Sunday, September 30, 2007

Pre Season Playoff-Cup Winner Predictions- West

1) Like the East we used the order of finish we predicted for the conference to determine the playoff matches and get our predicted results. As we mentioned last time we understand its no more than a blind folded dart throw, but its the preseason and almost everyone else does it, so why not?

2) Next the West:

  • Detroit-vs-L.A.- Assuming the old Wings stay healthy(Hasek) this won't be a push over series for a first round, but the Wings and their experience will be not be denied and proceed to round 2. Wings in 5

  • San Jose-vs-Vancouver- The Vancouver Luongos will keep things interesting and perhaps steal one at home in double OT, but the Sharks high powered offense will NOT be deterred by Luongo's heroics. Sharks in 5

  • Colorado-vs-Minnesota- The Avs come into this match up with a high degree of confidence. Though Lemaire's troops never say die, in the end the potent attack of the boys from Denver overcome the defense-first Wild, but not easily. Avalanche in 6

  • Anaheim-vs-Calgary- The series to watch! The defending Cup champs(with or without Neidermayer-?) never seem to get comfortable in their first round Cup defense. Kiprusoff playing for a new contract stands on his head and propels the Flames into the second round, but not without a fight(s). Flames in 7

3) Now on to the next rounds:

  • Detroit-vs-Calgary-A rematch/grudge match from last season. The bad blood is evident early and often, and the Flames 'Cinderella story' continues as they win a very hard fought chippy series. Flames in 6

  • San Jose-vs-Colorado- Another great series with both clubs possessing a full array of talented forwards. In the end the difference is between the pipes as Nabokov is the ultimate difference. Sharks in 6

4) This sets up a very interesting match up (Though not the one Mr. Bettman would have wanted) between the upstart Flames, and the high flying SJ Sharks. A great skating display with specialty teams carrying the day. Sharks in 6

5) This sets the stage for the Finals. The San Jose Sharks vs- Pittsburgh Penguins. Finally Gary Bettman and the NHL get a Finals they can be happy about. Not sure if the ratings will be a huge improvement over the last 2 years, but they couldn't get much worse. The NHL gets to showcase its 'next one'. Sidney Crosby in the premier series in the league. Unfortunately for the Pens though they are thoroughly outmatched in this series. The pens manage to win a game to avoid a sweep, but still fall to the Sharks in 5. So the Cup stays in California, but moves up the coast a bit.

6) Our run down of how tenuous each NHL coachs' position are with respect to their team should be out sometime this week. As always, keep it here for all the latest. By the way, anyone notice the season started? Don't feel bad, very few folks in the states(including California) did either.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Pre Season Playoff-Cup Winner Predictions- East

1) If we use the order of finish we predicted for both conferences this would be the playoff matches and our predicted results. Yes, we know its no more than a blind folded dart throw, but its the preseason and almost everyone else does it, so why not?

2) First the East:

  • Ottawa-vs-Montreal- The proximity alone would make this a fascinating series even if on paper its a bit a a mismatch. Despite not having a better goalie, the Sens will prevail in 6

  • Pittsburgh-vs- Toronto- The media in TO would be a veritable circus(when aren't they ?) with Sid the Kid in town. The Leafs will try unsuccessfully to try to agitate the young guys, but the Pens have enough veteran leaders to prevent this. Pens in 5

  • Carolina-vs-NY Rangers- For a second consecutive season the Rangers 'luckout' by meeting the weak SE division winners. Like last time around the Canes are no match for the Blue Shirts. Rangers in 5

  • Philadelpha-vs-Buffalo- A return of Marty Biron to his former team. Should prove to be an exciting close series with the deeper Flyers prevailing in a tough 7 game series

3) Now on to the next rounds:

  • Ottawa-vs-Rangers- Should prove to be a very intense close series with the team with the better goalie prevailing. Rangers in 7

  • Pittsburgh-vs-Philadelphia- The battle of Pennsylvania won't be as epic as some believe as the Pens overwhelm the Flyer defense and Marty Biron. Pens in 5

4) This sets the stage for the Conference Finals between the Penguins-vs- Rangers. The Pens pick apart the Ranger defense the way many thought the senators would have but failed. Lundqvist keeps it respectable, but can't do it himself. Pens in 5 The Penguins and their 20 year old captain Sid Crosby are headed to the Cup Finals. Mr. Bettman couldn't be more pleased.(Well, he'd be happier if the Crosby led Rangers were there, but he can't have it all) LOL

Look for the West and our Cup winner, Sunday! As always keep it here for the latest!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Pre-Season Predictions- West

1) Now, for our evaluation/predictions for the upcoming season for the Western Conference. As has been in evidence the last few seasons, the West is the stronger of the two conferences. It was also easier for us to predict last year. Though we didn't get the order dead on, we did correctly pick 7 of the 8 playoff teams.

2) Unlike in the East where there is a gradual drop off in talent from team 1 to team 15, in the West there seems to be more of a cliff from the top 9-10 to the bottom 4-5 teams. We can envision this being the case again this year. Here is the list in the order of playoff seeding(divisional winners in the top 3)

  • Detroit 115 Are they the best team? No, but they play in the VERY weak Central(Norris) which got weaker with the Nashville exodus. Eight games each against inferior competition will help them pad their point totals. They lost Schneider, Lang, Bertuzzi, and Kyle Calder, but Holland responded by signing Brian Rafalski and veteran Dallas Drake. Combine this with the emergence of younger players such as Jiri Hudler, Valtteri Filppula and Tomas Kopecky and the clutch scoring of Henrik Zetterberg and Pavel Datsyuk, expect another 100-plus point season. Of course that can come crashing down with their Cup chances IF Hasek gets injured.

  • San Jose 110 We believe that although the team did little to change their roster this summer, they really didn't have to. Hannan is the only real loss that might be felt. Toskala's departure simply settles what was becoming an annoying goaltending situation. Evgeni Nabokov is now the man. Joe Thornton/Patrick Marleau lead an offence that's as good as any. The defense is good, especially with the re-signing of Craig Rivet, but is not their strongest point. GM Doug Wilson has enough cap space remaining that he can add another body there before the trade deadline. Hopefully the Roenick signing won't be a distraction. The Sharks will challenge for the Western Conference title and a Stanley Cup.

  • Colorado 105 GM Francois Giguere was the big winner in the off-season, adding star winger Ryan Smyth and top defenceman Scott Hannan while losing nothing from his already solid core group which include Joe Sakic, Andrew Brunette, Paul Stastny, Milan Hejduk, Wojtek Wolski and Marek Svatos. There remains a question mark in net where Peter Budaj and Jose Theodore reside. With the ladder in a contract year. Will it bring out a big year? Couldn't be worse than the last 2! Look for Giguere to make a trade if neither Budaj or Theodore produce. Otherwise, this can be a dangerous team that should return to the playoffs and possibly win their tough division.

  • Anaheim 107 Many questions and changes for the Champs. They lost Penner to that silly Lowe offer sheet. They (maybe) lost both Teemu Salenne and captain Scott Niedermayer. All leave holes hard to fill. That said, Schneider was a nice pickup by GM Brian Burke, but does not come close to replacing the skill level, minutes played and leadership Niedermayer gave. The addition of Todd Bertuzzi should help but not replace the loss of Teemu Selanne, who also hasn't yet decided on whether or not he'll be back. Losing promising power forward Dustin Penner to Edmonton was tough, but with Ryan Getzlaf just scratching the surface of what should be a superb career, and the Ducks, led by Chris Pronger and J.S. Giguere, still have a championship core to contend. They'll be top four in the West and threaten to repeat as champs.

