Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year- 2012!!

1) Just a quickie note to wish all our readers the very best this New Years! 2012 will be the seventh calendar year we at FAUXRUMORS have been blogging.

2) We are excited to begin the year where we left off; Providing hard hitting, unique commentary, rumors and rumor evaluation, and of course always with irreverent humor. Thanks to all of you for making this venture so much fun! As always, keep it here for all the latest in 2012 and beyond!

Week 13 Picks

1) Yes, Its Lucky week 13 in the NHL. Along with it being New Years Eve there are an even dozen games on the docket today/tonight. Thus ar we are 85-63 for a .574 winning %

Edmonton at NY Islanders: Oiler

Pittsburgh at New Jersey: Penguins

Carolina at Tampa Bay: Lightning

Phoenix at Minnesota: Wild

Montreal at Florida: Panther

Ottawa at Buffalo: Sabre

Toronto at Winnipeg: Jets

St. Louis at Detroit: Red wings (Lock of The Week)

Washington at Columbus: Capitals

Boston at Dallas: Bruins

Colorado at Anaheim: Duck

Vancouver at Los Angeles: Kings

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

1) Firstly we here at FAUXRUMORS want to thank each and every one of our many loyal readers. We wouldn't be here without you!

2) During this hockey hiatus, we at the FAUXRUMORS group, along with the entire NHL, will also be taking a 24-48 hour break. We want to wish all of you and yours the best this holiday season! We will be back, along with the NHL back in action on Monday Until then we at FAUXRUMORS want to say:MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Week 12 Results

1) The Holiday vacation is underway.. No games for 48 hours. Our early Week 12 is complete. For the night we went a decent 7-4 to bring the season totals to 85-63 for a .574 winning %. We got our Lock to bring that stat to 9-3.

2) FR2 maintains he will get a Power Rankings out soon. A business deal prevented him dropping it this past week. I'm also working on a post concerning the coaching turn over. Look for it in the next few days.
As always keep it here for all the latest!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Week 12 Picks

1) Yes, a day early, but as we mentioned Saturday with the Christmas holiday there will be no games Saturday so we will use Friday his week as our weekly day to pick all the winners. To date through the first 11 weeks we are 78-59 for a .569 winning %.

Florida at Boston: Bruins

Washington at New Jersey:Devils

Toronto at NY Islanders: Islanders

Philadelphia at NY Rangers: Flyers

Ottawa at Carolina: Hurricane

Pittsburgh at Winnipeg: Penguins

Nashville at Dallas: Stars (Lock of the Week)

Tampa Bay at Colorado: Avalanche

St. Louis at Phoenix: Coyotes

Calgary at Vancouver: Canucks

Los Angeles at San Jose: Sharks

Monday, December 19, 2011

Sacrebleu!! Habs Hire NON-Francophone to Coach!

1) In a non-stunning move the Montreal Canadiens fired underachieving head coach Jacques Martin over the weekend. What was stunning to the local (French speaking) media was the hiring of a non-French speaker in Randy Cunneyworth. Who cares if he was a good candidate or not, its all about the politics (of exclusion of Anglo-phones) when it comes to anything in Canada's mostly Franco-phone province of Quebec. Oops, sorry, Québec.

2) First as to the move. It was LONG over due. Martin wasn't cutting it. You might recall how we chastized the Canadiens for their dumb move in firing their assisteant coach when it was clear the problem lied in their coach and GM being incredibly inept. In fact the GM was in our cross hairs with the recent Kaberle trade. See-----> So when they finally fired Martin we said "Its about time"! The French press of course couldn't careless if Martin was fired as long as he was replaced with someone with whom they could talk with in French. So the move to hire Cunneyworth was met with severe criticism with political officials. In fact The Province's culture minister says she expects "the Habs to correct the situation". In other words fire Cunneyworth and replace him with ANYone who can speak French. Even a French speaking chimp would probably be fine with the likes of these clowns!

3) So what will happen? AS Cunnyworth is still labeled 'interim coach' you can be sure that GM Pierre Gauthier and the Habs ownership will 'rectify' this situation and try to mollify the imbeciles who seem to make up the political class in Quebec. WE are already reading about a possible Patrick Roy hiring. It would of course make sense for many reasons. He's a former Hab great and MOST IMPORTANTLY he speaks French!!!! Voila this Faux pas will be corrected and we can finally Vive la différence and again the Quebec politicians can Joie de vivre.
Merci beaucoup

Christmas Trade Freeze?

1) Well the once heralded start of the Christmas trade freeze came and went with a mere whimper. ( THE NHL XMAS TRADE FREEZE PERIOD IS DECEMBER 19-27.) What was once one of the more active times of year (behind only the spring trade deadline, and entry draft) the holiday trade freeze has become just another arbitrary deadline that comes and goes with little notice by anyone but team' GM's and some hard core fans/bloggers. The inevitable question would be why? Why is it/has it been so quiet the last few years. The answer(s) are simple:

  • The salary cap: This is the obvious reason for ALL trade inhibition. Teams can no longer simply make a trade without first thinking of the short AND long term salary cap implications. Although the cap has increased substantially(39 to 64 mil) the past 5 seasons, teams are still learning the system and reluctant to get too close to the max, if possible, to retain flexibility for a deal later in the season. As we have seen, even then the cap (as well as the earlier trade deadline) helps to retard the number and scope of a trade.

  • League-wide parity: With so many (almost all right now) teams still technically in it for longer periods, almost all GM's are still thinking of this year and not ready to throw in the towel, per se, after 30 or so games and think re-build. So there are very few 'sellers' of quality.

2) There are some deals that were rumoured to be left on the table that may be revisited again in the New Year. The previously rumoured Nash deal, as we wrote back then blue-jackets-looking-to-make-big-move. the deal would either happen then or after the holidays, probably closer to the AllStar game in late January. Additionally we're told that GM of the Washington Capitals is actively shopping under performing/uber-talented winger Alex Semin. With his 6.7 mil salary almost 40% off the books it could become more palatable as the new year begins for a team to take on the enigmatic Russian as a rental. The Doughty trade rumours also refuse to go away despite his new long term deal. hard feeling remain. These were a few of the stories we were following the last week or so. If any seem to be getting close to fruition we of course will let all our loyal readers in on the rumor as we hear them. As always, keep it here for all the latest!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Week 11- Results

1) Week 11 is complete. We had another pretty decent week, going a solid 8-4 for the day/night to bring the season total to 78-59 or a .569 winning %. We also claimed another "Lock" to elevate that stat to 8-3. The NHL is dark on X-mas Eve and X-mas day so we will do our picks on Christmas Eve Eve(Friday) when 11 games will be played prior to the 2 day hiatus.

