Dawn is slowly breaking over the treeline, hoping to greet a new and better day beneath it. Families wake up. Birds sing. Grass grows.
One little girl sits, surrounded by a pool of black ink, whispering "So much news. So. Much. News. So much" over and over again.
We had a flurry of activity over at the Dispatch as Aaron Portzline is officially back from vacation and throwing bombs left and right to announce his resurgence. At Puck Rakers, they've started a new "In Depth" series to go through the team's roster by position prior to training camp, and what they project for each player. The first installment covers the left wing. The mention of Matt Calvert potentially getting ice time with Rick Nash and Jeff Carter? It makes me shiver with antici....
Over at Icethetics, there's a look at the Houston Aeros' new duds, and some NHL uniform updates for Chicago and LA. I'm surprisingly pleased to hear the Kings are keeping their purple and gold throwbacks around. I like those a lot.
Another Puckrakers article on the front office changes, which Porty expanded on a bit via twitter. Not surprisingly, for the split squad game in Winnipeg, Scott Arniel (who is himself a former Jet) will take the road squad with fellow Canadian Brad Berry, while American born Todd Richards and Dan Hinote will handle the home squad. There's also talk that the Jets' new jerseys (home and away) will be debuted as part of the festivities that day. If you're going to the game here in Columbus, take your camera, because people will want to see that on Twitter ASAP.
Tom Reed sat down with Scott Arniel for a nice Q&A. Interesting to see the optimism tempered with reasonable expectations, and that he's taking some improvements for how he coaches to heart, too. God dammit, is it September yet?
Adam Proteau of The Hockey News takes aim at the concussion issue, and argues the NHL needs to be doing more as soon as possible. Justin Bourne is simply happy they're finally being taken seriously, though he also sees room for improvement.
Scott Howson put on his blogging trousers and talked about Pelotonia, R&D camp, and the end of summer as he and the front office prepare to kick things into high gear.
Speaking of concussions, PHT has a good argument about Brendan Shanahan's biggest challenges in his new position. We also had some good news - concussed Avs forward Peter Mueller is finally ready to return after missing last season.
DBJ is a little frustrated with the NHL/CHL agreement that prevents players like Ryan Johansen from moving into the AHL ranks before age 20, even if it would be better for their development. I think his idea of asking the NHL to put in an "exceptional player" clause similar to the CHL's own clause to handle underage players is a very good one.
Over at NHL.com, Dave Lozo and some of their staff decided to "redraft" the NHL, working over all 30 teams from scratch. Look at the Blue Jackets roster and tell me it isn't inspiring. The central division still looks like a murder factory, of course, but it would be interesting.
That New Jackets Fan blog is now open for business, and he has a nice bit of "getting to know you."
Obsessed with Slap Shot? want to buy the car from the parade? Not a bad deal for a classic, if it's really been properly maintained.
LTL gives us some stat love for the home opener.
Seriously, they renamed HSBC arena to the F'N Center? I'm sure THAT won't backfire.
Non-Hockey but important to Columbus - take a look at Bob Hunter's column on searching for a new location for the Crew to play. I agree that if they could make the area work, a site in the AD would be great, but if the team doesn't think it's good for them, it isn't good for them.
We've finally got more winter classic details, even if they're unconfirmed by the NHL, and a second mask for Ilya Bryzgalov. It'll be interesting to see which one ends up being the "primary" mask, and which one might be worn at the WC.
Over at Fire That Cannon, Stacy gets her Copland on with a fanfare for the common fan.
Non-Hockey: Is Cleveland an overextended pro sports market?
Scott over at Copper & Blue breaks down each Western Conference team's individual point percentage.
Finally, take some guilty pleasure with the Kurtenblog guys.
Have a great Friday, guys!