Tag Archives: NHL

NHL Player-Safety Words Ring Hollow In Light of NFL Bounty Punishment

By Jason Menard

Hey NHL! Your current commissioner was plucked from one of the other Big Four sports, so in the interest of protecting your players, is there any chance of history repeating itself and maybe importing the NFL’s Roger Goodell?

The reason? Instead of merely paying lip service to protecting players, Goodell’s words carry even more weight in light of the unprecedented penalties levied against the New Orleans Saints for its actions in creating – or inaction in preventing – a bounty program. Continue reading

Winning Isn’t Everything. In Today’s Sports it Amounts to Very Little

By Jason Menard

“Winning isn’t everything. It’s the only thing.” – Vince Lombardi.

“… I’m not sure people want to see a team at home that has a 9-0 record but the average score is 12-7. I think they’d much rather see us .500 at home with an average score of 38-34.” – Chris Rudge, executive chairman and CEO of the Toronto Argonauts. Continue reading

Habs’ Language Issue Puts a Bad Taste in Fans’ Mouths

By Jason Menard

Randy Cunneyworth may be a great coach one day. If he does become one, it won’t be with the Habs, as the organization seems to have admitted that language is more important than winning. If that remains the case, the league’s most-decorated franchise may have to wait another 20 years before etching its name on the Stanley Cup – and the sullying of la Sainte-Flanelle, a once-proud uniform, will be complete.

Cunneyworth was named the Montreal Canadiens’ head coach following the Dec. 17th firing of Jacques Martin. And ever since that date, the merde has hit the fan. Continue reading

Waning Interest in Watching Bloodsport 5: The NHL

By Jason Menard

I have a confession to make – I like the film Bloodsport. I know it’s cheesy, campy, and poorly acted, but it also takes me back to a time when I was 15 and still heavily involved in karate. I thoroughly enjoyed the file despite its violence, gore, and cracking bones, because I was strongly aware of the fact that it was fantasy.

But there appears to be another sequel on the market – the NHL – and while Jean Claude Van Damme could head back to his trailer after the director said cut, wipe off the stage blood, and get on with his life, the actors in this modern production have no such luxury. Continue reading

Opportunity is Now for NHL to Embrace its History; Spark Bright Future

By Jason Menard

With its new realignment plans, the NHL has passed its geography test. But while the A-B-C-Ds of the conference format may satisfy the grammarians out there, if the NHL makes the smart move to embrace its history, not only will they pass the exercise with flying colours, but NHL commissioner Gary Bettman would come out of this with honours. Continue reading

Time, Innovation, Not Rule Changes All NHL Needs

By Jason Menard

Guy Boucher’s 1-3-1 system isn’t just putting the freeze on opposition offense – it’s blazing through a copy-cat league and making some general managers’ blood boil. But instead of taking a torch to the rulebook, the NHL must ensure that cooler heads prevail because – like all defensive innovations – it’s just a matter of time until the pendulum swings the other way.

The system, which sees one forward enter into a mild forecheck, backed up by three players across the neutral zone, and one defenseman playing a deep-centre-field/safety style of defense, is gaining popularity because it works. Continue reading

Kuhnhackl Suspension Proves Stars Play By Same Rules; NHL Must Follow

By Jason Menard

Tom Kuhnhackl’s 20-game suspension couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

I mean that wholeheartedly and it’s reflective of a positive change in the Ontario Hockey League that holds everyone – stars and goons alike – accountable for their actions when it comes to head shots.

Minor leagues have often been the proving ground for changes that find their way to the big leagues. One can only hope that OHL commissioner David Branch’s hard-line on head shots will find its way to the NHL sooner rather than later. Continue reading