Saturday 30 June 2018

Summer Of Chevy?

He has taken his lumps for not having the cap room to re-sign Paul Stastny nor moving pieces out at the NHL Entry Draft to open up that cap room, but Winnipeg Jets general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff was up early today working the phones, moving pieces, and retooling his team for another deep run in the 2018-19 season. The GM himself identified that signing Stastny was a priority for him, and he knew he needed to find some additional money for a few key restricted free agents while not sacrificing the depth he had amassed. On June 30, 2018, Kevin Cheveldayoff kicked off a summer of hard work by making a couple of key moves.

While everyone awaits the announcement by John Tavares as to where he'll play hockey next season, the Jets went out and made the necessary moves to re-sign arguably the second-best free agent centerman on most pundits' lists. Cheveldayoff did that by somehow convincing Marc Bergevin of the Montreal Canadiens to take backup netminder Steve Mason and his $4.1 million salary off the Jets' books.

Yes, it also cost them Joel Armia, a 2019 seventh-round pick, and a 2020 fourth-round pick, but Armia was projected to be a third-line player for the Jets this season, and those two picks aren't of the overly-valuable rounds that Chevy likes to target. In return, the Jets receive an underrated defenceman Simon Bourque who had just an awful season in Laval last season, but, to his credit, everyone in Laval had a pretty dismal season last year. Bourque will undoubtedly suit up for the Moose this season, so the Jets add a decent defender to their ranks.

Mason, for his part, simply didn't live up to the dollars that the Jets were willing to invest in him. He was often injured this past season, and the Jets used a carousel of backup netminders behind Connor Hellebuyck to relieve the starter of a heavier workload. The Jets will concentrate on maximizing a few dollars on the open market to fill the vacancy left by Mason in the trade, and I'd love to see the Jets take a flyer on one of Petr Mrazek, Laurent Brossoit, or Maxime Lagacé. All three goalies are 26-or-under, and the potential for them to start 20-25 games will be a factor as all three put up Mason-like numbers. Where they work for the Jets is salary, although Mrazek may want more than a six-figure, one-to-two-year deal.

Losing Armia might be a bit of a blow to the Jets' third-line as he had posted career bests of twelve goals and 29 points, but it opens the door for one of Nic Petan and Marko Dano to step up and grab that spot. My money would be on Nic Petan to grab the spot, but anything can happen over this summer and into training camp.

If the rumours of slotting defenceman Tyler Myers on the left side are true, the Jets appear to be pushing Joe Morrow down the lineup. Morrow, who signed a one-year, $1 million earlier this week, slotted in nicely with Dustin Byfuglien last season, and there was hope that those two could be paired again for next season. Yes, Morrow doesn't have the defensive skills of a Tobias Enstrom, but Morrow did bring some additional offence from the left side where it was Josh Morrissey carrying the play from the left side of the rink. Ben Chiarot won't do that, so Morrow could help the Jets by carrying more offence like he did in his short time with the Jets after the trade.

In an afternoon deal that appears to be an AHL deal on the surface, the Jets dealt qualified restricted free agent Chase De Leo to the Anaheim Ducks for Nic Kerdiles. De Leo had 35 points with the Moose last season while Kerdiles had 34 points with the San Diego Gulls. Kerdiles plays with a little more tenacity than what De Leo does, but De Leo has more skill. This move may be a response to a rumour that Moose captain Patrice Cormier is considering an offer to jump to the KHL. Cormier is one of those sandpaper players that will net you some offence when given the chance, but he's often playing a more physical role. If this is indeed one of the underlying pieces to this deal, I see nothing wrong with this move to acquire Kerdiles.

Overall, the moves made in the last week have Winnipeg looking a lot like they did last season when they finished the season strong and made a good push through the postseason. While Chevy won't be involved in any of the John Tavares drama, he did clear some much needed cap room to bring a player back who he stated he coveted since the end of the season. Of course, Stastny has to feel the same way, but there's a good sense he'll be back with the freed-up money that Cheveldayoff found today.

So far, it's a quality offseason in the Manitoba capital, but there's still work to be done!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Friday 29 June 2018

You're Better Than This

"Hey everybody. I'd like to thank you for gathering here. I heard a number of great offers over the last few days. I want to thank each of the teams I've met with and heard offers from, and there were a number of great offers on the table. In the end, however, I needed to make the best decision for me when it comes to my future. My summers were simply getting too long with the Islanders, so I made my decision. I will be taking my summer talents to Toronto to play with the Blue Jays."

Ok, that's not happening, but how awesome would it be if John Tavares simply came out of all his recent meetings and just made an off-the-wall announcement like that?

Look, I get that this is a pivotal moment in Tavares' career, but do we really need hockey's version of "The Decision" being played out? He's a phenomenal player, but I'm pretty sure that one player alone doesn't win a Stanley Cup. There have been many players who have been in a situation similar to this, so why is this one so different?

Wayne Gretzky made a decision to join the New York Rangers via free agency, and the Rangers never won a Stanley Cup. The Rangers did play in the Eastern Conference Final in 1997 during Gretzky's first year there, but were brished aside by Eric Lindros and the Philadelphia Flyers. The following three seasons in New York prior to his retirement, Gretzky and the Rangers missed the playoffs. It was one of the biggest signings in the NHL, but Gretzky's talents couldn't get the Rangers back to the promised land.

No one is comparing Tavares to Gretzky here, but if Toronto, San Jose, Boston, or anyone else who met with Tavares thinks that he's that "missing piece" that will put their teams over the top, there's a lot that has to go right for that to happen.

What really chaps my ass over this whole process is the media coverage that it is receiving. Tavares' decision will affect these teams, but I don't need hourly and daily updates on what he's inevitably going to do on July 1. Here's a quick hint: he will sign a deal on July 1 like dozens of other players. Speculate all you want, but plunking reporters outside his agent's office where these pitches are happening is beyond idiotic, especially when no GM or team representative will tip his or her hat at all, let alone appear on camera for an interview about the pitch.

In two days, we'll know John Tavares' decision. Let it go until Sunday.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Thursday 28 June 2018

The Hockey Show - Episode 301

The Hockey Show, Canada's only campus-produced radio show that strictly talks hockey, returns to the airwaves tonight after recovering from cake and Show #300 craziness. Tonight, we have a pile of stuff to go over as there has been all sorts of player and personnel moves around a vast number of leagues that we need to bring to your attention. Personally, some of the moves are fairly understandable while others made me shake my head. It's almost like NHL GMs get a bag of money dumped on their desks and they lose all sense of fiscal responsibility and sensibility. In any case, Beans and I will talk about the insanity as we dig into this show!

I've always wondered what it's like to be an NHL GM and toss stacks of money around like it's Monopoly money. In any case, Beans and I will run down all the major signings, player moves, personnel moves, and more from the beginnings of what should be an insane weekend when it comes to NHL free agency. We'll chat about the John Tavares soap opera and which suitor we believe Tavares will select. We'll discuss Manitobans selected in the NHL Entry Draft, new alternate uniforms, the newest six inductees to the Hockey Hall of Fame, the NHL Awards Show, and much more as we dive into The Hockey Show's Summer of Interviews! Catch all the news, notes, information, and fun at 5:30pm CT tonight!

