Congratulations to Chuck Fletcher who will be ordained GM of the Minnesota Wild today May 22nd in St. Paul.Having the opportunity to work with Chuck in Florida with the Panthers from 1995-99 when he was the assistant GM, he allowed me the opportunity to be a Development Coach as well as a Pro and Amateur Scout.While scouting home games in Cincinnati of the IHL, I was also allowed to work with John Weideman (now the voice of the Chicago Black Hawk Radio Network) and sustain a radio/TV career.Chuck is a true gentleman, patient and calculated and holding a Harvard degree.He will be an excellent addition to the Wild front office.
What about the Carolina-Pittsburgh series?Now leading 2-0, the Penguins were lead by the offense of “Geno“ Malkin.The hat trick goal was All World.An unassisted tally by winning the face off to himself; an individual effort to protect the puck; then the spinning back hand that had a seeing eye that found the 4” hole above Cam Ward’s shoulder.Explosive to say the least....the Pens best players are their best players in the series so far.Congrats to Chris Kunitz, the Ferris Sate product who scored his first playoff goal in 20 games.
One of my favorite players in the NHL may be out of the lineup against the Hawks.Pavel Datsyuk is favoring an injured ankle.This will force Babcock to make some changes, none that are drastic, but one line that could be together is Hudler, Samuelsson (GWG’s in the first 2 games) and the speedy Darren Helm.Chemistry with this crew will not pose a problem as they invade one of the greatest venues in pro hockey, the UnitedCenter.
How about Jeremy Roenick talking for the sake of talking?He is criticizing Mike Babcock for not playing Chris Chelios.....and he is blunt about the fact that it boils down to the coaches dislike for American players.....really?.....Lebda....Rafalski....hmmmmm?
The Hawks are calming themselves without panic being down 2-0 to the Wings.There is a lot of self talk and positive verbage coming out of Hawk camp with the likes of Pahlsson and Andrew Ladd who have Cup rings to stuck in storage.One has to be positive for sure, but can they realistically get back into the series with a team that can turn up the temperature with a flip of a switch!!....by the way....Osgood?...how good was he again when it counts!!
Stay tuned!!!Fun in the sun has begun, but there is hockey to watch as well!!