Tuesday, July 13, 2010

For the Record: Please Don't Pet My Nino Bobblehead.

The distraction: Keeping track of all the Portland Winterhawks who have been drafted or signed by the NHL. And counting the days until the home opener on October 2nd. Which is officially 80, if you must know. And, it's Nino bobblehead night for season ticket holders.

Yay for him, boo for us: The irony of bobblehead night is that Nino may still be with the Islanders when the Winterhawks' season opens. Good for him, major bummer alert for us. On the other hand, how cool will it be to see he and Ryan on NHL ice for the first time, geared up for their first major league games?

Speaking of which: I really must start a spreadsheet. Here's where we are so far:

2010 NHL Draft:

4 - Ryan Johansen to Columbus Blue Jackets
5 - Nino Niederreiter to New York Islanders
43 - Brad Ross to Toronto Maple Leafs
78 - Taylor Aronson to Nashville Predators
137 - Troy Rutkowski to Colorado Avalanche
139 - Luke Walker to Colorado Avalanche
191 - Mac Carruth to Chicago Blackhawks
208 - Riley Boychuk to Buffalo Sabres

2009 NHL Draft:
Brett Ponich to St. Louis Blues - signed this past spring
Spencer Bennett to Calgary Flames

Other Signings of note:
Stefan Schneider signed with Vancouver Canucks this spring
Chris Francis signed with AHL's Springfield Falcons, the affiliate of the Columbus Blue Jackets

En route to training camps:
Tayler Jordan to Vancouver Canucks. Tayler, by the way, played most of last season on a line with Stefan and Riley.
Oliver Gabriel to Columbus Blue Jackets. Yes, that's three Hawks in the Blue Jackets' system.
Taylor Peters to Pittsburgh Penguins.

There goes the salary cap neighborhood: The Kovalchuk talks with LA. Question: How much salary cap will the Kings have to unload to afford him? Not even Sidney Crosby does the "Give me $100 million or else" crap. Because he was obviously raised properly, first of all. And of course he makes more money from Reebok than he probably does from the Penguins. But still, nobody is worth that much salary, especially if they get injured. Which brings me to my second point...nobody is invincible. One hit to the head, one knee-on-knee collision and today's superstar can become tomorrow's deadweight. And finally, if they agree to the deal, it sets a dangerous precedent for future salary demands. There. End of rant. Now I feel better. Back to topic...

The rule: Section 5, Penalties. Other Penalties. Rule 556, Broken Stick.

To refresh on something I forgot last time: Rule 555, Illegal or Dangeous Equipment. 555.b. The Referee can request that a player or goalkeeper remove any personal accessories shall, at the discretion of the Referee, the personal accessories worn during the game be regarded as dangerous for the player and other participants.

If the accessories are difficult to remove, then the player has to tape them or put them under the jersey so as to render them no longer dangerous. So, no wearing your Stanley Cup ring for the purpose of throwing a way meaner and more injurious punch, even with tape? Can you see a player doing this and trying to convince the Ref he can't get it off because it's just too big and shiny? Well, now that I think about it, a player like Kovalchuk just might do this.

Ok, now on with the rule: 556, Broken Stick. Ever wonder why players just leave a stick on the ice and play continues? This rule explains it. A "broken stick" is one which, in the opinion of the Referee, is unfit for normal play. A player without a stick may participate in the game. 556.a: If a player whose stick is broken does not immediately drop the broken portions and continues to play, he shall be assessed a minor penalty.

Morals of the story:

The game: Ok, I get the rule itself. Simple enough. But why would you continue to play with a broken stick anyway? And why not allow a player to proceed to the bench for a new one instead of dropping it and putting other players at risk for injury? Perhaps because it means they could swap out a legal stick for an illegal one, after breaking it on purpose? Inquiring hockey minds want to know. Sure I could Google it, but where's the fun in that?

Life: How cool would it be if we could just drop the broken portions of our lives and continue playing the game of life without penalty? For example:

-- For driving offenses, instead of getting ticketed or appearing in court, you could just pull your car over, get out, put a few quarters in a machine and that night, just like the street sweepers, a truck comes along and tows your car off to be recycled and you get to buy a new one, complete with an unblemished record and a new driver's license.

-- Instead of a lifetime of guilt about letting the one who got away get away, we could get one chance to do it over. And either you get it right or you find out you realize you were right to leave.

-- All those national reforms for banks could require that they build a special tool into online banking accounts that lets you delete the debit that put you into overdraft mode, and record a deposit now that you won't make until Friday to restore your account balance.

Next up: Section 5, Penalties. Other Penalties. Rule 557, Falling on the Puck by a Player. Rule 558, Falling on the Puck by a Goalkeeper.

No comments:

Post a Comment