Who was the first NHL goalie to take a loss without being scored on in a game? Michael Murphy. After getting the first call-up of his career (which I predicted this summer), he was in net last night after Cam Ward got pulled in the third period, making two saves on two shots. The funny part is he took a loss because the empty-net goal scored by Calgary, during which time Murphy was the goalie of record, turned out to be the game winner. In any event, I am sure it was a night he’ll never forget.
Questions about why it was Murphy and not Justin Peters were answered by Sr. VP Derek Wilkinson: “Peters is subject to both re-entry and regular waivers. In this case, the Canes would not have had time to get him through re-entry waivers and get him the line-up given the time frame.”
Elliotte Friedman reported that Carolina feels they can trade both a forward and defenseman in the next few weeks. The most likely candidates for those trades are Tuomo Ruutu and Tomas Kaberle. The only problem is neither has played well enough to garner interest at the moment. It’s a sad state of affairs when you have to hope your players play well enough just so you can trade them.
One year too many for Martin Brodeur. He was a great goaltender who won cups on the strength of a team that suffocated the fun out of the sport. He probably makes a top five goaltender lists of most experts; I still think he was overrated. The endless trapping style of the most boring team in hockey history, the New Jersey Devils, was what was wrong with the hockey of that era.
What does everyone think about the realignment in the NHL? I think it’s a great idea. Detroit, Minnesota, Nashville and Columbus have to be ecstatic. Everyone plays a home and home outside their conference and then you play within your own conference in the first two rounds of the playoffs. Less travel for lots of teams.
The new conferences in the NHL need names because “Conference A” isn’t all that catchy. I don’t think they’ll be named after modern era hockey great likes Gretzky, Lemieux, etc. I’m pretty sure that Philly fans aren’t going to be thrilled about hanging a “Lemieux Division Champions” banner in their arena.
My color commentator and former Portland Pirates goaltender Chris Jablonski had no choice but to give me a kiss on the Diamond Springs Kiss Cam last night. It was incited by Chubby’s shenanigans with mistletoe. I am not afraid to say that I enjoyed it. “Jigsy” makes every game fun.
I’ve studied the life and political career of Margaret Thatcher for years and think she’s the greatest political leader of the 20th century. Now, Hollywood has made a film of her life called “The Iron Lady.” I don’t watch many movies these days but if this one is a hit-piece, I will swear off Hollywood forever.
Checkers athletic trainer Brian Maddox took a spill onto the ice early in the morning before the game on Sunday. The back of his head cushioned the fall. The hole in the ice was repaired, as was the one in his noggin (I heard it was 5 stitches). Good thing equipment manager and part-time surgeon Steve Latin was on hand to administer the necessary medical treatment and drive Brian to the hospital. Despite a bloody and waterlogged t-shirt, a possible concussion and overall body soreness, Maddox soldiered on and worked the last two games of the weekend. The injury probably wasn’t as bad as when Latin had to work with a partially-ruptured Achilles tendon (really sorry about that Seve).
Both games this weekend are on the radio. Friday night, on 610 AM with an 8:15 p.m. pre-game show in Austin, Texas. The game on Sunday begins with a 4:15 p.m. pre-game show on WBCN 1660 AM.
The New York Times did an article on the late Derek Boogaard’s brain analysis by a researcher Dr. Ann McKee. It’s a terrific article that can be read here
. “Boogaard had chronic traumatic encephalopathy, commonly known as C.T.E., a close relative of Alzheimer’s disease. It is believed to be caused by repeated blows to the head. It can be diagnosed only posthumously, but scientists say it shows itself in symptoms like memory loss, impulsiveness, mood swings, even addiction.”
My appearance last week with Woody and Wilcox on 106.5 The END was great last week because they understand the game of hockey and are really great guys. Thanks to @SheliaTaylor
, I walked away with some awesome Bob Seger CDs.
Rumor has it the Nature Boy Ric Flair will make an appearance at a Checkers game later this year. He was always a class act in a business filled with knuckleheads.
14) Heard this song on YouTube the other day
. it’s really good. Written and performed by an unknown 20th century guitar player.