State Of Hockey

No, I’m not talking about Minnesota.  No, I’m thinking of the NHL and how it just can’t seem to get its act together.  Lets start with:

Jerry Reinsdorf, the Chicago sports entrepreneur whom the NHL was counting on to keep the Phoenix Coyotes away from Canadian billionaire Jim Balsillie, has dropped his $148-million (all currency U.S.) bid for the club, just as the NHL announced it has filed one of its own.  more

Is this a setup or what?  Did Bettman call Reinsdorf up and ask him to do put in his phony bid to keep Jim Balsillie out of the NHL, or did they work it out some other way?  And it makes me think of how clumsy the Blue Jackets have been with their attempt to get get a bailout from Franklin County.  Columbus asked the NHL for advice with this issue and so far, the only visible action has been the publishing of the County Commissioners telephone and email information.  Maybe the Jackets should look for different advice, or better yet, do some creative thinking.

And then there is this little TV issue:

Despite the looming threat of its American rights-holder disappearing from the channel lineup of the nation’s largest satellite provider, the NHL seems not the least bit interested in the ongoing dispute that could lead to VERSUS disappearing from DirecTV on Sept. 1.  more

And what is with Puck-rakers trying to stir things up with Nikita Filatov?

If Nikita Filatov’s bid to gain meaningful minutes with the Blue Jackets this season wasn’t among the most intriguing storylines of training camp it certainly is now.

Filatov told a Russian publication that he’s receiving lucrative offers to play in the Kontinental Hockey League, but that he wouldn’t consider them unless he was getting little or no ice time with the Jackets this season.  more

Who cares?  This is how the newspaper covers the Buckeyes and it is really juvenile.  Filatov is all of 19 years old and therefore he says things a 19 year-old would say.  Of course he wants playing time and he thinks he is ready and he is looking at all options.  This kind of reporting would be more meaningful if the paper covered the team the same way when Doug MacLean ran things or Adam Foote was being surly.  But no, they just printed whatever Doug said or Adam didn’t say.  Give it rest, Puck-rakers.  Or at least put it in proper perspective. He is not angling for more ice time or money in the press.  He is smart enough to know that he needs to perform on the ice.

Connor Murphy (assistant coach Gord Murphy’s son) had five points in the recently concluded Under-17 world tournament.  Not bad, kid.

The Capital Hockey Conference will have two new members this year:  Bishop Watterson and Bishop Moeller.  That’s right, the most arrogant high school athletic program in Ohio will be playing in the CHC.  And also good luck to Watterson, who is taking the plunge and going full varsity this year.  It won’t be pretty, but things will get better.  Look at Dublin Jerome, which jumped right into hockey its first year as a school and won the Blue Jacket Cup the next season.  The CHC web site is not up-to-date, but you can check things out here.

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