Rumor Roundup: Flyers need help on the blueline, but don’t expect it to come soon

(Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)

The state of the Philadelphia Flyers defense core remains a troubling issue. They’ve lacked a true top-two defenseman since Chris Pronger’s career was ended by injury nearly three years ago. They attempted to address that issue in July of 2012 by signing Nashville Predators captain Shea Weber to an expensive offer sheet, but the Predators swiftly matched it.

Former GM Paul Holmgren attempted to bolster the overall blueline depth, acquiring Luke Schenn, Mark Streit and Andrew MacDonald via trade and free agency. None of them, however, can fill Pronger’s skates.

The Flyers underwent a front-office shakeup this spring when Ron Hextall took over as GM. Despite Hextall’s stated preference for building from within, rumor-mongers believe the Flyers still seek a stud defenseman, linking them to Winnipeg Jets blueliner Zach Bogosian. Read more

Bruin killer Simon Gagne will be at Boston’s training camp

Rory Boylen
Simon Gagne

There’s no denying NHL teams are, and have been, changing the way they build their rosters. Young and cheap players have become valuable under a cap system. The increasing awareness and use of advanced possession stats have been putting a priority on skilled players. The game has sped up, so quickness is valued. One-dimensional fighters, who could play fewer than five minutes in a game, are going the way of the dodo. Depth and fresh, fast legs are key.

The Boston Bruins let go of fighter and fan favorite Shawn Thornton this summer, which was a big statement for a team that prides itself on toughness. But, really, the 37-year-old wasn’t needed anymore because these days you need speed and scoring capability even on your fourth line. So who will the Bruins replace him with?

According to TVA’s Renaud Lavoie, Simon Gagne has accepted a training camp tryout with the Bruins. Read more

NHL logo rankings No. 7: Boston Bruins

Rory Boylen
bruinsfront

So far, the top 10 NHL logos have included Philadelphia, Anaheim (still not over that one) and Pittsburgh. Today, coming in at No. 7, we present the Original Six look from the Boston Bruins.

At times in Bruins history, the logo has shown a bear, but we most associate the team to the spoked, black and gold ‘B’. But the Bruins weren’t always black and gold. Originally, their primary color was brown.

Although we’ve noticed some commenters poo-pooing Boston’s look as we’ve counted down our favorite NHL logos, the ‘B’ was almost universally favored by the seven THN staffers who were part of the voting – and debating – process. The goal was to look at all the NHL logos again for the first time, not taking history into consideration, and judge them on design, color and, if applicable, how it relates to the city. The Bruins logo stood up to these tests – and, hey, you have to give bonus points for using a color like yellow.

But if you think you can design a better logo for the Boston Bruins, send your art to editorial@thehockeynews.com. At the completion of our logo rankings, we’ll share some of our best reader logo submissions.

(All logos are from Chris Creamer’s website.)

HISTORY OF THE BRUINS LOGO
In 1924, Charles Adams purchased the NHL franchise rights for a Boston team from Thomas Duggan for $15,000. Adams, who was president of First National Stores Inc., (Finast) also purchased a share in Major League Baseball’s Boston Braves franchise in 1927.

Adams, along with GM Art Ross, settled on the name “Bruins” an old English term for bear. But the colors the team would use were settled on before the team name was selected.

The color scheme of Adams’ Finast chain was brown and yellow and he wanted his NHL franchise to share that combination. The name Bruins happened to fit rather perfectly with it.

As you’d expect for a logo from the 1920s, the original look wasn’t the most refined the team has ever had. This logo, which was placed on a brown jersey, was used for one season before the team added more white into the mix.

bruins1

In 1925-26, a face was put on Boston’s Bruin and the whole logo was outlined. Brown was still the primary color used by the team, but white was added to the middle of the jersey, which made it easier to see the logo. During this time, Adams and Ross took advantage of a collapsing Western League to pick up a few star players, such as Eddie Shore.

The Bruin would last on the jersey for another seven years before it was kicked off in favor of a look that set the team on a path towards today’s spoked ‘B.’ Read more

Boston Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask looks like EVERYONE

Matt Larkin
Tuukka Rask

From the files of Typical Summer Story, Bro comes the world’s growing fascination with Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask and his magical powers.

He isn’t just a fantastic goaltender. He’s a shapeshifter who would make Mystiqueand Sam Merlotte proud. The guy looks like everyone. It’s uncanny.

If you’re a THN magazine reader, you know we run a feature called Separated at Birth in the back of each issue. We take fan submissions of players and their famous doppelgangers. Sidney Crosby looks a lot like Andy Samberg. Dustin Tokarski and Michael Buble are long-lost twins. And so on.

