The Next Russian Rocket, More Teams to Make the NHL? Possible Trades.

Find out who the next Russian Rocket will be, and more teams to make the post-season?It’s incredible how young teams go from being the top worst to being a tough team to beat.

The Atlanta Thrashers remain unbeaten in their start of the season, something that was considered a long shot some few years ago. With Hartley stepping in as the much better coach, the Thrashers look completely different, and the unfortunate event of Heatley and the loss of Dan Snyder hasn’t stopped this team from playing good and smart hockey.

Though not scoring a goal in last night’s game against the Rangers, Ilya Kovalchuk shows signs of future dominance with his offensive abilities. Signs that deserve to give him the title Russian Rocket.

What I see is a mixed breed of an Alexei Yashin and Pavel Bure. With blazing speed of Pavel Bure, the rocket slap shot of Pavel Bure, the bigger size and strength of Alexei Yashin, the skating abilitites of Alexei Yashin, and the wristers of Alexei Yashin.

Without Heatley, Kovalchuk still performs to his greatest level as coach Bob Hartley uses him as the primary offensive weapon, a Russian Rocket.

In my next section there are a few teams that have surprised me that show signs of possibly making the playoffs.

The first one being the Atlanta Thrashers. They follow Hartley’s strategies, and they perfectly execute them. Pasi Nurminen has completely taken the starting job from Byron Dafoe, and by the way…where is Jani Hurme? Await a trade to happen with Waddel holding a nice valuable goalie.

As of now, the Thrashers could make the playoffs and make things harder for division rivals Forida Panthers and Washington Capitals.

The Columbus Blue Jackets have been quite a surprise to this season. They are a fast defensive team, but smart offensively. Need I say that Marc Denis is stellar? Of course not, I praised him in one of my previous article last year. He’ll be an underrated goalie in the next couple of years, but his name will definitely be on top goalie rankings.

A message to Martin Brodeur: “After showing your pathetic level of class when calling J-S Giguere’s performance in last year’s playoffs “average” and after Patrick Roy announced his retirement, you claimed the “best goalie of the NHL title”. Don’t think it will last a life time Marty, younger goalies on teams whose defensive systems don’t make the defensemen and goalies are starting to climb up….

The LA Kings have Jason Allison and Adam Deadmarsh injured, yet they still get wins. Cechmanek has been quite good, but I see the same Cechmanek that allows soft goals that high school goalies make saves on. Though I think the monarchy won’t last in the NHL (has it ever in history?), the Kings are surprising the ones who said they’d be at the bottom of the pit.

Possible trades?

One, Mike Comrie has got to go. He has terminated his stay in Edmonton and there are teams looking to acquire him. Alien-like Bruce Garrioch believes that the Rangers are the front runners. While it may be true, it’s quite obvious that fat Garrioch and his ant-size brain cought that the Rangers would be the front-runners because GM Glen Sather and GM Kevyn Lowe have a good trading relationship, and because Glen Sather drafted Comrie.

It makes no sense to see Comrie going to the Rangers, unless the Rangers play him as a winger. Who would go the other way? You can count on Jamie Lundmark as part of it and maybe Dale Purinton. Detroit could definitely give it a shot, to land the smallish centre, but I am quite clueless as to who would go the other way, Dandelnaut may be part of the deal.

That leads me to think that there is a small chance of a three way deal taking place with the Oilers, Wings, and Capitals. The Capitals have that beautiful lockerroom atmosphere that says “Any veteran that makes over a million is up for sale”. Wow, so positive!

The deal could have the Red Wings acquiring Robert Lang, the Capitals acquiring Mike Comrie, and the Oilers acquiring X amount of value from the other two parties.

One of the nicest pick-ups in the waiver draft was Sheldon Keefe, who is a mix of Matthew Barnaby and Darcy Tucker. Apparently, the Rangers are looking to make a trade, as they also picked up Joel Bouchard. Matthew Barnaby has not played the way he did last season. No, I am not talking about points on the score sheet, I am talking about his style of play…his annoyance, pesty, asking for a beating performance on the ice is absent, and therfore….Barnaby could be on his way out of New York, which would lead to Sheldon Keefe replacing Barnaby, perfect move. Barnaby goes where? Who knows….we shall see.


25 Responses to The Next Russian Rocket, More Teams to Make the NHL? Possible Trades.

  1. Donovan says:

    First off, I’d like to say that I hate the Yankees!