2) Look for a couple of posts this week. A pre holiday Power rankings is likely as is a discussion of the holiday trade freeze. As always keep it here for all the latest

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Week 11 Picks- Who Would Janet Bet On?

1) Yes, we are taking a shot at Janet(Jones) Gretzky and her past-? affinity to put a few bucks on the line for sporting events. Anyway its week 11. WE hope to have our first back to back solid week. For the season we are an ordinary(for us) 70- 55 for a .560 winning %. FR2 tells me he plans on trying to put up a pre holiday Power rankings. Look for it to drop sometime in the upcoming week.

Boston at Philadelphia: Bruins

Vancouver at Toronto: Canucks

New Jersey at Montreal: Habitants

Buffalo at Pittsburgh: Sabres

Anaheim at Winnipeg: Jets (Lock of The Week)

Los Angeles at Detroit: Red Wings

Tampa Bay at Columbus: Blue Jackets

St. Louis at Nashville: Predators

NY Islanders at Minnesota: Wild

NY Rangers at Phoenix: Rangers

Washington at Colorado: Avalanche

Edmonton at San Jose: Sharks

Friday, December 16, 2011

Concussion Epidemic?

1) The way things are going you'd believe that there is a real epidemic of concussions going around the NHL this season. With the oft discussed Sidney Crosby concussion(s), to the most recent Chris Pronger (apparent) season ending concussion there seem to be a lot more high profile players going down with this very difficult to treat/often career threatening injury. In recent days/weeks we've seen stars Claude Giroux, Milan Michalek, Jeff Skinner, and Mike Richards join the aforementioned Crosby and Pronger to the list of star players going down with a concussion. However, according to the league the actual number of these type of injuries is no higher than last season. However don't believe for a second that the league won't have a knee-jerk response to these well-publicized injuries. There will be an inevitable call for 'changes' even if there really isn't one single factor involved in players having a concussion. Firstly NONE of the previous list of players injuries occurred as a result of a fight yet you can be sure the anti-fighting morons are going to bring that up as a way to curb concussions.

2) So despite the leagues statement that concussions are not suddenly increasing, we at Fauxrumors, who have been following the game for 40+ years, do NOT recall hearing much about concussions as a major problem until the past decade or so and really only the past 5 or so years. So what factors might be involved in this change?

  • Better Diagnosis: The neurological scans simply were not available 2 decades ago that are responsible in allowing teams to assess a players brain damage(if any). Techniques in assessment/diagnosis among medical professionals is light years ahead of where it was even a decade ago, so diagnoses are not missing concussions like in the past

  • Better Equipment: The new equipment certainly protects players much more effectively than in the past. Its light weight and hard as a rock. Players are more apt to feel free to make a hard shoulder hit, knowing they are well protected from harm, etc. Meanwhile helmets have changed little.

  • Faster game: Since the lockout the reduction in clutching and grabbing has sped up the game significantly. I ask any reader to watch a "classic" game from the 90's or before and you'll be struck by how much slower the game seems to be

3) So what will likely be proposed to curb this apparent epidemic? We predict some of the ideas will be in effect to try to slow down the game. If that happens we will have come full circle from the lockout when there was a call to make the game more exciting by reducing the boring (NJ Devils) trap and clutch/grab game. Some even point to the Brodeur rule (silly Trapezoid) as one factor allowing opponents an easier path to hit a defensman because goalies can't play the puck. The league has already tried to eliminate 'head shots'and in my opinion is succeeding, however most concussions (apart from Matt Cooke opponents) are not happening from direct dirty head shots, but from either inadvertent contact (Crosby) pucks to the head (Pronger) or just plane legal hard hits. It would be a shame if they league attempted to change the game now that its as exciting as its been.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Is 87 History?

1) Well its probably a bit premature to bury Sidney Crosby as being 'done' however as we have written a few times the past few months, and most recently last week, if Crosby were to sustain another concussion it could be career threatening. What was widely reported last week when Crosby was going to take a "precautionary" 2 game rest after having "mild symptoms" was that he and the team were just being careful. Of course we reported that we had heard otherwise. That indeed it was quite likely that Crosby had suffered another setback(concussion) At the time of that post it was still unknown how serious that new situation was. We wrote last week that we would know if/when Crosby failed to return from the 2 game absence if this was more serious than the team/he were letting the media know.

2) Fast forward to yesterday when the team officially announced that Crosby was going to be out 'indefinitely'. Quite a bit of a change/leap from a precautionary couple of days to 'indefinitely'. That had to bring an ominous feel to Penguin supporters. from what we could learn (and the team is being especially tight lipped/quiet even in private) Crosby has been having head aches even without exertion since last weeks game against the Bruins. Recall he didn't have a huge hit(s) in that game but a few what we'd call mundane hockey plays where he was jolted a bit. All neurologists as well as the faux resident medical expert Dr. Varga have told us to be ready for that. Once a player suffers multiple concussions he is very prone to re-injuring himself even with a less-than hard hit directly to the head. Our experts tell us that its unlikely that we'll see Crosby before 2012. Ofcourse that's a mere 2 weeks, but the longer he's out and having symptoms the more unlikely it'll be that he'll ever be counted upon to play much longer if ever. So yes, the end could be very close at hand with respect to Sid. It'll be a sad day for the Penguins and for the NHL. having one of its best players cut so short.

Monday, December 12, 2011

All-Prick/Most Hated Teams: 2011 Edition

1) We have been inundated with requests to update one of our most popular lists and felt enough time (4 years) had gone by that we could update it here. To review for our newer readers, in November of 2007 FR2 did a post listing the starting 6 players that were jerks, dirty, or just plane assholes/disliked by the rest of the NHL. He went on to list a First then second string team(s) along with his All time Prick team. Sio without further ado, here is our 2011 edition of The All Prick Team(s)

First team:

Center: Sean Avery

Left Wing: Chris Neal

Right wing: Matt Cooke

Defense: Dion Phaneuf

Defense: Chris Pronger

Goalie: Ray Emery

Head Coach: John Tortorella

GM: Brian Burke

Second Team:

Center: Steve Ott

Right wing: Jordon Tootoo

Leftwing: Dan Carcillo

Defense: Zdeno Chara

Defense:Shane O'Brian

Goalie: Roberto Luongo

Head coach: Dale Hunter

GM: Terry Murray

2) Next Our All-Time All-Prick Team(s)

First Team:

Center: Bobby Clarke

Rightwing: Chris (Knuckles) Nilan

Left wing: Dave (Tiger) Williams

Defense:Marty McSorley

Defense: Dave Manson

Goalie: (Battling)Billy Smith

Head Coach: Don (Grapes) Cherry

GM: (Iron)Mike Keenan

Second Team:

Center: Dale Hunter

Right wing: Claude Lemieux

Left wing: Ken (The Rat) Linseman

Defense: Dennis Potvin

Defense: Ulf Sammulesson

Goalie: Ron Hextall

Head Coach: Fred (The Fog) Shero

GM: Harry Sinden

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Week 10-Results

1) Yes, week 10 is complete. For the day/night we went a solid 8-4 (finally a good week!) to bring our season total to 70- 55 for a .560 winning %. We also (easily) got our Lock of the week to bring that season total to 7-3. We will ofcourse be back at picks next Saturday when another even dozen games will be decided.