But for every one NHL player submission we receive, five Rask ones pour in. We’ll get the same Rask comparisons from multiple readers and we’ll get multiple Rask submissions comparing him to different people.

Behold:

TUUKKA RASK

 

 

TUUKKA RASK, A.K.A MILOS RAONIC

 

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Brad Marchand says he HATES Tomas Plekanec

Rory Boylen
Brad Marchand

The Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins rivalry is…heated you might say. It’s one that dates back to the early days of the NHL, of course, and it’s never really let up.

The two teams have met in four of the past seven post-seasons, with each winning two series. But the styles of these two couldn’t be much different. Boston is a team that always tries to play on the edge and gets the most out of its players when they’re physical and able to get a retaliatory rise out of their opponents. The Habs, a smaller team, didn’t let the Bruins get to them in their second round series this past spring and ended up winning in seven games that were still all very heated contests.

You’ll remember the series ended with Milan Lucic’s epic meltdown in the handshake line, where he apparently threatened to kill Dale Weise and inspired an incredible T-shirt, to say nothing of the backlash to his offenses on twitter and other social media platforms. Lucic may have been a cheap crotch-seeker too often last season, but I find entertainment in the kind of over-the-top explosiveness he showed at the end of the series.

And it appears those hateful feelings still linger amongst Bruins agitators.

At the Phoenix House Champions for Change dinner in Halifax on Tuesday, American League president Dave Andrews asked Brad Marchand which NHL player irritated him the most. Which is ironic, considering Marchand would probably top the list of most other NHLers if they faced the question.

“Tomas Plekanec from Montreal…I hate him. I can’t stand him. No, I probably shouldn’t say that. I dislike him very much. Somebody is going to call and get mad at me tomorrow.”

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Another former NHLer sues league over concussion-related issues

Adam Proteau
Jon Rohloff

In less than a year, there have been three concussion-related class-action lawsuits launched against hockey’s top league by former NHL players. In the previous two lawsuits launched against the NHL (one in November of 2013, and another in April of this year) the plaintiffs were groups of retired players. But in the newest suit – which was revealed Wednesday – there’s only one ex-player involved: former Boston Bruins defenseman Jon Rohloff.

Rohloff’s lawsuit, filed Tuesday in a Minnesota court, alleges he suffered “multiple head traumas during his NHL career that were improperly diagnosed and treated by the NHL.” Rohloff further alleges he was never warned of negative health effects of head trauma, and that the NHL has known about a scientific link “between sub-concussive blows and brain trauma” for 85 years.

There is no word as to an amount of money Rohloff is seeking in the suit. But Rohloff is speaking out with a message that goes against the long-held notion NHLers “know what they’re getting into” when they choose to play what can be a vicious game:

“Former NHL players are uniting to send one resounding message: they signed up to play hockey knowing that they might get injured and dinged, but they did not sign up for brain damage.” Read more

At what point this summer do we change the “U” in UFA to unwanted?

Tampa Bay Lightning v Washington Capitals

For those NHL players who don’t step willingly into retirement, there eventually comes a day when UFA stands for unwanted free agent rather than unrestricted free agent.

As July ends and August begins, we’re now closer to the start of NHL training camps than we are the final game of the Stanley Cup playoffs. For unsigned UFAs, that’s an added layer of anxiety. What if nobody wants me and I’ve played my last NHL game?

Take a browse through capgeek.com and you’ll see half the NHL teams are already at the 23-man NHL roster limit. Another nine teams are at 22 players. And that doesn’t even include the several dozen or so non-roster rookie prospects who will surely make big-league rosters in October.

So not a lot of roster openings remain.

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Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews & Mario Lemieux lead list of all-time most uncomfortable NHLer commercials

Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane (Photo by Bill Wippert/NHLI via Getty Images)

Endorsing products has been a part of being a top talent in the NHL for nearly as long as the league has been in existence. Advertisers want the star power of hockey players, even if the low-key personalities of those players don’t make them natural public pitchmen.

Although some players do well in the role, more often than not, NHL players hawking products on TV is an exercise in embarrassment. In reverse order, here are the five most embarrassing TV ads featuring NHLers of the modern era:

5. Adam Oates goes dating for the NHL. When he was a member of the Boston Bruins, Oates inexplicably said yes to this commercial, which paints him as a lovelorn hockey star wearing his equipment in a restaurant, as as lovelorn hockey stars are wont to do. From the unfortunately-phrased “loose rebounds” comment to Oates’ weirdly shame-ridden “It wouldn’t be the first time” answer to getting shot down, this ad doesn’t make you want to buy an NHL ticket. It makes you want to sign him up for eharmony.com.


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