Once again, the power and influence of Hockey as the Official religion Sport of Canada was evidenced today with the round-the-clock and website coverage TSN.ca is giving to the selection process of the roster of the Canadian juniors. These teenagers on skates will stand on guard for their native land in the World Junior Championships to be played in Regina and Saskatoon at the end of this month. I can only imagine what the days leading up to the roster selection for the Canadian Olympic Team will be like in the increasingly-net-crazy hockey media world, let alone how we'll be inundated for those two weeks focused on Vancouver come February 2010.
In that we fans of the Raleigh club have an interest in the top talent coming to the NHL draft next summer, perhaps this WJC coverage may well be a window into our future. Today's developments:
Seguin, Deslauriers, Gormley, McFarland cut from Canadian junior camp - NHL.com No room at the athletes' dorm for these talented youngsters. Never fear, when you know the history, it's happened to many a talented hockey-babe before. When you're only 17, there's always next year.
Featured video with Tyler Seguin on his feelings when he was cut from the Junior team. Remember the same thing happened to Eric Staal his first year. And Taylor Hall and Matt Duchene last year. But I liked seeing a very poised 17 year old hockey star (Seguin) handle the press and the pressure. While you're at the TSN.ca video player, click around to find at least 4 more short clips and feature stories. More reaction to Seguin here with comments from Taylor Hall too and predictions on the draft.
A few stories from TSN's Bob McKenzie (the most widely read hockey dad in Canada ) who has been tweeting and blogging round the clock from Camp. First this (last night:) McKenzie: A personal view of how things stand at WJHC camp Take this for what it's worth: the superficial ramblings of someone who has seen all of two Team Canada Red-White games. Then this from McKenzie today. The first time around is the roughest. For these kids; Seguin, Brandon Gormley, John McFarland, Nicolas Deslauriers, the first time around is the toughest and these guys are terrific hockey players. No doubt, they'll be back.
Czechs look to improve on recent poor showings - 2010 World Junior Championship Remember the name Michal Jordan? No, not Michael Jordan. Michal - the European kid who was the Canes fourth round draft pick in 2008. The young blueliner will be the Czech junior captain. Neat. (More leadership in the baby Canes - always a good thing).
NHL Network-U.S. to air all U.S. games at 2010 WJC - NHL Network including all games played by Team USA. You didn't have anything else planned that week, did you? Here's the schedule of play December 26th to January 5th.
After the jump some updates on the US and Canadian Olympic teams, ongoing news from our prospects far and wide, Hurricanes and NHL links galore, and a sexy-cute-happy-hockey-Christmas-themed music video the whole family can enjoy.
The Big Kids and Olympic play
Some further movement and discussion from the selection committees of the Team Canada and Team USA Olympic rosters:
CTV Olympics - Stock Up / Stock Down Eric Staal's stock: on the rise (at last). Cam Ward, not so much.
CTV Olympics - Burke says U.S. hockey roster nearly finalized Brian Burke met with the rest of the Olympic hockey team's selection committee, and says the group managed to get most of the 23-man roster in place, with six players in a fight for the last three spots on the team.
2010 Olympics -- How Mark Johnson wound up 'being there' for U.S. women's Olympic hockey team - ESPN A long feature story but this may be one to remember come February. All hockey roads were supposed to lead Mark Johnson to a men's head coaching job. But the former Miracle on Ice star has found that the road less traveled was the plan all along.
Other Hurricanes Prospects "in the system"
Peters snubbed again for AHL weekly award - Hockey Spoken Here - timesunion.com - Albany NY The Rodney Dangerfield complex runs in the franchise it seems.
Chaput continues break out - The Troy Record Sports Stefan Chaput missed most of the 2008-09 season because of injuries, but Chaput has returned with a vengeance. He is ranked second on the club in points (18) with Albany captain Pat Dwyer in appearing in 26 of 27 games thus far this season. (from last week - but still another name we probably need to know)
Meile Scores Twice as Miami Rallies Past Ohio State :: U.S. College Hockey Online Highlight paragraph of the two games Ohio State University played (and lost) against NCAA #1 ranked Miami (of Ohio) over the weekend:
Ohio State stunned the Miami home crowd when they doubled their tally on the power play less than three minutes later. A Matt Bartkowski pass opened up a breakaway for sophomore center Zac Galpe. Galpe deked left and fired a shot over Knapp and into the upper corner of the net to give the Buckeyes a 2-0 lead with five minutes to go in the second period.
Question to you: Are you more proud the Canes' highly anticipated prospect Zac Dalpe provided the most memorable moments for his team over the weekend - or does it just reinforce your inner Dangerfield that they spelled his name wrong, twice?
UPDATE: Here's an informative Q&A with Zac Dalpe you should read. Thanks much to abramsdoug (Or A-Dog as I affectionately call him) who found and posted this elsewhere in his comments. Just the kind of piece I've been looking for on our other Zac(h). (Digression: Is this gonna be like Eric and Erik?)
Looking at the Hurricanes from the Outside-In - still no respect, a smidgen of empathy
NHL Hockey Power Rankings - National Hockey League - ESPN (#30, still) But to check out the mentions of Carolina in the Caps and Pens blurbs. The team does have a role it can play this season.