2) Also look (finally) for our 'All Prick team" this week and some other interesting posts for sure. As always, keep it here for all the latest

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Week 10 Picks

1) Yes, already we've made it to week 10 of the 26 week NHL season! Over 1/3 the way to the playoffs. We bring our record of 62-51, or a .549 winning % to today/tonight's scheduled 1 dozen contests.

Montreal at New Jersey: Devils

NY Rangers at Buffalo: Rangers

Vancouver at Ottawa: Senators

Pittsburgh at NY Islanders: Penguins

Tampa Bay at Philadelphia: Flyers

Winnipeg at Detroit: Red Wings (Lock of The Week)

Boston at Columbus: Bruins

San Jose at St. Louis: Blues

Anaheim at Nashville: Preditors

Minnesota at Phoenix: Coyotes

Edmonton at Calgary: Flames

Dallas at Los Angeles: Kings

Friday, December 9, 2011

Bettman to Drug Test Canadiens GM?

1) In a stunningly stupid move the Montreal Canadiens acquired Tomas Kaberle from the Carolina Hurricanes earlier today. The former Bruins defensemen was signed to a bloated 3 year 12 mil contract this summer which Canes' GM Jim Rutherford admits was a colossal mistake. So what does Canadiens GM do? he picks up the underachieving/over paid defender AND Kabelrle still has another 2 years AFTER this one! We wonder what GM Pierre Gauthier was smoking to do this deal!?!

2) The Hurricanes picked up Jaroslav Spacek, who will be a UFA after this season, in return. For the Hurricanes its addition by subtraction. Eliminating the Kaberle contract was a boon to Rutherford's attempt to possible reshape/adjust his moribund roster. Its amazing he found such a willing partner in Gauthier. Doesn't Gauthier recall how his team (prior to his arrival) picked up another salary cap anchor in Scott Gomez from the Rangers? Just shows that these hockey execs really aren't all that bright, or perhaps are under the influence. ;)

Crosby Concussed?

1) Just when it appeared that Sidney Crosby had recovered from his long post-concussion convalescence, the team is sitting their super star the next 2 games "as a precaution". Apparently during Sid's most recent game he had 2 "hard hits" that may have shook up his fragile/sensitive brain to the point where he had brief periods of post concussion symptoms once again. The team is NOT saying he suffered another concussion, but if you take a look at both of the "hits' described to be hard, you have to be concerned with Crosby's long term prognosis. Simply because in my opinion neither was a very significant blow compared to what could be delivered in a typical NHL contest. The first wasn't even a direct blow when he collided seemingly accidentally with David Krejci. In the play Krejci innocently played the puck and spinned to pass it, accidentally catching Crosby in the face with his elbow. There’s no apparent ill intent, no purpose to hurt anyone, it was just a hockey play.

2) Later in the contest Crosby accidentally bumped into teammate Chris Kunitz in another seemingly Innocent, less-than-hard knock. Probably most players sustain hits much worse than this on a regular basis so this has to be an ominous sign. However this should not be surprising to readers of this blog. We pointed out on several occasions how it won't take much to generate another concussion. Our resident medical expert, Dr. Varga has told us as such. Quoting our blog post from 8/29/11. As Eric Lindros, Pat Lafontaine and other former star players who have had multiple concussions have found once they return they seem extra prone to re-injuring themselves. Even hits that appear to be routine/innocuous can have severe consequences. Almost all specialists tell Fauxrumors that were Crosby to sustain another significant event (concussion) its all but sure his career would be over.

3) To have Crosby sit at all has to show he had some symptoms. Although the team denies such a problem and simply being cautious, our insiders tell us that Crosby did not appear to be himself in practice the next day. They also say he may have tweaked his shoulder? Regardless, we now more than ever believe that his career is going to be cut significantly short. Whether its this season or very shortly afterwards we believe Crosby will suffer a career ending concussion and be forced to retire prematurely. I hope and pray that I am Dr. Varga are wrong in that assessment! For the good of the game we hope Crosby plays another decade or more! It remains to be seen if the 2 game absence is extended or not. If so, then you can be sure Crosby is much worse than being reported. Additionally we had already planned a post that we worked on with respect to how the league is going to try to protect Sid. Look for it next week unless the current fluid situation changes for the worse.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

New Alignment- Winners and Losers

1) Many are currently discussing the new NHL divisional and playoff format set to become reality next season (if there is a 2012-2013 season). Since, as we discussed last post that Gary Bettman had to shove this plan down several teams' throats, we figured we'd go through who we believe are the biggest winners and losers under this plan.

First the Winners:

  • Detroit: Probably the biggest overall winners in the new alignment. The Redwings aren't moving to the Eastern Conference BUT with increased play among the East there will be fewer games on the Pacific time zone reducing their overall time out of their Eastern time zone by 40%!

  • Columbus: See above! The Blue jackets along with the Redwings were the 2 teams that lie in the eastern time zone that were playing the most games outside this zone so this new configuration greatly reduces the teams travel

  • Nashville: The Preds are a Central time zone team, but this plan prevented a possible move to the soon to be defunct SE division. They get to retain their more natural rivalries they've been growing in the Central the past few years

  • Washington: The caps and especially their fans get their X-mas wish and return to the old Patrick Division(with Carolina. jettisoning their Florida 'rivals'. By doing so they probably will have some of the lest amount of travel(other than the 3 NY teams) in the NHL

Next The Losers:

  • Florida/Tampa Bay: Already separated by hundreds of miles fro their nearest rivals(Carolina) with this new set up the closest team to Florida suddenly is Boston? I guess someone had to take a hit, but seems odd to have the old NE division remain intact and adding the FLA teams. Their new conference rivals are probably pleased to escape the NE winter with a few extra road trips to the sunshine state! Sorry we don't buy the Canandian Snow birds argument that they will help boost attendance for the Fla teams!

