Top Line: Awkward change comes to San Jose; more must-read stories
An annotated guide to this morning's must-read hockey stories:
• Change had to come to the San Jose Sharks dressing room after last season's playoff meltdown. Now it's up to the players to sort out a new leadership group. Shouldn't be too awkward with the old leadership still hanging around, right?
• Steve Moore's brother doesn't know what he's talking about when he claims there's no settlement in place in the lawsuit against Todd Bertuzzi and the Vancouver Canucks. Hard to figure out Mark Moore's motivations here, unless he feels his brother was incompetent to make a legally binding agreement.
• Former Penguins coach Dan Bylsma could have climbed off the unemployment rolls months ago. But he's not looking for just any job in the NHL. It has to be the right one. It's nice to have the luxury of picking your spots, eh?
• Could the Winnipeg Jets actually be worse this season? In one area, yes, but there should be real improvement in another. That's nice, but as long as its goaltending continues to rank at the bottom of the league, this team is going nowhere.
• Taylor Hall says his decision to reject Team Canada's invitation to play at the World Championships gave him the chance to come into this season healthy and ready to elevate his game.
• With a round of “best shape of my life” stories on the horizon, Justin Bourne tells you how to sort out the true 3% body fat types from the guys who spent the summer drinking beer on the links.
• Connor McDavid was in Buffalo Thursday to promote an upcoming game between his Erie Otters and the Niagara Ice Dogs. Not surprisingly, the topic of possibly playing for the Sabres one day came up. Here's what he had to say.
• The Ontario Hockey League's new anti-fighting and “dirty hit” rules are tough, but players will learn to live within the system. The real pressure now falls on the shoulders of the referees whose calls become more impactful than ever with new suspension protocols coming on line.
• Tim Leiweke isn't just another faceless exec who'll easily be replaced at Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, writes Cathal Kelly. His planned departure next summer will cripple the organization.
• On the other hand, Mark Zwolinski said Leiweke made radical changes in the way the Leafs go about their business, but they'll survive his departure in better shape than other MLSE teams.
• Twenty-nine of the NHL's most promising rookies are in Toronto this weekend. Here's why they'll leave with sore hands and an enduring hatred for signing autographs.
• The Champions Hockey League in Europe got underway and we already have 15 games in the books. Here's a look at the Day 1 action.
• And how about this early goal of the year candidate from HC Ocelari Trinec forward Marek Troncinsky? What a beauty.
• Pavel Datsyuk just out-skilled Paul Bissonnette in clothing design. Oh Biz, will you ever win?
• Here's a sweet infographic capturing the key events from one of the most remarkable individual seasons in hockey history.