Top Shelf

Top Shelf: Quite a shine on Shanny

Top Shelf: Quite a shine on Shanny

by Ryan Dixon - November 18, 2009 12:55 PM EST

There are a lot of elements to celebrate about Brendan Shanahan's career in the NHL, but now the question becomes, "what's next?"
Boredom, the No. 1 obstacle for newly retired folks, isn’t going to be much of a bother for Brendan Shanahan. This is a guy who did some of his best work during the 2004-05 season, which featured no NHL play, but a bunch of big players from the world of hockey getting together at Shanahan’s behest to help resolve some systemic on-ice issues plaguing the game, while there were actually no games being played.


Top Shelf: Wings, Canes can’t panic

Top Shelf: Wings, Canes can’t panic

by Ryan Dixon - November 11, 2009 1:30 PM EST

Although expectations were high heading into 2009-10, Detroit and Carolina shouldn't make knee-jerk moves to try and save their seasons.
The Detroit Red Wings and Carolina Hurricanes would do well to recall one of the best lines from one of the best movies of the past 20 years.


Top Shelf: J.D. sticks to the Blueprint

Top Shelf: J.D. sticks to the Blueprint

by Ryan Dixon - November 4, 2009 2:37 PM EST

When he left press row for a management box, John Davidson was inheriting a last-place team. Now that he's been on the job for three years, the results of a patient re-build are beginning to present themselves.
Even when you’re doing something you love, not every day is a good day. John Davidson can tell you that. And he would have told you it even before he left a cushy spot in the broadcast booth to become the St.


Top Shelf: Dashing Ken Daneyko still a Devil at heart

Top Shelf: Dashing Ken Daneyko still a Devil at heart

by Ryan Dixon - October 28, 2009 12:00 PM EDT

After exiting from the hockey stage, the bruising defender took on a role as an analyst for his former team and recently participated in a figure skating contest.
Toronto isn’t often a place where three-time Cup winners have their vocation mistaken. So you can imagine Ken Daneyko’s surprise when a two-month foray into a different kind of skating career began to trump two decades in the NHL in terms of how people were placing him.


Top Shelf: D-men make all the difference

Top Shelf: D-men make all the difference

by Ryan Dixon - October 21, 2009 2:35 PM EDT

From Broadway to sunny California, the impact of blueliners is being felt on several fronts this season.
An upcoming issue of The Hockey News will focus solely on defensemen and there’s plenty of fodder – so much so that we can get a jump on things with a column centered around the impact D-men everywhere are having right now, good and bad.


Top Shelf: Duchene proving he’s solid as a rock

Top Shelf: Duchene proving he’s solid as a rock

by Ryan Dixon - October 14, 2009 2:10 PM EDT

Whether the Avs can continue their hot start or not, 18-year-old rookie Matt Duchene won't let NHL pressure affect him.
Matt Duchene can feel it. Not the pressure. Not the heat. The excitement. Six games into a goalless rookie season, it’s Duchene’s grin, not an increasingly tight grip, that defines him.


Top Shelf: Time is now for Kesler to lead Canucks

Top Shelf: Time is now for Kesler to lead Canucks

by Ryan Dixon - October 7, 2009 1:50 PM EDT

With a perfect mix of skill and grit, the 25-year-old is the one Vancouver should look to to pull them out of their early slump.
It’s a little too soon and tacky to say the Vancouver Canucks need a hero. But the left-coasters could undoubtedly use a lift. Most believe that charge must originate from the crease, where Roberto Luongo has been more Bobby Lose – even Bobby Booed – than the sweet Bobby Lou Canucks fans have come to adore.


Top Shelf: A new season through an old lens

Top Shelf: A new season through an old lens

by Ryan Dixon - September 30, 2009 9:46 AM EDT

What lessons can the ups and downs of the 2008-09 campaign teach us about the 82 games to come?
Hockey summers, even ones made compelling by off-season moves, malcontents, boardroom power plays and backroom meetings, are still all about the words.


Top Shelf: Sorting out some pre-season thoughts

Top Shelf: Sorting out some pre-season thoughts

by Ryan Dixon - September 23, 2009 1:20 PM EDT

Tuukka Rask and Ondrej Pavalec prove to be two rookies worth watching; how the Bruins will replace Kessel; and Montreal's astronomical numbers.
One week of pre-season hockey and already a lot to talk about, starting with… • Tuukka Rask is making a major push to crack the Boston Bruins lineup.


Top Shelf: Kariya and the new Blues landscape

Top Shelf: Kariya and the new Blues landscape

by Ryan Dixon - September 16, 2009 1:31 PM EDT

With Paul Kariya coming back from injury, the burgeoning Blues will look to become a Western Conference force.
Every time Paul Kariya pulled on the Blue Note, he was, essentially, competing for a bad team. He signed with the Blues on July 1, 2007 and played every game on the team’s schedule through Nov.


Top Shelf: Pick ’em – Heatley or Kessel?

Top Shelf: Pick ’em – Heatley or Kessel?

by Ryan Dixon - September 9, 2009 11:38 AM EDT

If you were a GM and could have only one of the two super goal-scorers, which one would you want on your roster?
Two snipers, one question: Dany Heatley or Phil Kessel? Who would you take? With NHL training camps inching closer by the day, there are, by my math, roughly 90-plus goals worth of uncertainty still floating around out there in the unhappy Senator and unsigned RFA Bruin.


Top Shelf: Taking stock of Tampa

Top Shelf: Taking stock of Tampa

by Ryan Dixon - September 2, 2009 2:47 PM EDT

The signing of Alex Tanguay has given some spark to Tampa Bay, but aside from a tantalizing forward unit, do they have enough to carry them into the playoffs?
It doesn’t take much to spark debate within the walls of THN’s office. Whether we’re barking about who the real face of the NHL is or merely which sub joint within a five-minute walk of the building provides the best bun for buck.


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