Top Line: Dire days for Red Wings; strife in Toronto; Roy's return; more links
An annotated guide to this morning's must-read hockey stories:
• The Red Wings won the game, but got another reminder that this might not be their year.
• Detroit is set to pay a significant price off the ice as well.
• Their relationship between goalie James Reimer and coach Randy Carlyle may be damaged beyond the point of repair, but until Jonathan Bernier comes back from his groin sprain, Toronto's playoff hopes are in the hands of its back-up 'tender. That being the case, it might behoove Carlyle to deal more diplomatically with Reimer until the coach can again afford to bury him at the end of the bench.
• The play of Avalanche rookie Nathan MacKinnon in that contest reminded Habs coach Michel Therrien of a couple of decent teenagers he's coached in the past.
• The Sharks outshot the Panthers 29-2 in the third period but couldn't get the equalizer past Roberto Luongo in last night's 3-2 loss to Florida. Luongo made 54 stops to lead his team to its third-straight win in San Jose.
• The coach and the GM of the Saginaw Spirit did not attend the funeral of Terry Trafford yesterday in Toronto, a decision that Steve Simmons calls inexcusable. It certainly seems that way, although I'd like to hear Greg Gilbert and Jim Paliafito explain their decisions.
• Seattle's city council delivered another kick in the teeth to the area's hockey fans. This isn't exactly a death blow, but it would seem to put plans for an NHL franchise squarely on the back burner in the Emerald City.
• Maybe the timing in Seattle actually works best for the NHL, which doesn't seem to be in any hurry to expand. Still, Commissioner Gary Bettman is meeting with interested parties, including some who are based in one Western city that would have seemed wildly unlikely just a few years ago.
• While the NHL takes its time growing its ranks, the KHL has confirmed three new teams for next season, including Dolphin Sochi.
• Sam Cosentino offers a look at the top-10 OHL prospects for this year's NHL draft. Not sure I have as much faith in Nick Ritchie as he does, but other than that, this is a strong list.
• Graeme Nichols says the numbers reveal that the play of the Senators' goalies is to blame for the team's sub-par system. • Mike Harrington looks back at the miraculous renovation of the flood-ravaged Saddledome.