Blue Jackets broadcasters surprise fans at local bar with ‘opening night’ call of Xbox simulation

20 Oct

On Friday, the NHL canceled the 2012-13 schedule through Nov. 1, bringing the grand total of games missed to 135. Friday was supposed to be the home opener at Nationwide Arena for the Columbus Blue Jackets as they hosted the Vancouver Canucks.

To drown their sorrows, fans gathered at R Bar, the local establishment right near Nationwide to ponder what might have happened against the defending Presidents' Trophy winners. But it wasn't just going to be a normal night at R Bar. The place had organized an event surrounding the X Box simulation of what should have been the game against the Canucks.

Then things -- in the words of Champ Kind -- jumped up a notch.

The team's anthem singer, Leo Welsh, showed up to perform the National Anthem before the "game" and later in the evening members of the Blue Jackets television and radio broadcast teams made an appearance to do some work.

From The Dark Blue Jacket:

Long about the third period, something momentous happened.  The 'boys' showed up.  That's right.  Jeff Rimer, Bill Davidge, and George Matthews all came to participate in the camaraderie of the night.  It was great having them in the bar that night.  But then the treat started.  From their well deserved perch at the bar, George Matthews and Bill Davidge proceeded to call the simulated game.  For yours truly this was a blast from the past back to old radio days.  Additionally, there are certain freedoms that happen when one is not subject to FCC regs on over the air broadcasts, and George and Bill took perfect advantage of the liberties to give an exciting and heartfelt call to the simulated game, supported by raucous cheering of the patrons.

Blue Jackets blog Arch City Army shot a quick video of the festivities:

The EA Sports game kept its realism and the Canucks were victorious in the end, but on the day when the future of the actual hockey season was put further in doubt, those Blue Jackets fans got to experience something really cool on what otherwise was going to be a normal Friday night at the bar.

Stick-tap Deadspin

Follow Sean Leahy on Twitter at @Sean_Leahy

Tags: anthem, Bill Davidge, , , , , George Matthews, , , , vancouver canucks
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Is John Davidson on track to take over Blue Jackets?

12 Oct

Maybe it's because we're unabashed fans of his broadcasting career and results with the St. Louis Blues, but John Davidson could have a transformative effect on the Columbus Blue Jackets' franchise.

They don't need another Rick Nash — they need a hockey man at the top of the food chain that can take a team in a near-constant state of rebuilding and set it on course for sustained success.

Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch reported on Friday morning that the long-awaited talks between Davidson, who recently stepped down as president of the Blues, and Columbus brass will begin this weekend.

From the Dispatch:

It's unclear how Davidson would fit within the Blue Jackets' hockey operations department, but it's widely assumed around the NHL that he would need the promise of complete autonomy, just as he had with the Blues since joining them as president in 2006.

In that scenario, Davidson would likely assume the title of president of hockey operations, giving him authority of general manager Scott Howson and all hockey decisions. Priest could switch strictly to the business side of the organization, while retaining his rights to serve on the NHL board of governors.

Priest's bio is pretty indicative of a guy that'd rather just run the numbers side of things.

So the wheels are turning on John Davidson to the Blue Jackets. Which is a good thing. Here's Matt Wagner of The Cannon with some cautious optimism:

Based on his experience, resume, and tenure, it's not unreasonable to expect Davidson to command a salary in the high six figures, perhaps even seven. That doesn't seem so bad compared to, say, $5.5 million dollars for James Wisniewski's paycheck, but the lockout complicates things.

As it stands, the Blue Jackets are cutting the work weeks for their front office staff to save money while the team effectively has no access to their primary source of income. To add that financial demand, even if the team "saved" by perhaps reassigning Mike Priest back to Worthington Industries and using the money earmarked for his salary to pay J.D., is a risky move, especially if the lockout eventually threatens the entire season.

True, but few in hockey would say he's not worth the money.