  • NY Islanders: Imagine how difficult it will now be for the Isles to make the playoffs. Can anyone see them eclipsing the Pens, Flyers, or Caps any time soon? So that leaves the Rangers(who appear one of the best teams this year) Devils and Hurricanes. Even with the Canes and Devils in lean times its unlikely their management will allow them to stay that way soon, so it will take a small miracle to get them into the post season any time soon

  • Colorado: I guess geography is what it, but with the required increased travel East under this plan and having all their divisional/conference opponents in a different time zone the Avalanche will probably have the worst travel itinerary of any NHL team

2) By the way a frequent reader of ours wrote last night to remind us of how far in front of this realignment issue Fauxrumors has been. She reminded me that we wrote back in November of 2007 that the NHL should go to a 7 and 8 team division concept as well as bring back the old or (new) names to honor the past. See it here====>

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Bettman Shows his Muscles in Realignment Fight!

1) Looks like Big Gary got his way last night. We're told that there was "significant arm twisting" by the commissioner in the last 48 hours to convince several owners who were resistant to the large scale changes outlined and released last night. As regular readers know, we did a post yesterday where we believed from talking with our usual good sources that the league was going to sequentially realign the next 2 seasons instead of one big change as we saw occur. So why the change?

2) I believe the biggest enticements were Bettmans commitments to all owners that he can get an even better deal i the next CBA than even the NBA owners got recently. He told the board that he believes an owners favoured 54-46% split as opposed to the current 43-57 split in which the players get the upper hand, thus reducing payrolls roughly 25% across the board. Additionally an extra round of playoffs is likely in the cards as well. The new format will have the top 4 teams in each "conference" play in the first 2 rounds. Opening up a possibility that a team from another conference might fail to make the playoffs even though they have more points than a team that qualified. To ease that problem and to increase revenue/fan interest the league will create a "preliminary round" where the top 2 teams that missed the playoff cut would square off against eachother.

3) The Phoenix issue will solve itself under this plan. (Unless they move to Quebec.) A move to another city west of the Mississippi is easily solved with this format. It reduces travel for the Redwings so their owner is happy. It continues the regionalization (unless you live in Florida) and the associated rivalries. No one will ever be happy with any plan. Already teams are griping with the potential playoff format, and until the Preliminary round is instituted we'll be sure to hear crying from a bubble team or two. The other bit of intrigue left to be determined are the names of these 4 new conferences. We restate our desire to bring back the old names instead of the geographic names that Bettman brought to the NHL. The Patrick, Norris, Smythe, Adams Conferences sound so much better, and give the league a way to differentiate themselves from the bland NBA/NFL names.


1) When we looked at the NHL overall stats sheet the other day it struck us how a few of the more highly paid players were NO where to be found among even the top 20 point producers thus far in the NHL. Its not like this is the first week of the season either. To this point most teams have completed close to a third of their regular season games and the players below while sucking up a vast amount of precious salary cap resources are not producing to the level of their compensation. If this were pre 2005 it wouldn't matter nearly as much, but in today's NHL if a highly compensated star player isn't cutting it its a double whammy to their teams!

  • Alex Ovechkin- Salary 9 million Goals: 8 Points: 19 Projected Totals: 26/62

  • Eric Staal: Salary: 7.75 mil Goals:5 points 14 Projected Totals: 15/41

  • Dany Heatley- 9 million Goals: 7 goals 16 points Projected Totals: 22/50

  • Scott Gomez- 7.5 mil Goals: 0 goals points 4. Projected Totals: 0/25(missed 10 games)

  • Jarome Iginla- 7 mil Goals 7 Points 15. Projected Totals: 23/49

  • Rick Nash- 7.5 mil Goals 8 Points 19 Projected totals: 25/60

  • Vincent Lecavalier-10 million Goals: 10 Points: 18 Projected Totals: 34/62

  • Henrik Zetterburg-7.75 mil Goals:5 Points 14 Projected Totals: 17/48

2) Those are 8 players, all making in excess of 7-10 million dollars this season. None are on pace to amass more than 62 points. In my opinion if a player is making close to 15-20% of his teams' salary cap allotment, he best be putting up numbers minimally of 40 goals and 90 points. Some of these numbers have to be alarming to their teams. Eric Staal on pace for 15 goals and 40 points? No wonder the Canes are in the toilet. Alex Ovechkin, once the most feared player in the NHL is now no better than an average 2nd line forward projecting 26 goals. Hardly earnig his 9+ million dollar salary. Vincent Lecavalier? Amazing that he was given such an absurd contract when he hasn't put up decent numbers in years, yet he earns more than any other NHLer, despite being on pace to attain a tad over 60 points.

3) We could go through each of these players in addition to several others (like Ovechkin's team mate Alex Semin who is on pace for 18 goals 36 points to go with his 6.7 mil salary) or goalie Robeto Luongo, who's stats hardly match his 6.7 mil salary. The bottom line to all these stats is the fact that most of these players are signed to long term deals. In excess of 5 years and in the case of Ovechkin 12(7 more to go!) Its insanity to sign ANY player beyond 5 years. Goalies (are you listening Mr. Wang?) are especially problematic in giving them long term deals.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Realignment Going to be a 1-2 Punch?

1) From what we can discern from our various contacts in the NHL the league is likely going to plan on a "1-2 punch" in realignment. We're told that an announcement will be forthcoming later this week that Nashville will be moving to the SE division replacing the relocated Winnipeg Jets, who will take the Preds spot in the Central. A quick and easy move, and probably the one that makes the most geographical sense given all the possible choices. It simply was dumb to think about possibly moving Detroit there to make their owner happy

2) However there is the unspoken (other than here) "Elephant in the realignment room" the Phoenix Coyotes. The Yotes, from all we hear are just about ready to be relocated. The NHL has all but given up hope that a deal can be struck in the desert. There really was never a chance given the financial realities there. Only a deep pocketed local (who doesn't exist) who was willing to lose millions could keep them there. So the Board of Governors will have to decide where the team goes(likely East) thus making another realignment necessary.

