Edward Fraser's Column

THN.com Blog: “Homecoming” has Coyotes’ Vrbata back on track

THN.com Blog: “Homecoming” has Coyotes’ Vrbata back on track

by Edward Fraser - December 17, 2009 1:55 PM EST

A turbulent 2008-09 saw Radim Vrbata head back to Europe. But now that he's back in a place he's thrived before, Phoenix couldn't be happier with the Czech native.
Turns out, despite the contrary postulations of Thomas Wolfe, you can go home again. Phoenix right winger Radim Vrbata is proof of that. The skilled seven-season NHL veteran returned to the Coyotes this off-season after a disastrous 2008-09 that saw him sign a three-year, $9-million free agent contract with Tampa Bay following a career year in the desert.


THN.com Blog: Ducks still plucky despite drowning in the West

THN.com Blog: Ducks still plucky despite drowning in the West

by Edward Fraser - December 10, 2009 10:01 AM EST

Even though they sit dead last in their conference, the Anaheim Ducks still have the right pieces to turn their season around.
Through the first 40 minutes of their Tuesday tilt against the Stars, the Anaheim Ducks looked like a team destined to remain at the bottom of the conference standings.


THN.com Blog: Lifelong Habs fan keeps rolling to raise money

THN.com Blog: Lifelong Habs fan keeps rolling to raise money

by Edward Fraser - December 3, 2009 9:20 AM EST

Wearing his favorite team colors wherever he goes, Ryan Stotland takes to his bike for charity in a part of the world where hockey isn't on the radar.
When the morning sun appears over the horizon in South America, it beams down very few faces who’ve even heard of the Montreal Canadiens, never mind rooted for them for as long as they can remember.


THN.com Blog: Is blue the new black? Let's hope so

THN.com Blog: Is blue the new black? Let's hope so

by Edward Fraser - November 26, 2009 11:15 AM EST

Over the past 20 seasons the NHL has seen more and more teams using black as a primary jersey color, but that appears to be changing (for the better) this campaign.
There was a time, not too long ago, when black became all the rage in the NHL. After The Great One was traded to Los Angeles in 1988 and the Kings took on their new optical identity, ‘The Darkness’ became the shade of choice and slowly swept across the landscape: • In 1991-92 the North Stars changed their away jerseys from green and the Blackhawks introduced a retro sweater to celebrate the league’s 75th anniversary.


THN.com Blog: Russians favorite to take home gold

THN.com Blog: Russians favorite to take home gold

by Edward Fraser - November 19, 2009 9:31 AM EST

Team Russia's elite skill level coupled with the pressure on the Canadians to win at home will result in a championship for Ovie and Friends.
It’s not going to be a satisfying conclusion for those north of the 49th, but the Russians are going to win gold at the Vancouver Olympics in February.


THN.com Blog: Backstrom backstops new Minnesota system

THN.com Blog: Backstrom backstops new Minnesota system

by Edward Fraser - November 12, 2009 10:25 AM EST

Niklas Backstrom's numbers and his team's record may lead you to believe his play has dipped, but that notion couldn't be further from reality.
Looking only at Minnesota Wild goalie Niklas Backstrom’s stat line from this season, you might get the perception the 31-year-old Finn has struggled early on.


THN.com Blog: Michael Liambas suspension fits the crime

THN.com Blog: Michael Liambas suspension fits the crime

by Edward Fraser - November 4, 2009 3:38 PM EST

The season-ending suspension to the Erie player will cause a debate, but it will hopefully send a message that demands respect.
After doing his due diligence in assessing Michael Liambas’ hit on Ben Fanelli, Ontario League commissioner David Branch has sent a clear message that attempts to injure will not be tolerated and those who are found guilty of such actions will pay a steep price.


THN.com Blog: Skrastins playing big 'D' for Stars during Latvian Olympic year

THN.com Blog: Skrastins playing big 'D' for Stars during Latvian Olympic year

by Edward Fraser - October 29, 2009 9:35 AM EDT

The shot-blocking defender from Latvia talks about choosing to play in Dallas and the expectations for the Latvian team in Vancouver.
Karlis Skrastins isn’t a name that shows up on the scoresheet often – his point-per-game average is just 0.17 over his 691 NHL games – but he’s exactly the type of player whose intangibles put teams on the winning side of the ledger.


THN.com Blog: Young Bogosian helping Thrashers take flight

THN.com Blog: Young Bogosian helping Thrashers take flight

by Edward Fraser - October 22, 2009 9:31 AM EDT

The third overall pick in 2008 missed a chunk of last season due to injury, but there's no doubt he is quickly learning how to be a successful NHLer.
BUFFALO – After a 4-2 win Saturday that sent the locals home unhappy, the Atlanta Thrashers sat at 4-1-0; their best start in franchise history.


THN.com Blog: Real deal or early-season posers?

THN.com Blog: Real deal or early-season posers?

by Edward Fraser - October 15, 2009 10:20 AM EDT

The Rangers, Avalanche and Kings are off to great starts despite predictions of doom. But can they keep it up?
Like that eighth beer on a night out on the town, pre-season predictions seem like a great idea at the time, but in the light of day the choice(s) becomes fraught with regret over the absence of logic.


THN.com Blog: Last pick, but certainly not least

THN.com Blog: Last pick, but certainly not least

by Edward Fraser - October 8, 2009 10:41 AM EDT

A trio of current NHLers hold the distinction of begin pegged with the final pick of the draft and overcoming tough odds to make the show.
It doesn’t matter how impressive your scouting staff is, if you have any serious expectations of finding a serviceable skater with the very final selection in the draft, you’re fooling yourself.


THN.com Blog: One-on-one with Mark Messier

THN.com Blog: One-on-one with Mark Messier

by Edward Fraser - October 1, 2009 10:53 AM EDT

Edward Fraser talks with Mark Messier about his role with the Rangers, how he thinks the team will fare this season and The Messier Project.
Earlier in the summer, Mark Messier, one of the game’s all-time greatest and a legend in New York after helping the team snap a 54-year Stanley Cup drought in 1994, was named special assistant to president and GM Glen Sather.


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