"So how can I hear this show?" you ask. Well, the easiest way is for you to download the UMFM app on your phone or tablet. It's literally the easiest and most convenient way to listen to any of UMFM's great shows any time of the day, so go get it! Just follow this link on your iDevice or this link for your Android device and get the UMFM app! It's never been easier to tune into The Hockey Show or UMFM! Download the UMFM app today, and don't miss any of our great programming or shows! Of course, you can do the radio thing at the 101.5 frequency on the FM dial and you can always listen online via the UMFM website as well!

If you prefer social media, we try to remain up-to-speed there! Email all show questions and comments to! Tweet me anytime with questions you may have by hitting me up at @TeebzHBIC on Twitter. You can also post some stuff to Facebook if you use the "Like" feature, and I always have crazy stuff posted there that doesn't make it to the blog or show.

Tonight, Beans and I talk free agents, re-signings, new kids, old threads, newly-honoured men and women, and more only on The Hockey Show found exclusively on 101.5 UMFM, on the UMFM app, on the web stream!

PODCAST: June 28, 2018: Episode 301

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Wednesday 27 June 2018

Clothing Of The High Seas

The Mariners of Maine, one of the new expansion teams in the ECHL, were introduced with the logo to the left a few weeks ago. As time rolls by, more and more information is being shared regarding their inaugural season, but we had yet to see one shred of fabric that suggested what they would be wearing. One could probably predict the team's colour scheme based on the logo, but the uniforms had yet to be revealed. Being affiliated with the NHL's New York Rangers and AHL's Hartford Wolfpack, would we see the Mariners resemble either team or would they branch out on their own with a unique design?

No sense in delaying the reveal, so here are their inaugural uniforms for the 2018-19 season!
There's nothing particularly earth-shattering here. The Mariners will wear a couple of decent uniforms that have the secondary logo and the state of Maine logo on the shoulders. They didn't try to emulate either of their affiliated teams, and that's good. The white jersey is a little Dallas Stars-ish/Markham Thunder-ish for me, but it's clean and simple that allows the logo to pop off the chest.

Jersey orders placed on July 1 will be ready for December 2018, so make sure you put your money down early if you want to support the Mariners of Maine.

There was a rather strange reveal done by NewsCenter Maine, and I'll post that here simply because there are good notes revealed about the uniform in the video.

What do you think of the Mariners of Maine uniforms? Comment below!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Tuesday 26 June 2018

Who Is That Russian Guy?

The six inductees in the Class of 2018 Hockey Hall of Fame ceremony have been revealed, and there were a few surprises. In the Players category, it's hard to argue the merit of Martin Brodeur or Martin St. Louis as they've been two of this generation's best players. Jayna Hefford will be honoured as an inductee after her incredible career as part of the women's game. Alexander Yakushev will be honoured for his international hockey career, and it's one that is far more interesting than one would think. In the Builders category, Willie O'Ree is finally getting his induction as the man who broke the colour barrier in the NHL. And the sixth and final inductee is current NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. Let's get into this.

There isn't much that one can say about Martin Brodeur that hasn't already been published. Three Stanley Cups, four Vezina trophies, five Jennings trophies, two Olympic gold medals, two World Championship silver medals, a 2004 World Cup of Hockey gold medal, the cover player on NHL '14, and he holds the NHL's all-time career win total at 691. Pretty sure he was a shoo-in for the Hall of Fame the moment he announced his retirement.

Martin St. Louis is another player who really needs no introduction. The undrafted NCAA forward played in 1134 NHL games, scoring 1033 points. He won a Stanley Cup in 2004 with the Tampa Bay Lightning, two Art Ross Trophies including the 2012-13 Art Ross Trophy at the age of 37 to make him the oldest winner of the trophy, the Lester B. Pearson Award in 2004, and Hart Memorial Trophy in 2004, a 2004 World Cup of Hockey gold medal, an Olympic gold medalist in 2014, and two silver medals at the IIHF World Championships. Again, this resumé screams Hall of Fame, and Marty St. Louis will be headed there.

Jayna Hefford's inclusion should be the start of a long line of amazing women's player heading into the Hockey Hall of Fame. Hefford helped Canada win four-straight Olympic gold medals and one silver medal in 1998, and she will be remembered for scoring the game-winning goal in the gold medal game in the 2002 Winter Olympics. She holds seven gold medals from the IIHF Women's World Championships and another five silver medals. She helped Canada win the gold medal at the 2010 Women's Four Nations Cup. Hefford helped the Brampton Thunder win the first CWHL championship in 2007-08, was named the CWHL MVP in 2008-09, and scored a league-record 44 goals and 69 points in the '08-09 season. In total, she scored 439 goals in 418 games in the COWHL, original NWHL, and CWHL. Hefford's inclusion in the Hockey Hall of Fame should never have been debated.

Willie O'Ree changed hockey forever when he suited up with the Boston Bruins on January 18, 1958 against the Montreal Canadiens to become the NHL's first black player. In a rather amazing twist, O'Ree kept an eye injury secret that caused him to be 95% blind in his right eye from the Bruins, allowing him to break the colour barrier in professional hockey. O'Ree has been an inspiration to many kids of African-American heritage who have made it to the NHL including Joel Ward, Madison Bowey, and Wayne Simmonds. O'Ree's career was only 45 games long, but his determination and hard work that got him to the NHL will eternally be recognized with his induction into the Hall of Fame.

Gary Bettman will always be a polarizing choice, but there's no denying that he's made the league stronger, bigger than its ever been in the United States, expanded and moved teams to centers that have resulted in great league strength, and made it into a billion-dollar sports league. Yes, there's a lot that people will point to when it comes to negatives about Bettman, but there is no denying that hockey is better financially and certainly more prominent in everyday life in many non-traditional communities thanks to the vision of Gary Bettman.

So who is this Alexander Yakushev guy? Yakushev was an atypical Russian hockey player during his era in the late 1960s and early 1970s. While most players were smaller and speedy, Yakushev was a towering 6'4" scoring machine who owned the slot, but skated as well as his smaller teammates. He is often compared to Phil Esposito for his style of play, and he certainly made an impact in the 1972 Summit Series where he scored seven goals and four assists in the eight games to lead the Soviet team in scoring.

Yakushev won a a pair of Olympic gold medals in 1972 and 1976 while playing for the Soviet Union, added seven gold medals, two silver medals, and a bronze medal from the IIHF World Championships, and was named to the IIHF Hall of Fame in 2002. He was a goal-scoring machine in the Soviet Championship League with Spartak Moscow before ending his career with Austria's Kapfenberger SV.

