Hockey Notes - April 28th

- League and union have no options but to make deal - SF Chronicle.

- Both the NHL and NHLPA have to negotiate with more urgency, or the possibility of a full 2005-06 season is slim as well. In positive CBA news, the NHL and NHLPA have agreed to a more aggressive schedule of negotiations believed to be 6 meetings in the next 3 weeks. In negative CBA news, the NHLPA has filed for union certification in British Columbia and Quebec. It is a move to make the use of replacement NHL players in Canada illegal.

- Team USA won the IIHF Under-18 World Championships with a 5-1 win over Team Canada in the Czech Republic.

U-18 USA coach Ron Rolston told USAhockey.com:

The win is great for our program and for USA Hockey. Anytime you play a Canadian hockey team, you definitely have to bring your best to the table and, fortunately, that was the case for us tonight. I thought our kids battled hard and did a good job in the victory.

The table is now set for the 2005 IIHF Mens World Championships. Sorry world, but it is defeat Canada or bust for Team USA. More: USA Women win 2005 World Championship in Sweden.

- Jes Golbez takes a look at Team Czech.

- The Alaska Aces defeated the Long Beach Icedogs 3-1 Monday in front of the sold out Sullivan Arena in Anchorage. Alaska advances to the National Conference finals for the first time in their franchise history. One more series win will give them a chance to play for the ECHL 2005 Kelly Cup.

- AHL quick hits from theahl.com:

AHL Quick Hits -- April 28, 2005

The spotlight shines on the Atlantic Division tonight, as Manchester hosts Providence and Lowell visits Hartford in a pair of pivotal Game 5's. Follow the action from both of tonight's Calder Cup Playoff games live on the AHL's real-time scoreboard, or listen in to our teams' game cybercasts from your own computer.

Manitoba pushed St. John's to the brink of extinction with a 3-2 overtime win in Game 4 last night, taking a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven North Division semifinal Winnipeg native Lee Goren scored the winning goal on a power play 2:35 into OT, the Moose's second PPG in 25 chances in the series The game was played before a capacity crowd of 8,812 at the MTS Centre Clarke Wilm scored twice for the Maple Leafs, his first postseason goals since the 1998 Calder Cup Final.

Cincinnati staved off elimination as Zenon Konopka and Michael Holmqvist scored power-play goals in the final 4:05 of regulation to give the Mighty Ducks a 3-1 win over Milwaukee in Game 5 last night Shane OBrien added a goal and an assist and Joffrey Lupul and Ryan Getzlaf had two assists each For Getzlaf, they were the first two points of his pro career Ilya Bryzgalov got his first start of the series and made 20 saves for Cincinnati.

Philadelphia got two goals and an assist from Jeff Carter and 40 saves from Antero Niittymaki in a 4-1 win over Norfolk last night, giving the Phantoms a 3-1 series lead The 20-year-old Carter, who scored at least 34 goals in each of the last three seasons at Sault Ste. Marie (OHL), leads the Phantoms with three goals in the series Patrick Sharp added a goal and an assist for Philadelphia, his fifth and sixth points of the postseason.

Andy Chiodo made 23 saves for his fourth career playoff shutout as Wilkes-Barre/Scranton evened up their East Division semifinal with a 2-0 win over Binghamton in Game 4 Matt Murley opened the scoring late in the first period, and Colby Armstrong gave the Penguins breathing room with 10:52 left in regulation… Ray Emery made 20 saves in defeat.

Jason Holland scored with 48 seconds to go last night, giving Manchester a big 3-2 win at Providence and squaring their Atlantic Division semifinal at two games apiece Dustin Brown had a goal and an assist and Mike Cammalleri and Tom Kostopoulos added two assists each Tomas Kurka and Milan Jurcina scored for the Bruins Mathieu Garon, lifted from Game 3 after allowing five goals in two periods, settled in and made 24 saves on the night for the Monarchs... Game 5 is tonight (7:05 ET) at the Verizon Wireless Arena, where Manchester is 2-7 all-time in the postseason.

Another pivotal Game 5 tonight (7:05 ET) has Lowell visiting Hartford with their series knotted at 2-2 The Lock Monsters second line of Ryan Bayda, Mike Zigomanis and Chad Larose has accounted for six of the teams eight goals in the series… Jeff Hamilton has recorded a point in each of the four games for the Wolf Pack (3g, 3a) Hartfords Steve Valiquette and Jason LaBarbera, the AHLs top two goalies in the regular season, have a combined .943 save percentage through four games.

Game 5 - Lowell at Hartford, 7:05
Game 5 - Providence at Manchester, 7:05

Not sure how I started receiving the AHL updates, but they are much appreciated. You can see a photo Wilkes-Barre/Scranton goaltender Andy Chiodo making a save for the Pittsburgh Penguins here. More on Chiodo from theahl.com.

- A fan from Moose Factory, Canada sends in an article on Sharkspage favorite Jordin Tootoo, Admirals Tootoo an interesting character - Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Jordin had 10 goals, 12 assists and 266 PIMs in 59 games for the AHL Milwaukee Admirals this season. Milwaukee lost their first round Calder Cup playoff series with Cincinnati 3-1. For more on Jordin Tootoo visit his official site teamtootoo.com, and check this post for a few photos of Jonathan Cheechoo practicing with HV71 of the Swedish Elite League.

- Patrick Ehelechner signs with Deutscher Eishockey Liga team Adler Mannheim.

- The SJSU Ice Hockey Awards Banquet is 6PM tonight at the The Drying Shed in San Jose. Congratulations to the team on a successful season. I can not be there tonight, but I will be there next season!

- Video of the French Canadian singer flubbing the US national anthem twice, before coming out a third time with lyrics in hand only to fall flat on the ice. It is painful to watch but apparently she rebounded nicely, singing the song in its entirety on Good Morning America. Someone put her in a room with Bettman and Goodenow and lock the door.

- PRESS RELEASE: Watch Live Hockey Online -- 2005 IIHF World Championship Presented by MediaZone.com and IHWC.net; Complete Schedule of 56 Matches Will Be Offered Online Live and On Demand in Partnership with IHWC.net on MediaZone's Hockey Channel. More details and information about a package from USA hockey are available on SJsharks.com. My original post on Mediazone and hockey webcasts is here.

- Photographers Decry Getty Images's Hockey Memo - PDNonline.

- San Jose lands another sports team, the ABA San Jose Skyrockets. Coach/GM? Someone get Dr. J on the phone.

- Site Notes: Added Davis Indoor to the rinks page. Added the NY Times and LA Times to the NHL news section. Added Mike Chen, the SJ Sky Rockets, and the SJ Grand Prix to the San Jose section.

- Thanks for the donations sent in by fans this month. They are much appreciated.

[Update] I wanted to make sure to post a link to this Morning Buzz column from Victor Chi in the San Jose Mercury News. For some reason this blog is being hit by visitors from the NHL, NHLPA, NBA and MLB today. Maybe the right eyeballs will see this blurb:

ESPN has until June 1 to decide on its $60 million option to carry NHL games next season. But with the network committing so much cash to the NFL, it could pass on hockey or look to get it at a cheaper price.

"We fully grasp we cannot acquire every property out there," ESPN vice president Mark Shapiro told the New York Post. "We are putting our stock in the NFL and we are getting behind that horse. Other horses won't be able to run because of our deal with the NFL. That is the decision we made."

And the NHL?

"We believe that any rebuilding of that property would benefit from having ESPN behind it," Shapiro told the Post. "We would like to do a deal, but that deal needs to be on our terms."

You can find more details about the current NHL television deal with NBC here.

The loss of a $600 million upfront ABC television deal for a revenue split with NBC dwarfs anything from ESPN, but the words from Shapiro are another shot across the bow for the league. If ESPN loses the NHL, it will only increase the exodus of sports fans who used to watch actual sports on the channel and Sportscenter for sports news. But if ESPN earns better ratings for Poker, reality programming, and "Good Morning Bristol", who can blame them?

The owners may be pushing their terms on the players, but it was the opposite for 10+ years under the last CBA. And while ESPN is passing along the NFL cost to viewers, the NHL is passing along NBC/ESPN revenue linkage to players.

[Update2] NFL Deal could squeeze the NHL - NY Post.


Long Beach drops first two games to Alaska in the ECHL West Division Final

ECHL Long Beach Ice Dogs Alaska Aces

Alaska Aces goaltender Peter Aubry makes a save in a shower of ice during a 2-1 OT win over the Long Beach Icedogs Friday night. Aubry finished the evening with 34 saves on 35 shots. Ryan Bast's first playoff goal of his career came 3 minutes in overtime with assists by Ryan Gaucher and B.J. Young.

The Aces picked up a 4-2 win Saturday on the strength of 2 third period goals by B.J. Young and Chris Talbot. The best-of-five ECHL series continues Monday at the Sullivan Area in Anchorage. Alaska leads 2-nil, with 3 chances to win the Western Division and advance to the National Conference finals. The winner will face the Atlantic Conference champ for the 2005 Kelly Cup.

ECHL Long Beach Ice Dogs Alaska Aces

Scott Gomez

Click here for a photo gallery from Alaska's 2-1 OT win Friday night. Radio from the game is broadcast online at ibsu.net. Bill Courtland calls the games for Long Beach.

Long Beach Icedogs forward Bill Lindsay made a brief stopover in San Jose during the 2000-2001 NHL season. In 14 games as a Shark [plus 6 playoff games], Lindsay scored 4 assists and registered 29 penalty minutes.

ECHL.com notes from Game 2 of the Alaska-Long Beach series, and a few notes from Game 1 as well.

[Update] ECHL bans Langdone 8 games for hit on Gomez - CBC.

The East Coast Hockey League suspended Langdone for eight games on Friday for blind-siding NHL centre Scott Gomez during a game against the Alaska Aces last Saturday.

Gomez, who left the New Jersey Devils temporarily for the Aces during the NHL lockout, will need at least a month to recover from a broken pelvis, said Devils president and general manager Lou Lamoriello.

[Update2] Interesting former, current, and future Shark news from around the league:

- Report: Lombardi to interview with Ducks - TSN.

- Marleau cast for prime-time role on world stage - Globe and Mail.

- Kaspar in comfort zone - Ottawa Sun.

- Kaspar scores OT game winner - SJsharks.com.

More on Lombari here.


Several San Jose Sharks, Mike Ricci, and Owen Nolan scrimmage with SJSU

San Jose Sharks SJSU scrimmage

San Jose Sharks SJSU scrimmage

A few San Jose State and local hockey players scrimmaged with Owen Nolan, Mike Ricci, Mike Rathje, Brad Stuart, and Wayne Primeau among others today at Logitech Ice in San Jose. In addition to getting a few turns in on the ice, and a few verbal jabs in at Mike Ricci [ok, a lot of verbal jabs], it was nice to see a few of the pros dish puck after puck to the SJSU guys.

Click here for a few photos. More will be added later this weekend.

Scott Gomez injured in OT playoff game, garners ECHL scoring title and MVP honors

Scott Gomez ECHL Alaska Aces

At the start of this season, I posted about Scott Gomez taking $500 a week to play for the Alaska Aces of the ECHL. With the insurance premiums exceeding his salary, he was literally paying to play the game in front of his hometown fans. There was minor criticism at the time that he was taking away a roster spot from an ECHL player, but one of the conditions of his contract was that they create an extra roster spot for him.

