Monday's notes: Clouds over Smashville

While yesterday's funeral may have brought some amount of closure for Wade Belak's friends and family, one has to think that a cloud will hang over this team for some time to come. As professionals, their mode of operation is to focus on the task at hand and push distractions aside, but this one has to be difficult to deal with.

Please consider making a $3 donation (in honor of #3) to the Wade Belak Memorial Charity Drive, which benefits the Tourette Syndrome Clinic at Toronto Western Hospital, the charity Wade was going to compete for on "Battle of the Blades" (one his daughters has Tourette's). Another option is to contribute to the Andie and Alex Belak Scholarship Fund. Checks for that may be made payable to Woodmont Christian Church/Belak (3601 Hillsboro Pike, Nashville, TN 37215).

And now, your morning hockey notes...

Nashville Predators News

The View from 111: When the Music Stops
Mark argues for mental health to be treated in a similar fashion to physical health for hockey players, but I'd respond that all three of the fallen NHL players this year were receiving treatment for their issues, and that no program can prevent every tragedy.

As fans mark Belak’s death, friends honour his charitable legacy - The Globe and Mail
While it's nice that this article mentions the Wade Belak Memorial Charity Drive, I can't believe they don't link to it, or even mention the address of the site. How very old-media of them.

Friends react to Belak’s passing - Predators Insider
Josh Cooper spoke to a few of the attendees at Wade's funeral yesterday, including Tie Domi and David Poile.

‘We’re all going to miss him:’ Friends, family remember big-hearted Belak - thestar.com
This has more comments from the funeral, including Steve Sullivan, Ryan Suter, and others.

Around the NHL

Add former Flames brawler Jim Peplinski to the anti-fighting camp | ProHockeyTalk
You know what? Among all the anti-fighting ideas I've heard, this is the first article that comes forward with a reasonable, practical suggestion: some kind of protocol for medical review of players after they've gone through a fight, ensuring that they're OK before going back into the game. Perhaps something akin to the current "quiet room" concussion standard?

Sam Gagner Comparables Lead Us To The 1980s - The Copper & Blue
Career-comparable analysis is a tricky business, something I've toyed around with a bit relative to the Preds. Would you folks be interested in seeing these kinds of projections?

Rumor Vetting: Looks like Schumacher is staying in North America (for now?) - Jewels From The Crown
No, not Michael Schumacher the Formula One champion, were talking about a hockey prospect here.

Who will rise to the visor challenge in Tampa Bay? - Raw Charge
Will the Lightning players learn from Steve Yzerman's experience, and wear visors?

On Choosing to Lose : Tom Benjamin's NHL Blog :: CanucksCorner.com
I agree with Tom here, the whole "blow it up and draft high" model is fraught with peril. While it may have paid off for a couple teams, there are many more who linger in the NHL's basement for years, like St. Louis, Edmonton, and Florida.

Time For League to Treat All Players Like People, Regardless of Role PuckUpdate
This is a good blog that's been around for a long time, but this is perhaps the worst of the "what can we change about hockey to prevent further tragedies" suggestion I've seen yet.

Los Angeles Kings Resurrect Gretzky-Era Uniforms | The Hockey Writers
Opinions are all over the map as the Kings tweak their look once again.

Looking To The Past - Pension Plan Puppets
Take a trip back in time for some video from 1932, and a battle between Montreal & Toronto which features a goal by Howie Morenz, the legendary great-grandfather of Blake Geoffrion:


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