Yakushev moved into the coaching realm once his playing days were over, starting as an assistant coach of Spartak Moscow before taking over the head coaching position in 1989-90. He would hold that position until 1993 before taking the head coach position with Austria's EK Zell am See in 1993-94, and he would jump to the Swiss League's HC Ambrì-Piotta where he was the head coach from 1994 until he was relieved of his duties on November 5, 1996. Yakushev would return to Spartak Moscow in 1997, but he also assumed the head coach duties for the Russian National Team for the next two seasons. Since then, he's dabbled in coaching and in team management in Russia, but the 71 year-old will finally be honoured for a career about which very few hockey fans know.

Your six inductees will see their new plaques added to the Hockey Hall of Fame on Monday, November 12th, 2018. I'm extremely pleased to see Willie O'Ree and Jayna Hefford added to the Hall's esteemed players and builders, and it's always nice to see a player whose career was hidden behind the curtain of Communist Russia be honoured as well. I think the Hockey Hall of Fame's Selection Committee did a pretty good job with their selections this season!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Monday 25 June 2018

Gently Used Clothing

Remember these jerseys? If you don't, that ok because they were worn a total of one time. Those would the uniforms that the Flyers wore in the 2017 Stadium Series game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh. It would be the only Stadium Series game in 2016-17, and the Penguins won the game 4-2 that night. Why is this relevant today? Well, the Philadelphia Flyers have been hiding their new alternate jerseys in plain sight all this time. There was no major unveiling and no major announcement. All it took was a simple slide show on social media, and the Flyers announced their somewhat-new clothes.

On Friday with little fanfare, the Philadelphia Flyers logged into its Instagram account and uploaded a slideshow. It wasn't anything remarkable until everyone on that social media platform realized that slide #4 was the reveal. However, it would be Thursday where they posted their schedule info on, and they technically knock the Hurricanes off as the first team to reveal their new alternate jerseys!

While the Flyers might have one game's worth of history with this jersey, but let's go back to Saturday, December 10, 2016 when I took them to task over this uniform. It's still bad, and I'm still not a fan.

As I wrote then,
"... the reason they went with a black jersey is because it's a 'contemporary homage' to the past? Those two ideas normally don't go together. By definition, contemporary means 'belonging to or occurring in the present' while homage is defined as 'special honor or respect shown publicly'. When referring to the last 50 years, they decided to wear black - a color they wore for 13 of those 50 years? Wow. Whatever PR firm spun that yarn deserves a medal."
I still don't get the buzz over a black jersey, so wearing these again makes little sense. Give me more orange than black, and I'd be happier. There are all sorts of things they could do to improve these jerseys, but I guess it's convenient to pull these out of storage and wear them again.

One of the schedule announcements is another Stadium Series game as the Flyers will play in the 2019 Coors Light Stadium Series game at Lincoln Financial Field against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday, February 23 at 8 PM. You're thinking "ok, so they brought them back for that," right? Well, actually, "a new jersey is on tap for the 2019 outdoor contest," meaning they will not be wearing their Stadium Series jerseys for a second Stadium Series game. Makes sense, right?

While the Flyers don't actually tell anyone when the alternate jerseys will be worn aside from "select games this season," the Flyers do state that they'll release additional uniform details "closer to the start of the regular season." As long as the moths haven't chewed holes in them while in storage, we'll get another team wearing black on days where they've chosen to wear their alternate uniforms.

Black. Because it's the only colour alternate jerseys can be.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Sunday 24 June 2018

Money Trending Up

No, this isn't a Reebok ad with Terry Tate, but the image to the left is one that speaks volumes to what the Washington Capitals and John Carlson did today. If you missed the news, John Carlson and the Capitals agreed to an eight-year, $64 million deal that sees the defenceman get a decent little signing bonus and a whole bunch of monster deposits in his back account. My concern isn't whether Carlson was worth it - he would have received that on the open market had he gone to free agency - but rather what it does to the market for every other defenceman who plays a top-pairing role for his team. Suddenly names like Karlsson, Doughty, and Trouba have a benchmark to which they can compare themselves that carries a massive dollar amount.

Carlson has set the mark for future discussions regarding elite defencemen. He led the league in scoring in the regular season among defencemen, setting a career-high with 68 points this season. That's way up from his non-lockout career average of 44 points, and some will say that he's becoming a more complete defenceman as he matures. The 28 year-old's poise in the playoffs was unmatched, and he looks like he could be a career Capital if this contract plays out in its entirety.

That's good news for the likes of Karlsson, Trouba, Doughty, and any future top-pair defenceman because their agents will be singing all the way to the bank when it comes time for comparisons to be made. If the players were worried about salaries plateauing, John Carlson just made a lot of people a ton of money.

The obvious name that will benefit from this contract is Erik Karlsson. Karlsson finished last season as the sixth-highest scoring defenceman, but had the highest points-per-game total. His career average not including lockout-shortened seasons is 63 points, some 19 points better than Carlson. Erik Karlsson's defensive game, however, isn't as sound as John Carlson's is, but when it comes to generating offence from the blue line, no one may be better than the Swedish Karlsson. With Karlsson being an impending unrestricted free agent next year, is he worth the $8 million that John Carlson got? Is he worth more? I'd say the latter is entirely possible, and more likely than not. As a two-time Norris Trophy winner, Karlsson could be the NHL's first $10 million-per-season rearguard.

What about Drew Doughty? Doughty finished seventh in NHL scoring by defencemen last season, and has consistently been a top-three points producer in his career. His career average of 58 points in full NHL seasons is a full 14 points better than Carlson, he arguably plays in a tougher conference with more physical play, and is a two-time Stanley Cup winner and won the Norris Trophy in 2015-16. Doughty is at the top of the class when it comes to defenders like Karlsson, and I have a feeling that he'll also get more than the $8 million-per-season that Carlson got based on his body of work.

And that brings us to restricted free agent and top-pair defenceman Jacob Trouba in Winnipeg where he was 79th among defencemen in scoring, but there's no denying his effectiveness as a shutdown defenceman in helping the Jets become the second-best team in the NHL this past season. Of the four defencemen, he's the youngest. He arguably plays as many tough minutes as the other defencemen. If his only draw back is that he doesn't score as many points as the three men mentioned above, there's a lot that happens away from the puck that people aren't seeing.

For the Jets, they've been down the contract dispute with Trouba before, and I'm quite certain they don't want that happening again. Trouba is a major cog in their success, and they'll want to do more than just bridge him out. They'll look for term at a reasonable price, but the term that buy up some of Trouba's free agency period won't come cheap. I'm not suggesting he gets $8 million per season like John Carlson, but there will be some cost for the Jets to keep him on a long-term deal when it comes to the open market.

I'm not an NHL GM nor will I ever attempt to be one. Those guys have spent years learning the business, and I'm sure that Kevin Cheveldayoff put in more hours off the ice in a boardroom than he did on it in order to learn how to be a GM. What should tickle Cheveldayoff a little is that Jacob Trouba has expressed a desire to get a deal done in Winnipeg sooner rather than later. If Kevin Cheveldayoff can land Trouba on a long-term deal for what would reasonable be $6 million per season, I think a lot of fans in the Manitoba capital would be excited for that.

