How Each PacDiv Team Responded to the Trade Deadline

First of all, yes, PacDiv is a portmanteau of Pacific Division. That’s what you call a demonstration of creative license.

This was the most boring deadline in NHL history without a doubt. The largest name to move, Boedker, was a 2nd liner who is more well known for being a disappointing top draft pick than anything else, and being the first Dane to make a difference doing something other than being a complete dumbass like Jannik Hansen.

Without any further ado, here is a short description of each team’s deadline day moves:

  1. Los Angeles Kings added Kris Versteeg, Rob Scuderi and traded away prospect Valentin Zykov as well as Christian Ehrhoff. A little underwhelming – ┬áChicago added more.
  2. Anaheim Ducks added Brandon Pirri and Martin Gernat and lose Pat Maroon. Dumpster diving Bob Murray can’t help himself.
  3. San Jose did jack, though a week or so earlier they added Polak, Spaling and Reimer for Stalock, Ben Smith, Raffi Torres (who was promptly loaned back to the San Jose AHL team, and then announced he was not going to play the rest of the season. Good riddance.) and a pair of 2nd round picks. Why did the Sharks add Reimer? Do they not have faith in Martin Jones? This is looking like the last ride out for the Sharks team.
  4. Vancouver also did jack. A few weeks earlier they traded vaunted scoring prospect Hunter Shinkaruk for Granlund – Markus, not Mikael. Rumor has it that ownership nixed a Hamhuis deal to Dallas. After being both one of the dirtiest and one of the diving-est teams, with an extremely arrogant fanbase, I feel little pity for the team’s current plight.
  5. Arizona traded Boedker for Tanguay, Bleakley (former first round pick) and Wood (they needed to get longest road). It’s funny – Boedker is a talented player, but also a notorious underperformer despite his speed – and fans seem to be almost relieved when they get rid of such a player (thinking of Bobby Ryan, Teddy Purcell).
  6. Calgary Flames lose Hudler, Russell and Jones and get back 2 2nd round picks, 4th round pick, Jokipakka and Nick Backstrom’s LTIR salary. Welcome to the cap era, starring Chris Pronger as the second active hall of famer to hit the ice.
  7. Edmonton Oilers deal Gernat for Maroon, Purcell to Florida for a 3rd, and Schultz to Pittsburgh for a 3rd. I guess they are starting to clean out the garbage.

So who won? In terms of moves that align with the strategy of the team going forward, Edmonton and Arizona are the clear winners in my eyes. Edmonton got rid of worthless skilled players and got draft picks, which should be used to acquire some blue-collar veterans to support their stars (I do think Chiarelli is different from the previous stooges). Arizona wins by default for actually making a big trade. Not only do they get a 1st round prospect, but they also get Tanguay’s likely backloaded contract, which helps their financial situation.

The losers were the fans. This deadline was hyped up so much, and yet there were probably less than 4 significant trades this year.

How Each PacDiv Team Responded to the Trade Deadline

The night the NHL refs broke

In two games, today, in the NHL, the refereeing system broke down.

In one game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Winnipeg Jets, Anton Stralman threw a questionable hit to the head on Jets semi-star Bryan Little.

After the hit, Paul Maurice was furious at the fact that a two minute minor penalty was the only call assessed on Stralman. So furious that a staring match ensued at the end of the period. This culminated in Maurice stepping out onto the bench to land a swear-laden tirade at the refs, a tirade that cost Maurice the third period. He was dismissed from the game by the referee, who later smirked at the utilization of his well, unique, powers.

Incident number two – the St. Louis Blues take on the Los Angeles Kings. For this kind of game between two rough and tumble teams, with a rivalry no less, you would expect that the referees would swallow the whistles and let the men compete. Instead Francis Charron calls a series of phantom calls in the first period, and then misses egregious penalties and subsequently calls phantom calls to make up for it.

