DG's Quick Hits- March 4, 2003 Edition
I know…it’s been awhile; but I’ve been busy with schoolwork so I haven’t had time for articles lately. Rest assured, though, that I’m still alive and well, though excuse me if I get a few details wrong…I’ve been out of the loop for a while.
Anyway, this week’s hits:
No “sure bets” on Deadline Day
Alfredsson defers cheques…and warms hearts
On the radar screen: Sergei and Anna, the Nashville Predators and their season ticket base, Lost Causes, Hull, the NHL and losing, and a lot moreNO “SURE BETS” ON DEADLINE DAY
As the Toronto Star’s Damien Cox recently outlined, this year’s trading deadline could be the most unpredictable in years. With so few teams containing “valuable assets” gone from the playoff chase, who gets dealt on Deadline Day will be almost directly linked to their club’s performance. A team like the Los Angeles Kings, for example, could turn into buyers from sellers should they emerge able to catch the Edmonton Oilers for the final playoff berth and vice-versa should they stumble by week’s end.
It’s a fun little thought, all this madness, but it’s not really that unexpected. With NHL salaries rising and the amount of “wealthy” teams dwindling, the valuable players would eventually get lumped on only a few good teams over the years, meaning the bad, “poor” teams have virtually nothing left. Now, I know we’re not at that point completely yet, but we’re getting there, and all I have to ask is: do we want to get there?
ALFREDSSON DEFERS CHEQUES…AND WARMS HEARTS
The Ottawa Senators breathed a sigh of relief when captain Daniel Alfredsson announced he’s deferring part of his salary so the Senators can aquire a player for their Stanley Cup push. His agent says he really wants to win the Cup, but really didn’t say much else.
This reminds me of when Markus Naslund did (virtually) the same for the Vancouver Canucks, stating he’d play for less just to remain in a city he loved. I personally think it’s nice that we have a least a few loyal superstars who think about their team instead of their paycheque, and, as I stated before, if the Canucks were not in a position to win the Cup, I’d want Ottawa to win. Kindness like that has to be rewarded.
ON THE RADAR SCREEN
Sergei Fedorov admits that he was once married to Anna Kournikova and that he’s now depressed that they’re split. Okay, I know he’s got a very good reason (breakups are always hard), but I bet there would be millions of guys who’d at least like to say that they once dated Kournikova…Maybe it was naive of me to assume that the Nashville Predators wouldn’t be making the playoffs and would be paying back their fans for their ticket increase because of it. Then again, this is Nashville, so anything’s possible…I was hoping the Montreal Canadiens would be able to get back into the playoffs easily this year. A franchise that storied shouldn’t be fighting for a berth…This just in: the San Jose Sharks are a lost cause. Okay, so you already knew that, but now it’s official…Speaking of lost causes, it actually looks like the New York Rangers could make the playoffs. Should I hold my breath or should I give up hope because it’s the Rangers, who somehow manage to screw up anything no matter what…I know it’s old, but one of Brett Hull’s “10 Ways To Fix Hockey” was eliminating the OT Loss rule. I know the guy sometimes goes overboard, but Hull can be right dead-on and he’s right here. You shouldn’t be rewarded for LOSING. Then again, the NHL’s been rewarded for losing for years, so I guess the rule DOES make sense…That comment by Mike Knuble about the Boston Bruins’ decline back in November is really coming back to haunt them now. I say we don’t fire Robbie Ftorek but fire Knuble for being so inconfident…The Hockey News’ “Stat Of The Day”: the Florida Panthers’ unbeaten record when holding a lead. That’s impressive. Really. The hard part for the Panthers, though, is actually getting that lead…Finally, the ESPN readers voted Canucks’ General Manager Brian Burke as the best GM in the NHL. Maybe I shouldn’t be so hard on him now- then again, I’m holing my opinions until the Canucks actually do something in the playoffs.