News over the weekend was not good, Scott Gomez broke his pelvis when a hit from behind sent him into the open door at the Alaska Bench. To add insult to Gomez's injury, Alaska dropped the fourth game of the best of five playoff series 4-3 in OT. The Aces put a 6-2 hurting on Bakersfield in the fifth and deciding game to move on to a second round series with Long Beach.

In better News, Scott Gomez was named the CCM TACKS 2005 ECHL Most Valuable Player. Gomez won the ECHL scoring title with 73 assists and 86 points in 61 games played [13 goals, +26, 26 PPA, 69 PIMs]. Chris Minard of Alaska finished 2nd in MVP voting, with Pensacola goalie Frederic Cloutier and Idaho rookie goaltender Frank Doyle tied for third.

Injury to Devils' Scott Gomez Not as Bad as First Feared - NY Times.

Visit the Alaska Aces, Long Beach Ice Dogs, or ECHL websites for more information. Here is the Fresno-Alaska photo gallery from the 2-1 Alaska win November 6th.

[Update] Long Beach Icedogs vs Alaska Aces second round playoff schedule:

Series J

West Division Final
[2] Long Beach (43-20-9) vs. [1] Alaska (45-19-8)

Friday, April 22
Alaska at Long Beach 7:30PM

Saturday, April 23
Alaska at Long Beach 7PM

Monday, April 25
Long Beach at Alaska 7:15PM

*Thursday, April 28
Long Beach at Alaska 7:15PM

*Friday, April 29
Long Beach at Alaska 7:15PM

[Flashback] Aubry the difference as Aces sweep Falcons - Alaskaaces.com. Nice photo!

[Update2] The Fresno Falcons did not renew the contract of head coach Greg Spenrath. With the previous announcement by GM Blaine Moore that he would not be back, Fresno is looking to hire one candidate to fill both positions.

Fresno Falcons owner Charles Davenport told the official website:

At the end of the day, though, we have failed to make the playoffs two years in a row. With Blaine leaving as well, I felt it was time for a fresh start. I expect and our fans deserve a team that competes for the Kelly Cup Championship every season, and I'm committed to finding the right person to lead the Falcons back to the post-season for a chance to win another title.

NHL and NHLPA statements on April 19th CBA negotiations, NHL statement on Board of Govenors meeting

The NHL statement on the April 19th CBA negotiations, via NHLcbanews.com:


NEW YORK (April 19, 2005) - Representatives of the National Hockey League and NHL Players' Association today resumed discussions regarding a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. The League was represented by Commissioner Gary Bettman; Harley Hotchkiss of the Calgary Flames, chairman of the NHL Board of Governors; NHL Executive Vice President & Chief Legal Officer Bill Daly; Boston Bruins owner Jerry Jacobs; Nashville Predators owner Craig Leipold; New Jersey Devils Chief Executive Officer, President and General Manager Lou Lamoriello; NHL Executive Vice President and Director of Hockey Operations Colin Campbell; NHL Senior Vice President, General Counsel David Zimmerman, and attorneys Bob Batterman and Shep Goldfein.

After the meeting, which lasted approximately 6-1/2 hours, Mr. Daly released the following statement:

"While we continued to discuss various issues relating to the concept that was introduced at our April 4 meeting, no substantive progress toward a new agreement was made. The parties have agreed to arrange a more aggressive meeting schedule over the next several weeks in an attempt to move the process forward. We remain committed to doing everything we can to reach a negotiated solution as soon as possible."

The NHLPA statement on the April 19th CBA negotiations, via NHLPA.com:


NEW YORK (April 19, 2005): At the conclusion of today's meeting in New York, National Hockey League Players' Association (NHLPA) Senior Director Ted Saskin released the following statement:

"While we discussed many of the issues related to concepts that we introduced at our last meeting, we were unable to make any progress today. I am concerned that the NHL is not serious about developing new concepts together and remains fixated on measuring all of our proposed concepts against a linked, hard-cap system. I fail to see how we can make any progress if the NHL maintains their single-track approach. I expect Bob and Gary will be speaking again soon to discuss any next steps."

The NHL also released a statement on the April 20th Board of Govenors meeting in New York:


NEW YORK (April 20, 2005) - The Board of Governors met in New York for approximately four hours today, after which Commissioner Bettman conducted a brief news conference that included the following remarks regarding the Board's position going forward:

"What we have said consistently is, we're planning on having a season. That doesn't change. We're planning on opening on time. That doesn't change. What we're making clear, though, is the circumstances under which this will come about: We're still planning on going forward, we're still planning on opening a season on time, but we're making clear that we're not going to open on time if we don't have a new CBA with our players."

Now that my brother Chris is in NYC, it might be possible for me to cover the occasional NHL announcement from the source.

[Update] Congrats to James Mirtle on his new position with the Globe and Mail. Doh! I originally said the National Post. Maybe he can lend me the services of one of their editors.

[Update2] An interesting page listing all the NHL players who played abroad from the NHLPA. It would be nice if the totals from the 2004-05 season were added to their Bio page, in addition to a listing for the player's agent. Thanks to the Ice Block for the link. Jamie Fitzpatrick examines the winners and losers who went abroad. That column is a must read.

[Update3] In competely unrelated news, Letsgodigital reviews the new Nikon D50 DSLR, and DPreview examines the new Nikon D70s DSLR.

[Update4] Sharks goaltending prospect Jason Churchill has been relegated to a backup role this season after the impressive play of mid-season acquisition of Jeremy Duchesne [son of Gaetan Duchesne]. The Halifax Mooseheads face the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies in the QMJHL semifinals. Sidney Crosby leads Rimouski Oceanic against Chicoutimi Sagueneens in the other QMJHL semifinal.


Radio/Streaming/Television online hockey broadcasts

An online hockey broadcast section has been added to this weblog, scroll down to the right. Any quality live radio, online streaming, or television broadcast links will be added to this list. Pay-per-view broadcasts will be followed by a PPV. Online hockey radio shows and podcasts will be added at a future date to a more in-depth list on the links page.

Thanks to Aaron Bell of the CHL for the link to the OHL website, and a link to this press release: Ontario Hockey League launches OHL Live Stream - Ontariohockeyleague.com. He mentions the WHL has plans to stream games online next season.

Several QMJHL games were available for free on Friday nights on Eastlink.ca. An Eastlink representative said QMJHL playoff games would not be streamed online because of a conflict involving the league. The online video quality of Eastlink's broadcasts was very high.

ESPN360 could not say at this time if they would stream games online from the 2005 IIHF World Championships in Austria. As soon as I get more info, I will post it. ESPN Broadband streamed several 2004 World Cup games to compliment the coverage on ESPN and ESPN2. Earlier this year, ESPN360 had a free trial broadcast of a Swedish Elite League game between Farjestad vs Modo.

Submit your hockey broadcast links, or a schedule of games your network is broadcasting here.

[Update] Ask and ye shall receive. Reader Eric from London sends in an email about mediazone.com. For $29.99 [if you sign up prior to April 27th], you can watch all 56 IIHF 2005 World Championship games streamed online from Austria. Here is the mediazone FAQ. The service is not available from several countries including Canada, Austria, Denmark, Finland, Russia, and Sweden. From what I have read, it should be available in the USA.

More from Infront Sports & Media's Emiko Minami:

We are pleased to inform you that the event will be web-casted via Internet in all territories in which no TV station broadcasts the Event.

[Update2] Sharks 2004 1st round draft pick Lukas Kaspar has advanced to the OHL Eastern Conference Semifinals with the Ottawa 67s. Kaspar had a goal and two assists in the 7-4 win that eliminated the Sudbury Wolves in the semifinals. Live broadcasts of the games are available for $5.95, reduced from $8.95.

The Ottawa-Peterborough Eastern Conference championship schedule:

Game 1 - Thurs Apr 21 at PET, 7:00PM
Game 2 - Sat Apr 23 at OTT, 7:00PM
Game 3 - Mon Apr 25 at PET, 7:00PM
Game 4 - Wed Apr 27 at OTT, 7:00PM
Game 5* - Fri Apr 29 at PET, 7:00PM
Game 6* - Sun May 1 at OTT, 2:00PM
Game 7* - Mon May 2 at PET, 7:00PM

* If necessary.
** All times Eastern.

[Update3] David from the Ice Block emails two more PPV hockey streaming links:

CHL - http://www.chltv.com
UHL - http://www.theuhl.com/webcast.php


Hockey Notes - NHL Cold War edition

- NHL labour talks resume Tuesday - CBC News.

- The NHL and NHLPA met again today, presumably to discuss saving the 2005-06 NHL season. There was a wave of euphoria among the hockey media last week over both sides discussing a "hybrid" salary/revenue linkage. Color me skeptical.

- According to Ansar Khan, 3 scenarios are emerging for today's talks.

- The league and players union could make significant progress toward a new collective bargaining agreement.

- Owners could formalize plans for the league to declare impasse and start next season with replacement players.

- The NHL might decide against using replacements and announce that play will only resume after a negotiated settlement with the union, even if it means scrapping part or all of next season.

1. No chance, 2. Expect a firestorm of dissent among players/owners/fans over this issue, 3. Worst-case scenario. The NHL Board of Govenors meets Wednesday. If progress is not made towards a CBA agreement today, look for significant movement on scenario 2 or 3 tommorow.

- The night before negotiations: Daly: Union is stalling - Ottawa Sun.

- NHL Truth and Rumors - Sports Illustrated.

- Truth: there was no 2004-05 NHL season. Rumor: there will be a 2005-06 NHL season.

- What will happen with the NHL players who had contracts expire last season? SPECTOR: Some players will be hard to sign - Prince of Pucks.

- The 2005 World Hardball Roller Hockey championship will be held in San Jose August 6th through August 13th.

- Karpat shut out Jokerit 2-0 to win the best-of-five Finnish hockey championship 3-1. Karpat won their second straight SM-Liiga championship on goals from Petr Tenkrat and Mika Pyorala. Goaltender Niklas Baeckstrom made 20 saves to register a shutout.

- Finland announces its lineup for the 2005 World Hockey Championship in Austria. Strong on the blueline, but without some traditional key players in net, Finland will be an underdog against Sweden in Group C play.

- Denmark will have its hands full trying to advance out of Group C play. As the unofficial Danish ambassador to the San Francisco Bay Area, all I can say is: Remember 2003! If downing Team USA 5-2, and tying Team Canada 2-2 does not put your national team on the map, then move to North Korea.

Photos from the 2003 World Championship games with USA and Canada, from Ishockey.dk and ihwc.net.

- Danish hockey turns the corner - Peter Seeberg.

- More on Oulun Karpat and a 2004 SM-Liiga championship photo from oulunkarpat.fi. More on the Karpat "baby beast" hockey cheerleaders.

- John Buccigross lets the fans air out their opinions on 10 NHL rule changes. I like option 9, option 7 should be changed to "no music before faceoffs that does not come from an organ", and option 11 should be "add 5 feet to all 4 sides of the rink". I understand you grew up watching the Boston Bruins play in the phone booth called the Boston Garden, but when a player has to sit on a goalie just to generate an offensive chance, then there is not enough room on the ice. I direct your attention to Exhibit #1: Zdeno Chara.

- Make your votes for the 2khockey.net dream team. Sega bailed on the sports video game business, which raised a few eyebrows. Take Two Interactive created a new line of 2ksports video games, and will continue the ESPN hockey video game franchise. You can purchase the game here. Scroll down to the right for a few hockey video game links.

