March 19, 2009

Catching Up With The Past

There is quite a lot of news involving former players. Let's get down to it with this edition of Catching Up With The Past.

Back On The Bus - Concluding an excellent series on junior hockey, the Globe and Mail takes a look at why so many retired NHLers are returning to junior hockey as coaches, executives and owners.

Roy Coming Back To The NHL? - Sports Illustrated's Michael Farber looks at Patrick Roy, the coach. I do not think Montreal will hire Roy as their new coach this summer, although there will be a lot of clamoring for such a move by the French Canadian press. But I do think some time in the next couple of years Colorado will be interested in Roy as a coach. The timing is not right right now, in my opinion. They need to restock and rebuild a some more, but when a young Avalanche team is on the cusp of success again, watch for Colorado to call on the fiery Roy to try to take them to the next level, not completely unlike what Chicago did this year with Joel Quenneville.

More Cujo? - The Toronto Sun's Mike Zeisberger suggests retirement is no longer in Curtis Joseph's plans. I guess now that Martin Brodeur broke the record for most wins, Cujo wants to make sure he gets the record for most losses. He's only two behind Gump Worsley.

Will a NHL team give him another chance? He'll be 42 next season, and has only played in 23 games in the last two years. As the economic meltdown will finally hit the NHL in the next couple of years, I suspect many teams would rather dedicate back up roles and money to youngsters with more of a future, even if Cujo would come in around the $700,000 again.

More Brindy, Too - Chip Alexander of the News & Observer writes that Rod Brind'Amour intends on returning next season, too. Brind'Amour, currently 37, has two years left on his contract. The Carolina captain has had a dreadful season, and appears to have lost a step. He is too proud of an athlete to go out this way, so I hope he comes back and has a strong year. In order for that to happen, I think he will have to be recast in and accept a lesser role.

No Joke - On April 1st the Chicago Blackhawks and thoroughbred racetrack Arlington Park will both pay tribute to Mr. Goalie Glenn Hall. It is an interesting cross promotion. I wonder if the Hawks owners have any stake in the horse track?

Remember Dave Hunter - The Edmonton Journal's Jim Matheson recently caught up with former Edmonton Oiler grinder Dave Hunter. I always liked Hunter. He was less skilled than his brothers Dale and Mark, but I admired him more for some reason. It must have been all that Stanley Cup bling.

Hasek's Heroes
- Did you know Dominik Hasek founded Hasek's Heroes, a Buffalo based organization that provides a foundation of athletic development and educational support, enabling children from low- to moderate-income families to achieve their life goals? Me neither. Good on Dom. The group seems to be working with the NHL's diversity committee, as Hasek's Heroes will soon host the 1st Willie O'Ree Skills Showcase Weekend.

Big Willi Style - Eric McErlain of the AOL Fanhouse has a great story about former Atlanta Flames giant Willi Plett.

Clear The Track, Here Comes Shack - Ah, it's been too long since I typed out those famous words. Look out Barrie, Ontario. On Thursday Eddie Shack and Shayne Corson will visit the Simcoe County Museum. They are there to help promote the arrival of the Hockey Hall of Fame's travelling exhibition.

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