Blue-chip defencemen who become top-flight shutdown players while still contributing offensively are rare in the NHL. Those teams that have them usually lock them up for as long as they can because there's always someone out there who covets them. Trouba's a great player who would be coveted by at least half the teams in the NHL, so this summer's negotiation will be an interesting one for the Jets.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Saturday 23 June 2018

Where's My De Lorean?

I'll admit I'm not Marty McFly in any way, shape, or form, but after seeing how Carolina kicked off the alternate jersey season once again like they did in 2008, the Arizona Coyotes nodded and asked Carolina to hold their beers. The Coyotes, whose most recent eye-catching news pieces involved trading away Max Domi and entering an ECHL affiliation, made a splash at their own draft party last night by introducing their alternate jerseys for the 2018-19 season and beyond, and it was a polarizing move by the team when it came to social media. I'll explain in a second, but if you were a fan of the Keith Tkachuk-Jeremy Roenick-Mike Gartner era of the Coyotes, you're probably going to be excited for what they'll be wearing this season.

Starting with their home opener on October 6 against Anaheim, the Arizona Coyotes will return to their roots and sport the Kachina jerseys as modeled by current Coyote Clayton Keller to the right. As per the release, the Coyotes will wear the Kachina jerseys for all 13 Saturday home games and one Friday home game which, coincidentally, is Black Friday. The design is identical to what the Coyotes wore from 1996-2003 after the Jets moved to Phoenix, right down to the shoulder patches and fonts. In August of 2016, the Kachina jersey was voted as the best jersey in Valley sports history out of the 48 jerseys up for votes as per fans of Arizona Sports 98.7 FM.

"But Teebz," you exclaim, "these are black alternate jerseys!"

Yes, you're right, but they are part of the team's history. Make no mistake that I love the brick red colour that the Coyotes wear at home, but there's something about the psychedelic Kachina jerseys that just feels right. Again, it could be because they wore the jersey for seven seasons when they first moved, but the black home jerseys feel right in this case because there's already a history there. This isn't a forced black alternate jersey like many other teams have done just to say they have an alternate uniform.

I own a white Teppo Numminen Kachina jersey, so you know I'm a fan of the design. It took me a while to warm up to the Coyotes after the Jets moved south, but I have to admit that the Kachina jersey is one of the most unique designs in the NHL. Count me in as a fan of the team bringing back the look, and I'm excited to see how they do in these jerseys that have had the names "Gretzky", "Tocchet", and "Hull" on them at one point.

If you're interested, the dates they'll be wearing the jerseys are:
  • Saturday, Oct. 6: vs Anaheim Ducks
  • Saturday, Oct. 13: vs Buffalo Sabres
  • Saturday, Oct. 27: vs Tampa Bay Lightning
  • Saturday, Nov. 17: vs Boston Bruins
  • Friday, Nov. 23: vs Colorado Avalanche
  • Saturday, Dec. 1: vs St. Louis Blues
  • Saturday, Dec. 8: vs San Jose Sharks
  • Saturday, Dec. 22: vs Colorado Avalanche
  • Saturday, Feb. 9: vs Dallas Stars
  • Saturday, Feb. 16: vs Toronto Maple Leafs
  • Saturday, March 2: vs Detroit Red Wings
  • Saturday, March 9: vs LA Kings
  • Saturday, March 16: vs Edmonton Oilers
  • Saturday, April 6: vs Winnipeg Jets
It's interesting that they'll wear them against the Jets this season, but I'm not going to blow that out of proportion. It's just the former Jets versus the former Thrashers, so let's not get too worked up about that one, ok?

In any case, seeing these jerseys back on the ice will be a howling good time!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Friday 22 June 2018

Take Warning?

I know new Carolina Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon has said that he's willing to do things differently, but there was a distinct similarity at tonight's NHL Draft Party in Raleigh. While the Hurricanes got their guy in Russian-born Andrei Svechnikov with the second-overall pick, there was other significant news happening in Raleigh at said party where the new Hurricanes alternate jersey was being unveiled. If you thought that the Hurricanes drafting a Russian in the first-round of the draft felt off - they haven't done that since 2001 when they selected Igor Knyazev 15th-overall - their newest wardrobe addition comes directly from 2008.

Now you might be asking, "How does 2008 relate to this?" Let me take you back to this article I wrote on Wednesday, September 10, 2008. I start it off by writing,
Carolina was the first team to introduce the new alternate jerseys today, and I was anticipating good things from the Hurricanes. They basically kept the same design that they previously had before Reebok came in and messed around with the designs, and I commended them for that. However, today's unveiling leaves me disappointed. A lot. To say the least.
First team to introduce the new alternates? Check.
Basically kept the same design that they previous had? Check.
Today's unveiling leaving me disappointed? Check.

Ladies and gentlemen, I will go on record right now and admit that I absolutely abhor black alternate jerseys. Alternate jerseys should be fun in using a secondary colour that doesn't get highlighted in a team's colour scheme very often. Further to this, there is enough history in the Hurricanes franchise that it has options for what it could select as a fun alternative to their regular duds. Hartford Whalers colours? Maybe bring back the uniform work by Pat Verbeek, but swap the green for the red and plop the Hurricanes logo on the front? I'm just spitballing here, but there has to be something better than...

As I wrote ten years ago, "I understand that black might be a "cool" colour to choose for alternate designs, and I realize it's part of their colour scheme, black jerseys have already been done. And done. And done. And done again." But since we're faced with another black iteration of the Hurricanes, I'll break this one down here as well.

First, they finally got the flag right. The two square flags are an actual hurricane warning as opposed to the single square flag they used on their old black alternates. It might have taken the team a decade to correct it, but progress is progress. Credit where credit is due on this one.

Can we stop with the ghosting? If you can't see it, it doesn't exist on jerseys. Ghosting the storm flags inside the collar and the primary Hurricanes logo and the North Carolina state flag on the shoulders is idiotic if you have to be right next to the player to see it. These are literally subtractions by addition when it comes to black jerseys. Here's a quick tip: little pops of colour against a black background make those pops of colour stand out to the human eye. Maybe incorporate this idea into your future designs?

The charcoal gray on the shoulders is an interesting touch considering it's not one of the Hurricanes' colours nor does it really fit into the design here. Why change just that part of the jersey to an off-colour black and then not use it anywhere else on the uniform? I'm baffled by this decision. It literally feels like this was just colour-for-colour's-sake despite "storm gray" barely being off the black colour spectrum. Again, subtraction by addition.

They got new gloves! Is this a feature? Why point that out? The gloves should match the uniform, no? Yay for supplying your team with gloves that match the new uniforms, Mr. Dundon!

The new wordmark is probably amazing, but it's unseen in the promotional image above so why point it out in big, bold lettering? I'm not sure who is doing these release graphics for the team, but this one is really stretching for why I should like this new alternate uniform. In any case, the wordmark, seen in an entirely separate photo, is alright, and I kind of like the little hurricane warning flags built into the lettering. Sometimes, the details matter. This is one of those times, so kudos to whoever came up with this idea!

