Welcome back! It's Tuesday, which is reassuring if you had previously believed that the day star was swallowed last night by an eternal serpent, and the risk of the world being plunged into eternal night.
There's been quite a lot of reaction to yesterday's press conference, with Tom Reed weighing in (and welcome back from vacation, sir) at the Dispatch, plus an expanded discussion at Puck-Rakers, DBJ offering his thoughts, and Lori Schmidt giving her take. Overall, I'd call it cautiously optimistic - while opinions on the Richards hiring are split, it's not drastic, and I think everyone appreciates the way Scott Howson is approaching this offseason and assessing his own performance.
Jaromir Jagr is supposedly coming back to the NHL - perhaps even to Pittsburgh, depending who you listen to. But is it sincere, or is Jagr just pumping his own tires?
Former Jackets' coach Claude Noel is in the final competition for the Winnipeg _________ head coaching job. While we're unsure if he can top Mike Haviland in the talent portion, we've no doubt he'll walk away with the swimsuit competition.
Speaking of the ________, our SBNation brethren at Behind The Net have been transforming their site into the new _________ blog, whatever the _________ turns out to be. Go over and say hello to Arctic Ice Hockey.
Yesterday, DBJ asked if people still remembered the "honeymoon" between the Jackets and Columbus that Portzline and Arace keep talking about. The response in the comments is very interesting.
Say what you will about Gary Bettman, it takes some serious huevos to sit down with a reporter from a city you just left and answer his questions frankly. It's a good interview, and worth reading.
The Edmonton Journal's mailbag brings up more questions about the Jackets and Ales Hemsky, including a petitioner asking if we might deal Ryan Johansen to Edmonton. The response boils down to: Scott Howson isn't stupid.
Despite less than credible reports that a Jeff Carter deal might be done, there's no indication of anything actually happening. On the other hand, there's talk that Ilya Bryzgalov has agreed in principle to a deal with the Flyers, which would require them to make a deal to open up cap space before it would be official. Flyers beat writer Tim Paaccio has his own barometer for how likely a deal is to happen, which is useful if you accept total coincidences.
Nicklas Lidstrom will be back in Detroit for at least one more year. I'm torn between the typical (non-Detroit) Central Division fan response of being sick of him being so damn awesome on Detroit's blue line once again, and being glad that Scott Howson might have to compete against the Wings to get one defenseman, but he won't have to compete against them for an entire pairing.
Over at Stanley Cup Of Chowder, Evan is going out on top. Congratulations and all the best.
Could Ryan Smyth be headed back to Edmonton? It certainly sounds like a deal has at least been discussed.
Lori Schmidt continues her walking tour of 97.1.
Finally, congrats to Tapeleg on five years of blogging without, y'know, murdering anyone. Keep up the non-homicidal work.
That's it for now - we'll talk to you again soon!