• New Dallas Stars mascot is hideous – and that’s OK

    Matt Larkin
    Courtesy of Dallas Stars

    By now, you’ve probably had a look at Victor E. Green, the Dallas Stars’ freshly unveiled mascot. You’ve also visited the nearest emergency eyewash station, flushed thoroughly and patted your face dry with a paper towel.

    Victor is ugly. He’s that friend with a great personality who never gets responses on OkCupid and doesn’t know why. Oscar the Grouch, Youppi and a cockroach held hands, stepped inside Jeff Goldblum’s telepod from The Fly, and out popped Victor. He’s that giant toy you win at the beginning of a day at the amusement park and wish you could throw away.

    The Victor vitriol is intense. A small sample from enraged Stars fans on Twitter:

    “It looks like a booger with legs…”

    “As long as his name is the Grinch that stole the Stanley Cup. ???”

    “Vomits uncontrollably. WHY WOULD YOU DO THIS TO YOUR FANS?”

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  • Semyon Varlamov’s controversial t-shirt another instance of NHLers running from their own convictions

    Adam Proteau
    Semyon Varlamov (Instagram)

    T-shirts are like opinions: everyone thinks theirs is the best until they bring them out into the sunlight to be judged by everyone else. Colorado Avalanche goalie Semyon Varlamov probably thought so when he wore a shirt in Denver this weekend featuring Russian president Vladimir Putin and the phrase “Crimea Is Ours” on it.

    Almost immediately, Varlamov pulled the picture off his Instagram account, because people were laying into him for condoning a contentious political development that’s far from settled. But he really has nobody to blame for himself for whatever blowback has come (and will come) his way.

    Consider this paragraph the standard disclaimer for all you staunch libertarians out there currently typing up an impassioned “hey pal, he’s got the right to wear whatever shirt he wants!” email, comment or tweet on your word processing machine. Nobody’s suggesting Varlamov doesn’t have the right to send whatever message he pleases – and that goes for whether he’s wearing that message on his chest or if he followed the lead of people renting airplanes to fly banners over football stadiums this past weekend. We live in a free and open society and people are welcome to express opinions they believe in.

    But, just as Tim Thomas found out a couple of years ago, making public statements on controversial issues carries with it a responsibility to defend your stance and to be judged by people in return. Read more

  • Traverse City: Carolina goes big with Haydn Fleury

    Ryan Kennedy
    Carolina pick Haydn Fleury (Photo by Ken Andersen/NHLPA via Getty Images)

    The Carolina Hurricanes tend to go with forwards early in the draft and even when they did take a blueliner with their first selection in 2011, it was Ryan Murphy, the offensively inclined D-man. But when the seventh pick rolled around in 2014, the Canes tabbed 6-foot-3, 203-pound Haydn Fleury and they’re pretty happy with that selection.

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  • The Montreal Canadiens won’t have a captain this year – will P.K. Subban get it next year?

    Rory Boylen
    Max Pacioretty, Tomas Plekanec, Andrei Markov, P.K. Subban. (Courtesy the Montreal Canadiens)

    Ever since Brian Gionta signed with the Buffalo Sabres, there has been plenty of speculation on who would be the next captain of the Montreal Canadiens. Would it be Max Pacioretty? Andrei Markov? Tomas Plekanec? Or how about Norris winner and face of the franchise, P.K. Subban?

    How about all of the above?

    Monday, the team announced that each of those players would act as assistant captain this season, instead of selecting one to wear the ‘C’ full time. Since NHL rules dictate that only three players can wear an ‘A’ during a game where there is no captain, the four will be on a rotation. Read more

  • Anaheim Ducks will win the Stanley Cup…in our alternate predictions

    duckshappy

    The Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angeles Kings are, in the opinion of the deep thinkers at The Hockey News, the class of the NHL. Chicago is our pick to win the Cup, while the defending champs have, by far, the best chance of preventing that from happening.

    It’s a virtual two-horse race with the co-favorites, having remarkably similar pedigrees.

    But what if…we’re wrong? Unlikely, we realize, but not impossible. If both clubs get eliminated from contention, which dark horse is best positioned to come from the outside and bask in the winner’s circle?

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  • THN’s 2014-15 NHL season preview: Philadelphia Flyers

    The Hockey News
    Philadelphia Flyers.  (Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)

    2013-14 record: 42-30-10

    Acquisitions: Ryan White, Michael Del Zotto, Nick Schultz, Zack Stortini, Andrew Gordon, Blair Jones, R.J. Umberger

    Departures: Adam Hall, Ben Holmstrom, Kris Newbury, Steve Downie, The McGinn, Scott Hartnell

    Top five fantasy players: Claude Giroux, Jakub Voracek, Wayne Simmonds, Mark Streit, Matt Read

    Boom, Bust and Bottom Line: The best, worst and most likely scenario
    Boom: Once Claude Giroux got on track last season, the Flyers were mint. He had just seven points in the first 15 games – none of them goals – and the Flyers went 5-9-1. Beginning with his tally in a win over Edmonton, Giroux steered his troops to a 37-21-9 record the rest of the way. Read more

  • Getting To Know: Harold Phillipoff

    Mark Malinowski
    Harold Phillipoff. (Photo by Steve Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)

    Status: NHL left winger from 1977-1980 for Atlanta and Chicago.

    HT: 6-foot-3  WT: 230 pounds

    DOB: July 14, 1956 IN: Kamsack, Sask.

    First Hockey Memory: “I think every kid’s first hockey memory growing up in Saskatchewan is playing on the driveway without skates or playing in the basement.”

    Hockey Inspirations: ”Before there was Bobby Orr there was Gordie Howe. But as a kid I was inspired by Bobby Orr, Bobby Hull, Gordie Howe, Frank Mahovlich, Boom Boom Geoffrion…I remember him because of his name. I got to meet him in Atlanta. Great guy.” Read more