Are there no number or letter fonts being used on the promotional photo? That answer is no, so we'll refer to another image. Luckily, the Hurricanes are going to use the same font as they do on their regular home and road sets, and that's a good thing. It's clean, it's crisp, and - ohmagawd! - the colours pop against the black! I'm not sure who mentioned that before, but we'll just leave that alone for now. In any case, the fonts still work well on this uniform.

You may not know this, but Adidas, who are now making all the NHL jerseys, did a little thing at the World Cup of Hockey with some teams called "heathering". In the textile world, heathering is the process in which yarns of mixed colors are interwoven to produce flecks of an alternate color within the base colour. It should be noted that heather yarn is more expensive than regular fabrics, so you're $300 USD price tag for these jerseys are now justified, right? Back to the point, the Hurricanes are now featuring heathered red striping on the arms and hems that "is evident when viewed up close". I'm so happy that hockey is a sport where we, the fans, get to spend so much time up close to the players that we can appreciate these tiny nuances that literally make no difference on TV.

Look, I said it eight years ago when they rolled out the storm alternate jerseys, and I'm saying it here again today: "[t]he logo is good, but the all-black look ranks low for me." Sorry, Carolina. I own a red jersey, and it's vastly superior to anything black you've rolled out ten years ago or today. It might be time for a new direction. Tom Dundon spoke it, but I have yet to see Carolina move in any new direction.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Thursday 21 June 2018

The Hockey Show - Episode 300

The Hockey Show, Canada's only campus-produced radio show that strictly talks hockey, is back with a huge achievement as we have reached show #300! I'm not sure if Beans or myself ever expected to reach this milestone, but here we are as we've worked through six seasons of shows thus far! If you are interested, we have a limited supply of cake at the station if you want to come down and check out where we do our thing, but we've got a bunch of stuff to cover, so let's get to it!

What does one do for a monumental show like this? Well, Beans and I will talk hockey - I know, surprising, right? We're going to welcome Kyle from Toronto to join us on the show as we go over all the news from the past week. We'll chat about the Max Domi-Alex Galchenyuk trade, the Mike Hoffman deals, Pierre Dorion's insistence not to deal players to teams within his division, Gimli playing host to an MJHL game, the NHL Awards, the Canada West hockey schedules for the Bisons, and more!

We were going to do a highlight show of some of our favorite moments, but the hockey world doesn't seem to stop. We may still do a highlight show in the future, but Show #300 is going to be just as informative as every other show but with cake! Tune in tonight at 5:30pm CT for cake and news!

"So how can I hear this show?" you ask. Well, the easiest way is for you to download the UMFM app on your phone or tablet. It's literally the easiest and most convenient way to listen to any of UMFM's great shows any time of the day, so go get it! Just follow this link on your iDevice or this link for your Android device and get the UMFM app! It's never been easier to tune into The Hockey Show or UMFM! Download the UMFM app today, and don't miss any of our great programming or shows! Of course, you can do the radio thing at the 101.5 frequency on the FM dial and you can always listen online via the UMFM website as well!

If you prefer social media, we try to remain up-to-speed there! Email all show questions and comments to! Tweet me anytime with questions you may have by hitting me up at @TeebzHBIC on Twitter. You can also post some stuff to Facebook if you use the "Like" feature, and I always have crazy stuff posted there that doesn't make it to the blog or show.

Tonight, Beans and I welcome Kyle to the show, we enjoy cake in honour of our 300th episode, and we talk all the hockey things that happened over the last week only on The Hockey Show found exclusively on 101.5 UMFM, on the UMFM app, on the web stream!

PODCAST: June 21, 2018: Episode 300

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Wednesday 20 June 2018

Tippett Providing Tips

Dave Tippett, pictured to the left when we last saw him as a head coach of the Arizona Coyotes, has returned to the NHL in a rather unique way. The long-time player and coach has experienced and lived through a vast number of experiences, and it seems that the Seattle NHL group is needing a experienced man to navigate them through the initial stages of their expansion bid. Like Murray Craven did in Las Vegas, Dave Tippett has become a senior advisor for the expansion group led by Tod Leiweke. After his experiences in Arizona with the Coyotes, I'm quite certain that Tippett is very aware of the legalities of the NHL and all of its rules, by-laws, and guidelines.

The fact that Dave Tippett has resurfaced in Seattle seems a little odd at first, but it makes entire sense when you consider that the expansion group, who is also responsible in getting an NHL-suitable arena ready, has very little experience in the everyday things an NHL franchise offers.

"There are a lot of times where you need somebody with some hockey experience, whether it be infrastructure like the dressing rooms, the training facilities, or putting together the groundwork of what a skeleton hockey staff would look like," Tippett told Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times.

While his experiences off the ice will still be needed, it seems that everything there is about a hockey traditionally - facilities, staff, players, trainers - will be handled by Tippett as Seattle prepares to join the NHL. I'd say the Seattle expansion group has a man in place to run the on-ice portion of the franchise as head coach if and when they finally are to name a head coach of the new expansion team, but time will tell what Tippett chooses to do if he wants to pursue that opportunity.

"We'll see," Tippett told Baker regarding a return behind the bench. "I'm not ruling it out. It would have to be the right situation. But also, I'm intrigued about getting into another part of the game with this."

While I wouldn't rule out a potential general manager's position at some point for Tippett, does he have enough experience there at this point? Would he accept a role of some sort of Director or Vice-President of Hockey Operations? Those could be possibilities in the future for Tippett where he wouldn't have to sacrifice the free time he's been using to work "on his golf game and taking trips to Hawaii with his wife," as Baker wrote about his free time.

For the next couple of years, it seems Tippett will resume an office job as he and people in the Seattle expansion bid work towards bringing the 32nd NHL team to life. While it's simple a mere formality for the NHL to announce the expected expansion into Seattle, the work being done behind the scenes to recreate a similar season that Vegas had has already begun.

Having Dave Tippett among those staff is a good hiring by the Seattle NoNameYets.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Tuesday 19 June 2018

It's Banner Time

No, we're not talking about Bruce Banner of the Hulk, but one superpower of hockey got its schedule today. It took them until mid-June, but Canada West has finally released the schedules for the 2018-19 men's and women's hockey seasons, and there are some big dates that should be pointed out on one of the schedules. Yes, I'm going to talk about the Manitoba Bisons women's hockey team here, so settle in and get ready for some information. There's a lot happening this season, and it's time that I let you all in on a few secrets that the program and UMFM have been keeping close to their chests regarding this season's broadcasts.

First off, if you're in town or coming into town and want to see the Bisons men's hockey team play, please click here. If you're interested in seeing the defending U SPORTS women's hockey champions in the Bisons women's hockey team play, please click here. You catch all home games on UMFM's Second Stream and on Canada West TV while select home games can be heard on the radio at 101.5 FM!

