Monday, 23 August 2010

Rule Changes, A Historic Draft, and Boy, Does Asham Love the Atlantic Division

I would like to post a few times a week. However I've been busy moving and finishing up my summer classes. It hasn't been a busy week but there still have been some important events.
  • A host of potential rules changed were reviewed at the research and development camp held by Brendan Shanahan, who is now the NHL's Vice President of Hockey and Business Development. NHL brass is getting innovative with their ideas for the game, combining old rules and new ideas. Here are a few they looked at. 
    • I really like the idea of players having to serve a full two minute penalty. It seems odd that the NHL was once trying to curb offence, but now they are swinging the other way its about time this rule was reinstated. 
    • Hybrid icing, in which the referee can call icing when the players reach the faceoff circle if the defending player is the first to get there. This is just common sense and should have been thought of, and implemented, years ago. Then there would be even fewer unnecessary injuries, such as the one to Kurtis Foster.
    • Wider bluelines and a shallower net would increase the size of the offensive zones, giving players more room to work with. They also looked at having once faceoff circle in each zone, directly in front of the goalie. I really can't see that affecting the game too much but an idea is an idea and at least it shows they are thinking creatively and are willing to try something new.
    • Here is a wrap-up of the development camp, brought to you by The Hockey News.
  • It has been an historic year for women's hockey in 2010. Earlier in the year, women were inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame for the first time and now, for the first time ever, a draft was set up for the Canadian Women's Hockey League. If they really want to gain recognition however, they need to expand their program and begin drafting European players as well. the talent level of women's hockey suffers a huge drop off after Canada and the United States. When I went to the Olympics I saw Switzerland play against Russia and the Gold Medal game between Canada and the United States and I have to say it was like going from beer leagues to the NHL. The other six teams in the tournament really weren't close to their level of play. There is only one chance every four years for women's hockey to gain worldwide attention and more even competition would go a long way in giving those women the attention and credit they deserve. 
  • The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed Arron Asham to a one year deal making the Penguins the fourth team in the Atlantic Division he has played for since the 2002-03 season. Having already spent four seasons with the Islanders, one with New Jersey and the last two with Philadelphia, I wonder how badly Glen Sather will need a checking forward next season. The only thing I can think of that comes close to this is Pat Lafontaine having spent his entire career in without ever having to change his license plate.
  • Finally, the World Hockey Summit is starting this week in Toronto. Over 300 of the world's hockey leaders and experts will discuss, among other things, changes to the game and how to grow it in places where there is not much awareness or support for the game.
That's all for now. I'll post as often as I can and try to update the Twitter feed every day. Within the next few weeks I'll start posting offseason recaps of all the teams. Only 28 more days till the puck drops.

    1 comment:

    1. One of the most recent rule change that I really like is the shootout. It is very exciting to watch, you hold your breath as the opossing team shoots and get ready to cheer as your does. Everyone in the areana is on their feet. One of the most exciting shootout I saw was the Rangers in a 12 rounder, it seemed to go on forever and you started to wonder, what if everybody shoots and there is no winner? The best shootout I ever saw was the Rangers at Flyers for the last regular season game last year. The winner of the shootout went into the playoffs and the loser went home until next season. What pressure! I've always wondered what the players thought of the shootout,what the goalies think. I'm sure they have been asked and I'd like to know their thoughts on it.