- 1 year since Lokomotiv tragedy... some horrid details arise
It's a sombre time around the NHL, theres uncertainty about the CBA and today marks the 1 year anniversary of the Russian plane crash that claimed the lives of 45 people including the players from the KHL hockey team Lokomotiv Yaroslavl. It was a Wednesday afternoon when the team boarded their Yak-42 plane, the plane did not leave the runway properly and as a result could not gain altitude while in the air. at 4:05 local Russian time, the plane hit a radio tower and landed in the Volga River. The plane immediately burst into flames and claimed the lives of 43 of the 45 passengers on board. The two survivors of the crash later died in hospital due to their severee burns. Here's a great story on the one year anniversary.
On Thursday evening I was watching SportsNet when they began to talk about the crash and illegallysome details that had emerged from an investigation into the accident. What I heard sent chills down my back. The two pilots flying that Yak-42 plane shouldn't have been in charge. One of the pilots forcified his flying papers while the other had not finished his flying certification. Meaning the two pilots were illegally flying the aircraft. The fact that this horrible tragedy could have been avoided had they had proper pilots is sad. For these two pilots to be allowed to fly with innocent people on bored is just wrong and careless by the KHL and the airport. The darkest day in hockey history just got a little darker.
- 7 days till September 15th deadline
Until Friday morning the NHL and NHLPA had taken a recess from meetings after the league did accept the players latest proposal. But the two sides decided to put their differences aside and met for 2.5 hours on Friday. One can only hope that the two sides meeting for so long can only be positive. The players themselves were not involved in the meetings but are planning on arriving in New York sometime next week. The attempts of the meetings today were to "close the gap" between the two sides.
- Little ball of hate staying in Boston
announced mere minutes ago the Boston Bruins and Brad Marchand have agreed to a 4 year extension worth $18 million that will keep the little ball of hate in Boston through to 2017. The deal will have an annual cap hit of $4.5 million each season. This is a fantastic deal for the Bruins, who keep one of their key character players who along with Milan Lucic plays a true "Boston Bruins" style of hockey. Marchand played a major role in helping the team win the Stanley Cup in 2011.
- Shane Doan staying in the desert?
News broke Thursday evening that Shane Doan has a verbal commitment to resign with the Phoenix Coyotes. Under normal circumstances a verbal agreement would mean next to nothing, but Doan has made it clear his first choice is to stay with the Coyotes.
"We have a deal worked out, that we just want to make sure the team gets signed, and everything gets done, and it gets done before the 15th (of September). ~ Shane Doan
There was little doubt that the Coyotes captain who became a free agent in July would actually leave the desert. To cover all the bases Doan visited with the New York Rangers and Vancouver Canucks (amongst others), but things got interesting when an anonymous Eastern Conference team offered Doan a 4 year deal worth $30 million. Bur it appears to be all for not for teams hoping to land Doan;
"The Coyotes have been more than fair to me in their offer as well. Obviously to pick up your family and move would be difficult. And I've stated to anyone that has ever listened this whole time, my goal is to stay in Phoenix. And until I believe that the team is in that much trouble, then I was going to do everything I could to make it so that I had a chance to stay here."
- Bruins sign Malcolm Subban
The Boston Bruins have signed their top pick from the 2012 draft goaltender Malcolm Subban to a 3-year entry level contract.
- Senators resign Smith
The Ottawa Senators have signed forward Zack Smith 4 year contract extension which will see the young centre make roughly $1.9 million a season.
"It's very exciting. I got a call from my agent two weeks ago saying Ottawa was interested in doing a long-term deal. It's pretty exciting and very flattering that they want me around for another four years. I couldn't be more happy to get the deal done. It's a great ending to the summer."~ Zack Smith
Smith has played 152 career games and has 20 goals and 18 assists during parts of 4 seasons. He's a solid 3rd line centre and should help enhance the Senators offence.
- Avalanche name surprising young star captain
Many including myself expected Matt Duchene to be named the next captain of the Avalanche, but instead the team turned to young rookie Gabriel Landeskog. He made the team as an 18 year old and captured the Calder Trophy as top rookie after a productive season of racking up 52 points and led the team with 22 goals.
"I was a little bit shocked at first. I didn’t expect this at all, especially this early in my career. But I feel like I’m ready for it and this organization feels like I’m ready for it." ~ Gabriel Landeskog
Landeskog becomes the youngest player to be named captain at 19 years and 286 days, beating Penguins captain Sidney Crosby by 11 days. A few eyes were raised by naming him captain with only 1 full season under his belt, but it will give him and the new young core time to grow together.
"It’s something you dream about as a kid, just being a part of an organization like the Avs and getting the honour to put the "C" on with the history that this club has, It's a pretty humbling experience. I’m really excited and I’m looking forward to the challenge."
- Roberto Luongo has a firm destination in mind
The disgraced Vancouver Canucks goalie has once again reiterated the fact he wants to be a Panther;
"[The Panthers] makes sense for myself, for my career and my family. This is a preferred location for obvious reasons. "Obviously, I want to start. That's a given," ~Roberto Luongo
Where Luongo will end up going when dealt from the Canucks is an unknown. It's obvious he can't stay in Vancouver with Cory Schnieder but the Canucks are having a tough time trying to get a team to take his monster contract.
That'll do it for this weeks edition!