[Update] A few hockey blog posts of note:

- Vancouver Canucks GM Brian Burke sues NY Post writer Larry Brooks - James Mirtle.

- Why hockey is not baseball - Wisseewig.

- Michigan Final grades - Mgoblog.

[Update2] And now for something completely different, Eklund. I trust his "anonymous" sources about as far as I can throw Ray Ratto, but over the last week he has interviewed Paul Hendrick of LeafsTV, John Buccigross, and one of my favorite hockey columnists Tim Panaccio.

Make sure to take a look at this Eklund retrospective from Ordinary Least Squared, and Offwing's interview with the anonymous one. The second edition of the Sharkspage Enquirer might feature an all-Eklund issue.

[Update3] Sharks radio announcer Dan Rusanowsky writes about the HP Pavilion of San Jose's bid for the 2005 Frozen Four tournament. Sponsored by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, San Jose made it all the way to the final grouping before Ohio State's Value City Arena was chosen as the host site. Dan details the upcoming 3 Frozen Fours [2006-Milwaukee, 2007-St. Louis, 2008-Denver], and the finalists for 2009-2011 [Boston, Detroit, Philly, Tampa, St. Paul, Washington DC].


2005 AHL Calder Cup Playoff Schedule

Via a press release from the AHL. Visit Caldercup.com for more information.

2005 Calder Cup Playoff Schedule

Division Semifinals

Atlantic Division -- Series "A" (best-of-7)
A1-Manchester Monarchs vs. A4-Providence Bruins
Game 1 - Fri., Apr. 22 - Providence at Manchester, 7:35
Game 2 - Sat., Apr. 23 - Providence at Manchester, 7:35
Game 3 - Mon., Apr. 25 - Manchester at Providence, 7:05
Game 4 - Wed., Apr. 27 - Manchester at Providence, 7:05
*Game 5 - Thu., Apr. 28 - Providence at Manchester, 7:05
*Game 6 - Sat., Apr. 30 - Manchester at Providence, 7:05
*Game 7 - Mon., May 2 - Providence at Manchester, 7:05

Atlantic Division -- Series "B" (best-of-7)
A2-Hartford Wolf Pack vs. A3-Lowell Lock Monsters
Game 1 - Thu., Apr. 21 - Lowell at Hartford, 7:05
Game 2 - Sat., Apr. 23 - Lowell at Hartford, 7:05
Game 3 - Sun., Apr. 24 - Hartford at Lowell, 4:00
Game 4 - Tue., Apr. 26 - Hartford at Lowell, 7:00
*Game 5 - Thu., Apr. 28 - Lowell at Hartford, 7:05
*Game 6 - Sat., Apr. 30 - Hartford at Lowell, 7:00
*Game 7 - Sun., May 1 - Lowell at Hartford, 6:05

East Division -- Series "C" (best-of-7)
E1-Binghamton Senators vs. E4-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins
Game 1 - Fri., Apr. 22 - WB/Scranton at Binghamton, 7:05
Game 2 - Sat., Apr. 23 - WB/Scranton at Binghamton, 7:05
Game 3 - Mon., Apr. 25 - Binghamton at WB/Scranton, 7:05
Game 4 - Wed., Apr. 27 - Binghamton at WB/Scranton, 7:05
*Game 5 - Fri., Apr. 29 - WB/Scranton at Binghamton, 7:05
*Game 6 - Sun., May 1 - Binghamton at WB/Scranton, 5:05
*Game 7 - Mon., May 2 - WB/Scranton at Binghamton, 7:05

East Division -- Series "D" (best-of-7)
E2-Philadelphia Phantoms vs. E3-Norfolk Admirals
Game 1 - Fri., Apr. 22 - Norfolk at Philadelphia, 7:05 (WC)
Game 2 - Sat., Apr. 23 - Norfolk at Philadelphia, 7:05 (WC)
Game 3 - Mon., Apr. 25 - Philadelphia at Norfolk, 7:30
Game 4 - Wed., Apr. 27 - Philadelphia at Norfolk, 7:30
*Game 5 - Fri., Apr. 29 - Philadelphia at Norfolk, 7:30
*Game 6 - TBA - Norfolk at Philadelphia
*Game 7 - TBA - Norfolk at Philadelphia

North Division -- Series "E" (best-of-7)
N1-Rochester Americans vs. N4-Hamilton Bulldogs
Game 1 - Wed., Apr. 20 - Hamilton at Rochester, 7:05
Game 2 - Fri., Apr. 22 - Hamilton at Rochester, 7:35
Game 3 - Sun., Apr. 24 - Rochester at Hamilton, 4:00
Game 4 - Tue., Apr. 26 - Rochester at Hamilton, 7:00
*Game 5 - Fri., Apr. 29 - Hamilton at Rochester, 7:35
*Game 6 - Sun., May 1 - Rochester at Hamilton, 4:00
*Game 7 - Mon., May 2 - Hamilton at Rochester, 7:05

North Division -- Series "F" (best-of-7)
N2-St. John's Maple Leafs vs. N3-Manitoba Moose
Game 1 - Wed., Apr. 20 - Manitoba at St. John's, 6:05
Game 2 - Fri., Apr. 22 - Manitoba at St. John's, 6:05
Game 3 - Mon., Apr. 25 - St. John's at Manitoba, 8:30
Game 4 - Wed., Apr. 27 - St. John's at Manitoba, 8:30
*Game 5 - Fri., Apr. 29 - St. John's at Manitoba, 8:30
*Game 6 - Sat., Apr. 30 - Manitoba vs. St. John's, 7:05 (ACC)
*Game 7 - Mon., May 2 - Manitoba vs. St. John's, 7:35 (ACC)

West Division -- Series "G" (best-of-7)
W1-Chicago Wolves vs. W4-Houston Aeros
Game 1 - Tue., Apr. 19 - Houston at Chicago, 8:00
Game 2 - Thu., Apr. 21 - Houston at Chicago, 8:00
Game 3 - Sat., Apr. 23 - Chicago at Houston, 8:05
Game 4 - Sun., Apr. 24 - Chicago at Houston, 6:05
*Game 5 - Tue., Apr. 26 - Chicago at Houston, 8:05
*Game 6 - Thu., Apr. 28 - Houston at Chicago, 8:00
*Game 7 - Sat., Apr. 30 - Houston at Chicago, 8:00

West Division -- Series "H" (best-of-7)
W2-Milwaukee Admirals vs. W3-Cincinnati Mighty Ducks
Game 1 - Wed., Apr. 20 - Cincinnati at Milwaukee, 8:00
Game 2 - Fri., Apr. 22 - Milwaukee at Cincinnati, 7:35
Game 3 - Sat., Apr. 23 - Cincinnati at Milwaukee, 8:30
Game 4 - Mon., Apr. 25 - Cincinnati at Milwaukee, 8:00
*Game 5 - Wed., Apr. 27 - Milwaukee at Cincinnati, 7:35
*Game 6 - Fri., Apr. 29 - Milwaukee at Cincinnati, 7:35
*Game 7 - Sun., May 1 - Cincinnati at Milwaukee, 5:30

*if necessary... All times Eastern
(WC) at Wachovia Center - Philadelphia
(ACC) at Air Canada Centre - Toronto

- Select online pay-per-view broadcasts are available from b2networks for $6 a game.

- Rochester Americans left wing Thomas Vanek was named CCM Vector/AHL Player of the Week.

Seamus Kotyk

- Former Sharks prospect Seamus Kotyk became the 8th goaltender in AHL to score a goal Sunday. Kotyk picked up an empty netter against San Antonio.

Here is the race for the AHL's alltime goaltending scoring leader, 8 goalies are currently tied for first.

Darcy Wakaluk - Rochester 12/05/87 at Utica
Paul Cohen - Springfield 05/28/92 vs. Rochester
Robb Stauber - Rochester 10/09/95 at P.E.I.
Christian Bronsard - Syracuse 10/30/99 at Rochester
Jean-Francois Labbe - Hartford 02/05/00 at Quebec
Chris Mason - Milwaukee 10/15/01 at Utah
Antero Niittymaki - Philadelphia 04/11/04 at Hershey
Seamus Kotyk, Milwaukee 04/17/05 at San Antonio

- 2004-2005 Cleveland Barons season review from clevelandbarons.net. One highlight of the season was the play of Cleveland MVP Ryan Clowe. The 6,2 215 pound left wing finished with 27 goals and 35 assists for 62 points in 72 games played. He set a franchise record with a +19 on the season, notched 3 game winning goals, and scored the first goal of a game 9 times.

The Barons rebounded this season after losing the dynamic scoring duo of Boyes and Zalesak. Brad Boyes was involved in the 3 team trade to Boston for Curtis Brown. Miroslav Zalesak played for HK36 Skalica while waiting out the NHL labor impasse.

Next season it will be interesting to see which one of the Sharks top offensive prospects move up to Cleveland. Steve Bernier, Josh Hennessy or Lukas Kaspar would make a significant contribution to a 2005-06 Barons roster. The trio skated together on a line at the 2004 NHL rookie tournament in Anaheim. Bring up all 3, and have at least one Barons/Sharks doubleheader in San Jose and Cleveland next year.

- Photo gallery from the 2-0 Cleveland Barons loss to the Edmonton Roadrunners at the HP Pavilion in San Jose. The Barons played two more offsite games, a 1-0 loss to Syracuse at the Nationwide Arena in Columbus [home of the Blue Jackets], and a 2-0 loss to the Rochester Americans at HSBC Arena in Buffalo [one of the blue ice games].

- Barons win season (and Cleveland?) finale - Cleveland Plain Dealer.


2005 ECHL Kelly Cup Playoffs Schedule

From A. Sheldon, an update on the ECHL Kelly Cup playoff pairings:

2005 Kelly Cup Playoffs Schedule (By Series)

* - If Necessary

Series A
North Division Semifinals
No. 4 Toledo (41-26-5) vs. No. 1 Reading (43-22-7)

Thursday, April 14 Toledo 1 at Reading 0
Saturday, April 16 Toledo at Reading 7:05 p.m.
Sunday, April 17 Reading at Toledo 6:05 p.m.
*Tuesday, April 19 Reading at Toledo 7:05 p.m.
*Wednesday, April 20 Toledo at Reading 7:05 p.m.

Series B
North Division Semifinals
No. 3 Atlantic City (42-22-8) vs. No. 2 Trenton (42-21-9)

Wednesday, April 13 Atlantic City 2 at Trenton 4
Friday, April 15 Atlantic City at Trenton 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, April 17 Trenton at Atlantic City 4:05 p.m.
*Tuesday, April 19 Trenton at Atlantic City 7:05 p.m.
*Wednesday, April 20 Atlantic City at Trenton 7:00 p.m.

Series C
West Division Semifinals
No. 4 Bakersfield (40-22-10) vs. No. 1 Alaska (45-19-8)

Tuesday, April 12 Bakersfield 2 at Alaska 5
Wednesday, April 13 Bakersfield 1 at Alaska
Thursday, April 14 Alaska 2 at Bakersfield
Saturday, April 16 Alaska at Bakersfield 7:00 p.m.
*Monday, April 18 Bakersfield at Alaska 7:15 p.m.

