ON THE BUZZER Sports Blog

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NHL Goes Outdoors

winterclassicarena_thumb.gifFor only the second time in the history of the NHL, a regular season game was played outdoors, in the snow! The Buffalo Sabres hosted the Pittsburgh Penguins in what is now known as the NHL winter classic in Ralph Wilson Stadium. Sid the kid helped the Penguins to victory with a game winning shoot-out goal, sending the majority of the record setting 71,000 fans home disappointed. As the snow continued to fall, it became harder and harder for the players to see the puck, making stick handling a challenge as well. However, the fans weren’t the only ones who would love to see the NHL do this again. All the players seemed to have enjoyed themselves, reminding them of the ‘good old days’, as most NHL players started their careers playing outdoors on ponds, parks, backyards, etc. Should the league do this every year? Judging by the turnout, it seems like it’s a can’t miss!

January 4, 2008 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chris Simon… Doing What He Does Best

simon.jpgChris Simon is at it again. He has been setting NHL records for years now and no one has come close to touching them. Unfortunately for him and the NHL, they are not records you actually would want to have. New York Islanders forward was banned for 30 games Wednesday, drawing the longest suspension in NHL history again. Just last March, Simon was suspended for 25 games, resulting from his two-handed stick attack to the face of New York Rangers forward Ryan Hollweg. This time you ask? Oh, nothing big. He only stepped on Pittsburgh’s Jarkko Ruutu with his skate during a game last weekend. I mean is this guy mentally ill or what? Apparently the NHL and his team think so. Along with the suspension, Simon must seek counseling as he waits for his reinstatement back into the league. Hey, I know this guy is a nuisance in the league, but aren’t we all safer as fans if this guy plays and is not kept out of the game? Remind me to leave the country when he decides to retire.

December 24, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Canadiens Retire Robinson’s Number

robinson1.jpgA six-time Stanley Cup champion in 17 seasons with the Canadiens from 1972-89, Larry Robinson had his number 19 retired by the Montreal Canadiens. “Big Bird” won the Norris Trophy as the league’s best defenseman twice and also led the Los Angeles Kings to their one and only Stanley Cup Finals appearance. Robinson won the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP in 1977 after recording a plus-120 during the 1976-77, the second best single season plus-minus mark in league history. The ceremony began with video tributes from Wayne Gretzky, Ken Dryden, current Canadiens coach Guy Carbonneau, and Dave Schultz. He was a hard hitting and physical defensemen on the ice, but was known as a teddy bear and a gentlemen off of it. Congrats to one of the biggest icons in NHL history. Robinson, currently an assistant coach with the New Jersey Devils, becomes the 13th player to have his number retired by the Canadiens.

November 27, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Brodeur Wins 500th

brodeur.jpgMartin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils wins his 500th career game against the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday, becoming the second player in NHL history to do so. Brodeur reached one of hockey’s rarest milestones, joining Patrick Roy as the only two goalies to have ever reached that number. He is now 500-273-105-15. To put things in perspective, the closest active goalie to 500 wins is Dominik Hasek of the Red Wings… He is 133 wins away! Brodeur has spent his entire 14 seasons with the Devils and has led the franchise to three Stanley Cup titles. The 35-year-old on pace to pass Roy on the career win list (551) at some point next season.

November 27, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Avery In Trouble Again

avery.jpgIt seems it doesn’t matter who he plays for, but the Rangers’ Sean Avery always finds a way to get himself into trouble. Unfortunately for him, his mouth moves faster than his legs. In the news again, Avery is being accused of making cancer related comments to ill Maple Leafs forward Jason Blake before a pre-game altercation between the clubs last weekend. Of course, Avery in a statement denied any of it, stating “I am extremely upset and hurt that false and damaging comments were attributed to me regarding Jason Blake. I made no such comments. I have lost two grandfathers to cancer and have been a consistent contributor to multiple cancer-related charities, first and foremost, Hockey Fights Cancer.” Avery exchanged words with Blake and his Toronto teammate Darcy Tucker during warm-ups before New York’s 3-2 shootout victory over the Maple Leafs. Frankly, I am sick and tired of this guy. It seems wherever this guy is there is smoke and where there’s smoke there’s fire.  In the past, he has been reprimanded by the league for making derogatory comments about French-Canadiens and African-Americans and it seems he is always jawing at someone during each and every game. The league has no place for an idiot like this and it’s about time they really put their foot down! Kick this bitch out of the league!

