Top Line: Brodeur gets candid on Kovy; Fehr to leave NHLPA?; more links
By Allan Muir
An annotated guide to this morning's must-read hockey stories:
• Martin Brodeur was candid about the impact of Ilya Kovalchuk's retirement on the Devils: "It's going to be a challenge to make the playoffs.
• The failing health of the current executive director has sparked rumors that Donald Fehr might leave the NHLPA to return to baseball. There's thought he might play and advisory role that would allow him to remain in his current position, but with seven (or so) years of labor peace ahead, he's not facing a lot of challenges here. Don't be surprised to see him moving in that direction soon.
• Patrice Bergeron hopes his new deal means he'll be a Boston Bruin for life. So does every fan of the team. There are plenty of locally beloved players around the league, but few inspire devotion on the level of Bergy.
• Steve Buffery is ticked off at the Hockey Hall of Fame. Which makes him no different, I suppose, than 100 percent of hockey fans whenever they stop to think about the Hall.
• So it seems everyone in St. Louis was lining up to kick David Perron in the backside as he left town. Apparently, he clubs baby seals in his spare time or lacks the ability to appreciate "Sharknado" ironically or something.
• This isn't so much a story about Perron as it is about the adherents of advanced stats. Those guys call Perron "elite," according to Edmonton GM Craig MacTavish. Think we're all looking forward to seeing evidence of that on the ice.
• A 17-year-old sniper is earning raves at Toronto's development camp.
• Michael Traikos is taking a detailed look at how well Canadian teams have addressed their most glaring needs over the past two weeks. Here's what he had to say about the Maple Leafs, the Jets, and the Senators.
• Seth Jones is making a fast impression in Nashville.
• Remember when the Isles were running around looking for players to sign amateur deals just hoping to ice six capable defenders? A wealth of talent in the prospect pipeline ensures that won't be a problem in the coming years.
• The Blackhawks got penalty killer Marcus Kruger signed to a new deal. Is coach Joel Quenneville next?
• Eight of Philadelphia's 13 draft picks over the past two years have been spent on defensemen. Two of them made a big impression at camp this week.
• Kelly Egan offers a fascinating look at the failed dreams behind the Ottawa Senators. Just in case you forgot for a moment that hockey is sometimes just the pretty wrapping on a much larger package.
• George Malik shares his impressions of the action at Detroit's rookie development camp. You know who really should enjoy this? Dallas fans. It's as much a preview of the riches to come for them now that their team employs Jim Nill and Joe McDonell as it is for Wings supporters who have some more immediate promise in their future.
• When is a shot counted as a shot? The IIHF is looking to standardize its standards with an eye on impoving the numbers used for advanced stats.