Top Line: Instant impact for new nets; it's Spezza's time in Ottawa; more links
By Allan Muir
An annotated guide to this morning's must-read hockey stories:
• Here's a good look at those new nets, along with some insight into how they're supposed to impact play. Never a bad idea to try something different, but I give it three weeks before goalies alter their games to negate whatever value this change creates.
• Ed Tait offers some knee-jerk reactions to the Hockeyville contest. Sure can't argue with No. 1. That kid came to play.
• Mark Schiefele's strong performance on Winnipeg's top line suggested the 2011 first rounder could be ready to stick on his third try.
• A couple years back, Jason Spezza was getting booed every time he touched the puck at home. Now he's getting the C stitched on his sweater. Did the Sens make the right call in passing the torch to a player who always seemed more like a giggling goof than a leader in the past? Wayne Scanlan thinks so.
• "Every day, we're having meetings after practice and he's been the guy everybody's been overwhelmed with so far," said Colorado coach Patrick Roy. And he's not talking about Nathan MacKinnon.
• When a power play's been as lousy as Boston's over the past few years, any fresh approach is worth considering. This one just might work.
• Who has the best fans in the league? Montreal made a pretty convincing case last night.
• It's not often you hear a top prospect declare himself not ready for the NHL, but that's exactly what one Maple Leaf hopeful did yesterday.
• Dig into Kevin Dupont's potpourri column for a great line about one of Jaromir Jagr's more peculiar habits.
• The career of Mike Zigomanis might have taken an entirely different path if not for the fax machine issues that prevented the Sabres from signing him back in 2001. 12 years later, he finally has a chance to wear the blue and gold.
• New ownership is making life a whole lot easier in Phoenix.
• Vezina winner Sergei Bobrovsky came to Columbus' camp a different man. • Simon Gagne was tossed aside by the Flyers during last week's dalliance with Dan Cleary. He's feeling pretty butthurt about the whole thing.