Top Line: Captain Giroux abandons Flyers ship; Florida turmoil; more links
An annotated guide to this morning's must-read hockey stories:
• Nice use of the Monty Python classic bit "Brave Sir Robin" here by Marcus Hayes to illustrate how it looked when Philadelphia's Claude Giroux dodged the media after an embarrassing loss to New Jersey. This is exactly the kind of moment when the captain is supposed to stand up and take heat off his teammates, not heap it on them.
• Paint was peeled off the walls by plenty of yelling and cursing in the Florida's dressing room after the Panthers lost last night's game in Boston. No surprise that coach Kevin Dineen and assistants Gord Murphy and Craig Ramsay have been sent packing.
• There clearly are some folks out there who want fighting out of the game. You know who doesn't? The players.
• Here's another reason: Coach Patrick Roy puts players in positions where they're most likely to succeed. Case in point: the "demotion" of Nathan MacKinnon from second line to third in order to put him back at center, where he's most comfortable.
• Mike Heika says last night's OT win in Detroit shows that the Dallas Stars are taking on the personality of general manager Jim Nill. Not sure I've seen enough yet to fully agree with that, but I'll say this much: it's time for Dallas fans to start filling all those empty seats at the AAC. After sweeping a three-game roadie, this team is proving itself worth the price of admission.
• Brett Hull can still bring the funny.
• Sportsnet's insiders answer questions on problems in Carolina, Edmonton's top needs, and a potential fire sale in Calgary.
• Joe Thornton says the Sharks stunk up the joint on the way to their fourth consecutive loss. Is this the inevitable regression to the mean after a red-hot start, or do they really miss the mysteriously ailing Brent Burns that much?the legendary sniper Mike Bossy