  • Calgary 103 Iron Mike is back! If his past is any indicator the team will respond this season by over achieving then he'll lose their respect by next year. They lost steady defender Hamrlik, but the defense led by stars Robyn Regehr and Dion Phanef remains steady. With a Vezina caliber goalie, Miikka Kiprusoff playing in his contract year behind them, the Flames should be OK on their side of the ice. We can see a rebound/big season from Iginnla, and a return to the playoffs, as well as challenge for their division.

  • Minnesota 102 This is a tough team to predict. A HUGE unknown will be the goaltending of Backstrom. No longer do the Wild have 2 reliable goalies. If Backstrom has a sophomore slump, the team will struggle. Else they have enough fire power (Brian Rolston, Marian Gaborik and Pavol Demitra) to go along with the gum chewer's (Jacques Lemaire) defensive schemes to win more than their share of games to be propelled back into the post season

  • Vancouver 100 They made few changes to the team that surprised many last season with a division title. Backstopped by the Vezina/Hart callibre tending of Roberto Luongo, the Canucks won their share of ugly, boring games (NJ of the West). Don't expect much change this time around as the team will rely heavily on Luongo and the Sedins to win games. A slight let down from last season, but not a huge drop in the overall standings is possible.

  • LA 96 Had one of the better off- seasons. They added Tom Preissing and Brad Stuart to a blue-line that already had Rob Blake, Lubomir Visnovsky, Jaroslav Modry and rookie Jack Johnson. They already had a pretty good group of young forwards led by Anze Kopitar, Mike Cammalleri and Alexander Frolov. They added Michal Handzus, Ladislav Nagy and Kyle Calder. So far so good. BUT there are huge issues in net. Jason Labarbera and J.S. Aubin all are backups or AHL caliber in our opinion. They did the right thing jettisoning Cloutier, but can a 19 year old(Johnathan Bernier) be the answer? The goaltending will have to improve, but we feel the rest of the team is now good enough to make up for this deficiency and make the playoffs. If they had a top 5 goalie, this team might even be a Cup contender.


  • Dallas 91 We were way off in predicting their demise last year. They didn't do do terribly much this off season to improve. In fact losing one of their regular defensemen, Darryl Sydor. They were one of the lower scoring teams last season, and we don't see that changing. Turco had an outstanding season last year to propel the Stars to an improbable 50 win season, but we don't see that feat being repeated. They will struggle at times, and probably miss the playoffs.

    Nashville 90 We've made no bones of the fact that we don't like Barry Trotz as a coach. We feel his squads severely underachieved the last few years. With the gutting of his roster we may finally see if he is in fact a good coach. For if this team makes the playoffs, we will have our minds changed. They won't be pushovers, but we no longer see this team as a playoff caliber squad

    Edmonton 85 With Kevin Lowe's off season overhaul of the roster, that started with the trade of Captain Canada Ryan Smyth, the Oilers remain a team in flux. Question marks abound. Firstly will Mr. Penner respond to the inevitable pressure that being so highly paid brings? Can Roloson stay healthy and at 37 be ready to play 60+ games? Can Sheldon Souray replicate last years offensive explosion while reducing his minus stat? We don't see the Oil as being anything more than spoilers in the tough NW division.

    St. Louis 82 While many analysts like to use the Blues as their 'sleeper team' out west, we at Fauxromors are not sold on the Blues as playoff contenders. Sure Andy Murray helped turn them aroud when he got there, and they have a pretty nice young defense led by Brewer and rookie Eric Johnson. Also the addition of Paul Kariya will help, BUT they also added perenniel salary anchor/underachiever Keith Tkachuk. Add to that Manny Legace will be asked to carry the load in goal, we don't see the Blues as ready to play in the post season

  • Chicago 76- One thing that seems certain, the Blackhawks may lose their share of games, but they should be a more exciting team to watch than in recent memory. They will likely have 3 significant youngsters; Jonathan Toews, Jack Skille and 2007 first overall pick Patrick Kane all be playing opening night. That excitement aside, their defense is not good and Khabibulin has yet to play well enough to earn the 6.75 mil/year pay cheque. It'll be another non-playoff year in 'The Second City'.

  • Phoenix 70 A long shot at best to be anything but cellar dwellars, again. How much longer can Wayne put up with the losing will be the question that will be asked here. The blue-line remains solid with Ed Jovanovski, Derek Morris, Keith Ballard, Nick Boynton, and Zbynek Michalek,(all trade deadline fodder??) but they have an offence that doesn't have a single household name after the over rated Shane Doan. Their goaltending isn't likely to be in the top 10 either with a collage of backups/AHLers competing for the starting role. We can't see TGO sticking this out an entire season!

  • Columbus 68 - Biggest off season move was in the front office, where Scott Howson took over as GM from perrenial incompetant McClean. They also have one of the leagues better coaches in Ken Hitchcock. The problem is neither man plays. Rick Nash, David Vyborny, Fredrik Modin, Sergei Fedorov and Nikolai Zherdev give the team a decent set of forwards but their defense on paper at least is one of the leaue's worst. Goaltedning isn't going to be a strong spot either with Fredrik Norrena battling Pascal Leclaire for the starting role. It could be yet another LONG sesason in Ohio's largest city!

3) Like in our Eastern predictions, these numbers are assuming no major injuries to key players which is always inevitable and the unknown going in. We again welcome our readers who don't have their own blogs to offer up their own predictions. get 'on the record' so we can all laugh at how badly we all did next April! LOL

Look for our preseason playoff/Cup champ predictions by the weekend. As always, keep it here for the latest!! !

Monday, September 24, 2007

Pre Season Predictions-East

1) Its that time of year. While others amazingly posted/wrote their predictions in late July/early August, we at FAUXRUMORS decided that we would be better served/more accurate to wait until after the start of training camp when complete rosters could be analyzed, and early trends(as limited as that is for these purposes) could be evaluated. Not that this tactic helped us last year. As you can see we didn't exactly nail things. LOL We way over rated the Flyers and undervalued the Penguins/Islanders.

2) To simplify things we will do each conference separately. Unlike last year when we gave each team a range, we will simply stick with the one number concept. The other was too 'busy' and feed back from readers said it wasn't helpful, so we'll go with the traditional point total. We will rate them 1-15, placing division winners in their appropriate top 3 ranking.

3) WE believe as its been the last couple of seasons that there will be a huge fight for the last 1-2 spots, with all but 1-2 teams in it until the last couple of weeks/days.

  • Ottawa- 110 Essentially has their Cup Finals team returning. They possess one of the most lethal top lines in the league. Though Spezza needs to shed his deserved 'perimeter/soft player' label. Their defense lost Preissing and replaced him with Luke(not good)Richardson, but they remain one of the better sets of rear guards in the league with Volchenkov coming into his own last spring. That said, we can NOT get passed Mr. Puice suit, Ray Emery. He's not going to carry this team to a Cup(see last spring), but overall the team is good enough to win the relatively weak East.