Ok, so you have all the places to find the Bisons this season whether in person or from afar. That's going to be important when it comes to the women's team trying to defend their Canada West crown and the U SPORTS National Championship. The men are going to give it their all in trying to unseat one of Saskatchewan or the defending U SPORTS National men's hockey champion Alberta Golden Bears, but they'll have their work cut out for them.

Let's get to the schedule. You'll note which team is at home based on the clear notation of the home team below. If Bisons women's hockey is at home, then the men are on the road playing the same team. The opposition for that week is listed next. The dates and times is listed as well, and special notes about specific games are also listed.

Date/Time Bisons Team Opposition Notes
7PM 10/5
CalgaryBanner Raising Night
Girls' Hockey Day
2PM 10/6
7PM 10/12
Alberta Alumni Night
Minor Hockey Night
7PM 10/13
Alberta n/a
7PM 10/19
Regina n/a
2PM 10/20
Regina n/a
7PM 10/27
Mount RoyalSuper Spooky Saturday
2PM 10/28
Mount RoyalSunday Game!
Nov 2 & 3
Conf. ByeNo games scheduled
7PM 11/9
2PM 11/10
7PM 11/16
UBC n/a
1PM 11/17
UBC n/a
7PM 11/23
4PM 11/24
7PM 11/30
Calgary n/a
2PM 12/1
Calgary n/a
Dec. 7 to
Jan. 3
Holiday BreakNo regular season games scheduled
7PM 1/4
2PM 1/5
7PM 1/11
Mount Royal n/a
2PM 1/12
Mount Royal n/a
7PM 1/18
ReginaPride Night
Alumni Night
4PM 1/19
7PM 1/25
Lethbridge Bell Let's Talk
Winter Classic
2PM 1/26
Lethbridge n/a
7PM 2/1
2PM 2/2
UBCSenior Students Game
7PM 2/8
Saskatchewan n/a
2PM 2/9
Saskatchewan Senior Students Game
There's your entire schedule for Bisons hockey at Wayne Fleming Arena this season. If you're wondering how to catch the away games for either team, the only way that will happen right now is through Canada West TV because most of the other schools aren't awesome enough to feature radio and internet radio broadcasts like UMFM offers. And this is where the changes that I mentioned above come into play.

Starting this season, the UMFM broadcasts will be simulcast over the Canada West TV broadcasts! There will be some modifications, but all the graphic overlays and information present on Canada West TV will also be discussed on the radio broadcast. In its most basic of explanations, Canada West TV and UMFM will have the exact same broadcast going out over the respective mediums. This way, listeners on both mediums will get the knowledgeable information and reporting that UMFM provides on the radio broadcasts that was previously unavailable on the Canada West TV broadcasts. As you probably know, UMFM does a lot of work in getting stories about the players last season to ensure high-quality broadcasts, and the feedback received by Bisons Sports suggested that this was missing on the Canada West TV broadcasts.

In short, no matter how you tune into games for Bisons hockey, you're going to get a top-notch broadcast team with unparalleled knowledge, stories, and information about your Bisons athletes. That's the whole point of these broadcasts, right?

There are more changes and more fun being planned for the broadcasts this season, and future announcements will be made as to what these additional changes are. For now, expect another great season of Bisons hockey this winter as we get set to deliver all the great action via UMFM and Canada West TV!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Monday 18 June 2018

Gonna Get Paid

There are a lot of words and phrases that can be used to describe NHL head coach Barry Trotz: dedicated, driven, meticulous, detail-oriented, Stanley Cup champion, and, as of today, free agent. Barry Trotz resigned his position despite having triggered a clause in this current contract that would have seen him extended by two seasons. The only problem is that Trotz' extension, had he accepted, still would have seen him as one of the lowest-paid coaches in the NHL. Instead, he opted to walk away from the Capitals and seek better compensation after leading Washington to the promised land.

Pierre Lebrun's tweet above sums up the situation with Barry Trotz quite nicely, so there really isn't anything that I need to expand upon except perhaps why he's seeking more money. As Pierre stated in his tweet, $1.8 million per season on that extension doesn't amount to anything close he could possibly get on the open market after leading the Capitals to the Stanley Cup.

As it stands, Toronto head coach Mike Babcock currently pulls in a cool $6.25 million per year, and he hasn't won a Cup since 2008. Chicago head coach Joel Quenneville is making $6 million annually, but he has three Stanley Cups to his name in Chicago. Montreal head coach Claude Julien makes $5 million annually, and his wins came with a far-superior Boston team compared to his current employer's team. With Trotz's successes in Washington, it's hard to see why he wouldn't command something in the same ballpark as the salaries of those listed above.

With Trotz being a free agent at this point, all the speculation has him going to Brooklyn where Lou Lamoriello could sign him to run the Islanders' bench just as Brendan Shanahan did with Mike Babcock. If that happens, it should make for an interesting summer for the Islanders as Andre Burakovsky could be on the block for the Capitals as well having Jay Beagle as a free agent. Both players were key cogs for Trotz with the Capitals this past season.

There are other destinations he could land as well if there is some movement in the NHL coaching ranks, but the only vacant head coaching job at time is with the Islanders unless Trotz renegotiates a deal with the Capitals. Regardless of where he lands, though, there is one absolute certainty: Barry Trotz is going to get paid!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Sunday 17 June 2018

One For One

I feel like Gary Bettman when he announces a trade at the NHL Entry Draft, but, ladies and gentlemen, we have a trade to announce as Montreal packaged up Alexander Galchenyuk and sent him off to the Arizona Coyotes for Max Domi in a straight one-for-one trade. While some will credit the Coyotes for picking up a talented centerman from the Canadiens where he was misused and often deployed as a winger, some are crediting the Canadiens for acquiring another tough-as-nails winger who can score to add to the likes of Gallagher and Shaw. Regardless of what one feels towards this trade, both players needed something to kick-start their careers once again, and this trade might be that catalyst.

My personal feelings on this trade is that it was dead-even for both the Coyotes and Canadiens. Arizona gets a skilled centerman whose usage in Montreal has been questioned since he arrived, and there's a chance for the Coyotes to re-establish Galchenyuk as the skilled, play-making centerman he showed infrequently under Claude Julien. Montreal gets another rugged-but-smallish winger whose tenacity and doggedness on the puck might have been overshadowed by his lack of production last season. In both cases, there's a lot of room for growth in both players.

What the Canadiens didn't need to do was trade away an underperforming, lack-of-confidence centerman as they are extremely thin down the middle when it comes to talent at the center position. Somehow, Galchenyuk needed to find a way out of Claude Julien's perceived doghouse, but he was never really given that chance. This will now put more pressure on the Canadiens' scouting staff as they hold the third-overall pick, and there will be an expectation that the Habs draft a prototypical centerman with that pick who has the potential to step into the lineup next season to fill the hole created by the Galchenyuk trade.

