: The Devils cleared cap space to sign forward Petr Sykora by shipping center David Steckel to the Toronto Maple Leafs last night for a fourth round pick.