Puck Daddy - NHL

Here are your Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.

• Our next End of Decade piece, celebrating the best and worst draft picks of the 2000s, is coming up next.

Boston Bruins enforcer Shawn Thornton(notes) wasn't exactly what you'd call a Phil Kessel(notes) fan during the now-truculent forward's time with the B's: "I don't know if we're better off without him, but I know he wasn't the best fit." [Cameron Frye]

• Does rooting against Phil Kessel and for Toronto Maple Leafs' losses constitute a real rivalry for the Boston Bruins and Leafs fans? [PPP]

• Looks like Kevin Dallman's(notes) going to have company for the Russian Norris Trophy: Former New Jersey Devils defenseman and Hockey Hall of Famer Slava Fetisov is making a KHL comeback at 50 years old for CSKA, the team for which he's also the president. (Can you imagine John Davison suiting up again for the St. Louis Blues?) No word if Omsk is considering signing Wendel Clark as a counteraction. [CP]

• Bucky Gleason writes a hit piece on Alex Ovechkin(notes) after the Washington Capitals star was held scoreless against the Buffalo Sabres. Say what you will about the changes in Ovechkin's image League-wide this season, but the idea that he's booed every time he touches the puck in every NHL arena is a published falsehood. [Buffalo News]

• The Montreal Canadiens avoided a forfeit for using an ineligible player against the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday night, as they failed to notify the League that Ryan White(notes) had been recalled. But Bob McKenzie reports that they won't be able to avoid what could be a six-figure fine. [TSN]

• How much patience does the new regime for the Dallas Stars deserve? [Dallas Stars Blog]

• The Star Ledger asks if Andy Greene(notes) of the New Jersey Devils an all-star defenseman. We'll say "no," but mostly because there isn't an all-star game this season. Whoops. [Star Ledger]

• Quebec's premier reports that NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman believes in "the economic viability of a team in Quebec and the prospect of finding investors." Which is to say that Gary Bettman continues to give out hope to Canadian cities seeking NHL franchises like free candy after the Phoenix mess. [CP]

• Pierre LeBrun presents a plan to create a "baseball winter meetings" for the NHL. "I suggest we gather all 30 NHL front office staffs, player agents and media in a hotel June 29-July 3 and let the fireworks go off baby." Hell, go all the way: Have all the significant unrestricted free agents stand on stage in their underwear while GMs bid on them like a bachelor auction. Put it on the Lifetime network. [ESPN]

• Larry Brooks on the New York Rangers against the Chicago Blackhawks last night: "The Rangers rarely had the puck. When they did, they couldn't keep it. When they lost it, they couldn't retrieve it. The forecheck game did not exist. Toughness in front of Lundqvist was imaginary." [NY Post]

• Good story on Mike Green's(notes) Team Canada prospects, and whether his instant offense can compensate for his defensive lapses. [Washington Times]

• The Anaheim Ducks have stunk this season, but their spirits remain high. Not has high as Jonas Hiller's(notes) goals against average, but high nonetheless. [THN]

• Ottawa Senators center Mike Fisher(notes) is going to carry the Olympic torch. As if his other flame hadn't caused enough seething jealousy ... [Sun Media]

• Puck Buddy Andrew T. sent over this clip of Steve Downie(notes) battling Ryan Stone(notes) in the Tampa Bay Lightning/Edmonton Oilers game last night. Check Downie's feet at around 40 seconds, which earned him an extra tripping minor ... and then check out the beating Stone gives him. You. Do. Not. Trip. Ryan. Stone. [YouTube; and thanks to Puck Buddy Charles for pointing out that the tripping call came before the fight.]

• Jim Kelley believes that coaches take the fall more than players in Philadelphia. Which is to say he apparently doesn't consider goaltenders to be "players." [Sportsnet]

• See, this is why we love Chris Pronger(notes) of the Philadelphia Flyers: Because he took the time to tell John Tavares(notes) to "keep your head up" during a game earlier this season. If only someone had taken that sort of care with previous No. 1 overall picks that may or may not have worn No. 88 in Philadelphia at one time in their careers ... [Lighthouse Hockey]

• Did you know Tavares has tied the Islanders record for consecutive team goals scored by one player?  Did you know he tied a mark set by Bryan Trottier in February 1982? No sir, we didn't. [Josh Q]

Matt Bradley(notes) of the Washington Capitals talks fatherhood. [DC Sports Bog]

• We were worried about this: The Maple Leafs bandwagon slowly begins to roll. [Sports And The City and Local Sports Report]

Dennis Wideman(notes) will be a game-time decision for the Boston Bruins. [NESN]

• The New York Rangers send Matt Gilroy(notes) down to the AHL. Hopefully he was able to pick up his ankles up off the ice in Chicago after Byfuglien broke them for the game-winner last night. [Blueshirt Banter]

Vincent Lecavalier(notes) and Marty St. Louis were reunited again for the Bolts last night. [Raw Charge]

Steven Stamkos(notes) and Ryan Malone(notes) are both day-to-day for the Bolts. [Lightning Strikes]

• Finally, Barstool Sports dug up this bit of auditory hell from 1991. Presenting "Andy Moog Vogue," a Madonna parody which is exactly what you think it is. "C'mon Moog ... let your body move to the music." It's like they're not even trying.

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