Top Line: Blackhawks, Bruins facing post-Cup challenges; more links
By Allan Muir
An annotated guide to this morning's must-read hockey stories:
• The difference between the 2010 and 2013 Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks? This time around, management will be able to keep the team mostly intact.
• Well, except for Bryan Bickell.
• Rick Morrissey writes that the Blackhawks embody what Chicago is all about. Notice how no one ever writes stuff like this about a second-place team?
• The Hawks will have their parade on Friday. The mayor said it would be like "Ferris Bueller's Day Off," except, you know, school's already out.
• No denying that the Blackhawks jersey ranks among the most iconic in all of sports. It is a beauty. Which makes it tough to understand why the Trib used a photo of their practice jersey to illustrate this piece.
• If you're a fan of graphic representation of numbers, or even the Blackhawks, you'll dig this.
• Sean McIndoe writes about how the Hawks managed to avoid the pull of parity after winning the Cup in 2010.
• The Bruins have heard that adversity makes you stronger. They're just not in the mood to buy into that right now.
• The Boston Bruins have pressing player decisions and very little time to make them.
• Philly paid top dollar to bring Bryz to town. Now they're paying a record price to send him packing.
• Just because the Flyers need a goalie doesn't mean they become natural trade partners for the Canucks. If anything, the Bryzgalov buyout might force Vancouver to do the same with Roberto Luongo to finally be rid of his deal.
• This little Iggy is going to market.
• SI's own Michael Farber examines the use of hockey as a tool to facilitate peace in Northern Israel. This is awesome.
• Don't live in Canada? Couldn't catch TSN's Draft Preview last night? Well, now you can. Actually, now you should.
• The abundance of highly regarded QMJHL prospects at this year's draft proves the wisdom of four-year strategy launched by provincial authorities in 2009 to focus on the development of one-on-one skills, fundamentals, physical fitness and sports psychology.
• The Calgary Flames hold the sixth overall selection on Sunday. They've picked from that spot three times in the past. It hasn't always worked out.
• Ottawa is going the "best player available" route with the 17th overall pick on Sunday, but recent history suggests their fans shouldn't expect a quick fix ... or maybe even a long-term option.
• John Tortorella made a good first impression in Vancouver. Of course, it's a lot easier to be friendly and thoughtful in the summer than it is when your team is mired in a five-game losing streak in January. • The Canucks held an online press conference and opened the floor to fans before officially introducing Tortorella to the media. Even as one of those ink-stained wretches forced to the back of the line, I have to admit this was a genius idea.