Thursday thoughts: As "Captain Hair" departs, recall another big Preds signing

While some will mourn the departure of Antti Pihlstrom from the Nashville Predators (OK, only some), it's also a suitable time to reflect on a signing back a few summers ago that legitimized the Preds as an NHL contender. We've got these stores and a whole lot more after the jump...

Predators News

August 5th: This day in Predators history - Nashville Predators Examiner
Jim Diamond takes us back to the summer of 2005 to remember a noteworthy free agent acquisition by the Preds...

Captain Hair moves on… | Section 303
Jeremy says his goodbye to Antti Pihlstrom, who is bound for the Swedish Elite League this season.

The View from 111: Would You Buy A Used Blackberry From This Guy?
Mark shares his reaction to the alleged behavior of Jim Balsillie and Richard Rodier as recounted by Craig Leipold.

Red Light District: Preds personnel breakdown for 09/10
RLD surveys the locks and long-shots to make the Predators roster coming out of training camp this fall. I still believe David Poile will find a cheap, veteran filler on defense rather than go with all rookies at the 5-6-7 spots.

Elsewhere

Music City Miracles Interviews Tennessee Titans Kicker Rob Bironas - Music City Miracles
Kudos to SB Nation's Tennessee Titans blog, which features an interview (by a certain Graphic Design Goon) with the team's kicker. Well done, smashville!

Official: New Jersey Devils Signed Brendan Shanahan to 1 year, $1 Million Deal - In Lou We Trust
The Devils made a deal, alright - Shanny's back in the fold for one more go-round.

Five Hole Fanatics: Patience is a virtue
Kent sees plenty to like on the free agent market, and makes the point that an acquisition now of a player like Alex Tanguay or Robert Lang could pay dividends down the road at the trade deadline.

How you’ll learn to stop worrying and love ads on jerseys - Puck Daddy
An interesting discussion on whether, and to what extent, we'll see advertising on NHL uniforms. Folks may not realize it, but we're already partway there. Go back and look at old photos, and you don't see "CCM" logos on hockey pants, gloves or helmets. I think if the league is smart about placement, they could make some coin while avoiding the Euro-NASCAR look.

It’s going to be a confusing year to read Flames’ stories - mc79hockey.com
Tyler makes a good argument that Calgary seems to be building up their strengths and just wishing their weaknesses away this summer, which is an odd formula to say the least.

Sorry, Ladies - Varlamov Has the Love of His Life - Japers' Rink
Semyon Varlamov was outstanding for the Washington Capitals down the stretch and into the playoffs, and this translated interview from a Russian magazine makes for a fun read.

Twitter / Kevin Allen: Talked to Brian Burke and ...
Kevin Allen does what a real reporter does; talks to a GM and gets feedback regarding Nikolai Zherdev and Tomas Kaberle. No "rumors" or mysterious "inside scoop" here, just honest-to-goodness reporting. I'm sure the hockey rumor bozos will pick this up and run with it...

Top 10 pop culture moments in Jeremy Roenick's career - Puck Daddy
A look back at just what separated Jeremy Roenick from the rest of the NHL; he was, by far, the most media-ready athlete the NHL has had in a long time, and hopefully he'll build on that going forward. For my kids who wonder why Daddy took 10 years to get through college, check out #1 on this list. I blame the Sega Corporation.

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