    The title scared me for a minute, I thought that more teams were joining the NHL. I do think that some new teams have a shot a making the playoffs this year.

    Kovalchuk may be the next Russian Rocket, but can this kid carry the team alone? I doubt it. Despite the surronding players, this team needs a real leader to step up while Heatley is gone.

    I like Comrie in Detroit. He’d be like a good version of Draper. The three-way trade seems a little more likely though, but who knows with the Caps.

    Dallas’s new jerseys seem a little wierd to me, but they’re ok I guess. I like the logo, but the stripes are the wrong color. Minnesota look stupid. They look like a sweat-shirt, but I like simple looks, and its a improvement I think. Its definatley the best third jersey to debut this year.

    I hate the Yankees. I hate the Sox too, but I really hate the Yankees!

  2. mikster says:

    Have Bure and Kovalchuk ever led their teams? Hehe……

    Comrie in Detroit, i agree…..it’s the best fit for him.

    I like the Stars 3rd jersey, ain’t bad. Stands out for Texas, and the stars in the eyes are a good touch.

    Minnesota’s…..looks like an artist with no personality designed that one………yuck.

  3. Donovan says:

    Yeah I like the Wild colors, but the logo is just too abstract. It should be like a the Timber-wolves or something a little cooler.

    Check your PM’s, theres a question

  4. TC_4 says:

    First of all, THE YANKEES CAN GO TO HELL AND BURN, I HATE THEM!!! Cubs v Sox, who didn’t want that??? I could cry. Anyways, what’s all this talk about Dadeneault for??? I think we’ll get more for Comrie then him. Look for a Steven Weiss deal with Florida. The Oilers have always loved this kid. Comrie is more gritty, Weiss may have a little more skill. It’s like trading a potential Doug Gilmour(Comrie)for a potential Joe Sakic(Weiss). Sounds pretty good to me. Comrie could get the Panthers to the playoffs, and imediatly give them a really good 1-2 punch up the middle. Another possiblity is Comrie, packaged with maybe Rita, or Horcoff(I hope), or Salmelanian for a centre, and a top 4 d-man. We need another d-man. How about Comrie, Ferguson, and Rita for Weiss and Boumeester(just kidding), seriously for Weiss, Van Ryn, and a pick. One more Comrie deal, same package to Phoenix for Langkow and Vaananen

  5. Doppelganger says:

    Who cares about the Red Sox and Cubs? The Tigers are the team to beat. Anyways, Kovalchuk is the next “Russian hockey machine” but I hope he doesn’t pull a Bure and be out of hockey by his early 30s. I have a problem with how they are playing Kovalchuk though. With Heatley out, they are playing him on the point of the power play. He has scored one from there but he has had X amount of shots. They should put him back in the corners where he was last year and see if their power play improves (they only have one ppg so far) If not, then put him back it cant hurt. Also, everyone seems to be going out of their way to pass to him and it is causing them to miss scoring chances.

  6. RangerSteve says:

    1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918 1918….think I made my point…sorry guys…St. John’s University in Queens is goin nuts, NYPD called…the Curse Lives!…back to hockey…

  7. DaMick says:

    the curses live…. and will for my lifetime.

    nuff said

    Yankees rule.

    DaMick

  8. Kashin says:

    I remember when they said that Oleg Kvasha was “Baby Bure” dubbed by Mike Milbury. Now we can officially just call him a baby.

    Yankees are going down.

  9. Gforce says:

    your rangers still suck..jeter swallows..

  10. goodfela26 says:

    Yankees almost blew it with their $180 million dollar payroll.

    It would’ve been better to have Boston beat them last night in NY, but I’m gonna laugh if Florida wins the Series.

    If they lose, baseball is going to be in it’s worst state next year. I only say that b/c Steinbrenner will have his payroll skyrocket over $200 million when he signs many of the biggest free agents.

    The Yankees may be winning championships, but if they don’t implement a salary cap soon, baseball will be no more.

    Anyway, back to hockey…Nice article Mik.

  11. mikster says:

    Yanks kick ass, Sox should be put in the washer.

    Dandeneault is just part of the deal, he’ll be one of the players going to Edmonton.

    There’s no chance that Florida will get Comrie by trading Weiss. Florida is sticking with what they’ve got, which is a scary bunch of young players.

    Phoenix won’t trade Langkow at all.