Series D
West Division Semifinals
No. 3 Idaho (42-23-7) vs. No. 2 Long Beach (43-20-9)

Wednesday, April 13 Idaho 2 at Long Beach 3
Friday, April 15 Idaho at Long Beach 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 16 Long Beach at Idaho 7:10 p.m.
*Sunday, April 17 Long Beach at Idaho 7:10 p.m.
*Wednesday, April 20 Idaho at Long Beach 7:00 p.m.

Series E
American Conference Quarterfinals
No. 8 Greenville (39-28-5) vs. No. 1 Pensacola (51-16-5)

Thursday, April 14 Greenville 5 at Pensacola 4 (OT)
Friday, April 15 Greenville at Pensacola 7:05 p.m.
Saturday, April 16 Pensacola at Greenville 7:05 p.m.
*Tuesday, April 19 Pensacola at Greenville 7:05 p.m.
*Thursday, April 21 Greenville at Pensacola 7:05 p.m.

Series F
American Conference Quarterfinals
No. 7 Charlotte (39-26-7) vs. No. 2 Columbia (38-22-12)

Wednesday, April 13 Charlotte 0 at Columbia 2
Friday, April 15 Charlotte at Columbia 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 16 Columbia at Charlotte 7:00 p.m.
*Sunday, April 17 Columbia at Charlotte TBD
*Wednesday, April 20 Charlotte at Columbia TBD

Series G
American Conference Quarterfinals
No. 6 South Carolina (39-24-9) vs. No. 3 Florida (42-20-10)

Wednesday, April 13 South Carolina 4 at Florida 7
Friday, April 15 South Carolina at Florida 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 16 Florida at South Carolina 7:05 p.m.
*Monday, April 18 Florida at South Carolina 7:05 p.m.
*Wednesday, April 20 South Carolina at Florida 7:30 p.m.

Series H
American Conference Quarterfinals
No. 5 Mississippi (39-24-9) vs. No. 4 Gwinnett (40-24-8)

Wednesday, April 13 Mississippi 1 at Gwinnett
Friday, April 15 Gwinnett at Mississippi 8:35 p.m.
Saturday, April 16 Mississippi at Gwinnett 7:35 p.m.
*Monday, April 18 Mississippi at Gwinnett 7:05 p.m.
*Tuesday, April 19 Mississippi at Gwinnett 7:05 p.m.

Sharkspage Bloglet featured site of the day

Sharkspage is the featured site of the day at Bloglet, the free email blog subscription service. If you would like to get the text of a participating blog in your email instead of visiting the website, then give Bloglet a try.

[Update] Two more tech notes that might be of interest to bloggers, Neocount visitor tracking by country, and ESPN bottom line sportsticker. Click here for a sample bottomline ticker. Send me an email if you end up using either of these on your website.

Fight Night at the Tank

Miller Lite Fight Night at the Tank

The Miller Lite Fight Night at the Tank for April 14th showcased several competitive fights in front of a large and vocal crowd. The Main Event featured Diego Morales [now 35-2, 25K0's] winning a decision over Alberto Ontiveros [21-11-5 19KO's] in a 10 round Bantamweight fight.

A photo gallery from the April 14th Fight Night at the Tank in San Jose.

[Update] Diego Morales claims decision - San Jose Mercury News.

Rene Auguaristi of Morgan Hill gave one of the five-fight card's better performances, scoring a fourth-round knockout against Santiago Rodriguez in a super welterweight bout. Auguaristi, a 22-year-old De Anza College student who was making his pro debut, knocked down Rodriguez (3-1-2) twice in the second round and finished the job in the last of the scheduled rounds with an uppercut.

[Update2] 5 Bout Highlighted By 10 Round Finale - millerlitefightnight.com.


Hockey Notes

- NBA and NHL are cooperating with the congressional committee examining steroid use in sports.

The House Government Reform Committee had set Tuesday as a deadline for getting information about drug programs and test results. Major League Soccer, the ATP, USA Track & Field and the U.S. Soccer Federation responded in time, while USA Cycling asked for and was granted an extension because of a snowstorm near its headquarters

NHL chief legal officer Bill Daly said, "We provided a written response to Congress providing the information that was requested, as well as additional relevant materials.

Testing may be non-existent in the NHL, but it was reportedly part of the new CBA that was not agreed to. A note to the committee, investigate stimulants in the NHL, not steroids.

- NHL doesn't have games, and few steroid problems - SF Chronicle.

- NHL and NHLPA agree on a new concept of tying player costs to revenue?

- The San Jose Sharks finished the 2004-05 season with 37 wins, 34 losses, and 12 ties. Nils Ekman lead the team with 32 goals, Jonathan Cheechoo had 28, and Marco Sturm had 27. Patrick Marleau registered 61 total points, with Alexander Korolyuk netting a respectable 55. Evgeni Nabokov picked up 26 wins with a 2.34 GAA, and Vesa Toskala had 10 wins with a 1.91 GAA.

Thanks for the note on the season g4tv, but I will stick with the custom made wood paneled Atari 2600 handheld my brother bought and left on my desk.

- Upcoming AHL broadcasts via B2 Networks, $6 a game.

- Upcoming ECHL broadcasts via B2 Networks, at the same price. Click on a team's video link for a listing.

- Sudden-death goal gives Frolunda Swedish Elite League hockey title over Farjestad - Fox Sports.

Neither team managed to score in regulation, but 2:51 in overtime Andersson finally beat Swiss NHL goalie Martin Gerber with a shot off a rebound. Frolunda defenceman Sami Salo's shot had hit the boards and bounced back in front of the net.

"Fantastic finish," said Niklas Andersson. "I'm boiling inside. Listen to the crowd... these fans are fantastic."

Two years ago, Andersson helped Frolunda win its first league title in 38 years. Andersson played 164 NHL games with Calgary, Nashville, San Jose, Quebec and the New York Islanders from 1995 to 2001.

- ICE HOCKEY WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: Japan eager to end 7-year winless spell - Asahi.com.

- Updates from the IIHF on the top seven European League playoffs. More updates from the NHLPA members in Europe page.

- NHL tries to put free time to good use - San Jose Mercury News.

Even though the players' union rejected the latest NHL offers last week, there were hints of progress for the first time since mid-February, when efforts to resuscitate the season collapsed.

The New York Post reported the union had countered with a plan that established a payroll range between $24 million and $42.5 million, with those figures linked to percentage changes in ``identifiable league revenue.'' The NHL was said to be crunching those numbers and could have its response before the April 20 board of governors meeting, when some of the rule changes could be approved.

- ERC Ingolstadt lost Sunday to the Berlin Ice Bears 4-2. Berlin wins the semifinal series 3-1, and advances to face Adler Mannheim in the finals starting on Friday. More from prohockey.de. Thanks to Gryph for this link to game worn Ingolstadt jerseys available on Ebay. Marco Sturm's is at 252 euros with 56 total gebotes, and 5 tages left?

- Final DEL semifinal playoff update from Ecco in Germany:

Semi Finals Game 4

Adler Mannheim-Frankfurt Lions 1:2 (0-0, 0-0, 1-1, 0-1)
0:1 Frankfurt Lions P.Ratchuk F.Bouchard 49:26 ES
1:1 Adler Mannheim D.Edgerton 54:05 ES

1:2 Frankfurt Lions D.Sulkovsky 67:29 PP1

Huet,Cristobal AM 16 2 88.89
Gordon,Ian FL 29 1 96.67

Adler Mannheim:
F Devin Edgerton 1g

Frankfurt Lions:
D Peter Ratchuk 1g
F David Sulkovsky 1g
D Francois Bouchard 1a

Frankfurt Lions-Adler Mannheim 2:2

ERC Ingolstadt-Eisbären Berlin 2:4 (0-1, 1-2, 1-1)
0:1 Eisbären E.Cole M.Beaufait R.Shearer 13:52 PP1
1:1 ERC Ingolstadt J.Ficenec K.Sutton M.Sturm 20:34 PP1
1:2 Eisbären M.Beaufait 38:07 PP1
1:3 Eisbären M.Beaufait 39:20 ES
2:3 ERC Ingolstadt M.Sturm 56:12 ES
2:4 Eisbären E.Cole 59:39 ES (Empty net)

Waite,Jimmy (ERC) 32 3 88.89
Jonas,Oliver (EIS) 24 2 92.31

ERC Ingolstadt:
D Jakub Ficenec 1g
D Ken Sutton 1a
F Marco Sturm 1g 1a

Eisbären Berlin:
F Erik Cole 2g
F Mark Beaufait 2g 1a
F Rob Shearer 1a

Eisbären Berlin-ERC Ingolstadt 3:1 -> Berlin qualified for the Finals

- A poll from SLAM had the following choices, which were more informative than many columns I have read on the issue.

- Reduced goalie equipment
- No-touch icing
- Remove centre red line
- Tag-up offsides
- Fat blue lines
- Overtime shootouts
- Restrict goalie movement
- 3 points for regulation win
- Full 2-minute power plays
- 3-on-3 overtime
- Bigger goalie nets
- Reduced team rosters
- Blue ice/orange lines
- Unlimited curves on sticks
- Firm obstruction crackdown
- Enlarge present rink size
- Nothing needs to be done
- I'm no longer a fan

13% voted for no-touch icing, 13% voted for reducing goalie equipment size, only 6% voted for increase rink size? 5% out of 38,975 said they were no longer a fan. That is 1948.45 people. No fair Ray Ratto, you can only vote once.

- Dynamo Moscow swept Lada Togliatti 3-0 to win the Russian Superleague title. The final game went down to a shootout, with Dynamo prevailing 3-1.

Since I am box score happy today, here is one from the final game of the Russian Superleague final thanks to Wilka:


Friday, April 8, 2005 - Finals, Game 3.
Game 3 | Dynamo wins series 3-0.

Scoring summary:

1, Dyn, Chupin (2) (Ovechkin), 5:30.
2, Lad, I. Vorobiev (3) (powerplay) (Buturlin), 17:01.

No scoring.

No scoring.

No scoring.

1, Dyn, Frolov : scored, 1-0.
2, Lad, Semin : missed.
3, Dyn, Afinogenov : missed.
4, Lad, V. Kozlov : scored, 1-1.
5, Dyn, Kharitonov : scored, 2-1.
6, Lad, S. Sevostyanov : missed.
7, Dyn, Datsyuk : scored, 3-1.
8, Lad, Belkin : missed.
Dynamo wins shootout 3-1.

3, Dyn, Kharitonov (3) (shootout).

Dynamo - Yeremeyev W, 9-1.
Lada - Markkanen L, 6-4.

- The Great White Shark held at the Monterey Bay Aquarium was released out into the ocean March 31st. The Shark attacked too many of his roommates.

- Photo of the Boston Bruins Aquafina Ice Girls.

- The Finnish SM-Liiga finals are still underway. Powerhouses Jokerit and Karpat are facing off, with Karpat leading the final 1-0. Goal videos can be found here.

Anaheim Mighty Ducks interested in former Sharks GM Dean Lombardi

There was an interesting factlet at the end of Chris Foster's last column on the Anaheim Mighty Ducks for the LA Times.

The Samuelis' group is also expected to seek permission to speak with Kevin Gilmore, the Kings' assistant general manager. Gilmore, believed to be the first choice to take over as the Ducks' general manager, has spent the last five years with the Kings. He also spent five seasons with the Ducks, mostly as director of hockey operations.

Brian Burke, former Vancouver general manager, is also being considered, and Dean Lombardi, former San Jose general manager, is interested in the job.