You couldn’t help but feel that the referee was, if not determining the winner, certainly determining the course of the game.

As for the game between the Jets and the Lightning, the absence of Maurice seemed not to deter their 4-goal comeback to tie the game. Certainly this shows that the refs’ influence on the game, when negative, is not just about handicapping one team or another. The actions of the referee simply change the complexion of the game entirely.

Referees should be in the game to call the most egregious penalties and ensure the safety of the players, not necessarily in that order. They should not change a game. Tonight, the referees in the games at St. Louis and Tampa Bay respectively confused the players with respect to what would be penalized and what would not, and failed to protect players in the course of the game by enforcing the NHL’s policy against collisions to the head.

If you want to follow the referees night over night, please check this link below which gives a detailed summary of what games the referees are playing in and how they rank in terms of penalties called.

The night the NHL refs broke

The Battle of the Reddit Rangers-Kings GDT – a Decisive 3-flag Victory

When I first sat down to create this blog with my co-writer, I was very positive and encouraged him to write whatever he wanted, despite protestations that he wanted this blog to stay my own. I only gave him one restriction which I told him plainly: he could not write any fluff. I am going to break that rule today.


The Battle of the Reddit Rangers-Kings GDT – a Decisive 3-flag Victory

Is the NHL All-Star Game Real Content or is it just Marketing?

This is the essential argument that the question of the NHL all-star game boils down to. One side would say that the game itself has entertainment value because it is a collection of the league’s best players doing goofy stuff, playing a game and having various skill-based competitions. The other side would say that since the players are at such a low gear, the product is so disconnected from hockey, it isn’t really a game at all. It only exists to remind us of the stars we don’t see and to promote the brand of hockey, to encourage us to be even more enmeshed in the sport than before.

The NHL game itself might be controversial with regards to its entertainment value but there is no doubt that hockey as played is a product and not a marketing ploy. Increasingly people are seeing entertainment from not just the 60 or so minutes of play but also from the interviews, media coverage and various other forms of coverage that the players receive.

The NHL all-star game is another entertainment product but it largely ditches the NHL game to present the personalities as the main product. Everyone knows that the most entertaining part of the games in recent history was the all-star draft rather than what the draft was for. And everyone knows that the most entertaining part of this year’s product was the on-ice antics during the skills competition and the controversy with regards to John Scott.

A 60-minute competition of adult men playing a game is no longer the most relevant entertainment component of the sport. In fact it is increasingly falling into the background. People are deriving entertainment from imposing their respective backgrounds on the sport. Quantitative analysts love seeing the fancy stats, managers love to think about the game from the perspective of the GM, gossips and socialites love the banality of a player’s melodramatic life: these are all examples of the transformation of hockey from an entertaining game into a platform for other types of distraction.

The best example of this is an artistically minded person I frequently watched hockey with. It turned out that he as most fascinated by the aesthetics of the jerseys and mask designs.

It seems that maybe 60 or more percent of the all-star game is a misguided advertising platform for country musicians. What the critical fan should know is that watching Burns wear a Chewbacca costume and let his son shoot the puck for him, or watching Gaudreau with a burning stick, these are now the real sources of entertainment.

Is the NHL All-Star Game Real Content or is it just Marketing?

Don’t Let Rules Stand in the Way of the Game

Tonight the Flyers scored on a play that may or may not have been offside. We don’t really know for sure because the refs ruled that it was inconclusive enough to justify not calling it as a violation of the offside rule.

The offside call was not designed to disrupt borderline plays like this one.

Another example I want to bring up is the Cogliano no-goal that went off his skate.

I understand that it is a technical violation of the rule, but can’t we be cool with a little grey area? Chaos is a major part of hockey, and every good NHL play has an element of chaos to it.

Some people let a “by the book” approach to hockey stand in the way of appreciating hockey. Refs should not determine the game, they should only make calls when they absolutely have to.

Don’t Let Rules Stand in the Way of the Game