  12. devfanman4 says:

    I guess Brodeur has to be the most hated goalie now that Roy is gone. That’s appropriate I guess. I don’t know where you got that Brodeur comment on Giguere, but if that’s true then maybe Brodeur really is taking over Roy’s position in the NHL. Maybe he’ll be fighting Osgood when the Blues come to town.

    All kidding aside, Brodeur is the best goalie in the league now. He will prove that because the Devils’ defense isn’t as good this year as it’s been since he took over between the pipes for the Devils. And when Stevens retires, it will really look bad compared to the past 10 years. And he’ll still beat alot of Roy’s records.

    As for the new wave of goalies…Giguere and Turco aren’t looking too great right now considering they both were given huge contracts during the offseason. I like Aebischer, Denis, Luongo, and Nurminen though. Those guys are here to stay.

  13. devilsadvocate says:

    If you knew how to read, you would know that Broduer was referring to Jiggy’s play in the finals, and not the entire playoffs when he said he played “average”. Get your facts straight.

  14. 24cups says:

    The Panthers won’t never be able to be in the playoffs this year even with Comrie in the line up!!!

    Sox shouldn’t have traded the great bambino to the yankees!!! Go Yankees = 20$!!!

  15. 24cups says:

    Nick Kypreos (sportsnet) said that Pavel Bure is not a future Hall of Famer!!! Is that possible? I mean he scored a lot goals and spectacular too, and he had a pretty good influence on hockey(the way of playing not the way of dealing contracts)!!!

    I think there’s gonna be a couple of Russian Rockets in the years to come, i forgot his name, Ovechkin?, he’s playing in Russia and will be the 1st nhl entry draft in 2004. Anyway Kolvachuk is amazing and could be the next russian rocket too.

  16. 24cups says:

    Theodore is doing pretty good right now, allowed 2 goals in 3 games, sounds like the same Theo as two years ago!!!

  17. devfanman4 says:

    I forgot about Theodore…sorry. He’s doing good. I know it’s early, but it’s nice to see the Blue Jackets, Thrashers, and Panthers doing well. Maybe we’ll see a big change in the dominant teams as soon as this year?

  18. ranger_fan says:

    I say that Alexander Ovechkin will be the next Russian Rocket. No doubt that Ilya will be great, but I think this kid will be better.

  19. mikster says:

    Stan Fischler’s Bluelines column had that three weeks ago, a straight quote from Marty. It’s definitely true!

    The system overrates the defensemen and goalies for the Devs. I love Paul Martin, he’ll make Raflaski expandable, and David Hale will remind you of Stevens in the near future.

    I know Brdoeur has awesome talents and is the best goalie in the league right now, but it won’t last that long, i’ll even bet my money on it.

    New wave of goalies, i never mentioned Giguere or Turco being the next. Denis, Nurminen and Luongo i mentioned, but Nurminen is too old. He may be the next Hasek type European dominant goalie, but i don’t see a big chance of that happening.

    Luongo, Denis, Theodore, and Aerbischer will be tops in the future. Luongo leading the way.

  20. mikster says:

    If you knew how to be an………… you’d reply like that, which you did…copngrats!

    But yes, you’re right and what does that change though? I don’t think Giguere’s play was average in the Finals. A minor change of fact doesn’t change Brodeur’s level of class….

    devil’s advocate, you sure don’t sound like one!

  21. Kraftster says:

    Come on, everyone needs to get over Aebischer for a while here until he proves ANYTHING….which he hasn’t yet.

  22. mikster says:

    Ovechkin is not like Kovalchukk though. I think he’ll be much better all-round offensive player, but Russia Rocket means that you’re fast and Bure-like. Ovechkin is more like…’let me see if i can make a fancy play for a pass’.

    Good call though.

    If Cam Neely is debatable of making the Hall of Fame, then Bure is a must.

  23. TC_4 says:

    Why wouldn’t Phoenix do that deal mik??? Because they don’t want a player who’s putting up the same numbers, the same size, and is younger. Yeah, never!

  24. TC_4 says:

    Yeah mik, he was average in the finals. Well, not average, but you got to remember that he set his standards pretty high with what he did in the first two rounds.

  25. TC_4 says:

    If hate Brodeur because he’s good, that ridiculous. I hated Roy because the guy was the biggest jack ass ever! I’ve heard so many bad stories from reporters and what not about this guy, it’s just insane. Brodeur is one the the NHL’s nicest guys, why hate him? He’s pheonominal!

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