We've got projections for the upcoming season, news that the NHL's R&D camp is yielding results which could impact the game within a matter of weeks, and the use of stats to pick apart one of the most annoying cliches around.
There's all that and a lot more going on in this morning's hockey notes, so follow after the jump!
Nashville Predators News
These Guys Are Just Like Us - NashvillePredators.com
A great observation by Tom Callahan here, that getting anyone to admit they need help with issues like depression or substance abuse is tough enough (and something people from all walks of life struggle with). For pro athletes who are steeped in a "suck it up, get out and there and play" mindset, it can be even more difficult.
No surprise national TV neglects the Predators once again… | Section 303
Jeremy's pissed at the lack of Preds coverage on Versus coming up this season, and understandably so.
Previewing the Predators’ forwards for 2011-12, part two… | Section 303
Could Blake Geoffrion find a home alongside David Legwand and Martin Erat? That's an interesting notion, as I like Blake's size and willingness to go to the front of the net.
The Resurgence of Patric Hornqvist | The Predatorial
I'm betting on Hornqvist getting back to 30 goals, too.
Smashville 24/7: 2011-12 Preview: Kevin Klein
I think we can establish a realistic expectation for Kevin Klein, as a 2nd-pair even strength defender and solid PK man. That's a pretty darned valuable piece to have in a team's toolkit...
Around the NHL
"The Most Dangerous Lead in Hockey" – Fact or Myth? | PuckScene.com
Patten's been doing some number crunching, and (thankfully) skewers a tired old saw.
Is Jeremy Roenick America’s answer to Don Cherry? - The Globe and Mail
Get used to JR sounding off, as he signed a five-year contract with NBC to provide colorful commentary.
NHL moving toward a safer rink - The Globe and Mail
It's nice to see good ideas move quickly out of the league's R&D Camp and into regular practice, especially when they have to do with player safety.
Why calling icing on penalty killers might be terrible - Puck Daddy
To me, the last point here is the biggest; I'm not a big fan of increasing the role of special teams in hockey. Instead, focus on increasing the up-and-down action in 5-on-5 play.
No Tweaking Allowed : Tom Benjamin's NHL Blog
Another good reason to eschew all these "boost the power play" ideas being tested; they put more of a game's result in the hands of the referees.
Who Are The Goons and Who Do They Fight - Pension Plan Puppets
Another well-researched post which shows just how much of a sideshow "enforcers" have become in the NHL.
Shot Through the Hart - Pension Plan Puppets
Here's a neat way to demonstrate the connection between firing lots of shots, and goal-scoring. Pretty graphs here.
Hockey guru "embarrassed" by his Oilers predictions, but says he did better with other teams | Edmonton Journal
Ah, the perils of projection!
Doughty Should Look at Hextall to See Potential Damage of Holdout - NHL Hot Stove
A history lesson for the young defenseman.
Bourne Blog: Inside painkiller problems in pro hockey - Puck Daddy
Good insight here as to just how common the use of painkillers is for pro players, both at the minor league and NHL level. "Just by nature itself, some people are hard-wired to love 'em, some are hard-wired to hate 'em. When you run enough pills through enough guys, it's inevitable you're going to hit a handful that love 'em just a touch too much."
Islanders, MSG decide not to celebrate Penguins brawl - Puck Daddy
They may have struck this down, but I'll bet that Isles fans will still use that slugfest with Pittsburgh as a rallying point.
Bauer Supreme One20 Composite Hockey Stick Review - Hockey Gear HQ - news, reviews & deals
The level of engineering in modern one-piece composite hockey sticks gives players the ability to select equipment that's highly tailored to their style of play.