Slim pickings for next great Quebec NHL hockey star

Few French Canadians are prominent in modern professional hockey. What happened to the legacy of Rocket Richard?

Slim pickings for next great Quebec NHL hockey starWhile the Boston Bruins have done well enough when he was injured this season, Patrice Bergeron clearly remains the straw that stirs the Bs’ drink. The 32-year-old centre doesn’t put up Alex Ovechkin numbers but he’s the kind of difference maker every team needs. He’s helped make his linemates Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak into…

Who needs spring when you have playoffs?

Plenty of talking points as the NHL and NBA start their marathons in search of champions

Who needs spring when you have playoffs?April is best known for playoffs and spring. Seeing as how spring has failed to make an appearance so far, we shall content ourselves with the playoffs, National Hockey League and National Basketball Association variety. 1) Under Brendan Shanahan, the Toronto Maple Leafs have done most everything right. Tank. Draft well. Hire the best managers…

On thin ice: the NHL’s Canadian teams are mostly a mess

There's plenty of blame to go around but only one certainty: the nation will rally around the Toronto Maple Leafs – right?

On thin ice: the NHL’s Canadian teams are mostly a messThis has not been a vintage winter for hockey in the country that worships the game. Consider the wreckage: Canada’s National Hockey League stars were not allowed to participate in the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. The Replacements may be a swell movie, but it wasn’t a happy tale for the apple scruffs we…

Skipping Olympics a bridge too far for Bettman?

The NHL commissioner has kept the wolves at bay for years, but this season finds Bettman with nothing new to offer and much to lose

Skipping Olympics a bridge too far for Bettman?Don’t look now but Gary Bettman may be running out of second acts. The National Hockey League commissioner for life has spent a good deal of time pushing off the dodgy reality of his league’s place in the broadcast universe. He’s kept a marginal attraction afloat when ESPN and others ignore the league. But could…

An Oil slick of disastrous proportions

There’s a clock ticking on the Oilers’ monopoly on Connor McDavid’s affections

An Oil slick of disastrous proportionsMaybe Edmonton NHL fans should record a song called How Do You Solve A Problem Named The Oilers? Because someone has to figure out what in the name of Bep Guidolin is going on with their hockey team. As we near the all-star break (once called the Olympic break), the hockey heroes from northern Alberta…

Can sports go back to spitballing on the big calls?

Video replay in football is a perfect example of the law of unintended consequences. And each sport has similar problems

Can sports go back to spitballing on the big calls?Al Michaels was nettled. The star NBC announcer had watched yet another officiating tire fire at the end of Saturday’s Los Angeles Rams/Atlanta Falcons playoff game. He asked: Why do the final two minutes of a hockey game take two minutes, but the final two minutes of a National Football League game take 20 minutes…

Luck plays a big part in creating a winning athlete

Fire the coach. Yell at the players to motivate them. Or accept that luck plays a significant role in the outcome, no matter how valiant your efforts

Luck plays a big part in creating a winning athleteNow is the winter of sports discontent. National Football League coaches are being primed for the chop. National Hockey League and National Basketball Association coaches, too, are trying to stay one step ahead of the grim reaper as their teams’ rosy prospects dim. In the NFL, we hear that longtime Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis…

The NHL’s goose that laid the Golden Knights

The unexpected success of the new Las Vegas franchise could have the league incorrectly believing that further expansion is the ticket to riches

The NHL’s goose that laid the Golden KnightsThe stunning start to the inaugural National Hockey League season of the expansion Vegas Golden Knights is wonderful news – if you live in Las Vegas. If you’re a fan of the sport in general? Not so much. The Knights have bolted out to a 7-1 home record, putting them in a playoff position. They’ve…

Bad to the bone: why the NHL can’t clean up its act

The league just can’t help itself. Despite pledges to free up the game, we endure reform and recidivism on flow of play, minor fouls, major fouls, video reviews

Bad to the bone: why the NHL can’t clean up its actIn criminology they call it recidivism – the tendency of criminals to re-offend, revert to the norm, as it were. While there’s much noise about rehabilitation, a certain percentage of the usual suspects end up precisely where we found them. Bad to the bone. So recidivism might be the best way to explain the National…
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