After Henry Samueli [Broadcom] bought the Mighty Ducks from Disney for a reported $75 million, he is on the verge of rebuilding the Anaheim front office from scratch. Tim Ryan is expected to be named as president of the franchise, but the search for a GM has raised a few eyebrows.

Neil Smith [former NYR GM], Kevin Gilmore [Kings asst GM], Brian Burke [former Vancouver GM, current TSN analyst], and Dean Lombardi [former SJ GM] are rumored to be candidates for the Anaheim GM position.

Here is my mini Dean Lombardi retrospective after he left the team early in 2003.

There was the occasional free agent that did not produce as expected, there was the early three-headed monster debacle, but the quality and character of the personnel he brought in put the San Jose franchise on the map. Mark my words Anaheim, hire Lombardi and you will be an elite team in 3-5 years. Asking a team to give a GM that much time to mould a franchise is not a small thing, but it worked in San Jose, and it can work for Anaheim.

[Update] Ducks to overhaul front office - TSN.


USA Hockey announced 2005 IIHF Mens World Championship roster

The 2005 IIHF Mens World Championship tournament begins April 30th. Team USA just announced their roster last week.

2005 United States Men’s National Team Roster


30 Ty Conklin 6-0 (183) 180 (81.6) 3/30/76 L Anchorage, Alaska Wolfsburg Grizzly Adams (DEL)/Edmonton Oilers
29 Rick DiPietro 5-11 (180) 185 (83.9) 9/19/81 R Winthrop, Mass. New York Islanders (NHL)
73 Tim Thomas 5-11 (180) 180 (81.6) 4/14/74 L Flint, Mich. Helsinki Jokers (FNL)/Boston Bruins

25 Hal Gill 6-7 (201) 240 (108.9) 4/6/75 L Concord, Mass. Lukko Rauma (FNL)/Boston Bruins
4 Jordan Leopold 6-0 (183) 205 (93) 8/3/80 L Golden Valley, Minn. Calgary Flames (NHL)
8 John-Michael Liles 5-10 (178) 185 (83.9) 11/25/80 L Zionsville, Ind. Iserlohn Roosters (DEL)/Colorado Avalanche
10 Paul Martin 6-1 (185) 170 (77.1) 3/5/81 L Minneapolis, Minn. Fribourg-Gotteron (LNSw)/New Jersey Devils
3 Aaron Miller 6-4 (193) 210 (95.3) 8/11/71 R Buffalo, N.Y. Los Angeles Kings (NHL)
6 Andy Roach 5-11 (180) 181 (82.1) 8/22/73 R Mattawan, Mich. Lausanne (LNSw)/St. Louis Blues


21 Erik Cole 6-1 (185) 185 (83.9) 11/6/78 L Oswego, N.Y. Berlin Polar Bears (DEL)/Carolina Hurricanes
17 Matt Cullen 6-0 (183) 195 (88.5) 11/2/76 L Virginia, Minn. Cortina SG (Italy)/Carolina Hurricanes
14 Brian Gionta 5-7 (170) 160 (72.6) 1/18/79 R Rochester, N.Y. Albany River Rats (AHL)/New Jersey Devils
28 Adam Hall 6-3 (191) 205 (93) 8/14/80 R Kalamazoo, Mich. KalPa (FNL)/Nashville Predators
11 Jeff Halpern 6-0 (183) 201 (91.2) 5/3/76 R Potomac, Md. Kloten (LNSw) /Washington Capitals
26 Mike Knuble 6-3 (191) 216 (98) 7/4/72 R Grand Rapids, Mich. Linkopings HC (SEL)/Philadelphia Flyers
19 David Legwand 6-2 (188) 180 (81.6) 8/17/80 L Detroit, Mich. Basel (LNSw B)/Nashville Predators
9 Mike Modano 6-3 (191) 205 (93) 6/7/70 L Livonia, Mich. Dallas Stars (NHL)
18 Richard Park 5-11 (180) 190 (86.2) 5/27/76 R Eagan, Minn. Langnau (LNSw)/Minnesota Wild
37 Mark Parrish 6-0 (183) 182 (82.6) 2/2/77 R Edina, Minn. New York Islanders (NHL)
39 Doug Weight 5-11 (180) 200 (90.7) 1/21/71 L Warren, Mich. Frankfurt Lions (DEL)/St. Louis Blues
16 Mike York 5-10 (178) 190 (86.2) 1/3/78 R Waterford, Mich. Iserlohn Roosters (DEL)/Edmonton Oilers


General Manager: Don Waddell, Atlanta, Ga.
Equipment Manager: Mike Aldrich, San Jose, Calif.
Assistant General Manager: Jim Johannson, Colorado Springs, Colo.
Equipment Manager: Pete Rogers, Nashville, Tenn.
Sr. Dir., International Admin.: Art Berglund, Colorado Springs, Colo.
Athletic Trainer: Don DelNegro, Boston, Mass.
Head Coach: Peter Laviolette, Franklin, Mass.
Team Physician: Dr. Hadley Callaway, Raleigh, N.C.
Associate Coach: John Tortorella, Val Rico, Fla.
Massage Therapist: Inar Treiguts, Atlanta, Ga.
Assistant Coach: Keith Allain, Worcester, Mass.
Video Coordinator: Teal Fowler, Batavia, N.Y.
Team Leader: Bob Webster, Littleton, Colo.
Media Relations: Dave Fischer, Colorado Springs, Colo.

[Update] According to SJsharks.com, two Sharks have landed on Team Canada's roster for the 2005 Men's World Championship. Scott Hannan and Patrick Marleau will represent Le Blanc, Black et Teal April 30th through May 15th in Innsbruck and Vienna, Austria.

[Update2] Tragic news out of Halifax, Nova Scotia. A beer truck carrying 46,368 bottles of Alexander Keith's India Pale Ale flipped over and crashed into a guardrail.

"It is sad," Capt. Scott Logan of the Halifax Regional Fire Service (search) told The Daily News of Halifax. "Chances are they won't recover any of the beer."

[Update3] From the San Francisco Chronicle:

Software industry analyst Chris Swenson of research firm NPD Group, said will-writing software and other legal programs have seen a 63 percent increase in sales over the past quarter, compared with the previous three months.

He said he doesn't believe the spike was a result of the Schiavo case, but rather of the release cycle of titles in the legal software category.

Nice quote Chris! The NHL and NHLPA should hire NPD as part of a independent audit of the league financials. Throw in a GM or two, an NHL rep, and a blogger, and you would have an instant independent audit committee.

[Update4] At HDhockey.tv, you can purchase full NHL games on DVD for an average of $25-29.99. The Heritage Classic, the Miracle on Ice, 2004 WJC, 1997 Wings-Avalanche, 2000 Flyers-Penguins [5 OT], 1976 Flyers vs Red Army, are all interesting selections. Sharks games available: 2000 SJ vs STL Stanley Cup Quarters Game 7, 2002 Flyers vs Sharks 3, 2004 Blues vs Sharks Stanley Cup Quarters Game 5, 2004 Sharks vs Avalanche: Stanley Cup Quarter Finals Games 1-4.

USA Women win 2005 World Championship in Sweden

The significance of the USA women's 1-0 win over Canada did not come to me until I looked into the history of Women's Hockey. Jes Golbez had the unofficial count of Canada Women's World Championships won over the USA at 2646148937-0, but I wanted to dig a little further.

1990 - First ever Women's IIHF World Championship held in Ottawa. Canada overcomes a 2-0 USA lead and wins 5-2.

1992 - During the second Women's IIHF World Championship in Finland, Canada defeats the USA 8-0 to repeat.

1994 - Third Women's IIHF World Championship, this time in Lake Placid NY, yet another 6-3 Canada win over Team USA. Are you sensing a theme to this post?

1995 - Not World Championship related, but San Jose hosted the first ever IIHF Pacific Women's Hockey Championship. Canada downs the USA in overtime. Where was I for this?

1996 - Vancouver, Canada. The second ever IIHF Pacific Women's Hockey Championship. Canada defeats USA for the gold.

1997 - Another IIHF Women's Hockey Championship, the fourth. Another overtime game. Another Canada win, 4-3, over Team USA.

1998- Team USA defeats Team Canada 3-1 to earn Olympic gold. About time. Take that Canada.

1999 - Fifth IIHF Women's Hockey Championship, the fifth Team USA loss to Team Canada, this time 3-1 in the other direction.

2000 - USA Women lose to Canada in the IIHF WHC, six straight gold medals for Canada.

2002 - Canada wins gold over guess who? Finland? Wrong. Canada defeated the USA 3-2 for their turn on top of the Olympic podium.

2003 - The IIHF WHC in Beijing is cancelled due to the Sars outbreak. If there was a Championship, Canada would have defeated the USA in the final.

2004 - USA women lose to Canada again, 2-0 in the final IIHF WHC game.

2005 - USA 1, Canada 0. First ever IIHF Women's Hockey Championship for Team USA.

Congratulations Team USA!

[Update] All historical information above courtesy of USA Hockey. A PDF file of the 2005 USA Women's hockey media guide is available online.

[Update2] Photos from USAhockey, look under USA vs Canada after the first paragraph.

[Update3] Even in defeat, Canada has to get a little jab in: Canada remains No. 1 in IIHF world ranking despite loss to USA - National Post.

[Update4] From Victor Chi manning the Morning Buzz at the SJ Mercury News:

Here's your chance

Is there a future Cammi Granato or Angela Ruggiero just waiting for a shot at the big time? Here's your chance.

Looking for roster depth, USA Hockey is holding open tryouts to bolster its 2006 women's Olympic team.

There are four regional tryouts, including one May 7 in Lakewood. Players must be at least 16. To learn more, send an e-mail to cahagirlswomen[at]aol.com.


Sharkspage Ray Ratto translation service

Sometimes it is hard to follow the biting sarcasm, condescension, and sheer cluelessness of a Ray Ratto column. How are fans supposed to know what sports Ray wants us to follow, and which sports Ray wants us to care about, if they can not stomach a single sentence he writes? Sharkspage is here to help. With our new Ray Ratto translation service, we can cut through the ankle high chaff and deliver Ratto directly to you in easily digestable nuggets.

Longing for the playoffs? Don't bother - Ray Ratto.

The Stanley Cup playoffs begin this week – somewhere. On some alternate Earth, with red kryptonite, telekinesis and universal health care.

Bitter that I can't complain about low NHL ratings, I look at my Superman underoos and get inspiration for my latest column.

Here, the sound of rusting blades, disconnected propane tanks, Zambonis being converted for pony rides, and Gary Bettman and Bob Goodenow taking on babysitting jobs:

"Look, if you don't go to bed, I'll negotiate with your parents about an allowance cap tied to revenues."

"OK, OK. I wish my parents would let me stay at home by myself, you mean old jerk."

No translation.

By now, we've had all the whatever-happened-to-professional-ice-hockey nostalgia pieces and retrospectives we can stand. Anyone desperate for a hockey fix could watch Denver win the Frozen Four, although for the rest of us, it sort of felt like an exercise in eat-your-vegetables-because-people-in-northern-Manitoba-are-starving.


Thus, the complete absence of playoffs seems to have met a complete absence of longing for playoffs. If there are any pangs of regret in Tampa, they are easily subsumed by the Devil Rays' big weekend series win over Oakland ... or The Masters ... or a good garage cleaning.

Why am I being paid to write about the "complete" absence of NHL playoffs, when I could be writing about baseball, the Masters, or cleaning my garage?