Tags: , , , , , , hockey operations, John Davidson, , , St Louis Blues
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John Davidson leaves St. Louis Blues; could Columbus or Calgary be next stop?

27 Sep

Let's be clear: Now that he's officially left the St. Louis Blues as their president of hockey operations, the best move for John Davidson would be to return to television color commentary.

Yes, this is a completely selfish declaration on our part, because we hold JD up as the gold standard for hockey analysis in the booth; we doubt he'll be willing to take the pay cut.

Instead, Davidson will find a number of opportunities in the NHL to do what he did in St. Louis: Build a winner on the ice through the draft and smart spending, and be the voice of the organization in keeping fans enthusiastic about the direction of the franchise.

You think the Calgary Flames or Columbus Blue Jackets could use a guy like that? (Or, in a delicious twist, given his history with the New York Rangers, how about the New York Islanders?)

The news, , comes three months after Davidson's negotiating window with other teams closed. Speculation remained that new owner Tom Stillman would work out a financial settlement with Davidson, who had Apparently, that's finally happened.

Davidson met with the Blue Jackets during his negotiating window, and igniting

From Aaron Portzline of the Dispatch:

At $2 million per season, he was part of a talent-laden front office that also includes Doug Armstrong, Larry Pleau, Al MacInnis, head scout Dave Taylor and coach Ken Hitchcock. Outside of the Toronto Maple Leafs, it's one of the deepest and most expensive front offices in the NHL.

Meanwhile, the Blue Jackets have long had a crying need for experience and cache at the top of their organization. Davidson met with majority owner John P. McConnell and president Mike Priest in May, but none involved would discuss the meeting publicly.

He also loves Calgary. In, like, a big way. Both he and the team back in June, but speculation was that Davidson could run hockey ops while Ken King moves into a business leadership role.

Davidson's a rock star executive, and an asset to any team that manages to add him to the brain trust.

But yeah, we'd rather hear him back in the booth.

"Oh baby …"

Tags: , , Calgary Flames, , declaration, , John Davidson, John P. McConnell, , , St Louis Blues, stop, television
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Yes, indeed, despite the promise of impending labor Armageddon and a prolonged work-stoppage, your friends at Puck Daddy are previewing the 2012-13 NHL season (whenever the heck it starts). Why? Because this is the most important election in the history of all-time ever, and you need to know the candidates — like the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Yeah, so, that happened.

The Blue Jackets entered the season with high expectations after a significant offseason investment: Trading for Jeff Carter from the Philadelphia Flyers and signing free-agent defenseman James Wisniewski to a six-year, $33 million deal. Within the first five games of the season, Wisniewski was in the midst of a 8-game suspension and Carter had broken his foot.

There was constant talk that former coach Ken Hitchcock would replace Scott Arniel; instead, Hitchcock took over the St. Louis Blues (to incredible success) and Arniel was fired after a 11—25—5 record last season. Assistant coach Todd Richards took over, but the season was too far gone.

Then things got really interesting: The team announced it would listen to trade proposals for captain Rick Nash, which was later revealed to be a trade request from Nash during a defiant post-trade deadline press conference from GM Scott Howson.

He finally traded Nash during the summer to the New York Rangers, getting back a return that many felt was unworthy of a player of Nash's caliber.

Carter, a disaster, was eventually traded to the Los Angeles Kings for Jack Johnson. He later won the Stanley Cup.

Also, the Blue Jackets, despite being the most terrible team in the NHL, lost the Draft Lottery and the chance to take Nail Yakupov.

Good times.


The Nash trade obviously reshapes the Blue Jackets' roster significantly with the additions of C Brandon Dubinsky, C Artem Anisimov and D Tim Erixon — as well as the deletion of Nash, by far the team's most potent goal-scorer, from the roster.

The other big move: The acquisition of Sergei Bobrovsky of the Philadelphia Flyers for picks, giving Steve Mason some competition. Or someone to play behind. Or another enigma between the pipes.

