It’s Easter Sunday evening and things have finally quieted down, here on the home front. It’s time now to browse around the news from the world of hockey and make my comments.
- The latest on first round draft pick Brandon Sutter…
Tom Gulitti of the North Jersey Record, recently interviewed New Jersey coach, Brent Sutter, about Jersey’s collapse against the Penguins. At the end of the interview, Brent spoke a bit about his son Brandon. “Sutter said that he expects his son Brandon to sign soon with the Carolina Hurricanes and finish the season with their affiliate in Albany”.
Good news for Albany. It will be interesting to see how he does there.
- Commodore unhappy in Ottawa?
Mike Commodore finally earned his first point as a Senator on Saturday night when Daniel Alfredsson deflected his shot into the Toronto net. The Ottawa Sun has an interview with Mike about his time with Ottawa thus far, and asks if he thinks that he might be signing with the Sens during the off-season.
Commodore said he’s been trying to figure out how to fit into the Senators’ system. In Carolina, the Hurricanes’ defensemen were active, jumping up often to pinch and generally playing a more “up-ice” game.
“Here, you back off and let the forwards do the work,” said Commodore.
Senators’ coach and GM Bryan Murray said he hasn’t been disappointed in Commodore’s play, and he believes the best is yet to come.
“I don’t know if he’s been anything, but he is big, with long hair and not a lot of skill,” said Murray. “He’s just got to get the puck out of trouble. That’s all I thought he was.”
(Not exactly a ringing endorsement from his coach.)
Commodore, an unrestricted free agent this summer, was asked if he would consider signing here.
“Before I sign a contract here, I have to see if I can play here,” he said. “The way it’s been going, I’ll wind up being a minus-300 player for my career.”
It sounds like “Commie” misses Carolina.
- Williams and LaRose hit the ice…
Justin Williams and Chad LaRose both practiced with the Hurricanes on Friday, for the first time since their respective injuries. Both appeared to be skating well and without any hint of distress. According to this interview with John Forslund on Friday morning, LaRose could be ready to play in a week or two, while Williams might be ready to crack the lineup in the first round of the playoffs!
That would be pretty inspiring, having Justin Williams return to action during the playoffs.
- Buffalo management does it again…
Remember back at the beginning of the season, when it was determined that Buffalo defenseman Teppo Numminen had a heart ailment and needed surgery? Sabres management, in all their benevolent glory, decided to suspend the signed player because he failed his physical and was unable to play. Yep, these are the same bungling fools who mismanaged their way into losing Danny Briere and Chris Drury, along with having to match an offer to sign Thomas Vanek to an absurd contract.
At the time Numminen, who had been with the Sabres the previous 2 years, was the epitome of class and never uttered a negative word about the decision or the organization. But it has recently come to light that he has filed a grievance against the Sabres, through the NHLPA.
Hmmm… Who do you think will win this disagreement: A team that suspended a player who had a guaranteed contract when he couldn’t play due to an unknown serious health problem? I really don’t think so. Tom Golisano, get out your checkbook.
I wonder how the other Buffalo players look upon this “loyalty” that the organization shows to one of its own in times of need. No wonder they can’t hold onto to any decent players once contract negotiations start.