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Covering all the bases

Thanks to a variety of reasons, the Predators are a team no one wants to face in the playoffs. (Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)

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Thanks to a variety of reasons, the Predators are a team no one wants to face in the playoffs. (Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)

I wonder what a one-sentence intro to the mailbag would look like?

Adam, I am in a playoff pool and never come close to winning. Can you give me an educated guess as to who will go deep this season? I'm thinking Washington and Chicago, but that's too obvious. Everyone will be thinking that. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks,
Don Graham, Georgetown, Ont.


Don,

You’re absolutely right – playoff poolies everywhere will be snapping up Capitals and Blackhawks (and probably Penguins) left and right, the way they’ve traditionally done with Red Wings and…well, mostly with Red Wings.

I’d guess you need to put your money and picks behind an unexpected Cup contender to win your pool, so take a look at some of the lower seeds and figure out who you think might upset one of the powerhouse franchises.

I’ve said it before; I don’t think there’s such a thing as a sleeper team anymore. But I’d take a chance on the Predators in the West (and maybe the Kings as well) and Ottawa in the East.

Hey Adam, I know THN deals with pro hockey at all levels, but how about devoting a lot more attention to the NCAA? There has been great hockey at the NCAAs recently and there’s the Frozen Four right now, but it’s not on here. Can we discuss it a bit more? Thanks,
Bill Malcolm, Lethbridge, Alta.


Bill,

What, you mean this? Or this? Good timing, huh?

In all honesty, we at THN are fully aware of the challenges that are out there in terms of covering all aspects of the game. Ideally we’d have enough resources to offer up tons of content on the women’s game, children’s hockey and pond hockey (to name a few).

But practically, we have to devote the bulk of our attention to the NHL product, as that’s where the majority of fan interest is.

That doesn’t mean it’s fair. But considering that I’ve been getting my first few gray hairs this year – even though I still can’t grow a beard (or even a pathetic moustache or goatee that looks like it was drawn on in pencil) – I’m of the opinion that life isn’t fair.

Adam, pourquoi nous n'avons plus les statistiques des ligues de hockey, NHL. Les ligues junior de l'Ontario, du Quebec et de l'Ouest, c'était intéressant de suivre les prospects junior, votre journal est beaucoup moins in téressant et je crois que je vais arreter mon abonnement, j'appréciai beaucoup la formule d'y il ya 3 ans, s,v,p vos commentaries. Merci,
Pierre Roy, St-Georges de Beauce, Que.


Pierre,

Uh…je m’appelle Adam?

I’m sorry you were fooled by my last name. Unfortunately, I’m a Toronto-raised anglophile who can understand a petite bit of Francais, yet is pitifully unable to converse in your wonderful language.

Feel free to Google Translate this part, by the way. That’s what I did for your question, and here’s what came out:

Why we have more statistics Hockey League, NHL. The junior leagues in Ontario, Quebec and the West, it was interesting to watch the junior prospects, your newspaper is much less in fortresses and I think I'll stop my subscription, I appreciated very much the formula 'there 3 years ago, s,v,p your comments. Thank you.

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Again, I’m kind of lost. If you are asking why we don’t have as much coverage of the junior leagues, I’d refer you to my answer on our NCAA reporting. Hope that helps.

Hi Adam, as there was no All-Star Game this year, I was wondering, who would have been your picks for the starting lineups for the East and West? We may as well go off the whole season’s stats instead of just half a season. Looking forward to seeing who you think would get in there! Thanks,
Dave Wardle, Sydney, Australia


Hi Dave,

I think it’s somewhat unfair to make All-Star picks after a full season; in one respect, it’s almost as if you’d be voting for the league’s First and Second Team All-Stars by doing it at this time of year.

I’d rather reveal that to readers instead – and I promise to do that in the mailbag. But I’ll wait until I file my First and Second Team All-Star picks (as well as my votes for the league’s individual awards) once I fill out my ballot in the next couple weeks. Let the iPad-like worldwide anticipation begin.

Hey Adam, With the playoffs about to begin, what do THN staffers do for the summer? Do you guys punch the time-clock for the last time after the Stanley Cup is awarded and return in September? I’d love to have that kind of job!
Aaron Braeder, Halifax, N.S.


Hey Aaron,

I too would love to have that kind of job! Let me know if you find one, because it sure isn’t available at THN.

Now, a hockey writer having summers off may have been the reality a couple decades ago, but these days, the job is a 60/24/7/365 experience.

For instance, we’ll be putting together our special Draft Preview issue next week. Then there’ll be another regular issue. Then we’ve got some special hardcover books to complete.

After that, there will be the NHL Awards to cover. After that comes the NHL draft in June and unrestricted free agency in July. After that, we’ll be focused on our season-opening Yearbook. And of course, there’s the omnipresent THN.com beast to keep feeding each and every day.

Quite the bunch of slothful s.o.b.s, aren’t we? Maybe you should be looking to earn a living as the Maytag Repairman instead.

Ask Adam appears Fridays on TheHockeyNews.com. Proteau also answers readers' questions in every issue of The Hockey News magazine and on The Hockey News Radio Show on XM Radio channel 204. To send us your question or comment, click HERE.

Adam Proteau is writer and columnist for The Hockey News and a regular contributor to THN.com. His blog appears Mondays, his Ask Adam feature appears Fridays and his column, Screen Shots, appears Thursdays.

For more great profiles, news and views from the world of hockey, subscribe to The Hockey News magazine.

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