The Jackets also traded defenseman Marc Methot to Ottawa for Nick Foligno, signing him to a new 3-year deal.

On the free-agent front, Adrian Aucoin joins the Jackets' blueline for one year at $2 million after coming over from the Coyotes. Defenseman Aaron Johnson left for Boston, while Kristian Huselius left for Europe — and looked back in anger.

At forward … well, at the very least, the Jackets will be a pain in the ass to compete against.

For example: If Richards wanted to roll a top line of R.J. Umberger with former Rangers linemates Brandon Dubinsky and Artem Anisimov, he'd have three players who could hound the puck in the attacking zone — and in Dubinsky, a player that'll visit the sin bin to the tune of 100 penalty minutes.

Foligno can be a pain to play against. Ditto Derek Dorsett and Jared Boll and Derek MacKenzie. It's going to have the pugnacious tenacity that someone like Brian Burke would covet … alas, it might also have the offensive depth of some of his Leafs teams.

Where are the goals coming from? Dubinsky's best offensive season was 24 goals. Vinny Prospal had 55 points last season but turns 38 next February. Cam Atkinson had 14 points in 27 games, but the operative phrase there is "27 games." Ditto promising center Ryan Johansen, who had 21 points in 67 games as a rookie. And can you believe Derick Brassard is somehow still on this team?

On defense … things are a bit more settled.

Wisniewski and Jack Johnson should form the team's top pairing, despite not fitting into the usual offense/defense paradigm. Wisniewski (24:47 TOI) had 27 points in 48 games in a truncated season. Johnson, acquired for Carter last season, had 14 points in his 21 games with the Jackets.

Fedor Tyutin was second on the Jackets in total ice time (24:08) and led them shorthanded (2:49). After some talk he could be on the block, he signed a 6-year extension with the Jackets. Nikita Nikitin, acquire from the Blues for Kris Russell and a revelation last season, should be back as his defense partner.

That leaves veteran Adrian Aucoin on the final pairing, where the Jackets will spin the wheel of partners: John Moore, Ryan Murray or David Savard, who might have the advantage.

In goal … Scott Howson believed in Steve Mason last season, and he ended up being one of the primary factors in the team's demise: 3.39 GAA, an .894 save percentage and supplanted by Curtis Sanford at times as the starter. Now it's Bobrovsky with a chance to either share the burden to steal the job. He followed an outstanding rookie season (2.59 GAA, .915 save percentage) with one in which he couldn't find a groove playing behind Ilya Bryzgalov. Is a change in scenery the solution?

"These Teams Are On My List" by Rick Nash, a reminder of the number of places he would have rather been than Columbus.

Stability is in short order in Columbus, so the elevation of Richards from interim to head coach can be viewed as a positive through that prism. It's his second whack at the piñata after serving as head coach in Minnesota. He lost the room with the Wild; it's hard to imagine a similar power struggle in Columbus.

There's a Fire Scott Howson Facebook page. That it's request has yet to come to fruition remains startling given the team's fortunes and the failure of some of his high-profile moves (Carter, re-signing Mason, the Nash debacle). But there he is, trying to once again rebuild a team that's made the playoffs once in franchise history.

We'll go with Johnson, who assumed a leadership role on the team last season and could be in line to be its captain. They need more offense out of him, especially on the power play (an underwhelming 15.5 percent conversion rate). But if he isn't already, he will be the face of the franchise.

Was five goals and five helpers in the last six games of last season an anomaly, or does Cam Atkinson have the goods to solidify the team's second line next season? His 2.4 shots per game was third on the team.

Hold your nose and pick either goaltender: Mason because this category should probably be named after him at this point, and Bob because one simply doesn't know what he looks like away from having the Flyers in front of him.

[Concerned Female Voice]

"The Columbus Blue Jackets claim they care about our children. But what kind of a hockey organization pledges its support to defend gangster rap …

… and has male genitalia as a mascot?