And this is not to pick on Tampa, necessarily. Canada's national obsession is now reduced to a national hobby, something seasonal like ice fishing. Even Comrade Burnside's touching portrait (elsewhere on our happy little site) of the octopus seller in Detroit with too much time and squid on his hands strikes us not as a grim reminder of what could have been, but rather elicits thoughts of calamari waiting for the garlic.

Obsessions are bad for you. Hockey is bad for you. Communism is bad for you, except if you live in Cuba and have a subscription to Forbes. Ice fishing is more popular than hockey. Maybe if I can drop a squid reference, it can rescue this paragraph.

At least we know that any missives lamenting the loss of the Stanley Cup playoffs will have the heartwarming ring of utter insincerity. I mean, once you've been shown the faces of pure venality, it's hard to miss even the good things those faces could offer. Like playoff hockey, the best hockey there ever was.

Anyone lamenting the loss of the Stanley Cup playoffs is trying to sell you season tickets. The playoffs were always fixed, like professional wrestling. There is another sport that is more popular than hockey, and they have better costumes.

And we say "was," because there remains no evidence that there is going to be an "is" any time soon. Oh, the two sides have met now and then for hot roast-beef sandwiches and cold proposals, but the continent's appetite for any news those meetings could emit can be easily matched by a tavern argument over whether the Ottoman Empire was better than the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

The meaning of the word "is", is fundamentally different than the word "was". I am hungry, who took my roast beef sandwich?

In other words, we are still at the "Will you two either tell us what we want to know or shut the hell up?" stage.

We want to know what they know, and when did they know it. And where is my sandwich?

In fairness, we tried. We set up computer simulations of how the playoffs might have gone. We used dice. We even taped team logos over the faces of poker players in a televised tournament.

When I use the term "we", I actually mean other people.

What we got, in order, were two viruses and some spyware, a cat with three dice in his digestive tract and tape marks on the flat screen.

No translation.

There's a lesson in this somewhere – but unless it is, "This is what happens when you entrust something valuable to cheapskates and dunce caps," we're at a complete loss as to what it might be.

I am still searching for a point to this column. There is a point in here somewhere, but halfway through the article I am at a complete loss as to what it might be.

I mean, the Stanley Cup was serious fun, whether you were there or just a viewer. There was something about 40 players giving their all because they all had everything to lose that elevated the playoffs so dramatically over the regular season.

Cup shiny. Me like Cup.

But since Bettman was defending the rights of the over-rich and under-skulled, and Goodenow was fighting for truth, beauty and a principle that he could fold on later while pretending the dog ate his briefcase, the Stanley Cup has taken on the appearance of the crown jewels at the bottom of a septic tank.

Note to self, have to fix my septic tank. Is this column almost finished?

And if this seems harsh or a little much to take this soon after breakfast, well, let's review the principal duties of the hockey industry.

Did I eat my roast beef sandwich for breakfast?

The owners' sole duty is to put on games that people will pay money to watch. The players' sole duty is to play in those games. Everything else is trivia, period.

You pay to get into a hockey game? I get in for free. Suckers.

I mean, the owners are still rich, the players have found other games, and as part of the eternal grand plan of all sports, the fans have been played as saps, suckers and dim bulbs.

Owners bad. Players good. Fans suckers.

Thus, getting all weepy and rheumy-eyed about the Stanley Cup playoffs is the last sign before intervention is required. They don't care, so why should you?

You fans still care about the NHL, what is wrong with you? Move on. Where is my sandwich?

[Update] For more insightful Ray Ratto banter, take a look at One game, Two opinions.


Chivas USA scores late in the second half to tie San Jose Earthquakes 3-3

San Jose Earthquakes vs Chivas USA MLS soccer

Douglas Sequeira scored one minute into stoppage time to earn a 3-3 tie, and the first ever point for the expansion Chivas USA franchise. After losing its opening match 2-0 to DC United, Chivas came on strong against San Jose with a goal by Thiago Martins in the third minute. Hector Cuadros also scored for Chivas. Brad Davis, Troy Dayak, and Brian Ching scored for the Earthquakes.

The announced crowd was 11,519 but the empty spaces at Spartan stadium were few and far between. Red and white striped Chivas jerseys covered the stands. One side of the arena was throwing blue and white confetti, the other red and white. Every gust of wind stirred a blizzard of colored paper on the field of play. The Chivas section in the South End was active, banging drums and singing Spanish songs in between waving a 50 foot banner featuring one of their star players.

It was probably a good idea not to wear an Earthquakes shirt when wading into the throngs of red and white. Out of the blue, I was almost tackled by a short stocky soccer fan who started screaming at me in Greek. It took me a few seconds to realize I was wearing a Greece National jersey that my father got for me during the European Cup.

If San Jose could play Chivas every weekend, then rumors of the team leaving would quickly dissipate.

San Jose Earthquakes vs Chivas USA MLS soccer

Quakes not looking to form a habit - MLSnet.com.

Last gasp goal gives Chivas USA a point - MLSnet.com.

New Golden State rivalry begins - SJ Earthquakes.

Major League Soccer Scores an Audience in the U.S. - NPR [audio link].

Chivas USA more than all talk - LA Times.

Donovan scores 2 goals in MLS return - Fox Sports.

San Jose Earthquakes vs Chivas USA MLS soccer

Box score from MLSnet.com:

CD Chivas USA (0-1-0) vs. San Jose Earthquakes (0-0-1) April 9, 2005 -- Spartan Stadium

Scoring Summary:
CHV -- Thiago Martins 1 (Orlando Perez 1) 3
SJ -- Brad Davis 1 (unassisted) 45
CHV -- Hector Cuadros 1 (Ezra Hendrickson 1) 73
SJ -- Troy Dayak 1 (Brad Davis 1) 75
SJ -- Brian Ching 1 (Brad Davis 2) 79
CHV -- Douglas Sequeira 1 (Jesus Ochoa 1) 90

CD Chivas USA -- Brad Guzan, Ezra Hendrickson, Douglas Sequeira, Ryan Suarez (Jesus Ochoa 58), Orlando Perez (Isaac Romo 83), Hector Cuadros, Aaron Lopez, Ramon Ramirez, Arturo Torres, Thiago Martins (Antonio Martinez 87), Matt Taylor.

Substitutes Not Used: Javier Barragan, Francisco Mendoza.

TOTAL SHOTS: 13 (Thiago Martins 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 4 (Thiago Martins 2); FOULS: 25 (Ramon Ramirez 5); OFFSIDES: 0; CORNER KICKS: 5 (Ramon Ramirez 5); SAVES: 4 (Brad Guzan 4)

San Jose Earthquakes -- Pat Onstad, Craig Waibel, Ryan Cochrane, Troy Dayak, Wade Barrett, Brian Mullan (Dwayne De Rosario 71), Ricardo Clark (Ian Russell 76), Danny O'Rourke, Brad Davis, Ronald Cerritos (Alejandro Moreno 80), Brian Ching.

Substitutes Not Used: Chris Aloisi, Jon Conway, Tighe Dombrowski, Kevin Goldthwaite, Wes Hart, Roger Levesque.

TOTAL SHOTS: 16 (Brian Ching 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 7 (Brian Ching 3); FOULS: 19 (Brian Ching 6); OFFSIDES: 1 (Dwayne De Rosario 1); CORNER KICKS: 7 (Brad Davis 5); SAVES: 1 (Pat Onstad 1)

Misconduct Summary:
SJ -- Brian Ching (caution; Tackle from Behind) 17
CHV -- Thiago Martins (caution; Pushing, Holding) 33
CHV -- Ramon Ramirez (caution; Tackle from Behind) 40
SJ -- Brian Mullan (caution; Tackle from Behind) 60
SJ -- Ryan Cochrane (caution; Pushing, Holding) 71

Referee: Ricardo Salazar
Referee's Assistants: -Jose Corro; Emiliano Monje
4th Official: Marcel Yonan
Weather: Sunny-and-58-degrees

The SJ Earthquakes next game is in Chicago against the Fire. Chivas USA plays FC Dallas. Both games are on Saturday.

The Frozen Two, Denver faces North Dakota today at 4PM for National Championship

[Wire] Denver powered passed North Dakota 4-1 to win the 2005 Division 1 Mens Ice Hockey Championship. Live stats from the game from the NCAA. More stats from the Denver Pioneers. Peter Stastny [name sound familiar?], led all scorers with 2 goals and an assist for Denver. Gauthier and Ulanski also scored for Denver, and Zajac notched the lone goal for North Dakota. Sharks prospect Matt Carle had an assist and 2 shots on goal. Jordan Parise made 20 saves on 23 shots for North Dakota, Peter Mannino made 44 saves on 45 shots for Denver.

- The Denver Pioneers face off against the North Dakota Fighting Sioux today at 4PM for the NCAA Division 1 Mens Ice Hockey Championship. A live webcast of the game is available here, and the game will be broadcast on ESPN. NCAA photos are here.

- Denver, North Dakota Prep For National Title Game - US College Hockey online.

- Command Performance, Power play, goaltending lift Denver into title game - Inside College Hockey.

- Questions and Answeres with Matt Carle - Hockeys Future. DJ Powers interviews the Sharks defensive prospect before today's title game.

[HF] This is your second trip in a row to the National Championship game. Do you feel that there is a lot of pressure on you guys right now, because you are the reigning champions?

[MC] I don’t think so. We weren’t predicted to be here and we were picked to finish sixth in our league. We’re a team that exceeds expectations. That’s what we did last year. I think we’re just going with the flow, enjoying the ride and hopefully will win another one.

- Nate Ewell of INCH also talked to Matt Carle before Denver's semifinal matchup with Colorado College.

[NE] How does this year compare to last year?

[MC] I don't like to compare last year to this year, but it's definitely a stepping stone in our season. We came in here expecting to win this regional, and the boys came out hard today and proved that we deserved to be in the Frozen Four.

[NE] Why do you avoid comparisons to last year? You'd think you'd want to relive that over and over.

[MC] Two different teams, two different mentalities, two different seasons. We've done things that last year's team didn't do, and last year's team did

Matt Carle

Matt Carle at the 2003-04 San Jose Sharks training camp.

- Denver's Matt Carle was a Sharks second round draft selection in 2003. Carle scored the game winning goal against Colorado College in a 7-2 win Thursday. According to the official Denver Pioneers website, "Denver's highly-touted defensive pair of Brett Skinner (four assists) and Matt Carle (one goal, two assists) combined for seven points in a complete undressing of Colorado College's penalty kill."

- Photos from the Denver Pioneers.

- The Ice Block picks North Dakota tonight, but is he aware of the curse of Ed Belfour?

- Ed was in the building when North Dakota beat Minnesota 4-2 in the semifinals.

- Denver by two.

- The University of North Dakota Alumni Association is hosting parties across the country today for the Frozen Four Championship game.

- From the SJ Mercury News, 2 reasons to watch todays final:

- ESPN is using what it calls the DasherCam, a robotic camera that runs the length of the ice above the protective glass. It's intent is to give viewers an ice-level look without obstruction.

- Denver sophomore defenseman Matt Carle was the Sharks' second-round draft pick in 2003. Carle scored the winning goal and had two assists Thursday in a 6-2 win over Colorado College.

