Sam McCaig's blog

THN.com Blog: Hockey you can count on

THN.com Blog: Hockey you can count on

by Sam McCaig - October 31, 2009 10:55 AM EDT

From perfect home and away to Ryan Miller's outstanding GAA, there's plenty of numbers of note from around the NHL.
Numbers never tell the full story…but they can sure fit the bill in a blog. Here’s what happened, statistically speaking, heading into Halloween night:   The New Jersey Devils (6-0-0) and Pittsburgh Penguins (6-0-0) are perfect on the road.


THN.com Blog: 15 unusual suspects for success

THN.com Blog: 15 unusual suspects for success

by Sam McCaig - October 24, 2009 9:30 AM EDT

There's been some strange names amongst the league's list of top performers early on this season.
“The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist. And poof. Just like that, he's gone.” – Kevin Spacey as Verbal Kint in The Usual Suspects   And poof.


THN.com Blog: How Lidstrom stacks up against the all-time greats

THN.com Blog: How Lidstrom stacks up against the all-time greats

by Sam McCaig - October 17, 2009 9:08 AM EDT

Twelve years ago the Detroit defenseman wasn't in the conversation, now he ranks among the best of the best.
When The Hockey News published its definitive The Top 100 NHL Players Of All-Time back in 1997, Nicklas Lidstrom was nowhere to be found. At the time, Lidstrom was a 27-year-old defenseman playing in his sixth NHL season with the Detroit Red Wings.


THN.com Blog: Good, bad, big and bittersweet starts

THN.com Blog: Good, bad, big and bittersweet starts

by Sam McCaig - October 10, 2009 10:01 AM EDT

A look at some of the league's more intriguing early storylines; from Gabbo in N.Y. to J-Bo in Calgary to oh-no in Vancouver and New Jersey.
Good starts, bad starts, big starts and a bittersweet beginning. Here are 10 thoughts on the first 10 days of the 2009-10 NHL season:   1.


THN.com Blog: Under-the-gun goalies

THN.com Blog: Under-the-gun goalies

by Sam McCaig - October 4, 2009 11:25 AM EDT

As the last line of defense, goaltender is already a tough position to play, but for these 10, the 2009-10 season has added challenges.
It’s generally accepted that no one is under more pressure in hockey – or in any sport – than the goaltenders. The relentless intensity; the magnification of any mistake; the responsibility that comes with being your team’s last line of defense…it’s a big burden to carry, both physically and mentally.


THN.com Blog: Pacific Division preview

THN.com Blog: Pacific Division preview

by Sam McCaig - September 27, 2009 10:40 AM EDT

With a mixture of Cup contenders, reclamation projects and youth movements, the Pacific is full of talent and potential.
SAN JOSE SHARKS THN Prediction: First in Western Conference   Key additions: Dany Heatley, RW; Manny Malhotra, C; Scott Nichol, C; Jed Ortmeyer, RW   Key departures: Milan Michalek, RW; Jonathan Cheechoo, LW; Mike Grier, RW; Travis Moen, LW; Marcel Goc, C; Jeremy Roenick, C; Christian Ehrhoff, D; Brad Lukowich, D; Tomas Plihal, LW; Brian Boucher, G   For several years now, the Sharks have been great in the regular season only to fall flat on their collective teal face in the playoffs.


THN.com Blog: Players who should return to the NHL

THN.com Blog: Players who should return to the NHL

by Sam McCaig - September 19, 2009 9:25 AM EDT

With Theo Fleury in the middle of a comeback, here are some other players this author would like to see make a return.
Not only did 41-year-old Theoren Fleury return to NHL (pre-season) action, the wannabe Calgary Flame scored a dramatic shootout winner against the Islanders in his first game back.


THN.com Blog: Three reasons the Flyers will win the Cup

THN.com Blog: Three reasons the Flyers will win the Cup

by Sam McCaig - September 13, 2009 9:30 AM EDT

Thanks to a new, nasty edition to the blueline and unparalled depth and talent up front, Philadelphia must be considered an NHL favorite.
That muffled roar you just heard coming out of Pennsylvania probably was Flyers fans registering their approval of The Hockey News making Philadelphia our pre-season pick to win the Stanley Cup in the 2009-10 Yearbook.


THN.com Blog: Did you know...

THN.com Blog: Did you know...

by Sam McCaig - September 6, 2009 10:07 AM EDT

Maybe these little-known stats will help you prepare for the fantasy season, while the real one is on the horizon.
If you’ve grown tired of hearing about the Phoenix Coyotes’ excruciatingly slow death in bankruptcy court and can’t handle witnessing another implosion of the NHL Players’ Association (the third time in four years, if anyone’s counting), here’s a 2009-10 fantasy pool-friendly flashback to last season, offered up in a “Did you know…” fashion:   Everyone knows Alex Ovechkin led the NHL last season with 56 goals in 79 games.


THN.com Blog: Future franchise players

THN.com Blog: Future franchise players

by Sam McCaig - August 22, 2009 9:25 AM EDT

When compiling a list of the young stars in the game for our annual Yearbook, it became apparent there would be a lot of overflow.
For my last-page column in the 2009-10 THN Yearbook – Hey! Look! It's on newsstands and available online now! – I identified 25 NHLers under the age of 25 who are potential franchise players.


THN.com Blog: 30 things to remember for this season

THN.com Blog: 30 things to remember for this season

by Sam McCaig - August 15, 2009 11:00 AM EDT

Each team has a story to follow for the upcoming season, so here's just a little reminder of what to keep an eye on.
Two months into the off-season and there’s still almost two months to go before the NHL regular season begins. Here are team-by-team storylines to keep in mind as you sun it up by the sea.


THN.com Blog: Best value UFA signings

THN.com Blog: Best value UFA signings

by Sam McCaig - July 5, 2009 1:56 PM EDT

Amongst the madness of the first few days of UFAdom, there were a few sane deals that look good to work out for both sides at the right price.
Trying to decide which NHL teams got the best bargains in the early days of unrestricted free agency is a surreal experience. With hundreds of millions of dollars in contracts – in just a few days, remember – it's sometimes difficult to envision anyone being worth that much cash.


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