  • Pittsburgh- 108 Like the Senators, this team returns most of their team that surprised most(including us) last season. Most believed they'd be better, but few thought this fast. MVP/Ross winner Crosby leads a very formidable array of forwards that are only in their literal infancy. Along with an improved back line, they should be tough to beat. Also like the Sens, their possible Achilles heal is their goalie. Though highly touted, and looking great in spurts last year, Fleury has yet to demonstrate that he is a top tender. Without a decent backup this year, he will be thrown to the fire. They should be able to outscore most opponents so this deficiency won't be a huge issue until playoff time.

  • Carolina- 98 This team way under achieved last year. At least they better hope they underachieved, else they're in trouble as they are returning the same team this year. An extended Stanley Cup hangover was blamed, along with a few injuries. Rutherford must have believed that this was true, as he made few big changes outside of reacquiring Cullen from the Rangers. With their roster from 05 back, and being hungry again, we can see them regaining their form and winning the weak SE division

  • Philadelphia- 105 The Flyers can't be accused of trying the old we're going to 'rebuild' nonsense that other teams use when they have a God-awful year. They went right at trying to get back to the playoffs when they made huge splashes to acquire Hartnell, Timonen, Briere. We're not enamoured with their defense anchored(literally) by Derrian Hatcher, but the additions of Timonen and Jason Smith should help. They also tried to upgrade their goaltending win Marty Biron. We're not yet sold on him as a #1, but if he plays to expectations the Flyers could be the most improved club in the NHL. They have no place to go but up!

  • Buffalo-104 After losing both their captains(Drury/Briere) as well as having to over pay to retain RFA Vanek, it wasn't a good off season in upstate NY. That said they still possess a very young, talented lineup with a top goalie in Miller, and decent defense corps. The key to look for is will Vanek produce now that the pressure of his salary will be upon him? Overall, while a fall from the elite is likely, they have enough talent, and are coached well, so we still see them as a legitimate playoff team to not be taken lightly.

  • Rangers- 100. While many looked at their big UFA acquisitions of centers Gomez and Drury as huge upgrades, the losses of Nylander and Cullen in favour of the highly paid duo should be an improvement up front, but not as huge as some may have over stated. As Ranger fans painfully know, Higher paycheques do NOT = increased output. Meanwhile most prognosticators ignore a lack of improvement with their biggest weakness; their defense. Lundqvist, now a legit star, can cover for many miscues, but not all, so that's why we don't have them winning the division, but should be solidly a playoff team.

  • Toronto- 96 The Leaf nation will be happy to see their squad rebound from a non playoff year in TO. Jason Blake should give them an added weapon up front. While another 40 goal campaign is unlikely, chipping in 30 and his added tenacity on the PK will help. Vesa Toskala has shown in spurts that he is capable of being a #1 goalie, though has yet to have to do it long term. He will get that chance if he can out duel the underwhelming Raycroft in camp. Definitely an upgrade to the two-some the Leafs had last season. We believe those 2 factors should push them over the hump and back into the post season.

    Montreal- 95 They improved by just ridding themselves of the Samsonov distraction! We think they over paid for Hamrlik, but he may prove to be a decent replacement for Souray. They also returned Montreal native Patrice Brisebois to their backline. The wild card in Hab-land is the development of their younger players led by Long Island natives Chris Higgins and Mike Komisarek as well as, Andrei Kostitsyn, Guillaume Latendresse, Maxim Lapierre, and Tomas Plekanec. If they continue their development and take big strides, we believe the Canadians can surprise. In goal, the team seems set. Having jettisoned disappointing David Aebischer, prized prospect Carey Price is waiting in the wings should Cristobal Huet falter.


  • Tampa- 94 We may finally see John Tortorella burst that gasket he always seems so close to blowing when his team fails to execute. They barely got into the post season last year, and we see no significant upgrades so it will again be a battle that they may fall short of this time around. They went into last season unsettled in net, and they did nothing to change that. That most of all is why we don't see them in the big dance in April, and the inevitable rumors that one of their big three will be traded.

  • Atlanta- 92 Many see their first entry into the post season last year as a stepping stone. We do not. Their failure, and the manner in which they were dismantled may carry over, especially in goal where Kiprusoff wanna-be, Kari Lehtonen had his confidence shattered by coach Hartley with an early yank in their dreadful series. Russian sniper Ilya Kovalchuk needs to step up his game, and Marian Hossa needs to forget about the playoffs where he wasn't even the best Hossa on the ice. We can see them stumbling out of the gate and falling short of the post season.

  • New Jersey 91 Yes, yes, we know we predicted their demise this time last year and were proven wrong, but if not for a Hart/Vezina-like season from Brodeur they would have been in bad shape. Marty may be one of the best ever, but he's not superhuman, and even a slight decline this season combined with the lost offense(Gomez/Rafalski) could be enough to have the boys from Newark(Geez thats difficult to say!) sitting home in April

  • Boston 88 Chiarelli hopes to have fixed what was an obvious problem for his team last year with the acquisition of netminder Manny Fernandez. The B's seem to have a new starter every year. Perhaps Manny will finally solidify this problem position for them. We're not convinced. He was inconsistent after being handed the No. 1 job in Minnesota last year, losing that role to newcomer, Backstrom. Some have said that their relatively quiet off-season will allow the team to come together. They may be better than last year, but, this doesn't quite look like a playoff team to us.

  • Florida 86 Prognosticators like to point to new comer goalie Tomas Vokoun as the key to the Panthers making the playoffs. They fail to look at their starter last year, Ed Belfour, and see he actually had a good year. We don't see Tomas therefore as an upgrade. Up front,their captain Olli Jokinen is one the game's most underrated centres. Nathan Horton and Stephen Weiss could be ready for break-out years. The blue-line depth is thin after Jay Bouwmeester, Mike Van Ryn and Ruslan Salei. Overall, we see the Panthers no better or worse than last year, and not playing come mid April

  • Washington 83 While many especially in the Belt-way believe this team is ready to compete for a playoff spot we're not yet sold on that. Too many question marks to make that a safe bet. Can a 19 year old shy rookie be the answer to their center problems? Is Semin for real or was last year an aberration,etc.? Their defense should be better with maturation and the addition of Poti, but Kolzig is getting long in the tooth, and if he goes down for any stretch, the team will falter significantly. An improved version from last go around to be sure, but this is not yet a playoff calibre team.

  • Islanders- 80. While many of our Islander supporters won't be happy with this prediction, and those same folks will undoubtedly point to us missing the mark with Nolan's team last season, we were not too impressed with their off season. Way too many question marks going in to the season. One area where there is no question is between the pipes, where DiPietro has become a top 10 goalie. If his predilection for injuries continue though it will be a long season in Uniondale. If this team makes the playoffs Nolan has done the job of a magician and hopefully would be recognized for his efforts with an Adams win, if not nomination. Unlike last years obvious snub!

4) Those numbers are of course assuming no major injuries to key players which is always the unknown going in. We welcome our readers who don't have their own blogs to offer up their own predictions. get 'on the record' so we can all laugh at how badly we did next April! LOL
Look for our West Conference Predictions upcoming Wednesday, followed by our preseason playoff/Cup champ predictions by the weekend. As always, keep it here for the latest!!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Kings Make Another Positive Step!

