Top Line: All's sunny in Philadelphia; new advanced stats site; more
An annotated guide to today's must-read hockey stories:
• Flyers GM Ron Hextall explains away his quiet summer by saying that sweeping changes were not needed in Philadelphia. In this interview with CSN, he explains where he expects to find positive growth within the organization.
• Is this a possible replacement for the late, lamented ExtraSkater.com? Stats geeks certainly hope so ... but if not, maybe this site will do the trick.
• Bruins winger Matt Fraser talks about the joys of playing in Boston, earning his place on the team and the OT goal that defines his career ... so far.
• Speaking of hard to look at, check out this rather amazing collection of purely awful hockey cards courtesy of the aptly named The Bad Hockey Card Blog.
• The salary cap limits how much money the Canucks can dedicate to their on-ice product, but over the summer they've shown that there's no limit to how much they can spend on the front office. This dedication to hockey brainpower could give Vancouver an edge as the organization battles its way back to respectability.
• Ken Campbell says that the highly anticipated Red Army documentary is ”raw with emotion and truth that totally hits the mark.” That sounds like an unqualified thumbs-up. Can't wait to see it.
• Larry Kwong, the Chinese-Canadian player who broke the NHL's color barrier in 1948 is the subject of another hockey documentary that's making the rounds.
• The city of Glendale, Ariz., has accepted a new arena budget from the Coyotes that has a larger revenue deficit than the one that the city rejected in May. Bad news, but that's not even the most shocking part of the story. You have to see the first budget the team submitted to the city. It reads like it was written in crayon on the back of a napkin.
• Is this would-be Predator the most annoying prospect in hockey? If not, he might be the funniest.
• Here's Evgeni Malkin being stopped on a breakaway in a Russian charity game ... by Alexander Radulov. Maybe now the former Predators forward understands why Barry Trotz was always yelling at him about backchecking. (s/t Dmitry Chesnokov)
• Want to follow the KHL on the web this season? Subscriptions to either single teams or the entire slate of games are now available.