The Canadiens are getting a player who doesn't mind going to the front of the net, and often finds scoring chances from that area. Domi won't back away from playing in the high-traffic areas, and this was one of the weakest parts of the Canadiens' attack last season. He's also far more effective on the power-play than Galchenyuk ever was, and Montreal's 13th-best power-play shuld see an improvement with how Domi attacks the slot area with passes and with drives to the net while on the man-advantage.

The problem, to me, is that if the Canadiens use Domi as a centerman rather as a wing, they're asking for a ton of offensive trouble when it comes to generating offence. Domi, for all he's worth, needs to play alongside playmakers to be successful, and his finishing touch hasn't been anything like it was in junior hockey thus far in his NHL career. With Montreal possibly going with a Jonathan Drouin-Max Domi-Phillip Danault trio down the middle on their top three lines, that trio produces very little in the way of goals and could be the lowest-scoring trio of centerman on any NHL team this year. In other words, if the gamble to generate offence from the wing from Domi doesn't pay off and they move him to the middle, it could be a serious bust year for les bleus-blancs-et-rouges.

At the end of the day, two struggling young players get a chance to shed the tarnish they found in their previous homes with a fresh start in their home countries of origin. Galchenyuk will play center in Arizona, and should give the Coyotes another weapon to deploy behind the likes of Clayton Keller, Christian Dvorak, and Oliver Ekman-Larsson. Montreal will play Domi on the wing from everything being said, and that will help them if they push Domi to look to the middle of the ice more often for drives and passes. Whether or not that will happen will depend upon Claude Julien, but the Canadiens will get some added toughness along the wing if nothing else.

Who wins this trade? I'm going to say it's a wash at this time. The jury, however, is still out.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Saturday 16 June 2018

Neutral Site Game

The Manitoba Junior Hockey League released its schedule today, and there was one particular game that stood out to me based on the location of where the game is slated to be played. On October 27, the Virden Oil Capitals will meet the Selkirk Steelers in Gimli, Manitoba at the Gimli Recreation Center! I was a little surprised by this choice of a neutral site game as Gimli's population usually doubles to triples in the summer with the cottage folk, but remains fairly low when it comes to the winter. As much as I don't think Gimli would be a future location for the MJHL to expand into, the fact that the Steelers and Oil Capitals will play there should provide some insight as to what kind of crowd support the MJHL can get in the community.

As per the 2016 Canadian census, the permanent urban population of Gimli is 2246. That's not a figure that would indicate a large enough fanbase to support an MJHL team as Selkirk, the home team in this neutral site game, boasts an urban population of 10,278 as per the same census. Selkirk, for what it's worth, does fairly well with its attendance, but having 80% less people in town would hurt Gimli's chances at running a bigger operation in the MJHL. As a result, they do have the Gimli Vikings who play in the Keystone Junior Hockey League, a Junior "B" circuit in the province.

That being said, though, there's a great initiative here to push the game into potentially-interested communities and drive participation numbers up in said communities. As stated, Gimli is cottage country for many Manitobans over the summer, and that leaves very few permanent residents once the snow flies. Having some of the bigger teams in the MJHL play games in towns like Gimli should help push the game to new heights in those communities.

Selkirk is the closest MJHL team to Gimli, so it makes sense to have them as the home team. Getting last year's Turnbull Cup finalists in the Virden Oil Kings to meet them in Gimli bodes well for the play of the game as both teams should be competitive once again this season.

I think the MJHL taking a game to a neutral site is a smart idea. It shows the rest of the province the talent we're producing in Manitoba on the ice, and it showcases some great communities as potential future hosts for more games like this and, possibly, future teams for the MJHL. While Gimli may not fill a 10,000-seat arena, the fans are still as passionate as any other in this great province, and they'll be exemplary hosts for the Oil Capitals and Steelers in October!

If you have the means, make the trip north of Winnipeg and catch this game in a rather unique setting as Gimli, Manitoba hosts the MJHL on October 27, 2018!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Friday 15 June 2018

1967, 2014, 2018

What are years in which the three Toronto professional hockey teams last won their respective league championship trophy? If this was Jeopardy!, that answer would be correct as the AHL's Toronto Marlies downed the Texas Stars in Game Seven by a 6-1 score on Thursday night to capture the Calder Cup! While this championship won't erase 1967 in most hockey fans' minds, it does bring more legitimacy to the work being put in at the AHL level by Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment in trying to build a championship roster at the NHL level. If you're a fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs, the outlook is bright, but it still isn't guaranteed when it comes to erasing the ghosts of 1967.

If you're asking how 2014 factors into this, let's not forget that the Toronto Furies were the Clarkson Cup champions in that year. 1967 is, of course, the last time that the Maple Leafs won the Stanley Cup, and the Marlies added their names to AHL lore as they won the Calder Cup for the first time in their franchise history last night. If the Leafs could ever get their act together, the city of Toronto would be the most successful hockey city in Canada by a large margin. That, however, is a big "if".

Andreas Johnsson, who was named the Jack A. Butterfield Trophy winner as playoff MVP, and Mason Marchment each scored two goals while Carl Grundstrom and Ben Smith added single tallies in the game. Texas' Austin Fyten - brother of former Manitoba Bisons women's hockey captain Caitlin Fyten - scored the lone goal for the Stars. Garret Sparks recorded the win while Mike McKenna suffered the loss.

It's not the first time that a Maple Leafs affiliate has won the Calder Cup, but it has been a while since it happened. The one to do so? The New Brunswick Hawks way back in 1982. The Marlies, though, played in the 2011-12 Calder Cup Final, but were swept by the Norfolk Admirals. The St. John's Maple Leafs also played in a Calder Final, but they fell in seven games to the Adirondack Red Wings in 1991-92. There have been chances, but the Marlies finally ended the AHL drought this season after 36 years!

Andreas Johnsson, mentioned above, was on a different level than everyone last night. His speed and tenacity on the forecheck continually frustrated the Stars resulting in turnovers, and those turnovers was where Johnsson and linemates Miro Aaltonen and Carl Grundstrom went to work. Johnsson, a seventh-round pick in 2013 at #202 for the Maple Leafs, will almost assuredly be a regular in the NHL's blue-and-white next season after posting a point-per-game in the AHL this season and dominating when the stakes went higher in the Calder Cup Playoffs. He found some incredible chemistry with Grundstrom once he arrived in Toronto following his season with Frolunda, and the second-round pick in 2016 may push for a roster spot as well.

There will be questions as to who will lead the team next year with this season's leading scorer, Ben Smith, and the second-leading scorer in Johnsson potentially gone. Smith signed a deal with the German Elite League's Adler Mannheim hours following the victory, so there will be a significant chunk of the Marlies offence playing elsewhere next season.

Where one team suffers, though, another usually benefits, and the benefits will be seen close to home as Kyle Dubas - once the man responsible for building the Marlies - will now man the helm for the Maple Leafs. He has had first-hand experience watching this Marlies team develop, and that will spell good things for the Maple Leafs as replacements for high-priced free agents may be waiting in the wings. Dubas knows who would be closest to taking the next step, and that's a big benefit for the GM when it comes to finding available dollars for players like Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, and William Nylander.

