NHL News and Notes for Aug 8th

Fleury eyes NHL comeback

Balsillie’s ace in the hole

Nylander: “I think that Edmonton would be fun now. I would like to try that now.”Fleury eyes NHL comeback

Keith Bradford, Calgary Herald

As prospects go, he’s a bit on the small side.

But his hands look decent.

And the kid’s got wheels.

“I’ve skated with him the last couple of days at the rink,” said Calgary Flames tough guy Brian McGrattan. “He looks pretty confident, pretty fast.”

The kid, of course, is Flames legend Theoren Fleury, who is attempting a National Hockey League comeback at the age of 41.

McGrattan, who signed a one-year free agent deal with the Flames earlier this summer, was skating with a couple of other Flames at Westside earlier this week when Fleury showed up, complete with skates and stick.

“We were just doing kind of like a shinny skate and passing the puck around,” said McGrattan. “I was out there shooting the breeze (with him).

“He looks pretty good on the ice.”


Balsillie’s ace in the hole

Stephen Brunt

It isn’t tough to find someone to malign Richard Rodier, chief counsel to Jim Balsillie in his quest to secure an NHL franchise for Hamilton.

He has been described as a “rogue” lawyer, has been blamed in some circles for Balsillie’s failure to make friends among the NHL’s governors, has rubbed people the wrong way, has been accused of leading the billionaire down a quixotic path that can’t possibly end in success.

Some of that is pure NHL propaganda – both sides have been playing the information and disinformation game to the limits – but some of it also comes from those sympathetic to Balsillie’s cause, who are convinced he is the victim of bad advice.

But as this story enters a new and intriguing chapter, with Balsillie’s bid now part of the September auction for the remains of the Phoenix Coyotes, best keep one thing in mind.

Bankruptcy law is Rodier’s world. When it became clear that there was no direct route to NHL ownership for Balsillie – or at least NHL ownership in Hamilton – the entire strategy shifted to finding a club teetering on the brink, to find an owner who had lost faith, who needed to get out and get out fast.


Nylander: “I think that Edmonton would be fun now. I would like to try that now.”

David Staples

Good work over at Japers’ Rink, a Washington Capitals blog, which has a story from Capitals forward Michael Nylander, who has fallen in love with Edmonton all over again.

In July 2007, if you recall, Oilers GM Kevin Lowe thought he had Nylander signed up, only to have Nylander’s wife balk at moving to Alberta. Nylander ended up in Washington, where he has had limited success.

But now that Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau has told Nylander there’s no role for him on the team any longer, Nylander is wistfully recalling past loves and looking for a warm embrace in Edmonton.

“It would have been fun to try Edmonton,” he recently told a Swedish newspaper. “Now, of course, I said no to them before. Instead I chose Washington because we had more friends and knew more people there. And it was perhaps a little better socially. But I would have liked to try Edmonton. I think that it would be fun now. I would like to try that now but it will probably be difficult for them to get me under the salary cap”

Nylander will be 37 in October. He scored nine goals and had 24 assists last season in 72 games, which is about the level of production one would expect from a player of his age and with his background. He was never a superstar, never a player one might expect to have good years past the age of 35.


22 Responses to NHL News and Notes for Aug 8th

  1. Kramer says:

    Great music to make sausages!!!  Time to get up and make sausages!!!!!!!


  2. bbruins37 says:

    ive always liked nylander. good player and he's a guy thats never afraid to speak his mind. i hope an nhl team signs him and he doesnt go to europe


    IMO Europe can have him, like the article states he was never a superstar.  Although I haven't watched him play frequently, or that recently, I remember him being a player that not always showed up.

  4. muckies says:

    LOVE FLEURY – Hope Ottawa signs him, one of the NHL's most underated talents in the history of the game, amazingly talented player AND Maybe the most entertaining player I've ever seen, besides Mario, Hasek  or Wayne.

  5. leafy says:

    Here's why Bettman is a total prick. A major problem is the media. They are run by chicken shits.

    Even seasoned veteran interviewers like Ron MacLean and tough as nails Don Cherry are afraid of Bettman.

    If I interviewed Bettman, the first thing I'd ask him is, define "good character".  That seems to be the prevailing theme on why Bettman doesn't want Balsillie to own a team.

    According to Wikipedia's site, Balsillie has donated millions of dollars to charities.  What the f*** has Bettman donated?  What has he done to help other people, apart from lying constantly and acting like a complete asshole?

    Typical f**king bastard lawyer.

  6. blaze says:

    If I didn't love the NHL Center Ice package so much I'd cancel it out of spite just because of that arrogant midget.