November 17, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Wings Seeing Red

redwings.jpgIt’s been a rough week for one of the top teams in the NHL. After losing to the Blues 4-3, The Detroit Red Wings were stranded in St. Louis after their plane was stuck in mud! As the plane was being taxied, it accidentally slipped of the pavement and into the grass, causing hours of delays and resulting in the team to return to their hotel in St. Louis. Couple that with 2 losses and this is a week the Red Wings would soon rather forget. No one was injured during the incident and now Detroit will look to turn things around against the Blackhawks in Detroit on Saturday.

November 17, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Modano Sets U.S. Record

modano.jpgDallas Star’s center Mike Modano broke Phil Housley’s NHL record for career points by an American-born player with two goals against the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday night. Modano’s back-to-back goals, including a short-handed record-breaker, in the first 4:24 gave him 1,233 points in 1,253 regular-season games, 242 games fewer than Housley played. The 37-year old six time all-star Michigan native has spent his entire career with the Stars, first in Minnesota and now Dallas. He is the franchise’s career leader in goals, assists, points, games played, game-winning goals, power-play goals and short-handed goals.

He moves into 35th place on the NHL’s career scoring list and is trailing Peter Stastny by six points. It should also be mentioned that Mike is one of the classiest players of all time. He was awarded the NHL Good Guy Award from the Sporting News in 2004. And he is as good of a person off the ice as he is on. In the summer of 2000, he established the Mike Modano Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to raising money to improve the quality of life and assist underprivileged children in the Dallas area. Congrats on a great accomplishment Mike… couldn’t have happened to a better guy!

 

November 8, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Sen-Sational!

senators.jpgWith an impressive 8 win – 1 loss start to the NHL season, the Ottawa Senators are making a strong case that they very well might be the best team in the league. The have jumped into first place in the Northeast Division, already leading the second place Boston Bruins by 6 points. Dany Heatley leads the team with 7 goals, while Jason Spezza and Daniel Alfredsson continue their strong play. Spezza leads the team with 11 assists and Alfredsson leads the team in shots with 36. Martin Gerber has been fantastic between the pipes, leading them with 6 wins and a very impressive 0.936 save percentage. Hold on though Sens fans… haven’t we seen this before? A great regular season, only to be overshadowed by a bad post season? I don’t know about you guys, but unless they bring home the Stanley Cup, it will be considered another year of underachieving and one more year of disappointment for the fans.

October 24, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Another Flyer Suspended

boulerice1.jpgPhiladelphia Flyers forward Jesse Boulerice was suspended 25 games by the NHL on Friday for cross checking Vancouver’s Ryan Kesler across the face with his stick, making the suspension the longest in league history. It was a vicious and despicable act and frankly, the NHL has no room for this kind of behavior. The suspension was handed down by NHL disciplinarian Colin Campbell after a hearing in Toronto. I am all for physical play, but don’t cheap shot someone when they are not looking and risk a career ending injury. That’s cowardly. Luckily for Kesler, he was OK and back on the ice. Bravo to Campbell and his decision and as far as Boulerice, he will forfeit $63,502.75 in salary and will be eligible to return December 13 against Montreal.

October 18, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Head Thrasher Thrashed!

hartley.jpgNot a good time to be an Atlanta sports fan. My condolences to my colleague Romik, but the Hawks stink, the Braves didn’t make the playoffs for the first time in I think 50 years, the Falcons are bad, getting worse… and now this. The NHL’s Thrashers are off to their worst start in franchise history, losing their first six games of the year, while being the only team in the league without a win. Sounds to me like that’s good enough to can their head coach. Bob Hartley, in his 5th season with Atlanta, was let go and general manager Don Waddell had this to say, “we felt after six games the direction we were going was not the direction we wanted to go.” Really? You mean starting the year 0-6 is not part of a master plan on your team winning Lord Stanley’s Cup? Well coach, at least you can move on to a real sports city…

October 18, 2007 Posted by | Eddie, NHL HOCKEY | , , , , , | 3 Comments