Ryan Kennedy's Column

Kings GM Dean Lombardi's blueprint for success

Kings GM Dean Lombardi's blueprint for success

by Ryan Kennedy - June 6, 2012 1:43 PM EDT

It's not always the easiest route, but Dean Lombardi built through the draft and pulled the right trades at the right time.
With the Los Angeles Kings on the precipice of glory, it seems as good a time as ever to evaluate how the team was built. Or, more precisely, rebuilt.


Tim Thomas can't be faulted for decision

Tim Thomas can't be faulted for decision

by Ryan Kennedy - June 4, 2012 2:36 PM EDT

The Bruins goalie decided to take next year off and whether he comes back or not, his reasoning is sound.
There are two reasons to become a professional athlete and they are not mutually exclusive: love and money. Tim Thomas has both covered, so if he has played his final NHL game, he can leave without regret.


Draft combine showcases top NHL prospects

Draft combine showcases top NHL prospects

by Ryan Kennedy - June 1, 2012 6:49 PM EDT

From the interview process to the grueling tests, the combine provided some kids a chance to prove they're healthy; and more.
There was a time when the NHL draft combine was attended by just a handful of media members; now it's a big spectacle. The players invited have all heard the horror stories about tricky interview questions and puking after the bike stations, so there isn't a lot of new terrain to be unearthed.


CHL-NHL teenager rule needs adjustment

CHL-NHL teenager rule needs adjustment

by Ryan Kennedy - May 31, 2012 11:25 AM EDT

Players drafted out of the CHL have to wait to come to the NHL, while those taken from somewhere else have a more direct route.
This year’s top draft prospects are currently having their heads scrambled by their prospective employers at the NHL combine and many decisions will be made in the next few months.


Kings investment in Drew Doughty already paying off

Kings investment in Drew Doughty already paying off

by Ryan Kennedy - May 9, 2012 12:35 PM EDT

The Kings were hunkered down in a long contract negotiation with their defenseman last summer, but the deal that came out of it has been working out fine.
Based on the way Drew Doughty has played for the red-hot Los Angeles Kings lately, it seems almost unfathomable his worth to the team was questioned over the summer.


Flames shouldn't expect much from Roman Cervenka

Flames shouldn't expect much from Roman Cervenka

by Ryan Kennedy - May 3, 2012 2:23 PM EDT

The signing of the Czech forward is an attempt to gain offense, but here's why he probably won't live up to expectations.
The Calgary Flames waded into murky waters Wednesday with the signing of center Roman Cervenka, a 26-year-old Czech free agent who has spent the past two years in the Kontinental League.


Raffi Torres gives Blackhawks a rallying point

Raffi Torres gives Blackhawks a rallying point

by Ryan Kennedy - April 18, 2012 1:02 PM EDT

The Phoenix winger's brutal hit on Marian Hossa gives the Hawks extra motivation for Game 4.
Dare ye anger the Hockey Gods, Raffi Torres? The stout Phoenix Coyotes winger has once again propelled himself into the spotlight by propelling himself into an unsuspecting opponent.


Oilers must trade down for 'D' in NHL draft

Oilers must trade down for 'D' in NHL draft

by Ryan Kennedy - April 11, 2012 12:21 PM EDT

Edmonton must avoid the trap of the "take the best player available" adage and fill the big hole on the blueline.
People often ask hockey writers who they cheer for. Most will say they cheer for players they like; some will simply strut around in a golf shirt with the home team’s crest on it.


Reasons for optimism from non-playoff teams

Reasons for optimism from non-playoff teams

by Ryan Kennedy - April 4, 2012 2:43 PM EDT

The playoffs aren't a reality for a number of teams this season, but that doesn't mean they can't bounce back in 2012-13.
Sixteen teams will enter the Stanley Cup playoffs in a week, leaving the rest of the league to ponder what went wrong. A few of those squads will miss by a point or two and be forced to dwell on the one or two blown leads that ultimately cost them a post-season berth over the 82-game schedule.


Cody Hodgson due for breakout season in 2012-13

Cody Hodgson due for breakout season in 2012-13

by Ryan Kennedy - March 28, 2012 12:55 PM EDT

Training with Gary Roberts, Cody Hodgson is due for an explosive season like so many Roberts trainees have had in the past.
With six games remaining, Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos has 55 goals and a legitimate shot at 60. Only two players have scored more in the past decade – Jonathan Cheechoo and Alex Ovechkin – and Stammer is still just 22 years old.


Return of Radulov sets Predators up as Stanley Cup contender

Return of Radulov sets Predators up as Stanley Cup contender

by Ryan Kennedy - March 21, 2012 11:55 AM EDT

What does Alexander Radulov do for the Predators? He makes them stand out in a sea of flawed teams.
‘A-Rad’ is back. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a chance to use that nickname for right winger Alexander Radulov, but I’m sure Nashville fans easily trump my excitement when it comes to the high-scoring Russian.


Stars Sidney Crosby, Alex Galchenyuk set to return

Stars Sidney Crosby, Alex Galchenyuk set to return

by Ryan Kennedy - March 14, 2012 1:30 PM EDT

While the Penguins get the face of their franchise back, one of the top prospects for the 2012 draft is ready for his first game of the season.
Two elite players who rock ‘Black and Gold’ on a consistent basis will be back with their teams this week. Wednesday, the Ontario League’s Sarnia Sting welcome back center Alex Galchenyuk, who has missed the entire season with a knee injury.


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