3) The proposed 'Big change' realignment that would eliminate 1 division in each conference, thus giving one 8 and one 7 team division in each conference will probably be given the go ahead but not announced until next spring or even summer when the Coyotes are officially declared dead. The final decision of whom goes where will ultimately be decided depending if the Yotes go to KC as many surmise, or to Quebec City as many up north would prefer. However there isn't an NHL ready arena yet in Quebec like there is in KC and the move to KC would geographicly be easier to accomidate. The Coyotes would move to the Central and allow the Red Wings to move East where their owner has been "Ilitching" to go for years. Stay tuned folks we're told this is still a fluid situation and one that is giving Mr. Bettman quite the head ache having many owners calling him daily making thier cases of why they want to move where!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Week 9 Results

1) Week 9 is complete. Just when we thought we could turn things around we fall even further back, going 5-7 on the night to bring our 9 week total to 62-51, or a .549 winning %. On the night the road teams were an astounding 9-3! Rather amazing. We even failed to win our Lock of the Week as Dallas continued their recent side by giving up 5 goals at home to the scoring-deprived Islanders! Oh well. We have a chance at redemption next Saturday when another 12 games will be decided.

2) This upcoming week look for a post we did recently updating our popular post we did a few years ago. The All Prick team! Also we believe FR2 is working on a post concerning some under performing, highly paid players in the league right now.
As always, keep it here for all the latest!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Week 9 Picks

1) A new month, and a new chance for me to try to improve what I think is an abysmal record through the first 8 weeks of the NHL season. Thus far I am 57-44, f0r a .564 winning %. Not terrible, but I'd prefer to be above .600. Today/night there are an even dozen games.

Montreal at Los Angeles: Kings

Toronto at Boston: Bruins

Ottawa at Washington: Capitals

Pittsburgh at Carolina: Penguins

New Jersey at Winnipeg: Jets

NY Rangers at Tampa Bay: Lightning

Chicago at St. Louis: Blues

Buffalo at Nashville: Predators

Philadelphia at Phoenix: Coyotes

NY Islanders at Dallas: Stars (Lock of The Week)

Calgary at Edmonton: Flames

Florida at San Jose: Sharks

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Coaching Carousel Continues....

1) In a bit of a bizarre move the Anaheim Ducks abruptly fired head coach Randy Carlyle late last night and replaced him with recently fired Bruce Boudreau. The strangest aspects of this move is not that the Ducks fired Carlyle. The Ducks were off to an absolutely awful start to the season as they sat 14th in the Western Conference. However the team seemed to be trending up a bit lately, and the move was made after a sound 4-1 victory over the Canadiens at Honda Center. Its unusual for a team to fire a coach late in the evening, especially immediately after his team wins a game.

2) So why? Our sources tell us that Ducks GM Bob Murray was contemplating a move for the past couple of weeks, but didn't have a suitable replacement lined up. When Boudreau was fired by the Capitals this past Monday morning Murray thought he might have his man. What also added to the swiftness of the move was the fact that Boudreau was a wanted man. As our sources correctly told us Monday, Bruce was already being courted/contacted by 2 other teams. Both of which were 'North of The Border'. One scout tells us that Boudreau was going to have another job by weeks end somewhere". Thus Murray was forced to act fast, else he'd lose his opportunity. We're told that early yesterday afternoon, after receiving the OK to talk to Boudreau from Caps management, (He had another year on his contract) Murray offered the job to Bruce and a verbal deal was made, but too late in the day for Murray to make his move before game time. We're told Bruce threw a few items into a suit case and was en-route to California even before the official announcement was made early this morning (Eastern time)

3) For Boudreau the timing couldn't be better. Like the Capitals whom he took over for Glen Hanlon in 2007, the Ducks should be better than their record indicates. They can't go anywhere but up. When one of your stars like Ryan Getzlaf goes 14 games between goals it can't fall on the coach, but as always, it does/did. We believe the Ducks will have a bit of a resurgence under Gabby(as we believe they would have anyway). As for Carlyle, don't feel sorry for him folks. For one, he signed a 3 year, multi million dollar extension right before the start of the season. More importantly our very accurate sources tell us some of those teams "up north' who were looking at Boudreau will now set their sites on the former Norris winner/Stanley Cup winning coach. "Don't be shocked to see Carlyle coaching by Christmas" is what one Eastern Conference official told Fauxrumors early today. Yes, the coaching carousel goes round and round.....

Monday, November 28, 2011

Boudreau Canned! Maurice Next?

1) The waiting is finally over in Washington where 4 year head coach Bruce Boudreau was finally let go officially this morning and replaced with former cap/fan favourite, Dale Hunter. We say finally because from we have been told this move has been in the works for as much as the past 2 weeks. General manager George McPhee, our spys tell us was spotted visiting new coach Hunter in London Ontario over 3 weeks ago. Probably a bit more than a scouting trip? Our source tells us that Hunter was approached with the proposition for this position in early November but needed additional time to get things in order with his current team for which he is also the co-owner.

2) The writing was clearly on the wall in DC where the Caps have tried every possible way to shake up their consistent under achieving/mistakes. When their star and captain, Alex Ovechkin stops skating/trying(as is evident the past 2 weeks) its clear something has to give. Boudreau had a verbal altercation with Ovechkin and benched the 26 yr old at the end of a 1 goal game to 'send a message'. However this was the 'straw' that caused GMGM to decide it was time to make a change. If the team captain is no longer listening, the coach has lost the entire team. Ovechkin in our opinion is as much to blame for the recent team issues as anyone. He was the wrong guy to be named captain and Hunter may quickly find that he is against a "prima donna'. It will be interesting how that goes. Stay tuned, for as we're told "Hunter is not the kind of guy to sit still for that kind of Bullshit"

3) Meanwhile in Raleigh Paul Maurice's days are also numbered. The Canes lost their 3rd consecutive game last night in Ottawa, and are now 3-6-1 in their last 10, dropping them to 14th in the 15 team conference. The team like their counterparts in Washington appear rudderless and in need of a change. GM Rutherford likes Paul Maurice a great deal, but come on' Jim, its time for a change! The season is slipping away and while we don't think the Hurricanes are a playoff calibre team we don't think they are a 'lottery team" either and we have long said that Maurice is hugely over rated and needs to be replaced!

4) Just an aside, another source tells us that Boudreau won't be out of work too long. The source tells Fauxrumors that he fully expects Bruce to be working before the All star Break and likely in a city 'North of the border'.

Post Script: Apparent Maurice was fired a little over an hour after we posted this article!!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Week 8 Results

1) Another very ordinary week here. We went a piss-poor 6-5 on the day night to bring the season total to 57-44 0r a .564 winning %. We did get the Lock correct to elevate that record to 6-2 on the season. We'll be back at this next Saturday when week 9 has an even dozen games on the NHL docket

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Week 8 Picks

1) Well, now that the L-tryptophan induced Turkey day comas are passed its time to get back to picking hockey games. Today/night there are 11 games on the schedule where we bring our 51-39 record.