1) A tad late in our opinion, but better late than never. Apparently, and surprisingly the LA Kings have decided that their once starting goalie, whom they acquired from the Canucks in July of 2006 for a pair of draft picks, was not up to the task of staying with the big club. He never was able to get comfortable and set in the anticipated role struggling with inconsistent play and many injuries. Most recently to his hip.

2) Cloutier is due to make $3.1-million both this season and also next, and will still be paid that when he clears wavers and is sent to Manchester(the Kings AHL affiliate) Once he clears wavers his salary will no longer count against the Kings salary cap, leaving significant space/flexibility (7-8 mil) if they choose to make additional moves now or later in the season.

3) Our only question is why it took so long to realize this was a bad move? We have never been big Cloutier fans. Well, we like the fact that he can drop his gloves and do this However, he has NEVER impressed us as anything more than a backup/AHL caliber tender. Having flashes of brilliance, but never winning/being the difference consistently. Which explains why he has failed to catch on with his now, 5th team.!

4) So where do the Kings go from here? Its a mere 8 days till their initial tilt in London against the high powered San Jose Shark. The word from the left coast is that they are feeling very comfortable handing the reigns over to either Jason LaBarbera, who had a nice start last year only to fade badly the second half, J. S. Aubin, who was less than impressive with the Leafs the last couple of seasons, or may they hand the starting role to a 19 year old??

5) Jonathan Bernier, younger brother of Sharks forward Steve Bernier has been playing rather well in camp we are told. We have only seen him a bit in the Canada-Russian Summit Series where he put in a very impressive effort. He does have an additional year of junior eligibility left, but if he excels the job may be offered to him. He can NOT be sent to the AHL, so the Kings will have a short window to see if he can handle the rigors of the NHL, or needs to be sent back to the Lewiston MAINEiacs of the QMJHL.

6) We feel its too bad that LA GM, Dean Lombardi, didn't realize his error sooner and try to land/trade for a better starting goalie. We feel that may be this teams only weakness. Bernier's potential aside, we are not comfortable with the other 2 potential tenders to be able to carry this team deep into the post season. As always thats why they play the games. Time will tell.

Self Destruction?

1) We were floored(well not really) to read that the Nashville Predators, yes the same team that is for sale and had its roster gutted over the summer, is RAISING TICKET PRICES!! No, you didn't read that wrong, they are actually raising prices! For some tickets a whopping 100% increase will be instituted for certain games. Overall the average price increase will be in the 25% range.

2) If your like us at FAUXRUMORS that sends red flags up all over the place. This is the franchise that needed to add spectators to be able to stay in Nashville. So what do they do?

  • They take a potential Stanley Cup contender and destroy the lineup by trading away some of their best players Hartnell, Vokoun, Timonen, and not signing or even offer a contract to their UFA's(Kariya), etc.

  • Blame the fans/local businesses for lack of interest in the team. Basically saying that its their fault the team is losing money and may have to move.

  • Sign a letter of intent with Jim Ballsille to sell the team. Jim through on one side of his mouth says the team will stay put, on the other he puts season tix for sale in Hamilton

  • The team, in need of additional fans, raises their prices 25% despite having a MUCH smaller payroll than last season.

3) One of the team's new buyers is businessman, William (Boots) Del Biaggio If that name rings a bell it should. He was the person who wanted to move the Pens or get an expansion team to move to his new K.C. arena. What does this all mean? Well, it doesn't take folks who believe in conspiracies to see the writing on the wall. This team is history! Of course we have been saying that all along, but never has it been so clear publicly than it is with this amazingly colossal degree of Chutzpah that the team owners came up with; a spike in ticket price, despite icing an inferior product.

4) Raise your hands if anyone believes the Predators will get to their stated/needed goal of 14,000+ tickets/game sold this year? If they couldn't last/previous seasons why would folks pay more to get less this year?? Hmmmm, the Kansis City Predators? Get used to the sound of it folks. The fix is evidently in!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Mark Your Calanders!

1) Here are the more notable dates for the upcoming NHL season. Note that our preseason predictions -East is set to be published here next Monday! The West Edition should be ready by next Wednesday, a week from today. We plan to subsequently offer our long range playoff/Cup winner predictions thereafter. We are working on a story on the latest Nashville news. It should be out Friday. As always, keep it here for all the latest!


13 - Opening Day of NHL training camp and - Preseason schedule begins

29-30 - Regular season opens in London, England


3 - Season begins in North America


10 - Hockey Hall of Fame Game (Rangers @ Leafs)

12 - Hockey Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony (Toronto)


1 - Signing deadline for Group 2 free agents

19-27 - Holiday Roster Freeze in effect


1- Ice Bowl Pittsburgh at Buffalo (out doors)

20 - NBC coverage begins

26 - NHL Super Skills Competition

27 - NHL All-Star Game (Atlanta)


15-17 - Hockey Weekend Across America

26 - Trade deadline 3 p.m., ET


6 - Last day of 2007-08 regular season

9 - Stanley Cup Playoffs begin


9 - Last possible day for 2008 Stanley Cup Final

12 - NHL Awards show (Toronto)

15 - Deadline for first club-elected salary arbitration

20 - NHL Entry Draft (Ottawa)


1 - Free Agency period begins

5 - Deadline for player-elected salary arbitration

6 - Deadline for club-elected salary arbitration

10 - Deadline for eligible players to elect Group 5 free agency

Monday, September 17, 2007

Extension fever!?!

1) Yes, folks we are hearing that teams/GM's have evidently learned from the mistakes of some of their colleagues this past season/summer, and are actively negotiating extensions with BOTH soon to be UFA's as well as RFA's. Only a season ago that would have been the exception. Most teams and players alike didn't like to even discuss contracts during a season.

2) No longer will teams like the Sabres have a 'no negotiating with players during the season' rule. They were burned when BOTH of their co-captains (Drury/Briere) bolted for big UFA paydays in July. Our source in Buffalo tells us that Regier thought he would have no problem signing Drury, as they had informal discussion in the fall last year, but Drury was upset that the team refused to go further than informal discussions and he cut off all talks until June. By that time his asking price was far more than what he wanted in November.

3) The 'no negotiating before summer' was almost always true of players who were to be RFA. In the past those players were free agents in name only. With it being next to never that another team would even think about trying to cherry pick another team's property. With the 2 Lowe offer sheets to Vanek and Penner, the latter acquired by the Oilers, the Pandora's box has been opened, and GM's have to now be wary. Any player with significant talent can't be allowed to become a RFA. If no other reason than it allows another team to dictate the terms of a deal, even if they match. Any team with cap space is a potential offer sheet originator.

4) Therefore we are hearing that quite a few players who would be UFA/ and RFA's are already being approached by teams to get extensions done NOW! As we have seen, as the salary cap escalates, so does the price for the elite players. Not everyone will take a discount, as Thornton, Iginla, and to some extent Sid Crosby did this past summer. To that end we are hearing that teams are in deep negotiations with several of the more well known potential 2008 free agents. Below is NOT a comprehensive list, but the folks who we believe if they went on the open market would get considerable attention from around the league

5) This list is in no particular order, and contains BOTH UFA as well as RFA. As we already mentioned; a year or so ago that distinction would have been important, but now its blurred.

  • Miikka Kiprusoff- The star tender of the Flames is in his final year of a deal that pays him 3.6 mil. The team can NOT afford to allow him to go on the open market next summer. He'll ask and probably get at least what his counter part in Anaheim, Giguere received 4 years 24 mil.