  7. leafy says:

    Me too. We obviously buy the package because we love the game, not because of that little prick.

  8. leafy says:

    Many of the younger fans didn't watch Fleury in his prime and probably don't realize how good he really was.  In his earlier years in Calgary, he was pure dynamite.

    I still remember that OT goal he scored on Edmonton where he slid all the way across the ice after scoring.

  9. leafy says:

    What do Leaf fans think about Stormin' Norman Rumack getting fired by The Fan 590?

    I used to listen to him a lot in the mid 90's when he was very entertaining with his "hammerhead alerts", but I haven't heard him in quite a while.
    Anybody know why he got canned?  Did his act grow thin?

  10. alpalstewart says:

    as a die hard oilers fan i say pass on nylander he had his chance to be an oiler. just because no one wants him anymore he thinks the oilers are still interested, the only way i can see him becoming an oiler is if he accepts a 1 million dollor deal which he wont so i say cya in the khl nylander. the oilers will try hard to get a superstar on the team and if not then we do the same thing as last year and hope for a diamond in the ruff. the oilers should try to make a deal with philly for simone gagne

  11. nordiques100 says:

    budget cutbacks. i think for latenight programming the fan is going with simulcast stuff like from espn radio.

  12. nordiques100 says:

    don't think he has the juice to play at the NHL level anymore.

    but, if claude lemieux gave it another crack, i am sure some team will bring fleury in. lets hope he's clean.

    dunno if bettman will reinstate.

  13. mojo19 says:

    100+ point man in his prime.

    Although he's been away from the game for a while

  14. beckfan05 says:

    He is a *****ing dick. And for so many reasons and now he adds another to a looooong resume of dickness.

    I mean seriously, heres a guy who is passionate about the sport of hockey and wants to purchase a team and bring it back to where more teams belong, Canada.

    But Mr. Queens NY wants to hoard as many teams as possible to the States and has all of his ***** puppet owners behind him. I dont understand it!

    Bettman hates Canada and it shows more and more each passing year.

    He'd rather put a team in Las Vegas or *****ing New Mexico before he puts a team back up north.

  15. the_word says:

    I'm at the point where I'm annoyed with the constant scapegoating of Bettman. He's not acting on a personal agenda against Canada rather his actions reflect the will of members of the league he represents. He has to play the role of a diplomat and speak in lawyer talk, its his job.

    Balsillie's philanthropy should be expected from a billionaire however I assure you Balsillie is no friend of the proletarian working man.

  16. JannettyTheRocker says:

    You know what Michael Nylander, SCREW YOU!!! I really don't care anymore that you turned down the Oilers in the first place, to each their own. But the fact that you let this drag on for so long letting people think that you were pulling a Pronger, and that Edmonton was such a horrible place to play. You could have been honest from the start when you decided to go to Washington, and not let the city of Edmonton get thrown under the bus again……..Michael Nylander, you are NOT welcome in Edmonton. You can go burn in hell w/Chris Pronger, Dany Heatley, and Mike Comrie.

    GO OILERS GO!!!!

  17. muckies says:

    I hope Oiler nation boo's Heatley hard when he comes, he deserves it big big big time. Especially the fans in Edmonton, they are so well respected league wide if they give it to Heatley, he'll never ever be thought of as anything but a turd for the rest of his career. They hate him in Atlanta, Edmonton, and half of Ottawa, and when he gets traded all of Ottawa.  

  18. JustYouW8 says:

    Off topic, but TSN is reporting that a deal is in place to send Justin Pogge to the Anaheim Ducks for a conditional late round draft pick, which could improve based on his performance.. The Leafs also signed G Joey MacDonald who played with the New York Islanders last year.
    Myself, I would've like to have seen Pogge get a chance to work with Allaire for a year and see if he can improve.. He is still young. If this turns out to be true, best of luck in Anaheim.

  19. leafy says:

    Word, are you Bettman's cousin or something?

  20. leafy says:

    Its' the end of an era. I remember Norm when he first started on the fan on the "Richards and Rumack" show…around the time when the Jays won their first World Series.  But his late night show in the mid 90's was hilarious.

  21. leafy says:

    I couldn't agree more. None of Bettman's ideas make any sense whatsoever.  Plus he's totally f**ked up the league with now 30 teams and counting.

    We need to remember, he's a bloody lawyer.  Not very nice people, I've dealt with them, believe you me.

  22. leafy says:

    Fleury, Niewendyk and Roberts along with MacInnis ruled Calgary in the early 90's.  They probably should have won more than one cup.  Then when they traded MacInnis in '94, everybody started leaving and they weren't the same again until 2004.

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