NY Islanders at New Jersey: Devils

Philadelphia at NY Rangers: Flyers

Edmonton at Colorado: Avalanche

Winnipeg at Boston: Bruins (Lock of The Week)

Washington at Buffalo: Sabres

Pittsburgh at Montreal: Penguins

Florida at Tampa Bay: Lightning

Nashville at Detroit: Predators

Dallas at Phoenix: Coyotes

Vancouver at San Jose: Sharks

Chicago at Los Angeles: Kings

Thursday, November 24, 2011

At The Quarter Pole......

1) With nearly all teams having now played 20% of their schedules and the NHL dark on this Thanks Giving holiday we decided to project (NOT predict) the finals standings. Obviously there is plenty of time for teams outside of the playoffs to get back in, but some trends are clearly becoming evident. This is NOT a Prediction!! We merely are projecting an 82 game season point total based upon each teams current point total/games played.

2) First in the East:

  • Boston 107

  • Philadelphia: 105

  • Florida: 105

  • NY Rangers: 105

  • Pittsburgh: 104

  • Washington: 103

  • Buffalo: 98

  • Toronto: 97


  • NJ: 94

  • Montreal: 86

  • Ottawa: 86

  • Tampa Bay: 82

  • Winnipeg: 78

  • Carolina: 71

  • NY Islanders: 60

3) Next the West:

  • San Jose: 117

  • Minnesota: 113

  • Detroit: 103

  • Phoenix: 103

  • Dallas: 102

  • Chicago: 101

  • Los Angeles: 97

  • St. Louis: 94


  • Edmonton: 94

  • Nashville: 94

  • Vancouver: 90

  • Colorado: 71

  • Calgary: 70

  • Anaheim: 62

  • Columbus: 51

4) To reiterate, these are PROJECTIONS NOT PREDICTIONS! With a relatively small sample size a few (more or less) games played can alter the point totals significantly. That said there are a few interesting developments thus far. Who expected teams like Minnesota, Florida, Phoenix, Dallas, or Toronto to be in the playoff race this season? Who could have seen Carolina, and Anaheim be so low in the standings? Yes, plenty of time for 'water to find its level' but sometimes these trends do continue throughout the season.

5) Finally our (admittedly silly to mention) quarter pole Trophy winners.

  • Hart: Phil Kessel

  • Vezina: Tim Thomas

  • Norris: Shea Weber

  • Calder: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins

  • Adams: Kevin Dineen

Monday, November 21, 2011

87 Returns

1) The waiting is apparently over. Sidney Crosby will make his long over due/waited for return to the NHL tonight when the NY Islanders enter CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh. Crosby apparently has been given the "all clear" from his many Dr.s. Having participated in 'contact drill' of increasing intensity the past few weeks, the 24 year old Penguin captain has remained symptom free. Our contacts in Pittsburgh tell us that the team has been "extra cautious", and that Crosby was actually cleared to play over a week ago, but the team was waiting for additional time and the right time/place for the super stars return.

2) The internal thought was that playing his first game on friendly ice against an opponent that is wavering in the standings, who (despite last years fight filled mess of a game last February) lacks overall team toughness and is just the right team to play against right now. Don't expect anyone in the organization to state that publicly, but you can bet your bottom dollar Sid wouldn't be playing his first game in/against Philly! So what should we expect? We at Fauxrumors fully expect that Crosby will show little rust/effects of his time off. He simply is the most talented player in the game and in his prime. We wouldn't be shocked if he has a multi-point game right out of the gate tonight, and be right up with the rest of the league leaders (29 points right now) by the All star break, if not sooner.

3) Of course all of that will depend on his future health. As many of our regular readers will recall we had own own 'expert' comment on his situation a few months ago. Dr. Varga was dead-on in his assessment back then that it would be a minimum of another 2-3 months before we should expect a return. We are hoping that the venerable Dr is dead wrong in his prediction that Crosby will be very vulnerable to a subsequent injury. As we wrote then: As Eric Lindros, Pat Lafontaine and other former star players who have had multiple concussions have found once they return they seem extra prone to re-injuring themselves. Even hits that appear to be routine/innocuous can have severe consequences. Almost all specialists tell Fauxrumors that were Crosby to sustain another significant event (concussion) its all but sure his career would be over. Lets all (regardless of how you feel about the Penguins or Crosby) hope/pray that 87's return is not short lived but the next stage of what has already been an amazing career! We hope to never again see scenes such as we witnessed (below)

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Week 7 Results

1) Another ordinary week for us at FR. Week 7 is complete and we went 6-6 on the day/evening to bring our season total to 51-39 or a .567 winning % We did manage to win the Lock of the Week easily on LI to bring that stat to 5-2 on the season. We will be back for Thanks Giving weekend next week when 11 games are on the schedule.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Week 7 Picks

1) Week Lucky 7 in the NHL today/tonight as 12 games will be decided. We take our 45-33 record into the action and try to improve from our barely .500 score a week ago.

Philadelphia at Winnipeg: Flyers

Detroit at Los Angeles: Red Wings

Phoenix at Buffalo: Coyotes

Washington at Toronto: Capitals

NY Rangers at Montreal: Rangers

Boston at NY Islanders: Bruins (Lock of The Week)

New Jersey at Tampa Bay: Lightning

Pittsburgh at Florida: Penguins

Columbus at Nashville: Predators

St. Louis at Minnesota: Wild

San Jose at Dallas: Sharks

Chicago at Edmonton: Oilers

Friday, November 18, 2011

On The Hot Seat?

1) With the recent coaching change in St. Louis we decided it might be wise to look at whom may also be or SHOULD be on the proverbial hot seat as the NHL heads into the Quarter poll of the 2011-2012 season. We'll list 4 coaches/GM's who should now be held accountable (fired) for what they have done/not done to help improve their squads.

  • Garth Snow: Despite winning last night the Isles are bringing up the rear in the East. Winning only twice in their past dozen games. It would usually go on the coach for the record, but Capuano is not at fault here. It is Snow who has been in charge for much of the past 6 years. Responsible for the interminable "rebuild". The team, especially the defense is old and slow. Its looking like high draft picks like Kyle Okposo and Josh Bailey are not progressing. Remember Snow spurned Luke Schenn in order to get Bailey (and another draft pick). Okposo has been a recent 'healthy scratch. The Minnesota native who was taken with the 8th overall pick in 2006 appears lost. The team lacks overall toughness and the triad of goalies is not only a distraction but gives Capuano less roster options. We don't anticipate Wang to replace Snow, but the chants of 'Snow Must Go' will undoubtedly start to rain down from the venerable rafters of the NVMC. (Where they haven't seen a playoff series win in 19 years!)