- Colorado College forward Marty Sertich won the 25th annual Hobey Baker Award. Sertich had 27 goals and 37 assists in 43 games. According to hobeybaker.com, Sertich is the second Colorado College player to win the award in the last three seasons. Another Colorado College forward, Brett Sterling, made the final ballot for this year.

- All four Frozen Four Finalists were from the same conference for the first time in the 58 year NCAA championship history. North Dakota, Colorado College, Minnesota, and Denver are all from the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

- WCHA is cream of college hockey crop - Fox Sports.

CAHA Championships at Logitech Ice this weekend

From the SJ Mercury News:

The California Amateur Hockey Association state championships got under way at Logitech Ice on Friday, and they end Sunday. Local entries include the San Jose Junior Sharks, Santa Clara Valley Blackhawks, Tri-Valley Blue Devils and California Cougars (San Mateo).

For more information, visit logitechice.com, or call 1-408-279-6000.


Germany Hockey Playoff Semifinal update

Ecco from Germany posts an update on the semifinals of the Deutscher Eishockey Liga playoffs. For more on Marco Sturm and the DEL playoffs, visit prohockey.de, erc-ingolstadt.de, or del.org. Photos can be found on Kbumm, or de.sports.yahoo.com.

Semi Finals Game 1:

Frankfurt Lions-Adler Mannheim 3 - 4 (0-2, 1-0, 2-2)
0:1 Adler Mannheim F. Carciola E. Healey - C. Ullmann 11:40 ES
0:2 Adler Mannheim M. Kink J. Tripp - J. Podollan 16:02 ES
1:2 Frankfurt Lions P. Lebeau D. Norris - D. Weight 22:33 PP1
1:3 Adler Mannheim J. Hecht D. Edgerton 40:39 PP1
1:4 Adler Mannheim E. Healey J. Tripp 51:54 ES
2:4 Frankfurt Lions C. Kohmann P. Ratchuk 53:51 ES
3:4 Frankfurt Lions J. Young F. Bouchard - D. Norris 59:44 PP1

Gordon, Ian - FRA 58:50 29 4 86,21

Huet, Cristobal - MAN 60:00 36 3 91,67 ->Lockout Player<-

Frankfurt Lions:
D Francois Bouchard 1a
F Christian Kohmann 1g
F Dwayne Norris 2a
D Peter Ratchuk 1a
F Doug Weight 1a ->Lockout Player<-
F Jason Young 1g
F Patrick Lebeau 1g

Mannheimer Adler:
F Fabio Carciola 1g
F Devin Edgerton 1a
F Eric Healey 1g 1a
F Jochen Hecht 1g ->Lockout Player<-
F Markus Kink 1g
F Jason Podollan 1a (former )
F John Tripp 2a (former )
F Christoph Ullmann 1a

Frankfurt Lions-Mannheimer Adler 0:1

Eisbären Berlin-ERC Ingolstadt 3 - 5 (0-1, 1-3, 2-1)
0:1 ERC Ingolstadt J. Langenbrunner A. Ward - A. McDonald 01:14 ES
0:2 ERC Ingolstadt C. Mann D. Ast - B. Burym 22:14 ES
1:2 Eisbären Berlin K. Fairchild M. Beaufait - F. Keller 22:54 ES
1:3 ERC Ingolstadt C. Armstrong M. Jiranek - D. Ast 24:11 ES
1:4 ERC Ingolstadt C. Melischko A. Polaczek - C. Armstrong 27:47 ES
2:4 Eisbären Berlin D. Walser F. Busch - R. Shearer 43:29 ES
2:5 ERC Ingolstadt A. Ward M. Harder - C. Armstrong 50:21 ES
3:5 Eisbären Berlin M. Beaufait S. Walker - D. Walser 58:17 PP2

Kölzig, Olaf - EBB 58:00 25 5 80,00 ->Lockout Player<-
Waite, Jimmy - ING 60:00 38 3 92,11

Eisbären Berlin:
F Mark Beaufait 1g 1a
F Florian Busch 1a
D Nathan Dempsey was held scoreless
F Kelly Fairchild 1g
F Florian Keller 1a
F Rob Shearer 1a
F Steve Walker 1a
D Derrick Walser 1g 1a

ERC Ingolstadt:
D Chris Armstrong 1g 2a
F Doug Ast 2a
D Brad Burym 1a
F Mike Harder 1a
F Martin Jiranek 1a
F Jamie Langenbrunner 1g ->Lockout Player<-
F Cameron Mann 1g
F Christoph Melischko 1g
F Alexander Polaczek 1a
D Aaron Ward 1g

Eisbären Berlin-ERC Ingolstadt 0:1

Next Matches:
03/04/05: ERC Ingolstadt-Eisbären Berlin
03/04/05: Mannheimer Adler-Frankfurt Lions

Semi Finals Game 2:

Adler Mannheim-Frankfurt Lions 3 - 1 (1-0, 2-1, 0-0)
1:0 Adler Mannheim D. Edgerton J. Podollan - S. Kelly 05:49 ES
2:0 Adler Mannheim J. Hecht Y. Tremblay - R. Corbet 21:48 PP2
2:1 Frankfurt Lions J. Murphy D. Sulkovsky - C. Kohmann 26:41 ES
3:1 Adler Mannheim Y. Tremblay S. Kelly - J. Hecht 34:53 PP1
Huet, Cristobal - MAN 60:00 30 1 96,67 -former
Gordon, Ian - FRA 57:27 29 3 89,66
Mannheimer Adler:

F Rene Corbet 1a
F Devin Edgerton 1g
F Jochen Hecht 1g 1a ->Lockout Player
F Steve Kelly 2a -former
F Jason Podollan 1a -former
D Yanick Tremblay 1g 1a ->Lockout Player

Frankfurt Lions:
F Christian Kohmann 1a
F Joe Murphy 1g
F David Sulkovsky 1a

Frankfurt Lions-Adler Mannheim 0:2

ERC Ingolstadt-Eisbären Berlin 2 - 3 (1-2, 0-0, 1-1)
1:0 ERC Ingolstadt A. McDonald K. Sutton - J. Ficenec 10:20 PP1
1:1 Eisbären Berlin M. Beaufait S. Felski - S. Heins 15:38 PP1
1:2 Eisbären Berlin S. Felski 17:22 ES
2:2 ERC Ingolstadt K. Sutton G. Goodall 43:09 ES
2:3 Eisbären Berlin D. Walser A. Barta - A. Rankel 43:46 ES

Waite, Jimmy - ING 58:28 41 3 92,68
Jonas, Oliver - EBB 60:00 21 2 90,48

ERC Ingolstadt:
D Jakub Ficenec 1a
F Glen Goodall 1a
F Andy McDonald 1g ->Lockout Player
D Ken Sutton 1g 1a

Eisbären Berlin:
F Alexander Barta 1a
F Mark Beaufait 1g
F Sven Felski 1g 1a
D Shawn Heins 1a
F Andre Rankel 1a
D Derrick Walser 1g

Eisbären Berlin-ERC Ingolstadt 1:1

Semi Finals Game 3:

Frankfurt Lions-Mannheimer Adler 4 - 3 (2-0, 1-0, 1-3)
1:0 Frankfurt Lions J. Murphy M. Reichel 05:14 ES
2:0 Frankfurt Lions J. Young D. Weight - P. Lebeau 06:18 PP1
3:0 Frankfurt Lions S. Robidas D. Weight - P. Lebeau 30:24 PP2
4:0 Frankfurt Lions D. Norris D. Weight - S. Robidas 42:42 PP1
4:1 Adler Mannheim J. Hecht 46:21 PP1
4:2 Adler Mannheim R. Corbet J. Hecht 48:39 ES
4:3 Adler Mannheim J. Hecht D. Edgerton - N. Pyka 51:54 ES

Steve Kelly (Adler Mannheim) 5+20 pim (will be banned for a game)

Gordon, Ian - FRA 60:00 29 3 89,66
Huet, Cristobal - MAN 58:51 26 4 84,62 ->Lockout Player<-

Frankfurt Lions:
F Patrick Lebeau 2a
F Joe Murphy 1g
F Dwayne Norris 1g
F Martin Reichel 1a
D Stephane Robidas 1g 1a ->Lockout Player<-
F Doug Weight 3a ->Lockout Player<-
F Jason Young 1g

Mannheimer Adler:
F Rene Corbet 1g
F Devin Edgerton 1a
F Jochen Hecht 2g 1a ->Lockout Player<-
D Nico Pyka 1a

Frankfurt Lions-Mannheimer Adler 1:2

- Ingolstadts forward Cameron Mann got a 4 game ban before the game,because of some action in the last match.

Eisbären Berlin-ERC Ingolstadt 4 - 2 (2-0, 1-2, 1-0)
1:0 Eisbären Berlin D. Pederson S. Ustorf - S. Walker 06:47 ES
2:0 Eisbären Berlin S. Heins S. Ustorf - D. Pederson 09:36 ES
2:1 ERC Ingolstadt M. Sturm D. Ast - P. Von Stefenelli 22:56 ES
2:2 ERC Ingolstadt D. Ast J. Langenbrunner 35:00 PP1
3:2 Eisbären Berlin S. Heins N. Dempsey 39:34 PP1
4:2 Eisbären Berlin F. Busch M. Beaufait - S. Felski 55:25 ES

Jonas, Oliver - EBB 60:00 31 2 93,55
Waite, Jimmy - ING 58:18 38 4 89,47

Eisbären Berlin:
F Mark Beaufait 1a
F Florian Busch 1g
D Nathan Dempsey 1a
F Sven Felski 1a
D Shawn Heins 2g
F Denis Pederson 1g 1a
F Stefan Ustorf 2a
F Steve Walker 1a

ERC Ingolstadt:
F Doug Ast 1g 1a
F Jamie Langenbrunner 1a ->Lockout Player<-
F Marco Sturm 1g ->Lockout Player<-
D Phil von Steffenelli 1a

Eisbären Berlin-ERC Ingolstadt 2:1

Top 3 Scorer:
1. F Jochen Hecht (Adler Mannheim) 9gp 8g 9a 17p 10pim +5
2. René Corbet (Adler Mannheim) 9gp 9g 3a 12a 14pim +5
2. Doug Weight (Frankfurt Lions) 9gp 2g 10a 12p 6pim -1

The next games are on Sunday.

NHL Rules Changes, Buccigross's 10 suggestions, a fans reaction, the GM meeting in Detroit, the Shanahan committee's suggestions, and my final word

ESPN's John Buccigross writes a list of 10 recommendations he would give the NHL on changing the rules, Creativity is the key to success. Irreverent as usual, but #6 hits on a point the league needs to consider.

6. Mandatory player and referee microphones Every game one player from each team and one on-ice official should wear a microphone. Players are funny, emotional and, in some cases, smart. We need to showcase them and put on an entertaining television show. What the NFL realized a long time ago that most NHL GMs and PR people don't is that televised games are TV shows. A TV show won't get good ratings unless it is creative and compelling. I don't want to turn this into "Real World Raleigh," but the NHL should have the full authority to tell teams what to do in terms of cooperation with its national TV partners, whether it's ESPN, NBC or CBC. Individual NHL PR departments, as well as coaches and GMs who sometimes veto the moves, have too much authority. Bain Capital Partners LLC and Game Plan International's leveraged buyout of the NHL would be positive in a lot of ways. Most importantly, the NHL would have one owner and thus decisions would be made, like better TV production methods, for the good of the league as opposed to individual teams.