  • Alex Ovechkin- Alexander the Gr-8 as they call him the Verizon, is coming off two VERY impressive seasons for the lowly Capitals. Scoring 98 goals and 198 point s in his first 2 seasons, the Crapitals simply can NOT afford to allow him to be a RFA next summer. There is NO doubt he'd get an offer from someone. The Caps and GMGM would be wise to lock up their franchise player NOW before the distraction of it gets too much. To this point the Ovechkin family has handled AO's negotiating. Things are still cordial, but there have been a few 'uncomfortable moments' recently when the concept of a long term deal was broached by the Ovechkin camp only to be put off by McPhee. Seems they want to wait until mid season if they can. HUGE mistake in our opinion!

  • Dion Phaneuf- Coming off his rookie deal which pays him barely 800K, he most defiantly would get interest around the league as a RFA. The Flames would be wise to offer a lucrative long term(5 years) deal to the budding star defensemen. Unfortunately there aren't too many precedents that can be used to judge what is a far price. We are hearing the Flames are offering a 3 mil average, while his agent is looking for an outlandish 5. He would get the 5 if he were a UFA. We will see compromise and this will get done before he gets to the next offseason

  • Dany Heatley- Would most likely be the most sought after UFA available next summer if available. After 2 50+ goal, 100+ point seasons it will probably take at least 9 mil to retain him. As one of the most dangerous offensive players in the NHL, the Senators NEED to lock him up NOW! The only negative we can come up with was his poor Cup finals, but he did have 22 points in 20 playoff games. He IS the real deal.

  • Dan Boyle- Simply is an irreplaceable cog of the Lightning offense. The quintessential power lay QB, Dan has (relatively) quietly put up fairly impressive offensive number the last few years. Garnering a 20 goals and 63 points last season. At 30 he has quite a few seasons of productivity remaining so we are hearing that Feaster is trying to juggle his cap to be able to offer the rearguard a deal that he can't refuse. Else Boyle would be one of the more attractive UFA's available next summer

  • Ryan Getzlaf- Was a revelation last year. Came into his own as an up and coming power forward with the champion Ducks. Finishing his rookie contract, the Ducks are eager to avoid another 'Penner situation' next summer. Burke won't offer up quite Penner money, but instead will offer a nice salary and security of a 4-5 year deal in the 3.5 mil range. Ryan we're told is likely to accept the offer.

  • Henrik Lundqvist- After a slow start was probably the best goalie the second half. propelling his team into the playoffs. There is little doubt that the Rangers took Henrik to arbitration for no other reason than fear that a team would make an offer sheet that would be difficult for the cap-strapped rangers to match. Henrik, as we've discussed on a few occasions LOVES playing in NYC. It was instant love between the Swede and the area. A bit too much so early on, but once he curtailed the partying, he was OK. Its VERY unlikely Lundqvist will be available come July. Talk to get a long term deal have started and probably before the new year we will be hearing about a 4-5 year deal in the 25+ or so mil range.

  • Michael Ryder- Seems odd to talk about a 27 year old as a potential UFA, but Michael would be one IF the Habs decide/ or can't get a deal done before next July 1. The former Calder runner-up has had consecutive post lock out 30 goal campaigns. Despite this it seems the Habs are not yet certain he is worth an investment as they have on the last 2 years signed him only to one year deals. You can bet he'll get plenty of interest if he has another 30+ goal season, so Gainey better decide soon. He'll likely be favourite trade rumor fodder for the Montreal/Canadian media

  • Jason Spezza- The 24 year old Ottawa forward is coming off 2 pretty impressive regular seasons. Playing the pivot with Daniel Alfredsson and Dany Heatley, they make up one of the most feared lines in the league,. That said the Finals really illustrated a big issue some have found in Jason's game; his knack for being a perimeter player and lack of toughness. Still, the Sens would be hard pressed to be able to easily find an affordable replacement so they will have to find a way to get Jason signed before next summer. he may be a RFA, but you can be sure he'd be offer sheet material if available

    • Jeff Carter- After a good rookie season last year is one Jeff, and the entire Flyer team for that matter, would like to forget. However he is still only 22. He has shown that he has excellent offensive potential and has the size to be able to dominate. With the recent acquisitions their should be little pressure on Jeff, but he will have to work hard to get quality ice time. If healthy he can become the 1st line center the Flyers believe they drafted in 2003.

    • Marc-Andre Fleury- Almost forgotten in all the Crosby, etc hype around Pit is the fact that Fleury was the number 1 overall pick in the 2003 draft. Its also forgotten that he is a mere 22. A young age for a goalie entering his 3rd season. Now without an experienced back up he must be capable of putting the franchise on his shoulders, and expectations will be high for a goaltender chosen first overall. If he is successful he won't be cheap to resign and that could be a problem for a team chock-full of super stars in the making. However the precedent has been set with Sid taking a bit less, so it might be expected that Marc would be willing to accept a long term deal at slightly less than market value. We haven't heard yet if he would be willing to do that. Stay tuned. It will be an interesting season on and off the ice in Steel Town!

    • Andrej Meszaros- The 21 year old Ottawa defensemen burst on to the scene 2 years ago and quickly became a top 4 defensemen. He's mature beyond his years and has displayed a knack for his ability to lead the rush in transition. He can only improve with time so he would be a prime target to be cherry picked if he somehow were available. We do NOT see that as a likely possibility

    • Marian Hossa- The 28 year old Slovak forward is completing the last year of a lucrative deal he signed just before his trade from Ottawa. Thus far he has affirmed the reasons for the deal. he has great regular seasons, but disappears in the playoffs. he actually wasn't even the best Hossa in the Thrasher's thrashing by the Rangers. That said, Atlanta has every intention of attempting to retain him. Teaming up with Russian sniper Ilya Kovalchuk , they have been a force to be reckoned with. Incompetent GM Waddell is already in contact with Hossa about possible 3 year 24 mil extension to keep him in Atlanta

      • Davis Vyborny- has been one of the better Jackets the last 2 post lockout seasons. No spring chicken at 32, he has earned his relatively modest 2 mil salary with consecutive 60+ point seasons. Columus would prefer to get him signed to a 2 year extension before he becomes an attractive UFA next summer

      • Barret Jackman- The 26 year old former 1999 1st rounder has been somewhat of a disappointment with his limited offense, but he is extremely aggressive and an excellent bodychecker. He also plays a sound defensive game and has plenty of leadership qualities. For those reasons the Blues will try hard to retain the Trail, B.C native.

        • Markus Naslund- The 33 year old Canuck will be completing his deal which pays him 6 mil. Though he hasn't earned it the past 2 years, can the Canucks afford to lose him? They may offer him an extension, but at a lower, more affordable salary. Right now we are hearing he may either opt to test the open market and hope he has a good contract year, or return home to his native Sweden unless the 'Nucks offer is more than the 3 year 9 mil extension that our sources tell us is on the table.

        • Matt Stajan- The forward may not yet be a top 6 forward, but he has been progressing well enough that its a distinct possibility. He been quite versatile playing all 3 forward positions. Look for the leafs to give the youngster additional offensive responsibility this season. We hear that they will hedge their bets and wait to see how he responds to this before discussing extension.