"The Columbus Blue Jackets. Not a hockey team. A corrupting force of thuggery and deviancy. Paid for by the Cleveland Barons Preservation Society."

In the last year, the Jackets fired a coach, traded a star center, traded their franchise player, finished last and lost the draft lottery. Oh, and they secured the 2013 NHL All-Star Game. You know, the one that'll probably be cancelled.

Rebuild might be putting it kindly. But there are some pieces in place on defense; and like we said, it could be a tenacious group up front.

Are they the worst team in the conference on paper? Probably. Will they be a pushover? They'll compete every night.

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Blue Jackets send Murray, Jenner to amateur teams (Yahoo! Sports)

13 Sep
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- The Columbus Blue Jackets have assigned defenseman and No. 2 overall pick this summer Ryan Murray to the Western Hockey League's Everett Silvertips and center Boone Jenner to the Ontario Hockey League's Oshawa Generals.
Tags: , , , Boone Jenner, , , , Generals, Jenner, , , Ryan Murray, Western Hockey League
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How Blue Jackets’ new ‘Defend NWA’ campaign promotes fan defiance in dire times (and some gangsta rap)

28 Aug

One of the telltale signs that your favorite team is struggling at the gate: When they spend more time promoting the players visiting the arena than their own  stars.

I saw this firsthand growing up as a New Jersey Nets fan in the late 1980s. The team was as terrible as the arena, empty seats outnumbering fans by a considerable margin. Sam Bowie and Dennis Hopson weren't selling tickets; Michael Jordan and Larry Bird would, so the multi-game packages were built around when the Bulls, Celtics and other glamor franchises would visit the Meadowlands.

[Also: Top 100 NHL fantasy pool player rankings]

It's depressing when your team's marketing plan positions it as a jobber to the stars, like a welcome mat for the soiled feet of the visitors. It does nothing to instill pride or stoke passion. It's akin to your house guests grabbing the cable remote and flipping channels while you're forced to watch "Honey Boo Boo", which is a special kind of pain.

It happens in the NHL, too. If Phoenix Coyotes fans haven't been through enough already, the attendance-challenged Western Conference finalist thoroughly puts over the visiting teams on its just-released 2012-13 schedule. "Phil Kessel and the Toronto Maple Leafs come to town for their only visit" and "The Philadelphia Flyers, led by snipers Claude Giroux and Danny Briere make their only visit to the Valley" and so on.

At no point in the release does it say something like "Cheer On Your Coyotes As They Battle …" or "Watch Your Coyotes Kick The Crap Outta …".

Or "Defend Your Arena From The Conquering Hordes of Opposing Players and Opposing Fans." Which is exactly where another attendance-challenged team in the Western Conference, the Columbus Blue Jackets, have decided to take its marketing campaign for next season.

It's not enough to show up at the game; it's time to defend your arena and your team from the mud being thrown at them by the rest of the hockey world.

And if it evokes a classic gangsta rap group, all the better.

[More: Predicted conference standings for 2012-13 season]

In case you haven't heard, it's been a pretty terrible 2012 for the Columbus Blue Jackets. They finished last in the NHL with 65 points and a goal differential of minus-60, and yet didn't earn the top pick in the NHL Draft. Their franchise standard-bearer Rick Nash opted for a trade over further rebuilding, and was sent to the New York Rangers in a package the majority of hockey pundits deemed underwhelming.  Center Derick Brassard said he doesn't see a first line on the current roster. The Jackets' identity had entered into crisis, on the ice and in their messages to fans.

"It is a new era. We're going to be honest in saying that," said Marcus Stephenson, digital marketing manager for the Columbus Blue Jackets.

So how does a team that traded last summer's key acquisition to the eventual Stanley Cup champions, finished last, lost its captain and is in a clear rebuild convince fans with varying degrees of abject frustration to spend money on tickets?

By attempting to transform those emotions into a battle for dignity.

