A link to the story of Evgeni Malkin’s transition from Russia to the NHL…Is it time to blow up the Flames?…Is there a road back for Steve Mason?…A Hurricanes fan continues to suffer…Something fishy going on with Nino Niederreiter…Bad Hockey Card of the Day.


Malkin's long journey to NHL a fascinating story.

PENSBURGH: provides a link to a story in Pittsburgh Magazine chronicling the transition of Evgeni Malkin from Russia to Pittsburgh, and adjusting to life in North America and the NHL.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: You don’t have to be a fan of Malkin and the Penguins to enjoy this story. Go. Read. Enjoy.

ARMCHAIR HOCKEY: Jason Chen asks, “Is it time to blow up the Flames?”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Yes. Yes, it is. And no, I’m not dumping on the Flames, or harboring any hatred toward them. Why would I? I have no dog in this fight. The bottom line is the Flames “window of opportunity” to be a Cup contender closed three years ago, and the window of remaining a playoff contender closed two years ago. It’s time for an overhaul.

THE CANNON: Matt Wagner looks at several options for Steve Mason to get his career back on track.

SWEET TEA, BARBECUE AND BODYCHECKS: My pal “Acid Queen” is continuing to suffer watching her beloved Hurricanes flounder under “Chairman Mo”.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: C’mon, Rutherford, you’re tearing your fans apart! Do something! End this suffering. And no, I’m not mocking. Seriously, how low can this team go before management finally realizes it needs a coaching change? Right now, that’s the only real option this club has to turning things around. There’s no magical trade coming for fix things, and I’ve seen nothing to suggest they’re going to improve under coach Paul Maurice.

PRO HOCKEY TALK: Joe Yerdon believes there’s something fishy going on with Isles rookie Nino Niederreiter, who continues to be a healthy scratch, yet the Islanders won’t send him back to Junior.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The kid’s not gonna improve as a press box ranger. Either give this kid more playing time, or send him back to Junior for more seasoning. They’re doing him no favors this way.

GREATEST HOCKEY LEGENDS: The star of today’s “Bad Hockey Card of the Day”: Ron Duguay, doing his Jon Bon Jovi impression.