        • Brent Seabrook- The former 1st rounder is coming off back to back solid NHL seasons as a very young defensemen on a poor Chicago team. He has been one of their bright spots on dismal seasons. They would prefer to not lose him. However this IS still a William Wirtz owned team so logic/doing the right thing isn't a guarantee with this team.

        • Corey Perry- Like his teammate Getzlaf, Cory was a highly touted junior prospect who finally seemed to put it all together last year. Playing with Ryan he along with Penner former a very formidable power trio in the playoffs that were hard to stop. Though not quite as highly regarded as Getzlaf he does have as much, if not more offensive upside. The Ducks will do their best to get him signed long before July 08.

        • Trent Hunter- After the first 30 or so games it looked like Trent had lost all his offensive ability. Though he never lost the confidence of his coach ted Nolan. Trent never stopped working(which is why Nolan never stopped playing him) and that work paid off with a very nice second half where he was one of the best players and that carried over into the Isles brief playoff appearance, scoring 3 goals in the 5 games. We hear that discussions for a 3 year deal are already underway, and there is little chance that Trent will be playing elsewhere in 2008

        • Sean Avery- The pesky, Darcy Fucker-like forward really came into his own once he was dealt to NY. Despite his negative persona he always displays all-out hustle and is a tireless forechecker. His work produced a respectable 48 points as a checking forward. If he continues to keep his mouth and tendency to take bad penalties in check he can become a very versatile all around forward. The Rangers got him relatively cheap at 1.9 mil. If he has a 50+ point season his value will require the Blueshirts to pony up double that figure at least to keep him. No talks have taken place yet, but you can be certain that if he starts out fast the garden brass will be contacting Sean's agent.

        • Mike Richards- (No he didn't play Kramer on Seinfeld.) Often lumped/mistaken for/with his team mate Carter. Wasn't as impressive as a rookie as Jeff, but unfortunately had the same injury bug that plagued his larger teammate. Scouts have said that he plays a smart, two-way game and possesses outstanding leadership qualities. Can kill penalties and also be a playmaker on the power play. Also only 22 the Flyers will be patient and hope he develops into the player they believe he can be.

        • Kari Lehtonen- The Finn is completing the second year of a 2 year deal that pays him about 2 mil. He finally seemed to be coming into his own last year after an injury plagued 2005-06. However, his poor performance in the playoffs(along with ALL the Thrashers) has affected the teams approach to negotiations. They don't want to shell out big bucks unless/until they can see more consistent results. As we believe he is arbitration eligible, the Thrashers have that option if a long term arrangement isn't agreed to before July.

        • Jay Bouwmeester- The best defenseman that no one knows about. If he played in Canada or a big US market everyone would be talking future Norris candidate. As scouts have said: Has incredible skating ability, a keen sense of when to join the rush, size and hockey smarts. Sounds a bit like Mr Pronger in Anaheim. The Panthers know that he is a corner stone player and will NOT allow him to be picked off via an offer sheet. The 23 year old Edmonton native should see a nice bump up in salary from the 2.25 mil he's set to make this season.

          • Alexander Semin- The flaky shy Russian came on to the scene in a big way last year. Pegged to be a 2nd line LW, his offense was a welcome addition to the anemic capitals attack. If he has another near 40 goal season GMGM may have to make a difficult decision. A team can't realistically pay top dollar to 2 players at the same position. No one with in the organization is talking what their plans are at this time with the 'other Alex'. Our feeling is they would like to keep him, but if it appears his demands are too steep they will have to deal him.

            • Paul Gaustad- The 25 year old hulking forward has yet to breakthrough in the NHL, but has shown signs in limited ice time that he belongs in the bigs. Is solid at both ends of the ice, and a deft play maker. He probably will get added ice time and a chance to show more offensive consistency. The sabres will probably wait until at least mid season before deciding if they want to extend his deal

            6) Just a reminder of our zero tolerance policy: Also as promised our season preview set to be released in 2 parts will be ready by week's end. As always, keep it here for the latest!

            Sunday, September 16, 2007

            Zero Tolerance!

            1) This is an unfortunate, but apparently necessary post to alert a very vocal, yet distinct minority(one person) that this blog will no longer tolerate/entertain the nonsense that you have perpetrated the last month or so.

            2) Of course it goes way back beyond that, but we're referring to your (Hockeynutz)'s latest version of yourself, Hawk. Also this pertains to any one else who has a non-hockey related beef with any of us at THE FAUXRUMORS GROUP, LLC. The last few weeks during the dog days of the offseason we were a bit more tolerant of that crap. Now that training camp has opened across the league, its time to resume this blog to what it is intended; the discussion of NHL hockey.

            3) If you have a perceived issue with us(other than hockey-related disagreements) The available remedies for you will be:

            • Writing to us directly:

            • Writing your opinions to others who contribute to the list at their e-mail addresses

            • Leave your commentary on this thread. We won't erase any non hockey commentary if its left here. We will periodically remind readers if they forget, that this will be the refuse for their non-hockey related beefs, opinions, etc. If non-hockey related comments are left anywhere else they will be summarily deleted. You are therefore warned now.

            • As before, ANY/ALL hockey-related disagreements are allowed. We have VERY thick skin and are perfectly fine with other points of view. What we will no longer tolerate is the endless inane blathering of the aforementioned minority. Sorry to the other 99.99% of the folks who follow the rules.

            4) We are busy finishing up a post on the "Extension Fever' that is gripping the league. Look for it sometime tomorrow! As always, keep it here for the latest!

            Friday, September 14, 2007

            Preseason Predictions

            1) Just a note to let our readers know that the annual FAUXRUMORS pre season predictions posts will be coming out sometime next week. Along with the 2 part series (One for each conference) we will go one step further and make an even larger leap ahead, picking our the Cup Finalists as well as our pick to be the eventual Stanley Cup champs in 2008!

            2) Will also allow you, the readers to not only weigh in your own opinions after the posts, but we plan to also include a poll so you can vote on who you believe will be the winner.

            3) Things are just starting folks. Training camps across the NHL are NOW open!!! Hallelujah! As always keep it here for the latest.

            Thursday, September 13, 2007

            Strumpet Back At It?

            1) We came across this funny story from one of our fellow bloggers, Jes Gőlbez over at 'Hockey Rants'. Evidently our favourite whipping boy, Alexei Ya$hin has some relationship problems. According to the NY POST Ya$hin's long time girlfriend, aging (47) model Carol Alt was seen hanging with Swedish Ranger star goalie Henrik Lundqvist.

            2) To refresh the memories of some of us not up to speed with Carol's past exploits. WAYYYYY back in the early 1980's, when she was still a super model she hooked up and married Ranger defensemen Ron Greschner. They stayed together right up until Ron retired. Then, apparently Carol didn't want to retreat back to Goodsoil, SASK to live once hockey was over so she found a new beau hockey player, the aforementioned Alexei Ya$hin. He was 19 years younger than Greshner, and apparently more importantly, still playing in the NHL.

            3) Which leads us to now. After the Islander's buy=out of the oft(deserved) maligned, and over paid center, there were few offers that Ya$hin felt were worthy of his talent, so he flew back to Russia for a real pay cheque. Surprising (to some) Ms. Alt did NOT follow her long time boy friend over the pond, but instead stayed in the states. Which seemed reasonable. Many couples have long distance working relationships. Reasonable, until this story broke.

