Wow! Today the Canucks announced that Roberto Luongo will serve as their team captain! I’ve always thought goalies were not allowed to be captain but it turns out they’re just not allowed to wear the “C” on their jersey. So the Canucks will have alternates who can talk to the referees on the ice but ‘Captain Canuck’ will now officially be Captain Canuck. The first role of captain is to lead a band of brothers for nine months out of the year and when you think of the great captains in hockey history can you really think of anyone on the Canucks better suited to this role? I’m not sure there’s any team in the NHL who relies more on one player than the Canucks do on Luongo. So congrats to Luongo for breaking new ice with this role and kudos to Canucks’ management for thinking outside the box in putting him there.
Surprising almost nobody, the Blackhawks have placed Nikolai Khabibulin on waivers. Folks have been speculating about Khabibulin’s fate since the Hawks signed Cristobal Huet to a monster free agent contract in the summer. The most popular rumors have Khabibulin headed to LA since A) they are way under the minimum salary level and B) they’ve struggled in the crease for years. In the “new” NHL era I can understand the Kings signing him for salary cap reasons. But isn’t their long term success better served by continuing their youth movement and developing the goalies currently in their system?
UPDATE: Khabibulin cleared waivers so now the Blackhawks can get serious about their two-goalie situation. Erik Duhatschek points out the Hawks have made it clear they intend to accommodate Huet as much as possible so we should see a move earlier than later. Duhatschek confirms LA as the likely destination but also suggests GM Dale Tallon has some other (surprising) options.
Latvian national team member and Dynamo Riga goalie Edgars Masalskis was robbed and assaulted last week after a Russian league game, suffering a broken ankle and probably a broken spirit. HockeyBuzz has more of the details but the first question in my mind is did Ray Emery and Wade Dubielewicz think about this kind of thing before heading to Russia? The photo above was taken at the World Championships last season when Masalskis was in net vs. Norway. It would have been a better Kodak moment if he’d been playing Russia when this happened but still, it was the best way I could try to make light of the way he must have been feeling last week. Speedy recovery to Edgars and a serious heads-up to Emery and Dubie… you’re not in Kansas anymore.
If the size of goalie equipment is up for review can we negotiate trappers the size of the one in this shooter tutor? I can almost see the entire ad through the glove cutout. Speaking of which, why are the Jackets players being encouraged to shoot INTO the goalie’s glove? Thanks to Tapeleg at Jerseys and Hockey Love for taking this shot at the Blue Jacket’s training camp. One question: how do you have a shortage of goalies at training camp??? The 70:1 odds I saw last week in Vegas are looking pretty accurate right now for the Jacket’s chances of winning the Cup.
Cool! Last season Martin Gerber wore a plain black mask and fans started calling him Darth Gerber, so this year he’s wearing a true likeness of Lord Vader. He says he might not keep it but if he does it should prove to be more successful than The Clone Wars.
In the tech world (where I make my day-to-day living), Guy Kawasaki needs no introduction. Seriously, he gets paid tons of bucks to speak at tech events all over the world (check out how they send him to these events) and hangs with the who’s who of the business world. Today I drove down to Redwood City to play some pickup with him, learn more about Alltop (if you’re reading this you MUST check out Alltop), and hear about hockey in Hawaii (where he’s from). BTW, just to give the non-techies in TendersLounge a sense of how Guy rolls, when someone in Montreal heard he was in town they arranged an introduction to Patrick Roy. Serious street cred… or ice cred as the case may be. Check out my visit with Guy:
Great to see Curtis Joseph back in the blue and white of the Leafs. Apparently “Fans” was easier to spell than “Cujo”. Actually all the Leafs were wearing these jerseys (and the number 1) to show fans how much they appreciate the continued support of an organization that can’t make the playoffs, can’t get the number one draft pick and can’t sign one of their most popular captains in team history. Leaf fans clearly are #1 in the Barnum and Bailey rank of suckers born every minute.