  • Paul Maurice: Its mind boggling that Paul was even asked to come back when Rutherford fired Peter Laviolette. Maurice was fired from Carolina after the 2004 season. How long can Maurice live off their playoff Final 4 appearance 3 years ago? Since then the Hurricanes have finished 3rd in the SE and out of the post season. Thus far this season they Canes are near the basement, only the lowly Islanders (see above) are beneath them (for now). After two additional bad seasons in Toronto why do folks still seem to think he's a quality coach? He's coached an amazing 15 seasons and failed to make the post season 10 times!! Coached 1000 games yet is well under .500 lifetime (.472). This seems like a no-brainer to me. Rutheford is an astute hockey exec, and we don't think he will stick with his buddy too much longer.

  • Scott Howson: The Blue Jackets GM since June of 2007, the Toronto native went "all in" this past off season and spent right up to the salary cap max to try to get his team back into the post season after two seasons where they missed the post season all together. The franchise is actually still looking for its first ever playoff GAME win, after getting swept by the Red Wings in 2009. Thus far the Blue Jackets are dead last in the entire NHL with a mere 8 pints through 18 games. This after Howson got Jeff Carter. Traded to the for restricted free agent to-be Jakub Voracek, the eighth-overall pick in the 2011 draft and Columbus’ third-round selection Carter, 26, starts an 11-year $58 million extension this season. He also gave big bucks to UFA defender James Wisniewski to a six-year, 33 mil contract. They also re-upped R.J. Umberger to a five-year 23 mil contract extension. With those moves along with adding UFA Czechs Radek Martinek and Vinny Prospal most figured the Jackets would at least be competing for a spot. The owners shouldn't be happy how their limited resources have been used here and so Howson rightly should be on the hot seat!

  • Bruce Boudreau: Some might be surprised to see 'Gabby's name here, but real hockey fans, and most importantly knowledgeable Caps fans won't. Despite a gaudy regular season record (199-85) the Capitals have been a great disapointment when it means most, the post season. In the playoffs Boudreau is a winner of 2 of 6 playoff rounds, or a 17-20 record. Despite being the higher seed in EACH of those losing series! Worse yet, if one watched HBL24/7 last year we saw a man who frequently became unhinged and through F-bombs everywhere. Worse yet, it appeared the players could care less. This season we were told there would be a new "accountability". Caps fans tell us the roster might be altered somwhat, but the underlying issues remain. Its clear Bruce was a breathe of fresh air after Hanlon, but its quite clear he can NOT get them to the next level and needs to be changed. Anyone think if the Caps and Penguins exchanged Only coaches we'd see the Pens stay a top and caps flounder? Fuck no!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

NHL Power Rankings-1st Installment

1) Our first of what we anticipate will be a bi monthly posting of who is playing at what level. Based loosely upon overall record, and recent trends over the past few weeks. Obviously the first installment is all about how well teams came out of the gate. Subsequent Power Rankings will give their previous ranking along with their current placement in our unbiased poll

  1. Pittsburgh: Hard to quibble placing the Penguins on top of our poll. Despite injuries to key personnel Bylsma has his team playing at peak performance. Scary to imagine how well they'd do/be once they're healthy/get Crosby back?

  2. Chicago: Have the most points of any NHL team as of today. have been putting the puck in the net quite regularly helped by their PP coming to life with avengence, helped by their potent backline

  3. Philadelphia: Surprisingly the Flyers are among the highest scorers in the league. So much for the defense first approach? heck, it seems to be working so far. The best road team thus far If they can get their PP working they might be tough to beat!

  4. NY Rangers: Winners of 7 strait the Broadway Blue Shirts have turned an early season slump around in a hurry. Is Sean Avery really the difference? Actually its been Lundqvist and Dan Girardi helping to propel the Rangers up the standings

  5. Minnesota: Despite having one of the worst PP units the Wild are pacing the NW division. Its again their defense and goaltending led by Josh Harding's amazing start to the season. can he and the Wild keep it up? So far we're liking what new coach Mike Yeo is doing

  6. Phoenix: Another surprise is the way the 'Yotes are playing. Ownership uncertainty remains and they lost Bryzgalov, but so far Mike Smith has been doing well as his replacement in the desert

  7. Buffalo: Wit the most wins in the East the resurgent Sabres are a top the NE division. Have slipped in the past week or 2, and lost starting goalie Ryan Miller to injury so its time to step up for the soft Sabres?

  8. Dallas: After the fastest start in team history the Stars have cooled a bit They remain on top of the Pacific after their long road trip. Can Lehtonen continue to play at this high level? He will probably need to for the Stars to stay in playoff contention

  9. Detroit: Seems that the Wings have finally found their skating legs. Winning 4 strait Franzen has been on fire of late to help the surging wings. Now if they can get Zetterberg going the Wings will be totally back

  10. Washington: After a fast start the caps are reverting back to their old ways of taking periods off and not playing up to their talent level. New personnel, same old habits. Their PK is a tad better of late, but still needs improving

  11. Edmonton: The Kids are alright. They got off to a fast start, but have comeback to earth with a recent road trip. Khabibulin still looking like his old self despite recent set backs. Hall and Nugent-Hopkins look like real deals. If they can get Magnus Paajarvi on board they would really have something

  12. Boston: The Bruins have finally awoken from their early season Cup-Coma. The past 2 weeks they have been playing as good as anyone. Early season scoring woes are long forgotten Super Soph Tyler Seguin is double digit in goals and appears ready to assert himself as their #1 forward

  13. San Jose: Winners of 7 of their past 10 the Sharks are playing their best hockey thus far after their usual slow start. If they can get Antti Niemi playing like he can the Sharks will once again be the team to beat out West

  14. Florida: Surprising most of us with their early record that has them right in contention for the weak SE division. Not surprising they can score. Surprise is the strong play of defenesemen Dmitry Kulikov

  15. Nashville: Congrats to Trotz and his 1000 games coached. As we expected the Preds are goal starved, but have one of the best goalies in the game in Rinne so they are in every game. Rookie Craig Smith off to a nice start

  16. Toronto: Would probably been in the top 5 if this had been done 2 weeks ago. Injuries and poor play have hurt the Leafs of late. Biggest injury is to Reimer, who's replacement, The Monster' has been down right ugly in goal

  17. St. Louis: They're initial/expected spurt after 'Hitch took over not withstanding, can it continue, or will they revert back? 2 regulation goals in 3 games is certainly Hitcock-like! However if they want to make the post season he better work on the leagues worst PP unit!