#DEFENDNWA is the rallying cry for the Blue Jackets this summer; "NWA" as in Nationwide Arena, the team's home base.

It's a social media campaign that's an innovative twist on the old "pay to see the visiting team" conceit: Acknowledging the Jackets' adversity, with an unspoken nod to their opponents' success, and asking fans to rally to defend their turf against these visiting teams rather than paying to see them beat up the locals.

"It plays into the overarching 'Join The Battle' theme that we've come up with this year. Our team is completely different. Our building's going to be a lot different. We're ushering in a new era here," Stephenson said.

"You've heard Coach [Todd] Richards talk about that level of accountability, and that's there organization wide. We wanted to take that same message and put it out to all of our fans."

The result was a social media blitz in August, that had Jackets fans changing their Twitter avatars to "Defend NWA" signs and attaching the #DEFENDNWA hashtag to their hockey tweets.

"It was to show the rest of the hockey world that we have this great group of fans here. Super passionate and hardcore," said Stephenson.

To those fans, "DEFEND NWA" was a clear reference to their home hockey barn.

To others … well, NWA might evoke another image. One straight outta Compton.

(Hey, look, a Kings fan!)

From 1986-1991, the gangsta rap pioneers "Niggaz With Attitude" created classics like "[Expletive] Tha Police" and spawned the careers of Ice Cube and Dr. Dre. And there's really nothing greater than unintentional gangsta rap references in NHL marketing campaigns, is there?

Stephenson was aware of the connection since the dawn of the campaign.

"Our core fans got it. Our fans here know that, as it relates to us, NWA relates to Nationwide Arena," he said.

"As with the nature of Twitter, you need a hastag that's shorter. But I realize the hashtag has gotten some traction in the hip-hop community. But I would point out that their N.W.A. has periods."

The players began getting involved with "DEFEND NWA" too, beginning with defenseman James Wisniewski's "imagine what it'll sound like if we start winning" message:

"It really showed how united an organization we are. We're all really aligned. It speaks volumes," said Stephenson.

Has the campaign made an impact with fans? Matt Wagner of The Cannon opines:

It's legitimate to look at the search engine results or social media trending and saying that the more these tags and campaigns circulate, the more successful they are, but the real success or failure of these efforts is going to be measured in how many tickets are sold - and specifically, how many tickets are sold to Blue Jackets fans who will wear the home colors with pride when teams capable of drawing many more fans into the area (Detroit, Chicago, Pittsburgh, etc.) come to town.

Given the challenges the team faces in a post-Nash, potential lockout, last place offseason, that's a tall order, and while I am hopeful we'll see improvements in the on-ice product, I'm not so sure we're going to see the same thing in the stands.

That's the real battle for the Blue Jackets in filling seats: That fans are filled less with defiance and pride than with apathy.

That's why this honest take from Columbus could work: It's a quasi-acknowledgement that times are tough, with the hope that fans will want to solider through this with their favorite team — rather than stay home and concede their territory to empty chairs, or ones filled with opposing sweaters.

"Our organization is anxious to move forward, and our fans are with us there. It wasn't just us coming up with some marketing campaign; it's knowing our community well enough to know they'd assist in defending this arena," said Stephenson.

Tags: , boo, , Defend, , , , NWA, rap
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Here’s Rick Nash in his New York Rangers jersey (brace yourselves, Jackets fans)

24 Aug

We've seen Rick Nash posing with his New York Rangers No. 61 sweater, as he did during his introductory press availability this month. Now, via the latest issue of The Hockey News, here's the former captain of the Columbus Blue Jackets in his new jersey:

What a jarring sight for Blue Jackets fans. And by that we mean Rick Nash smiling.

s/t Dark Blue Jacket

Tags: , , Dark, , Jackets fans, jersey, new york rangers, , , , Rick Nash, sweater
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The Essentials: Columbus Blue Jackets Edition

20 Aug

(This month, Puck Daddy asked bloggers for every NHL team to tell us The Essentials for their franchises — everything from the defining player and trade, to the indispensable fan traditions. Here is the crew from Dark Blue Jacket, giving us The Essentials for the Columbus Blue Jackets.)

