“The real problem is not that we are different, nor that we disagree and have conflict. It's that most of us automatically view conflict as something negative rather than as a tool God can use to help us better understand ourselves and one another.

--Robert Ricciardelli”

Thursday, February 14, 2008

02/14 Hockey Notes

(…school has kept me out of touch for a week or so on the subject of hockey, so here is trip through some recent headlines…just to bring things up to date…)

Monday‘s article by Matt Johnson may seem like just another rant on NHL officiating. But, the truth is, he highlights a growing problem—inconsistent officiating. That’s a really nice way of saying the refs kind of make some stuff up as they go along. If the NHL Lords have any desire to see the status of the League improve…well…there are some simple things they can do to bring that about…

Speaking of improving the game…Hard to believe it’s been 3 years since the lockout. But, even so, the salary cap hit a new high, at $53 million. Remember all the fanfare when the lockout ended of the cap being $35 million? And the brouhaha leading to the lockout about teams going broke because of salary escalations? My how times don’t change…

Good news on Richard Zednik, though. Despite losing 5 units of blood, and an hour of surgery, Zednik will be OK after having his carotid artery severed in a freak accident. Despite the high speed, rough and tumble play, there have really been few bad incidents involving skates in the NHL. Here is a summary of the major skating accidents in the last ten years or so.

And, then there is the continuing Return of Forsberg Saga”. Honestly, this guy has more press that says nothing new than anyone outside of Hollywood. It just seems to be a never ending stream of “He will,” followed by “He won’t.” Having traded him to Nashville, it does seem fitting that the flyers would want him back, though. GM Paul Holmgren, said,

"Other than the fact that we have not gotten a call and other teams did (that Forsberg isn't interested in playing for them), well, that leaves us in the game, I guess.”
Of course, now that Simon Gagne is out with his third concussion this season, the Flyers could use the help, if he is honestly over the foot troubles. I wonder if it will make a difference to Forsberg?

I have to admit I liked the idea behind John Buccigross’s column Tuesday: What if the NHL started over from scratch next season?
What if the NHL started from scratch?

What if every player's contract was shredded and we started all over?

What if the NHL restocked all 30 teams through a league-wide draft in which every player was available?

What would the first round look like?
Pure fantasy, of course, but it was an amusing read all the same. MVN posted an alternative view of how the draft would go. Personally it strikes me as a little more reality based…but still pure fantasy.

(…I won’t even try to think mine out…)