FanHouse MUVPs: Eastern Conference -- NHL FanHouse Who's the most Under-rated Valuable Player for the Canes? Chad LaRose, Carolina RW -- When teams are going through bad times like the Hurricanes are right now, even your hardest-working grinders are not going to look good. But know this: at least half the league would like to have a heart-and-soul, Stanley Cup-winning veteran like Larose on their third or fourth lines.
The Five Worst Teams that Outshot their Opponents - Behind The Net Which NHL teams have consistently outshot their opponents but lost anyways? Behind the Net takes a look. #3. 2002-04 Carolina Hurricanes. Truly the gang that couldn't shoot. Note this first comment from a reader: Nice. It’s interesting that two of those teams were coached by Paul Maurice (though only in part in the case of the Leafs). Is that merely a coincidence, or is it suggestive of a particular style of play?
Other NHL persons-of-interest
New Flyers coach looking for team 'to dig in' | Philadelphia Daily News | 12/14/2009 For the first time in weeks, there was a palpable buzz in the Flyers' dressing room yesterday at the TD Garden. Comments from Lavi on that risky offensive style. Brings back the memories, doesn't it?
NHL Network Online: Hossa's nifty glove work Marian Hossa catches the puck in mid air and then bats it home for an incredible goal in the Chicago Blackhawks' win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. If you haven't seen it, check it out. A whole new level of hand-eye coordination - on skates, no less.
Babcock: Use Detroit's people as an inspiration - NHL.com - Ice Age Mike Babcock: Use Detroit's people as an inspiration he tells his beaten down Red Wings. Answers the question: What would Babcock do?
Don Cherry did not appreciate being called out by the Toronto neuro-surgeon last week: Cherry lashes out - The Globe and Mail Coach's Corner star responds to negative comments directed at him with profanity-laced tirade; Listen to his comments.
For those trying to keep with which 'tender is in whose crease this week, these links might help:
Legace's long road back to the NHL It’s safe to say that things have not been easy for the 36-year-old Legace since last January when the Blues demoted him to their AHL affiliateagainst his wishes. But his pride, hard work and dedication to the sport he loves so much kept his spirits up and although he isn’t a no. 1 goalie, he is back in the NHL and he managed to keep the Carolina Hurricanes afloat after Cam Ward suffered a deep cut in his leg from Rick Nash’s skate during a game against Columbus on November 7. I also liked to read his high praise of Brodeur and Ovechkin. Cool dude to add to the room.
Flyers Claim Michael Leighton off Waivers (Again) - Broad Street Hockey Check in on the Flyers' fans reaction to Leighton's imminent arrival. We wish Michael and his family the best. He's earned a fresh start for sure. Tought market though.
Report: Canadiens offer goaltender Halak to Flyers It appears Canadiens goaltender Jaroslav Halak wants to play more and Montreal general manager Bob Gainey is willing to accomodate him if the right offer comes along. According to the sports media website ruefrontenac.com, Gainey offered the services of Halak to the Philadelphia Flyers. (Hmmm. So he was snubbed for Michael Leighton?)
Jussi Jokinen: Sooooo Sexy!
In case you missed this from LTD's slideshow from the Season Ticket Holders' event Monday night:
The Finn most amused by this pronouncement of his countryman' s lesser known claim to fame? Joni Pitkanen. While you STHer's were apparently on the topic, did anyone finally remember to ask for a translation for woman pauloihinsa ?
As a pendant piece to Beefkabob's ex-Hurricanes stats analysis from this morning, I did a little digging to see how the SBN blog for tomorrow's opponent the Dallas Stars, Defending Big D may have remembered the talented Finn that once was all theirs.
Stargazing: Catching up with ex-Stars - Defending Big D We catch up with ex-Dallas Stars Guerin, Crombeen, Jokinen and Smith. I have to say that with the case of Jokinen, I found myself strangly annoyed that he was scoring all of those clutch goals for the Canes last year. Where was that 2 years ago?
This just in: The Hurricanes Report podcast released late this afternoon. Haven't listened yet, but according to the billing, Tim Gleason gets some love.
Has technology made attending early season games obsolete? - Puck Daddy Given our recent 1200-post gamethreads, what do you fellow readers and commenters think?
KuklasKorner : Hockey Here ya go: An open list of favorite hockey blogs. Christmas clicking for puckheads who love to blog.
Brett Hull Night – Ceremony on TV, Game Not | Frozen Notes Versus haters unite: Brett Hull Night Ceremony on TV, Game Not: Hoping to see the ceremony to honor Brett Hull before tonight's game against Calgary? You're in luck.
"That's What Christmas Means To Me" Music Video To Benefit Hockey Fights Cancer Alyonka & Diana Larionovs' newly released music video for "That's What Christmas Means To Me." This combines different, catchy, hip, pretty, happy, hockey and "Christmas" and all for a good cause. What's not to like? (Glovetap to one of my favorite sister-bloggers at Musings of a Hockeymom for the original link)