By Dark Blue Jacket

The Dark Blue Jacket blog writing team of DBJ, Gallos and Alex respectfully submit the following "Essential" Columbus Blue Jackets items for the hockey world's review and consideration. Having a team that has only made the playoffs once in its 11 seasons (and we're still waiting for the first playoff win...), there's a fascinating combination of simplicity, complexity and humor in compiling a list of that which is truly essential about Columbus Blue Jackets hockey.

Enjoy the ride, everyone.


DBJ: Rick Nash. Came in when the team was still in its expansion phase, took them to the playoffs and bailed out rather than hang around for the rebuild once the team hit the cellar. (Like too many fans, sadly.)


Alex: 2008-09, they made the playoffs, duh.


Gallos: Game 4 in the playoffs against Detroit. I have been in the horseshoe, when Ohio State was playing Lou Holtz's Notre Dame and Eddie George put the team on his back and started the run to the Heisman trophy. The atmosphere in the 'Shoe was electric, but absolutely did not hold a candle to the atmosphere in Nationwide Arena that day. The loudest, most explosive, craziest sporting event I have ever been to, bar none. It was absolutely electric, and I long for more.


Alex: Nash's playoff-clinching goal is probably the way to go, even though his insane highlight-reel goal against Phoenix is still my favorite. To me it's essential CBJ because it was a great goal, but ultimately meant nothing.


DBJ: Jeff Carter to LA/Jakub Voracek and 1st rounder (Sean Couturier) to Philadelphia/Jack Johnson and LA's 2013 1st rounder to Columbus. This actually was two trades, but Columbus fans look at them as one extended personnel move. (We're used to drawn-out personnel actions. Rick Nash was trade bait forever, you know. Can you believe nobody wanted to give up a Stanley Cup-winning roster?)

Point being, Columbus fans are highly bullish on Jack Johnson. Don't be surprised if he's sporting the "C" in C-bus real soon.

Unsung Hero

Gallos: Ken Hitchcock. The dude wrested a team of nobodies and Nash onto a course that ultimately led to their first playoff appearance. He did this with sheer strength of will, hard work, and hockey acumen. Until the franchise villain did his thing (see next) Hitch had this group of nobodies chasing the playoffs. He deserved a Jack Adams for that year, though there was no way he was going to get it. It was an amazing coaching job. His ending in Columbus was ignominious, as he hung around under contract after the idiot GM fired him. He finally got his due in St. Louis this year, winning the long deserved coach of the year.

Franchise Villain

DBJ: Adam Foote. With all due respect to Jeff Carter (who didn't sign here, never wanted to play here, etc.), Carter wasn't the team captain that had a plane waiting at the airport after rolling his franchise over a barrel. Foote can keep his Stanley Cup rings - he's persona non grata in Columbus.


Alex: Derick Brassard vs. James Neal on 12/18/2008. Ill-advised fight that ended his excellent rookie season prematurely with a separated shoulder. He has never been the same since.


DBJ: Ken Hitchcock. He figured out a way to get this franchise to the playoffs. Nobody else has come close. 'Nuff said.


DBJ: George Matthews. You have absolutely no idea what the CBJ radio play-by-play voice is saying, but you sure as heck have a good time listening to him. He gets downright apoplectic when the Blue Jackets score.

Arena Tradition

Gallos: The Cannon, baby. The freakin' Cannon. Other teams hate it. 'Nuff said.

Arena Food

Gallos: $9 Beer. Say no more.


DBJ: The new 3rd sweater. Put Boomer aside (as he unfortunately debuted at the same time) ... the new jerseys (color scheme, cannon logo, etc.) have pretty much taken the fanbase by storm.