            4) Evidently, and we don't have confirmation from other sources yet, but Carol has taken a liking to yet another hockey player, Henrik Lundqvist. Some may recall our exclusive 'outing of Henrik's sometimes reckless partying habits last fall. Well, the 25 year old Swede must have been intoxicated to go after the geriatric hockey harlot. As we wrote on the Rant blog She's 47 for Christ's sakes! Does Lundqvist have some unresolved Oedipus issues that the Rangers may want to address? It was creepy enough to see her with Ya$hin. If this is true it would be down right nauseating. She was once incredibly hot, but nowadays how could a young, rich hockey player want this??:

            Wednesday, September 12, 2007

            Silliness out of Montreal, etc.

            1) The link is provided, but if your not a French speaker, we will aid in its translation. Leave it to the French Montreal media to conjure up a controversy where none existed before. Fresh off their inane Shane Doan witch hunt the Quebec media, with little to write about until camp opens, came up with this doozy: Evidently Danielle Briere decided to not to go to Montreal because Hab's GM, Bob Gainey would not promise him he would play on the first line with Higgins and Ryder. Gainey insisted that Saku would remain the team's first line center. Brière went to Philly where they said he could 'play with who he wants.'

            2) Of course that's total Barbara Streisand(BS). Anyone who has been reading our blog the past few months already know why Danielle decided to play in Philly. He wanted to get away from the exact media clowns/circus as well as the scrutiny that being a Francophone player in Montreal brings. Not to mention the absurd tax rates, but the atmosphere in Quebec was the primary reason we're told that the Gatineau native decided to stay away from there. At least its never boring up there! LOL

            3) Once this non-story dies down we're sure the Vinny Lecavalier stories/rumors will commence. Of course Vinny will be heading to Quebec at some point. Where else would he want to go, right? That and the inevitable resumption of Peter Forsberg rumors. We're sure by mid season if the Swede hasn't yet signed, he'll have been rumored to be going to all 6 teams up north at some point.

            4) Speaking of idiocy and media. Our pal Stan(The Maven) Fischler, via Ron Spence has this Whopper. Apparently "Hockey Isn't Canada's Sport". Why? Well because in the last 40 years 11 states have won a Cup while 'only' 3 provinces in Canada have hoisted it. As we wrote directly to Stan, that has to be one of the most silly explanations as to why "Hockey Isn't Canada's Sport".

            5) Not to mention the fact that Canada has far fewer provinces than the US has states, its inane when you see how many Cups Canada has won in just 2 cities since the 1920s. All in all Montreal, Toronto, Edmonton and Calgary may ONLY represent 3 provinces, but they have combined for a whopping 40+ Cups. One could also argue (successfully) that almost every team that has won from a US location has been made up of a majority of Canadian born players! Why don't you ask the Russians junior players who they feel about Canada's hockey prowess?

            Tuesday, September 11, 2007

            Never Forget!!

            1) Let's Never forget that 3000 of us were murdered for no other reason than for what those colors represent; Freedom! These colors NEVER run!

            Monday, September 10, 2007

            Out-Door Hockey?

            1)Let us start off with saying that we are NOT against the idea of having an out door hockey game. We believe also that the choices of teams, the Penguins and Sabres are a good choice, albeit not our first. Both are young, exciting teams to watch and it will be a great event that hockey surely could benefit from. It is our opinion that they aren’t maximizing their return on the event.

            2) First of all, the timing is horrible. New Years Day has always been a huge day for college football. Already the NHL is almost ignored by ESPN/the U.S. media. With this timing, you can pretty much be assured that it won’t get at most a passing glance on New Years Day. For your perusal here a list of the games planned for that day:

            • Outback Bowl – 12:00 p.m. – ESPN

            • Cotton Bowl – 12:30 p.m. – FOX

            • Capital One Bowl –2:00 p.m.– ABC

            • Gator Bowl – 2:00 p.m. – CBS

            • Rose Bowl Bowl – 5:30 p.m. – ABC

            • Sugar Bowl – 9:00 p.m. – FOX

            3) This NHL’s version of the Ice Bowl set to take place at Ralph Wilson Stadium, home of the NFL's Buffalo Bills, at 3:00 p.m. The rumor(not yet confirmed) is that the game would be carried live on NBC. With that timing of the game during the span of the game itself, you will have to be in competition with two games that will likely be just finishing up, two that just started and another that will just be starting when the hockey game will be finishing up. Who in heck planned this???

            4) As for the placement of the game. Buffalo has shown itself to be a decent hockey town with it being in close proximity to hockey crazy southern Ontario to attract hockey fans from those locales, and fill up the estimated 60,000 seats. It is also not a far drive for Pittsburgh fans to make to Buffalo to see their Pens. However, given the unpredictability of the weather in Buffalo, it could be a huge problem. Known for localized snow bursts(or more) off Lake Erie, how would the league handle such a possibility? Have a snow delay? Is there a way to plough snow from an ice surface so play can be resumed, etc?

            5) We realize scheduling any out door games has a whole set of unique issues that can arise, but having the game in Buffalo in early winter on a day that almost all of the U.S. will be watching college pig skin, seems to not be the best possible scenarios. What would/could be better?

            • Montreal-Toronto: Played as a home and home, out-doors. Guaranteed to sell as many tickets as you can sell in both venues. Yes, it wouldn't get as much play down in the states, but the Buf-Pitt game won't be getting any exposure anyway.

            • Rangers-Islanders in NYC (Yankee Stadium)- This has been floated, and probably has quite a few issues to be resolved before it could be a reality, but this would get exposure in the biggest American market, and have the rivalry like the above game to make for an intense game.

            • Above all schedule the game(s) when the NHL would get maximum exposure. Geez, why not just have it set for SuperBowl Sunday at 6:00 p.m.?

            6) The key therefore in our opinion is the timing of the game. New Years Day would probably NOT be our first choice. We understand the logistics of such an undertaking, but so should the powers that be in the league office. We hope that the weather is good, and that hard core hockey fans aren't too interested in any bowel games, and next time they have more time to get this arranged properly.

            Thursday, September 6, 2007


            1) We were originally told an announcement will be forth coming early this afternoon in Anaheim concerning on again, off again retiring Scott Niedermayer. As some of our regular readers may recall, we have been vocal in our chastisement of the future Hall of Fame defender for dragging his feet(skates) in making this decision. However it appears that Scott even at this late date has NOT Yet decided!!

            2) While some thought he deserved time to make a decision, we felt that after a few weeks off he was obligated to let his employers know what direction he was going to take and not leave them hanging. In a 'salary cap NHL' a player who is owed another 13.5 million for 2 seasons needs to make clear his intentions as soon as possible. Here we are into September, with training camp a mere week away and we are still in the dark as to what Scott will decide to do. We find that absurd! While we're sure Brian Burke won't be saying anything derogatory about his (former-?)captain in public, privately we're sure he can't be too happy with the prolonged uncertainty.

            3) We are told that Teemu Selanne is also soon to announce his intentions for the upcoming year. Like Niedermayer, it would have been the right thing to do to make this announcement sooner, but unlike Scott, he is not under contract. Our sources tell FAUXRUMORS that Teemu is NOT in any kind of game shape at the moment which may mean he's either going to announce retirement, or possibly leave open a late fall/early winter return.(That should heat up the rumor mill of his intended destination!) We're told the Ducks would entertain a mid season return from the Finnish Flash if they are given assurances of his intentions now.

