Hockey Hugs is a feature that celebrates the best in hugging from around the sport of hockey, because who doesn't love a good hug now and then? Have you seen a particularly good hug photo lately? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org or Tweet it to @HarrisonMooney . Welcome once again to hockey hugs, the Puck Daddy feature that's all about the love. We're into the second round of the playoffs, and it's a double-edged sword. On the one hand, the hugs just keep getting more and more meaningful the further into the postseason you go. On the other hand, the variety is beginning to dwindle. Fortunately, many of the teams remaining have characters you can't help but chuckle at. The San Jose Sharks, for instance, have the Wookiee Brent Burns. What's he howling? Why, he's swearing a life-debt to Marc-Edouard Vlasic, just like Chewbacca! Meanwhile, the Boston Bruins are led by, basically, the Iron Giant in a spoked B, so they're going to produce a lot of great big-guy-little-guy shots. Case in point, this photo, where Brad Marchand looks less like a teammate and more like a troll that rides around on his back. Coming up: more hugs, unsurprisingly. We've been doing this awhile now. You know how it works.
Jonathan Toews has no goals in the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs, through eight games. He had two last postseason, through seven games. He had one in seven games against Vancouver in 2011. In 2010, when the Chicago Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup, Toews had one goal in the final 11 games of their run to the championship. It was still good enough for the Conn Smythe. We’re no math majors, but Toews has four goals in his last 33 playoff games. During that span, defenseman Brent Seabrook has three goals. For context’s sake. Reader ‘Hollis 22’ is wondering why Toews doesn’t take flack for this drought: “If Alex Ovechkin was in that kind of drought, the hockey media would be in his face with torches and pitchforks. In contrast, Joe Thornton has 5 goals in his last 27 playoff tilts, yet he and Patrick Marleau are viewed as guys that crumble in the playoffs. “Why this stat hasn't made its way to the forefront of the Chicago-Detroit series is mind-boggling to me.” The line of Toews, Marian Hossa and Brandon Saad has two points in three games against the Detroit Red Wings, who lead their series 2-1. That came on a Marian Hossa power-play goal in Game 1, on which Toews earned an assist. Otherwise, they’ve watched Henrik Zetterberg’s line do to them what they did to Zach Parise’s line in the Minnesota Wild series: Shut them down, while generating their own offense on the counterattack. Which is why criticism of Toews’s postseason offense can be sort of tricky.
Brian Burke was the architect of the USA Hockey team that rode the hot goaltending of Ryan Miller all the way to overtime of the 2010 gold medal match in the Vancouver Olympics. He was the general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs then. Now, he’s out of a GM gig; according to Sportsnet 590 in Toronto, that’s the reason he won’t be back in the same capacity for Team USA in Sochi 2014. As reported on the “Brady and Lang” show by co-host Greg Brady, Burke will not be asked back as the team’s general manager. As Brady tweeted: “Burke was told, as suspected, USA Hockey wants a current NHL GM. [Nashville GM David] Poile a strong candidate. Burke definitely wanted the job - obviously he made a huge commitment to after his son's tragic passing. Might be a mistake by USA Hockey.” Burke’s son Brendan died in a car accident on Feb. 5, 2010; the Winter Olympic hockey tournament in Vancouver began on Feb. 13, 2010. Burke worked through his personal tragedy, which served as an inspiration for the American players. He also made some bold decisions at GM that helped Team USA earn silver: Most notably the addition of Chris Drury to the roster, as the veteran center had become a high-priced punchline for the New York Rangers. Drury was one of the team’s best players in the tournament, and rewrote the legacy of his latter years in the NHL. The notion that a general manager needs to be currently employed in the NHL to take the reins of Team USA seems a bit odd.
The Toronto Marlies eerily mimicked the parent Maple Leafs in Game 6 of the Calder Cup Western Conference Semi-Final, as the Grand Rapids Griffins rallied from a two goal third period deficit with three goals in the final 10 minutes to win 4-3 at Ricoh Coliseum on Tuesday and eliminate the Blue and White from playoff competition. Carter Ashton and Paul Ranger gave Toronto a 2-0 first period le...
By Tony Ambrogio (@SNTonyAmbrogio) Getty Images A couple of observations from the Maple Leafs locker clean out: *The sting of the Game 7 loss to Boston is still fresh. *The Leafs won’t overspend to keep unrestricted free agent Tyler Bozak. *GM Dave Nonis expects to make his team better through trades, and not via free agency. Nonis may have said it best on Thursday talking about the heartbreaking playoff exit to Boston when he called it a “once in a lifetime.” “We have to find a way of flushing that memory out of our system because if we dwell on it for the next three months we’re not going to be prepared for October,” said Nonis. “The only thing I said to them is that it’ll take some time,” said coach Randy Carlyle. “Time will heal this, but we can never forget.” “I mean it stings,” winger James van Riemsdyk told me. “So you look for stuff going into the summer to try to maybe keep in the back of your mind and maybe push you through some of those workouts.” Now
NEW YORK -- One of the universal truths in the Stanley Cup playoffs is that the teams that receive secondary scoring are usually the ones that win games and series.
NEW YORK -- Daniel Paille's goal with 3:31 left in regulation was the game-winner in the Boston Bruins' 2-1 win over the New York Rangers in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden.
The Maple Leafs reaped the rewards during the 2013 season of allowing their top prospects to gain confidence and experience with the AHL Toronto Marlies. Nazem Kadri, Matt Frattin and Jake Gardiner all played a significant part in the Marlies 2012 run to the Calder Cup Final and that exposure made them more effective, mature and well-rounded hockey players. The organization is hoping that histo...
Jersey Fouls is our ongoing exploration of the rules and etiquette for proper hockey jersey creation and exhibition. If you spot what you think may be a foul in your arena, email a photo to us at email@example.com for inclusion in future installment. Via reader Jenni comes this bro-tastic bro-dacious Jersey Bro, bro: Seen at a Charlotte Checkers game, this guy was REALLY proud of his "BROVECHKIN" jersey, and asked me to take a picture of him (and the Nutcracker) with his own camera as well. I can assure you, the Checkers were NOT playing the AHL affiliate of the Capitals... so that too, is a foul, in my opinion! Your opinion is correct. This is a Russian nesting doll of Fouls. (Also, it speaks to the power of the Foul that we didn’t even notice the albino cousin of Cookie Puss holding a bag of peanuts next to him.) We were curious if “Brovechkin” was an actual thing, and not just Mike Green’s daily greeting to his captain. We discovered it has an Urban Dictionary entry: “a bro who has dirty swag.” That bro should probably find a Laundromat. Anyhoo, there’s also “Brovechkin” gear available on sites like Bros Like These Shirts , in case you absolutely have the need to call attention to what a wide bro-cabulary you have. Vomit. (Coming Up: A George Parros mustache Foul; a hideous Tampa sweater; Toronto Maple Leafs Tribute jersey; Detroit Red Wings hate Frankenjersey; another Caps Foul; Revisionist Sweaters; and a rather crude ‘69’ jersey.)
Anyone who has followed the Maple Leafs over the years has grown accustomed to certain names becoming fixtures in Toronto trade rumors. As with Eric Lindros in the late 1990â€™s and more recently Roberto Luongo, the name of Colorado Avalanche center Paul Stastny has been frequently mentioned as a possible solution for the organizationâ€™s lack of a top line center. Veteran reporter Howard Be...