Previously On Puck Daddy

The Essentials: New York Islanders edition

The Essentials: Boston Bruins edition

The Essentials: Colorado Avalanche Edition

The Essentials: Dallas Stars Edition

The Essentials: Washington Capitals Edition

The Essentials: Anaheim Ducks Edition

The Essentials: Montreal Canadiens Edition

The Essentials: Detroit Red Wings Edition

The Essentials: Ottawa Senators Edition

The Essentials: New Jersey Devils Edition

The Essentials: Phoenix Coyotes Edition

The Essentials: Florida Panthers Edition

The Essentials: Los Angeles Kings Edition

The Essentials: Carolina Hurricanes

The Essentials: Pittsburgh Penguins

The Essentials: San Jose Sharks

The Essentials: New York Rangers

The Essentials: Edmonton Oilers Edition

The Essentials: Tampa Bay Lightning Edition

Tags: , , Dark, Dark Blue Jacket, , , , , , The Dark Blue Jacket, The Essentials,
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Okposo reviews The Dark Knight Rises; Breakfast at Quick’s; Enstrom extended (Puck Headlines)

27 Jul

• Breakfast at Jon Quick's house. Clearly, they knew the spread would be overshadowed by the gaggle of trophies, so they hardly tried. Bagels and muffins? Lame. [Kevin Westgarth]

• The Winnipeg Jets have agreed to terms on a multi-year extension with Tobias Enstrom. [TSN]

• Kyle Okposo reviews the Dark Knight. The Islanders need to make this a regular feature. [Islanders]

• Don Levin, the owner of the AHL's Chicago Wolves, is pretty serious about getting an NHL team into Seattle. How serious? He went to Bellevue. [Seattle Times]

• Here's a neat article on what it's like to be the host family for a future hockey star like Jimmy Howard on Patrick Kane. The interviewer sounds legit. "I basically treat the boy like my son. I do for him exactly what I would do for my sons. I go to all home games and try to go to any away games that are possible. I make sure they are fed properly. I even have little chores for them to do when they aren't on the road." [Patch]

Looking at where Alex Semin fits on the Carolina Hurricanes, as well as this tidbit on the package the Blue Jackets were asking for Rick Nash: "The Canes pursued free agent Zach Parise and offered up a trade package for Rick Nash, but fell short on Parise (signed by the Minnesota Wild) and bowed out on the Nash bidding (the Blue Jackets apparently were asking for Jeff Skinner and another top-nine player; Zac Dalpe and another prospect and two first-round draft picks)." [Canes Now]

• Cam Charron compares the treatment of Rick Nash to the treatment of Alex Semin. [Backhand Shelf]

• Great obscure moments in Leafs playoff history: that time Pat Quinn screwed up the lineup card during a playoff game. [Down Goes Brown]

• Rick Nash discusses a phone call he had with John Tortorella. "[Tortorella] called me right after the deal went down. He seemed really intense but he seemed really helpful." I imagine Torts was like, "Welcome to New York, Rick, Let's make a blood oath." [North Jersey]

• In case it wasn't clear Shane Doan's agent is pumping the market like a boss, here he is on whether or not Shane is anxious to get something done soon: "I don't think Shane is anxious," said Bross, who represents many baseball players. "I'm used to free agency in baseball where we drag it out ridiculously long." I'd wager, then, that these delays have less to do with waiting for Phoenix, as they say, and more to do with strategically upping demand. [The Province]

• According to Aaron Ward, the Red Wings appear to have figured this out and dropped out of the running for Doan's services. [Kuklas's Korner]

• Sad news: Kevin McIntosh, a fixture in Windsor hockey since the 1970s, steps down from his position as general manager of junior's LaSalle Vipers because of Parkinson's disease. [Windsor Star]

• Minnesota Wild prospect and Gophers leading scorer Erik Haula was cited for disorderly conduct last weekend after urinating in a public place. In the best report ever, the officer noted that Haula was turned over to a friend who was "somewhat sober". [Sacbee]

