Friday, June 27, 2008

Mr. Magoo Finally Hanging up the Skates

Mick McGeough has officially decided to hang up the skates this season and retire. This makes many fans including myself happy because McGeough had a tendency to screw up. A lot. Most recently I can remember a Stars/Oilers game in 2007 where the Oilers had scored the game-tying goal within the last minute only to be waived off by a bad hand pass call by McGeough.

He will stay on board though being a mentor for up and coming officials and working training camp.

Story from the Regina Leader-Post

Adam Mueller Stepping Down as Titans Head Coach

It was announced yesterday that New York Titans head coach Adam Mueller is going to retire as coach from the Titans due to family and work considerations. The Democrat and Chronicle is reporting today that Knighthawks head coach Ed Comeau is going to become the next head coach and general manager. A formal announcement should be made on Monday.

This leaves an opening in the Knighthawks organization and the article mentions that player Regy Thorpe may be considered for the head coaching position.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Dispersal Draft set for Monday

NLL Insider is reporting that the dispersal draft of the Arizona Sting players is set for Monday. The Boston Blazers will have the first pick in the draft and is looking to take Dangerous Dan Dawson. The draft order is the same order as the NLL Draft. Both Edmonton and Toronto are also looking to move up in the draft to try and take Dawson.

The Insider is also reporting that there will only be one expansion team in 2009 and that will be the Boston Blazers. There were rumors that there would be a team in Vancouver coming. It may still happen but will not happen this year. Unfortunately, we here at Dueling Sabres will not be able to tell you who goes where in the dispersal draft but stay tuned to NLL Insider for all of your information.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The Pests are Leaving Town

Two players that probably annoy Sabres fans the most are looking for greener pastures come July 1st. According to the New York Daily News, Sean Avery has said that he will not be resigning with the Rangers and become a free agent and today according to the Hockey News, the Maple Leafs have informed Darcy Tucker that he will be bought out of his contract and become a free agent. Nothing is more gratifying than not having to deal with Tucker 6 times next year.

Who Replaces the Mullet?

With Barry Melrose accepting the coaching position in Tampa Bay today a small void has been left in the world. Who can replace the mullet? Now, we ask this question in two facets: a.) Who becomes the talking head at ESPN and b.) Who replaces the televised mullet?

ESPN has been ignoring hockey well for the past three years but has shown a little bit of interest as the playoffs picked up. They showed this by bringing along Don Cherry through the playoffs and really exposing to Americans not living on the border what they have missed all this time. But, someone needs to pick up that slack that Melrose is going to leave behind. Because we all know that someone needs to do the Melrose Line podcast and warm the Sportscenter chair for the ten minutes that Melrose had of TV time. So, without further ado here are the choices.

E.J Hradek: Hradek has been making the rounds on ESPN for a while now, mostly appearing on ESPNEWS. He has a good knowledge of the game and probably would make for a suitable replacement. The only dig on him is that no one really knows who he is.

Ray Ferraro: Former NHL2nighter, Ferraro is a former player who has had experience under the lights working for ESPN as well as NBC and Sportsnet in Canada. Ferraro would make a great studio analyst and probably suit the role the best for ESPN.

Darren Pang: My dark horse for this "competition." Panger also used to be an analyst for ESPN until they got out of hockey three years ago. Currently, he is the color analyst for the Phoenix Coyotes and doing a mighty fine job if I say so myself. The one thing that makes Darren Pang stand out is that he is so damn recognizable. Once a hockey fan sees or hears for that matter Pang they normally watch. Well I think so in that regard.

Finally, there is only one answer the second question. That is Brian Engblom.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

News Wrapup for 6/10

This is a posting of yesterday's news and things I've missed. Since there is so much, I'll break it down into groups.

Rumors and Trade News

There are some rumors coming out of Calgary that there may be a trade involving Olli Jokinen going to Calgary for Alex Tanguay and others. Story from Five Hole Fanatics.

It seems that Wade Redden will not be an Ottawa Senator and will test the open market. This coming from Garrioch and SLAM Sports. It also seems that the Maple Leafs are interested in Redden. SLAM Sports has that one as well.

Canucks and Beyond is debating on who is going to be Luongo's benchwarmer in Vancouver.

The Denver Post is reporting that the Avalanche and Jose Theodore are close to agreeing to a contract to keep Theodore an Avalanche. In the case of the Avalanche, they really have no other choice.

Vinnie LeCavalier has stated that he wants to stay in Tampa. Story from St. Petersburg Times.

Howard Berger reports that Darcy Tucker will not accept a trade from the Toronto Maple Leafs and the only way to get him out of Toronto is to buyout his contract.

The Anaheim Ducks have sent Marc-Andre Bergeron to the Minnesota Wild for a third-round draft pick. Story from OCRegister and analysis from Bleacher Report.

Micheal Leighton has signed a two year deal with the Carolina Hurricanes today. Story from Lord Stanley's Blog.

Sundin's agent says that he will most likely return to the Maple Leafs next season. Story from the Toronto Star.

With Hasek gone, we take a look if Jimmy Howard will get a chance as the Red Wings backup. And if not, its time to start to fire up those Ryan Miller rumors. Story from Fanhouse.

Retirement Annoucements

Hasek annouced his retirement on Monday. Responses coming from Fanhouse, Red Wings Corner, Slapshot, and Melt Your Face Off.

Dallas Stars defenseman Mattias Norstrom annouced his retirement on Tuesday. Story from Star-Telegram. Follow-up from Star-Telegram as well.

