A roundup of interesting blog posts which caught my eye today: Canadiens looking toward this season with optimism…8 reasons a Ducks fan is looking forward to this season…A look back at NHL opposition to the mandatory helmet rule…Wondering what the hockey world will make of the movie “Goon”…Jeremy Roenick’s comments about Flyers fans…Top ten players to avoid in your fantasy draft…A notable Capitals blog wins two awards…A review of NHL 12 (Vancouver Riot edition).

EYES ON THE PRIZE: Kevin van Steendelaar noted the Canadiens teed off on their pre-season golf tournament with optimism toward next season, though there are some concerns over the health of Andrei Markov.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Markov’s knee status aside, the Canadiens should be improved over last season’s edition.

ANAHEIM CALLING: “PhantomPretender” lists eight reason why they’re looking forward to the upcoming season. Among them: the amusement over watching the Sharks and Kings struggle this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Of my expectations of the Ducks and Kings, “struggling” isn’t one of them.

THE LEAFS NATION: Danny Gray looks back at the widespread opposition around the NHL back in 1979 to the mandatory helmet rule, noting players have often been on the wrong side of history when it comes to rule changes which improve player safety.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There was resistance, way back in the day, to the implementation of shoulder pads, and of course when goaltending innovator Jacques Plante decided to buck tradition and his coach to wear a face mask. Today, you wouldn’t find any NHL goalie willing to do their job without wearing a mask, nor would you find any of their teammates willing to play without helmets and shoulder pads. Those resistant today to changes to rules, like banning head shots, will also eventually prove to be on the wrong side of history.

HOCKEY WILDERNESS: “BReynolds” wonders what the reaction of the hockey world will be to the movie, “Goon”, due out in 2012, in the wake of the deaths of enforcers Derek Boogaard, Rick Rypien and Wade Belak.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If it’s a well-made film, I daresay it’ll be embraced by most in the hockey world, though publicly I don’t think we’ll see the NHL play it up.

BROAD STREET HOCKEY: Travis Hughes doesn’t take kindly to recent remarks toward Flyers fans by former Flyer Jeremy Roenick.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Say what you will about “J.R.”, he knows how to keep his name in the spotlight and how to keep fans talking about him.

HOCKEY INDEPENDENT: Fred Poulin lists ten players you should avoid selecting in your fantasy draft.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I own two fantasy teams, and I agree with Poulin’s assessment of those on his list. Read and heed, fantasy GMs!

NUCKS MISCONDUCT: “The Stanchion” offers up a review of “NHL12: Vancouver Riot Edition”.

And finally, congratulations to the Washington Capitals blog Japer’s Rink, for being the People’s Choice and Editor’s Choice in a CBS Washington poll of “Most Valuable Blogger Awards 2011”.