• USA Hockey takes you back to when ice hockey was a summer Olympic sport. [USA Hockey]

• Should the NHL have a disciplinary appeals board? [Edmonton Journal]

• The Kings appear in no rush to trade Jonathan Bernier. [Fox Sports West]

• A fond farewell to Fabrian Brunnstrom, who returns to Europe. [Defending Big D]

• Have a chuckle at the best tweets about Tim Thomas's support of Chick-fil-A. [PITB]

• Dan O'Toole's intro to TSN Sportscentre's latest update on the NHL's CBA negotiations is pretty much perfect.

Tags: , Dark, , Minnesota Wild, , , , Rick Nash, Tobias Enstrom, treatment
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Rick Nash trade reaction; Kane, Jets closer to extension; RIP McQuaid’s mullet (Puck Headlines)

24 Jul

Here are your Puck Headlines: a glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.

• Anaheim Ducks forward Saku Koivu was among the Olympic torchbearers this morning in London. [@anaheimducks]

• Mark Spector is not a fan of the return Scott Howson got for Rick Nash: "In many ways, the Rick Nash deal so perfectly sums up what has been a total loser of a franchise in Central Ohio. We waited, they talked about the largesse it would take to acquire Nash -- and when it's over it's like another Blue Jackets season. Lots of hype. Very little delivered." Ouch. [Sportsnet]

• More on Howson from Sean Gentille: "It took five months, but Columbus Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson eventually climbed into the bed he made for himself." [Sporting News]

• Why what the Blue Jackets got in return wasn't all that bad. [Backhand Shelf]

• Scott Howson did pretty good. [Fear the Fin]

• In other Blue Jackets news, 2012 first round pick Ryan Murray has signed his 3-year entry level contract. [CBJ]

• Amid all the Rick Nash hubbub on Monday, Sergei Kostitsyn and the Nashville Predators avoided arbitration and agreed to a 2-year, $6 million deal. [Tennessean]

• As we wait for the Lubomir Visnovsky hearing regarding his trade to the New York Islanders, this from Arthur Staple: "They could still try to make a deal with the Ducks for Visnovsky, who has told friends he would still be open to playing for the Islanders even if he wins his case." Um, so what's the problem? [Newsday]

• The family of Jessica Redfield has set up a fund to help support a journalism scholarship. [Official Jessica Redfield Fund]

• Evander Kane and the Winnipeg Jets are moving close to a 6-year, $29 million deal, according to Gary Lawless. [Winnipeg Free Press]

• The LA Kings had their Stanley Cup championship DVD premiere Monday night and their Twitter feed ruined the ending for everyone.

• Shane Doan has reportedly given potential Phoenix Coyotes owner Greg Jamison until Friday make progress in the sale of the team. "If Doan can't get serious assurances that the Coyotes sale will happen he will look at signing outside of Phoenix and will narrow that list down." [Phoenix Business Journal]

• Farewell Adam McQuaid's mullet. We shall miss thee. [Days of Y'Orr]

• It's the end of July and Mike Knuble's phone has yet to ring. [CSN Washington]

• Down Goes Brown on the pros and cons of matching the Shea Weber offer sheet: "PRO: The Predators have been receiving revenue sharing payments from the league's wealthier clubs for years, and Maple Leaf fans would probably enjoy seeing MLSE's money go towards signing a big name free agent for once." [DGB]

• Zach Boychuk and Jay Harrison re-sign with Carolina. [Canes]

• Same goes for Colin Wilson and the Nashville Predators who agree to a 3-year, $6 million extension. [On the Forecheck]

• The Latvian Hockey Federation has extended Ted Nolan's contract through the 2012/13 season. Should Latvia manage to qualify for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, the contract will expire in May 2014. [IIHF]

• Finally, our new favorite "History Will Be Made" parody, featuring M.V.P.:

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