  18. Montreal: The Habs are slowly coming back to life after a disastrous start. Uncharacteristically they have a very poor PP. Martin will have to find a way to revive that else it'll put too much pressure on Price to be the difference maker nightly

  19. LA: With that kind of talent, no excuse for winning a mere 2 of their past 8 games! Murray deservedly should be on the hot seat! Through 17 games they have scored 2 or more only 4 times! This team should be scoring more!

  20. Vancouver: Like Boston had a bit of a hang over, although they didn't win anything. They seem to have little trouble scoring, its their defense and Luongo that seem to be the issue. We're not big Roberto fans, but we'd expect he'll turn things around

  21. TB: Another team that got off to a less than stellar start but have turned the corner the past couple of weeks. Roloson not looking 48 years old in net helps. Scoring has been there all year, its their defense and goaltending that'll determine if they get in the top 8

  22. Ottawa: As expected the young Sens are a fickle bunch. Look great on some nights and God-aweful the next. The offense certainly has done their share. Its the back line and in goal that has been the biggest reason the sens are under .500

  23. Calgary: So far nothing is distinguishing this team from last season's squad that missed the playoffs. Inconsistency abounds. No extended winning or losing streaks, but with their offense invisible how long before GM Feaster decides enough is enough and unloads a vet or two?

  24. NJ: The Devils record is a bit deceiving. 4 of their 8 wins have come via the shoot out. Rookie Adam Larsson looks solid, but how long/far can a team have a teen age rookie lead their defense in ice time and succeed? Getting Kovalchuk back soon should help

  25. Winnipeg: Few had expectations they'd be great this season, but after a dreadful start the Jets appear to be playing at least competitively. They don't have any stars up front so if they don't give a full effort they probably have little chance of victory

  26. Colorado: After an initial great start, most of which was away from Pepsi center, the Av's are crashing back down to Earth and sputtering to say the least to stay in contention. Two wins in their past 10 games not good

  27. Carolina: Isn't it time Rutherford see that Paul Maurice is NOT the right fit here? The Hurricanes GM is a savvy man so we can't see the canes not making a move if they continue to flounder

  28. Anaheim: Very disappointing start for the Ducks. They should not be playing this poorly. WE had to check twice, but they have won 2 of their past 12 games!! Its gut-check time in southern California(for both teams!)

  29. Columbus: Like on the Island, the GM has much to answer for here. Scott Howson spent and traded for a team that was supposed to compete for a playoff spot. Instead they stand(sit) at the bottom of all 30 teams!

  30. NY Islanders: Not exactly where Isles fans thought they'd be. Its time for accountability from the man who assembled the roster, Garth Snow? One win in their past 11 puts them dead last in our poll. Most thought they'd at least stay in contention until the All Star break, not out of it by the holidays!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Goalies Now Fair Game?

1) That's what the Buffalo Sabres contend after the league failed to suspend Bruins forward Milan Lucic for a hit on Sabres' net minder Ryan Miller. Lucic knocked the East Lansing Michigan native out of the game with an apparent concussion which will side line him for an undetermined period. Sabres coach Lindy Ruff was outraged that Brendan Shanahan decided that the 2 minute penalty that Lucic received was all that was appropriate in this incident. Citing Lucic's intent was not to run the sabres goalie. Here is a short Youtube version of the said-incident:

2) Our reason for bring this story to light is NOT to take a side one way or the other here but to address the issue head on. As I and Fauxrumors have long asked its time to allow players to make "legal contact" with goalies who wander outside their crease and play the puck. No, they shouldn't be boarded and have their heads targeted, but should be able to be hit like Lucic did to Miller, who was well outside of his crease, and took it upon himself to play the puck. To often we have seen goalies use the fact that referees protect them like sacred cows to go out of their net to play the puck with impunity. We believe that is why the dumb trapezoid rule was implemented. Goalies like Brodeur were feeling quite comfortable to go and become a third defensemen thus the league decided to increase scoring they needed to reign in the ability of goalies to play the puck as much.

3) Seemed like an odd/dumb way of treating a problem. Why not address it more directly? If goalies like Miller Brodeur, etc knew that they would possibly get knocked off the puck and possibly out of position as a result, they would be far less likely to leave their crease in the first place, making it unnecessary to paint silly shapes like trapezoids behind the goals. As long as they weren't hit illegally we would have no issue with body contact outside of the crease when a goalie plays the puck. The pendulum has shifted WAY too far from where it was 30-40 years ago when goalies were "fair game" if they left their crease. A hit like the one by Lucic wouldn't be seen as menacing or illegal and bring the ire of the sabres, but would make Ruff angry with Miller for placing himsel in a vulnerable position in the first place.

Monday, November 14, 2011

First Salvo in 2012 Labour War?

1) In what many are saying was a LONG overdue move, according to Larry Brooks of the NY Post the NHLPA requested and received forensic accounting report on a few 'select NHL franchises. In effect to see if the reported income matches with the actual income. Why? Simple, the players share is directly related to the overall NHL income. If teams under report it then the players get short changed, literally. According to Brooks several teams including Nashville and Washington were 'guilty' of under reporting income. To that we say, shocker!(not!) We say why hasn't this gone on since the last CBA was signed in 2005? And why only selected clubs? If I were the head of the NHLPA I'd demand ( as is their right under the CBA) a detailed/independent forensic accounting of EVERY team EVERY year! Geez, it makes too much sense to not!

2) Brooks goes on to mention that the discredited Ted Saskin made a secret side deal with the NHL that disallowed the NHLPA from looking at the books of teams after a season is completed. Which means if 1/2 the teams were 'skimming/hiding' money from 2005 to 2010 the NHLPA can't/would never find out about it! Dumb at the least, and probably one of the reasons Saskin was let go. Donald Fehr the NHLPA should respond to the findings with asking for the remaining teams to be audited as well. If, as we have LONG surmised in the next CBA the NHL will ask for further concessions from the players, the NHLPA best have ammunition to respond. We believe the NHL will have far less ability (but still try) to demonize the 'rich' players this time around. I'd advise our readers to follow the NBA labour problems as I'm sure the NHL is as well. If the players eventually cave in, it is all but assured that the NHL and especially its hard liners will feel emboldened to make significant demands. Our sources tell us that a reduction of the current 57% to 47-48% along with a 25% roll back across the board will be the minimum the league will demand. They may even try to reduce the guarantees on future contracts much like the NFL does. If the NBA owners get all they want their NHL counter parts will smell blood and go for the kill of what they already perceive as a weakened foe. It remains to be seen if this recent demand for auditing is an early sign that the players will fight, or just a PR move by Fehr to show he's trying to do something to his rank and file and for public consumption.
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