            4) Like Selanne, one possibility floating around the Niedermayer camp is an early/mid season return. To that we say, "What the hell for"??? Its not like Niedermayer is coming off a major injury or is dealing with a significant family/personal situation that requires his time. So whats his problem? We always knew he was somewhat of a flake( but to do that to his teammates and organization that invested a boat load of cash shows a lack of respect and selfishness we can not ignore. On-ice accomplishments aside, that would be a bush league maneuver. One that until now was relegated to the likes of Roger Clemens. Shit or get off the pot Scott!

            Wednesday, September 5, 2007


            1) Yesterday we were struck by the stark contrast of career paths. On one hand you had Pierre Turgeon who called it a career. No major surprise here. 'Sneaky Pete' has been declining in production. His last stand out season going back to 2001. So it was clearly time to 'hang em' up' after an illustrative, arguably Hall of Fame career. With 500+ goals and 1300+ points. He had some decent seasons afterwards, but he never seemed to be the same player after this He always carried himself with class. We wish Pierre well!

            2) On the other you have Jeremy Roenick announcing is is NOT going to retire, but will persist for yet another season. Most likely for the selfish reason of wanting to get to 500 goals(He needs 5). As we wrote yesterday we don't know what was the Sharks reasoning for bringing in JR, but as much as some believe its a no lose situation for them, it can backfire. Roenick may not be the role model/veteran influence the Sharks want in their young locker room. Recall how Roenick did last year when asked to sit a few games. Though he once was one of the most dynamic players in the game, he is now been reduced to little more than a buffoon; a mere shell of his past self. Sad.

            Saturday, September 1, 2007

            Favourite Player For Each team

            1) With the off season winding down(Finally) we decided we'd throw out another discussion/opinion type post for all of you. We invite our readers to join in and give your own list/comment on ours.

            • Anaheim - Ryan Getzlaf, Without a doubt the player from the Ducks We'd love to see on our team, big, strong and skilled, with potential to get even better. George Parros and his moustache get honorable mention!

            • Atlanta - Pascal Dupuis. No reason, just love hearing announcers try to pronounce/say his name. LOL.

            • Boston - Zdeno Chara. How could the tallest player EVER to lace em up NOT be a favourite? He's also pretty dam good, and looks like he's strong enough to beat the crap out of anyone if he chose. Its a good thing for opponents he has a calm temperament!

            • Buffalo - Derek Roy. Not only is he a pretty good young player, but we can say his name and not have to sound silly like many do when saying the name of former Av's Hall of Fame goalie, who has the same last name.

            • Calgary - Dion Phaneuf. Toughness, skill, youth, scoring touch, you name it, the kid has it. You always know when this guy is on the ice. Announcers seem to love to say his full name each and every time he comes near the puck

            • Carolina - Erik Cole. Gritty and tough yet puts up points very well. Came back from that nasty neck injury, guys got guts. Also from a place called Oswego, NY. Where ever that is?

            • Chicago - Patrick Lalime...OK no, seriously Sergei Samsonov. Year in and year out steals his employers money. Gets big bucks for small effort/results. Expect more of the same. Get less for more from Sammy!

            • Colorado - Joe Sakic. Can't argue that he's the best leader in the NHL since Yzerman left the game. Excellent play maker, passer, excellent at pretty much everything. To think 14 teams past him up that draft year. Of course some of the top 14 were pretty good too(Turgeon/Shanahan) Some were not(McBean, More, Chynoweth)

            • ColumbusSergei Fedorov. He's made a lot of money and he's done Anna Kournikova. 'Nough said

            • DallasTodd Fedoruk. Have to have respect for a guy who keeps getting his Skull Kicked IN yet just keeps coming back for more more, and more............

            • DetroitNicklas Lidstrom. Since Stevie Y is no longer available for the list, we'll have to go with him. A great defenseman who always is there for 'big time minutes' on both sides of the rink. Is so good, you hardly notice him at times.

            • EdmontonRaffi Torres. Another trade we bet the Isles wish they could undo. Red-Dog may have had an off year, but at 25 he's still improving. You also gotta love a guy who can hit like this !

            • Florida - We will miss having Eddie the Eagle to kick around. Will the Miami PD also miss him? We don't think so. We honestly don't like anyone else on the team.

            • Los AngelesDan Cloutier He might suck, but any goalie who likes to drop the mitts and do this is OK in our books.

            • MinnesotaDerek Boogaard. (See Fedoryk) The guy runs a hockey fighting camp for kids! Whats not to like!

            • MontrealBryan Smolinski. For the simple reason he's played for so many teams(8) he can tell you where all the best restaurants are in each city are located

            • NashvilleJordin (22) Tootoo. 'The Little Chief'. Has a bit of 'short man syndrome', but he IS only 5'2" after all. He needs to be traded to the NY Islanders. Nolan gets the most from 'chiefs'.

            • New JerseyKevin Weekes. He may not be any good, but he sure has an interesting web site devoted to him!.

            • NY IslandersMiroslav Satan. We really didn't want to pick him, but the Devil made us do it!

            • NY RangersColton Orr. With that last name you may think he'd have skill at more than this There had to be a reason why a guy who has NEVER been double digits in points at any level, is in the NHL.

            • OttawaRay Emery. (See Cloutier) He is NOT as good as some say, but the man is just so entertaining, he fought Buffalo's Peters in full goalie gear, gets suspended for using his stick as a hatchet . That's more than enough to get on the list. But also the puice suits !

            • PhiladelphiaDanielle Briere. Hey, how could we not root for the girl? She won't live up to the 10 million dollar salary, but it'll buy plenty of makeup!

            • PhoenixShane Doan. Probably a bit over rated /overpaid, but anyone who can put those Froggy buggers in the Quebec Media/politics in their place, is OK in our book!

            • Pittsburgh – Mark Recchi. Bet you thought we'd say Georges Laraque. Guys are so afraid of his fists that he seldomly fights anymore. The 'Wrecking Ball' has had a Hall of Fame career with a few Cup Rings.

            • San JoseJonathan Cheechoo. One of the best 'Chiefs'. When they combined Cheech with Big Joe his potential was finally realized. Should be back on the war path again this year! A bargain at 2.5 mil! Should have held out for more wampum!

            • St. LouisKeith Tkachuk. Now 11 years removed from his last 50 goal season. Keith has parlayed his past success into big money contracts which he hasn't lived up to. He's set to steal another 8 mil from the Blues the next 2 years. Eventually someone will realize you don't win with this bum on your team!

            • TampaMarty St. Louis. Probably one of the best undrafted players of the last 25 years. At barely 5'4" you can't but be impressed. One wonders how confused fans would be if he played for the Blues.

            • TorontoDarcy Fucker. The fact that everyone hates him,(including us) only makes us like him more. As Reggie Dunlap says: " You gotta twist em, fuck with them". Darcy is one of the best at that and more!

            • VancouverThe Sedins. Announcers forced to use first names when they are out there. We wonder what would happen if one starts to suck? So far all contracts have been identical(like they are) If they were forced to be separated, would they die ??

            • WashingtonAlexander Semin. Since his arrival has made the use of the double entendre easy! " Semin all over the ice". "Great release" "Hard shot" etc. Yes, its sophomoric, but entertaining.
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