Perhaps what was most noticeable this series was the difference in styles of play between the two teams. The Western Conference champions seemed to use a more physical game similar to their NHL affiliate as the Stars won battles using size and physical play. The Marlies used more of an NHL Eastern Conference style where team speed was always on display in the games that they played. Game Seven was all about that speed, and combined with the skill assembled on the roster the Marlies skated to the large margin of victory.

It was an inspiring season from a Toronto professional men's hockey team for once. The Marlies got out of the gate early, played incredibly smart, skilled hockey all season long, and it culminated in a championship lap with the Calder Cup. They came close before, so this victory was all the more sweeter. Congratulations to the Toronto Marlies, your 2018 Calder Cup champions!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Thursday 14 June 2018

The Hockey Show - Episode 299

The Hockey Show, Canada's only campus-produced radio show that strictly talks hockey, returns tonight with another big episode where we break down all the latest news, notes, and information coming out of hockey. This show might be a lot more serious than the craziness we've had over the last few weeks after a franchise-shattering story came out from one team and one man's extremely personal article about his struggles highlighted a number of problems league-wide for the NHL. Beans and I will go over these topics tonight, but we do have some business to conduct prior to hitting the big stories.

It was Teri, who had selected the Washington Capitals, versus John, who had selected the Vegas Golden Knights, in final round of the Survivor: NHL Playoffs contest, presented by Lay's and the Show Your Emotions contest, and Teri would emerge victorious! Teri becomes the first woman to win the contest, so that's pretty awesome. On her way to championship glory, Teri also defeated two-time reigning champion Tom, so she can also hang that accomplishment beside her brand-new Dallas Stars jersey! John, for making the making the final, will go home with a Bisons Sports gold t-shirt compliments of the University of Manitoba's Athletic Department! We'll talk to both finalists tonight on the show as we close-out the 2018 edition of Survivor: NHL Playoffs! A big thank you to all the competitors in this contest, and a huge thank you to Lay's for giving us a little extra emotion this postseason with your support!

As I was saying off the top, Beans and I have some serious issues to cover tonight. We're not going to shy away from the insanity happening in the nation's capital with the Senators, and we'll recap why the Senators might have had the worst season in NHL history when you consider all the stuff that has happened to that franchise this season. We'll also talk about the article written by former NHL defenceman Nick Boynton that appeared in The Players' Tribune about the struggles, depression, anxiety, and continued mental health battles he's dealing with due to concussions and head trauma after retiring from the NHL, and I highly recommend you read that article. We'll also discuss the recent lawsuit filed by former players of the University of North Dakota women's hockey team against the school for discrimination, some player signings and movement, and a pretty cool event happening in an ECHL city that may attract some attention! All this and possibly more happens tonight at 5:30pm CT!

"So how can I hear this show?" you ask. Well, the easiest way is for you to download the UMFM app on your phone or tablet. It's literally the easiest and most convenient way to listen to any of UMFM's great shows any time of the day, so go get it! Just follow this link on your iDevice or this link for your Android device and get the UMFM app! It's never been easier to tune into The Hockey Show or UMFM! Download the UMFM app today, and don't miss any of our great programming or shows! Of course, you can do the radio thing at the 101.5 frequency on the FM dial and you can always listen online via the UMFM website as well!

If you prefer social media, we try to remain up-to-speed there! Email all show questions and comments to! Tweet me anytime with questions you may have by hitting me up at @TeebzHBIC on Twitter. You can also post some stuff to Facebook if you use the "Like" feature, and I always have crazy stuff posted there that doesn't make it to the blog or show.

Tonight, Beans and I hand out prizes, talk about the implosion of the Senators, discuss Nick Boynton's emotionally-raw article, chat about the UND lawsuit, banter over player moves, and more only on The Hockey Show found exclusively on 101.5 UMFM, on the UMFM app, on the web stream!

PODCAST: June 14, 2018: Episode 299

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Wednesday 13 June 2018

Fighting The Good Fight

The loss of the University of North Dakota's women's hockey team is still, at its best, tragic. Financial shortfalls in North Dakota forced the state-funded university to slash its budgets across the board, and it was noticeably felt through the UND Athletics Department when the entire women's hockey program was cut from existence along with men's and women's swimming. On Tuesday, however, eleven players with two-or-more years of eligibility remaining who were part of the program filed a discrimination lawsuit against the North Dakota University System in an effort to see UND reinstate the program in its entirety.

The 11 former players, as reported by Grand Fords Herald's Brad Elliott Schlossman, include Breanna Berndsen, Kristen Campbell, Charly Dahlquist, Taylor Flaherty, Ryleigh Houston, Anna Kilponen, Rebekah Kolstad, Sarah Lecavalier, Alyssa MacMillan, Annelise Rice, and Abbey Stanley.

They hired Dan Siegel who recently represented former University of Minnesota Duluth women's hockey coach Shannon Miller in her discrimination lawsuit that saw her win the case and receive $3.74 million by a jury in March. While the cases differ, Siegel will argue discrimination once more as the lawsuit alleges that the university violated Title IX laws that prohibit women from being treated differently because of gender. As you may recall, men's hockey at UND wasn't touched by the cuts made by the Athletics Department.

Does this lawsuit have merit? I believe it does. And Siegel feels it would be in UND's best interest to come to a resolution before this case ever reaches a courtroom.

"I'm hoping UND would decide to take the right approach to this case and will agree to sit down and see if we can work it out," Siegel told Schlossman. "The sooner we work it out, the sooner the program could be put back to work and the less money UND will spend fighting the case and less money we will spend fighting the case. Hopefully, we can get an early resolution."

UND, of course, will have to weigh their options here as they have their lawyers examine the lawsuit with respect to Title IX laws. The law is pretty clear that "[n]o person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity," and the lawsuit filed by the eleven women is alleging, among other discrimination claims, that the university violated the Title IX laws by cutting the prominent program at the school. Again, I think they have merit on this claim.

It should be noted that two complaints that were filed by a UND student last year with the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights were both dismissed with one case citing the financial difficulties faced by the school as a factor in the dismissal of the complaint.

"That will not affect our suit at all," Siegel told Schlossman. "The OCR complaints were based on different facts and different legal theories. They didn't pass on the particular claims that we're making in our case."

This case should be very interesting. If Siegel has indeed found a way to argue the Title IX laws that will bring hockey back to UND, that will a huge victory for women's hockey on the whole, but especially in the area where a once-proud franchise would be resurrected. If this lawsuit is dismissed, this might spell the end of UND women's hockey for some time. Clearly, the stakes are fairly high when it comes to these eleven women pushing for a return to the school they all originally planned on attending.

I'll keep an eye on this case because I was and still am a big UND women's hockey fan. Let's hope that a judge or jury finds merit in this lawsuit so we could potentially see UND Fighting Hawks women's hockey back on the ice by 2019-2020 at the very latest!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!