Sharkspage reader Bill Lenihan has a few suggestions of his own. Here are his thoughts in their entirety.


Bigger nets? Thicker bluelines? Orange lines w/ blue ice? Speedo unisuits? Jetsons-style see-thru helmets? Puhleeease! I make my living as an engineer in the aerospace industry, and whenever I have a problem, the first rule to a solution is always "Try the simple things first!" That is why the laundry list of potential changes to the NHL is so frightening. Before we re-imagine this game into something that looks like Rollerball-meets-Soccer, can we please try a few simple things, first?

1. Move the goal lines back to where they were 20 years ago, and put the extra space in the neutral zone. Helps defeat the trap and allows the team with the puck some room to build momentum coming into the offensive zone. (Thank you, Denis Potvin)

2. Roll back the size of goalie gear (especially leg pads) to circa-1980 levels, but allow them to retain their modern, lightweight, water-repellent, space-age materials. Keep in mind that the lower levels of hockey in North America tend to emulate what's going on in the NHL (for 'marketing' to their youth players, who all have NHL heroes they follow). Has anyone thought about the infrastructure costs to the local neighborhood rinks if bigger nets become the NHL standard? Wouldn't mandating smaller goalie pads -- which have to be replaced every few years anyway -- be essentially a zero-cost alternative to the same ends? Naturally, at the amateur levels, smaller pads would be grandfathered-in over time.

3. Goaltender mobility? ... They can go anywhere on the ice they please, but once they leave the crease they're subject to the same checking rules as everyone else. We can think about expanding the crease dimensions a LITTLE bit, too.

4. Limits on curvature of the stick? ... Gone! Today's hockey player knows that super-curved sticks are lousy for stickhandling & passing (what they do most of the time) and useful only for those opportunities where they can pop out a 35-foot slapshot with nobody in their way (what they never get time & space to do).

5. Blue Ice? ... No! I've seen it in person at Long Beach Ice Dogs (ECHL) games. It's a serious impediment for the fan in the arena to keep track of the puck. There are ways to televise a white ice surface without glare distorting the image. The NHL just needs the better broadcasters to share their tricks of the trade.

6. Obstruction? ... Clear, unambiguous definition thereof!

7. Shootouts in overtime? ... No! This is a team sport, not a skills contest. Sofa king what if there is a tie once in a while?

8. ANY regular-season overtime? ... the present 4x4 5-minute format is ok if ya gotta have some OT, but there are far better ways of reducing the number of ties we have at the end of 60 minutes ...... and thus no need for OT in the regular season at all. See:


9. Hurry-up face-offs? ... Get rid of the need for regular-season OT, and you won't need this. Hurry-up face-offs are a drawback to fans in the arena, as we miss game action while other fans are getting in/out of their seats. My reason for going to hockey games is to relax and enjoy the spectacle, not to become a clock-watcher so I can hit the freeway in time to catch Jerry Springer.

10. Tag-up offsides? ... Yes!

11. Instigator rule? ... Gone! No more dog-and-pony shows (McSorley/Brashear, Bertuzzi/Moore) for the non-hockey media to bash our sport.

12. Mandatory visors? ... No! Every player has a unique "sweat + body-heat + plastic = fog & distorted vision" equation. Therefore, they must be free to try them, weigh the tradeoffs, and decide for themselves. The next CBA could allow teams to offer contract incentives to players who wear them, because visored players will theoretically have lower insurance rates and fewer man-games lost to injury.

13. Somebody had the bright idea of having a "draft playoff series" that runs in parallel with the regular playoffs. The idea is that the bottom-dwelling non-playoff teams, instead of just tanking the season for the CHANCE to get the #1 overall pick, instead play a series of best-of-3 playoff rounds among each other in order to WIN that #1 pick. More games. More revenue. Fans have a meaningful goal to cheer this-years-losing team. Current players feel they are contributing to the teams future. Win-win all around. (Sorry I can't remember who thought of this.)

14. Call the friggin' rulebook the same for every minute of every game, pre-season or Game 7 of the Cup finals. In the beginning, the penalty box will be packed like a can of sardines as every single nit-picky infraction is called, but eventually the players will learn and adjust.

15. The NHL & NHLPA pay equally for a 3rd-party organization to oversee the Officials, with the exclusive rights to educate, berate, demote, promote, or fire any referee / linesman who doesn't adhere to # 14.

Give these changes two years. Then, if the game isn't more exciting, we can talk about getting rid of the 2-line pass rule, limiting players to wooden sticks, thicker bluelines (Bobby Smith's idea that The Hockey News has adopted as a religious crusade), etc., etc.,.

The power-brokers in the NHL seem hellbent on doing anything to attract a big, lucrative American TV audience. I worry that the radical changes they envision to accomplish this will alienate the long-time, diehard fans (translation for NHL owners: the people who've actually paid real money out of their own pocket to sit in the non-luxury-box seats in your arenas and tolerated witnessing the wrestling matches you've been passing off as major league hockey for the last 10 years).

When those people have discarded the sport, who will be left to watch the NHL (or whatever the marketing droids rename it) after the owner's dream of big ratings dies a painful death because Joe Sixpack from Anytown, USA -- having never, ever skated in his entire life! -- simply has not before / does not now / and will not in the future "get" ice hockey? I think it's great that Gary Bettman and his corporate partners can dream big dreams, but at the end of the day we all have to live within our means. For the NHL, myself -- a fan since 1970 -- and others like me, are your means.

Bill Lenihan
Redondo Beach, CA

PS -- Form-fitting unisuits? I must have missed the press release that introduced Mr. Blackwell as the NHL's fashion consultant.

Form fitting unisuits also are mentioned in this Uniwatch column by Paul Lukas, Fix Hockey with New Unis! The popular Uniwatch column has three unusual suggestions to fix hockey uniforms: tucked-in jerseys, pants instead of hockey shorts, and incorporating uniform design elements on the helmet.

Each of his suggestions are backed with historical references and lots of example photos. Using the helmet as a design element? Yes. Tucked in jerseys? Pants? No.

One suggestion I would make came to light when the NHL installed safety netting after the death of Brittany Cecil. A few teams used black netting, a few white, and the rest used clear. The netting either extended all the way to the ceiling, or it was hung from a bar that mirrored the end boards about 50 feet up.

For an unknown reason, the NHL switched to using colored or alternate jerseys at home instead of the usual white. From the nosebleed seats through the netting, or when watching on TV, it is much easier to read the name and number of a player if the home team is wearing a white jersey. When the road team wears their colored home jersey or an alternate jersey, there is a diversity of colors each time a new teams comes to town instead of the same homecolor/white for every game.

It may be a minor change, but it would liven up the rink, and make the broadcast easier to watch.

[Update] All of this speculation on NHL rules changes is being made against the backdrop of 30 NHL GM's meeting in Detroit on Thursday. According to the AP, the size of goaltending equipment, goaltenders playing the puck, widening the bluelines, and shootouts are on the agenda for discussion.

[Update2] In December of last year, Detroit Red Wings forward Brendan Shanahan gathered together a number of NHL players, coaches, GMs, and other notables to discuss ways to improve the game. The 2 day meeting came up with a number of suggestions, and as usual, Offwing has a full recap of all the particulars.

The 10 suggestions made by the Shanahan committee:

1. Create competition committee.

2. Obstruction: Flagrant diving be made two-minute minor and 10-minute misconduct; stick on body should be illegal.

3. Five minutes of overtime, then shoot-out.

4. One-minute, rather than two-minute, minor penalties during overtime.

5. Streamline goaltending equipment.

6. Adopt AHL experimental rules (tag-up offside, wide bluelines, restricted goalie zone, and push goal line back two feet).

7. Automatic icing. On intentional icing, defending team should not make line change.

8. Two-minute minor penalty for any player who shoots puck into stands in defending zone.

9. Improved access for broadcast rights holders.

10. Improve communication and partnership.

No word on if a blogger or two would be included in that competition committee.

[Update3] The Buffalo Sabres came up with an interesting idea to paint the ice blue, and widen and change colors of the red and blue lines. During an AHL game between the Cleveland Barons and the Rochester Americans, the player reaction was not all that bad.

Buffalo also proposed increasing the size of the net. Take a look at the concept photo the Boston Herald posted along with an AP article.

[Final Word] I have seen most of the suggestions, and many are interesting and should be considered. Unfortunately the game has changed, and it is not for the better. Players are bigger, equipment is bigger, goaltender pads are bigger, even referees are bigger. Every player is taught how to go down to block a puck, and now many are going down just to clog the passing lanes. The death knell for creative and high scoring NHL hockey came with the success of the trap. 50 goal scorers are now only seen in the rear view mirror.

Today there is less room to move on the ice, and less time for a player to demonstrate his skill when he has the puck. The only way this will change significantly is to remove two rows of seating, 5 feet, from all four sides of the rink. The teams will take a hit because these are the highest priced, most desired seats in the arena. But the effect on the game will pay off in the long run in the form of a better product on the ice.

San Jose Sharks Equipment Manager named to Team USA for World Championships

From San Jose Sharks Director of Media Relations Scott Emmert:

San Jose Equipment Manager Will Travel to Austria for April 30 - May 15 Tournament

SAN JOSE-The 2003-04 Pacific Division Champion San Jose Sharks announced today that Equipment Manager Mike Aldrich has been named to the Team USA equipment staff for the 2005 International Ice Hockey Federation World Championships, which will be held April 30 - May 15 in Innsbruck and Vienna, Austria.

This will be the third Team USA appearance for Aldrich, who also served as the team's head equipment manager at the 2003 World Championships in Finland and assistant equipment manager for the 2004 World Cup of Hockey. He also handled all the equipment needs during the 1997 NHL All-Star Game at HP Pavilion for the Western Conference as well as the Heroes of Hockey squad.

Aldrich, 39, enters his ninth season as equipment manager overseeing the entire operations of the Sharks equipment staff. Aldrich handles the intricate requests of all Sharks players with regards to equipment, such as skate sharpening needs, handling all purchasing orders, inventory control and distribution throughout the season.

In his 11th season with the organization, Aldrich previously served the same capacity for the International Hockey League's Kansas City Blades for three seasons (1993-95), then San Jose's top development affiliate.

The United States begins play in the 16-nation 2005 IIHF World Championship on May 1 in Innsbruck against Slovenia. The U.S. team won a bronze medal in last year's IIHF World Championship to mark its best finish in the event since winning a bronze medal in 1996.

For more information, visit www.usahockey.com or www.iihf.com.

Congratulations, and go Team USA!

SJSU Ice Hockey Awards Banquet

From SJSU capatin #4 Ray Kellam:

When: Thursday, April 28th; 6pm

Where: The Drying Shed 402 Toyon avenue, San Jose, 95127 (Max Ramsay's family restaurant. Best food in San Jose. Full bar too.)

Cost: $20

What: All you can eat buffet. 2004-05 highlight DVD premiere, season awards ceremony and possibly Penn State thriller DVD on big screen in the bar.

Why: Support the team. Proceeds go to SJSU ice hockey.

RSVP: Max Ramsay; ramsaymx1989[at]yahoo.com, or 408-926-1395.

Attend the banquet and help support local college hockey.

Boston Bruins Aquafina Ice Girls

Boston Bruins Ice Girls

There are a few fans who do not believe ice girls should be a part of the NHL. I am not one of them.

Thanks to the reader that sent in the link to this photo, but I lost both your name and the URL of the website that posted this in the move to a new computer.