Trevor Linden from the Vancouver Canucks is expected to announce his retirement today. Story from Canucks and Beyond.

Coaching News

The Leafs announced Ron Wilson as their new head coach yesterday. Stories from Howard Berger and San Jose Mercury News.

The Atlanta Journal Constitution has a possible list of candidates for the Thrashers. The Ice Man from the AJC throws in his two cents as well.

The Rest of the Stories

The Hockey Song controversy has finally ended. Since it was CBC's story to tell, we'll let them tell you how it ended.

Dion Phaneuf is going to be the cover boy for NHL 09. Story from Fanhouse.

The Panthers are putting a $25 surcharge on premium tickets mirroring essentially what a gold game is in Buffalo. Story from Palm Beach Post and reaction from On Frozen Pond here and here.

According to Barry Melrose Rocks, you too can be the owner of your very own arena. Story here.

Canes Country takes a look at the National Post article referring to the contraction of the league.

Bob Wojnowski from the Detroit News has a good piece on the healing powers of the Stanley Cup.

The Toronto Star has a good story on Jim Balsillie's lawyer and how he may be hindering Balsillie's chance at an NHL team.

The Montreal Gazette has Jarome Iginla's reaction to being a Hart Trophy nominee.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Gurtler in Trouble with the Law

John Gurtler, voice of the Buffalo Bandits and PA annoucer for the Buffalo Bills, was arrested Saturday night along with his wife and son after a post-prom party at the Gurtler residence. Story from WIVB.

This will be interesting to see how it plays out for Gurtler and his career and well life.

The Second Worst Kept Secret is Announced

It was officially announced today that the Portland Pirates are going to be the Sabres farm team until 2011. This being probably the second worst kept secret in the history of the organization, it should shock no one. This comes after the split with the Rochester Amerks back in November.

I am happy that the Sabres finally have a farm team to themselves in Portland and it should be good to see the young talent that comes from this team. With Gerbe, Kennedy, Enroth, and the others that were signed a few weeks back, this team should have time to gel in Portland and be able to be a force to reckon with in the next few years. This crew will definitely challenge the current Sabres for positions on the team in this upcoming training camp and others to come. Hopefully, the Sabres players can lead the Pirates to the 2009 Calder Cup.

By the way, if your wondering what the first worst kept secret in the organization was, it was the logo fiasco from the Summer of 2006. Which reminds me, two summers ago the town was talking about the logo, last summer the town was talking about the captains, what are the Sabres going to concoct to keep the buzz going into this summer.

Monday, June 9, 2008

News Wrapup for 6/9

I have realized that it is hard to keep up with the blog when your enjoying the nice weather outside. So I wil try and keep this updated. Here is the news for today.

Brian Burke will be the general manager of the 2010 US Olympic Hockey team. His assistant general manager will be Nashville's GM David Poile. LA Times has the info with Burke and Bleacher Report with Poile.

Detroit assistant Todd McClellan is meeting with the Thrashers this week for their opening. Here is the link from the AJC.

The Boston Globe has a good writeup about what may be the next big thing in the NHL, puck moving defensemen.

Ron Francis is being honored by Algoma University in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. Story from the News Observer.

Hasek is planning on retiring today at a news conference today at 11. Story from the Boston Globe.

The Detroit News has a good story about the Wings fans who don't have a chance to get Wings tickets.

On Frozen Pond has some info on the coaching situation in Florida.

Apparently Willam DelBiaggio still has ties with AEG, the group that owns the vacant arena in Kansas City. Story from Mirtle.

The National Post has an opinion piece on how the NHL should shrink. On the other hand, On Frozen Blog has a piece on how the league should realign and where teams would fall with expansion.

Nashville should be fine even with DelBiaggio's financial troubles. Story from the Tennessean.

The Nashville City Paper has a good piece on how the Predators have too many people for too few spots.

Fanhouse has a quick piece on how Hossa is toying with the Penguins.

Damien Cox at the Toronto Star has a warning for new Leafs coach Ron Wilson.

Mirtle is tracking the UFAs and has a compiled the list of how many each team has. I am grateful to say that I am not a Penguins fan.

The Cumberland County Sentinel has an article that explains the possible reasons for the spike in viewership.

The biggest story from this week is the decision by the CBC to drop the Hockey Night in Canada theme. Here are a couple opinions from Sabres Edge, Hockey Nation, Dennis Kane's Excellent Montreal Canadiens Blog, and Five for Smiting.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Catchup Post

So I realize that I have disappeared for a while and have missed some important signings. The Sabres have announced that they have signed Buffalo native Tim Kennedy and also signed Swedish goaltender prospect Jhonas Enroth. In terms of Kennedy, this was the signing that we knew was coming but was just waiting for. Kennedy has proven to be a big star at Michigan State and looks to try and make the big club this year. Most likely he will be in Portland but should be a bright prospect. In terms of Enroth, the Swede decides to try and make a name for himself in the NHL rather than try and make it in Europe. Enroth looks like he may have a chance to be a second-tier goaltender in the NHL, probably taking over the starting role from Adam Dennis in Portland.

The Stanley Cup Finals have finally lived up to all the hype they were given with the triple-overtime game last night in Detroit. Detroit leads the series 3-2 and one would think they have the decisive edge going into Game 6 from being embarassed in their home rink. The Penguins got some lucky breaks to start the game that led to their first two goals, the major one being the Kronwall own-goal. I think that the Red Wings will close this series out tommorrow night but nothing is better then a Game 7 to decide it all