Ryan Kennedy's Column

THN.com Blog: Hurricanes roster being built to last

THN.com Blog: Hurricanes roster being built to last

by Ryan Kennedy - November 26, 2010 11:21 AM EST

The shrewd workings of Carolina GM Jim Rutherford is helping to balance his team for now, without sacrificing a promising future.
I like what I’m seeing from the Carolina Hurricanes this year. Not so much in the short-term on-ice sense - the team has been quite average and has an odd proclivity of either blowing out or getting blown out by opponents - but rather the direction they’re heading.


THN.com Blog: Is Ryan Murphy a candidate to go No. 1 in the 2011 NHL draft?

THN.com Blog: Is Ryan Murphy a candidate to go No. 1 in the 2011 NHL draft?

by Ryan Kennedy - November 19, 2010 12:30 PM EST

Central Scouting and the International Scouting Services recently released updated rankings for 2011, so we break down the trends.
Draft rankings are never set in stone, so it’s not surprising the two major players in the hockey world – International Scouting Services and the NHL’s own Central Scouting Bureau – have posted shake-ups on their recent releases.


THN.com Blog: OHL draft dominance done?

THN.com Blog: OHL draft dominance done?

by Ryan Kennedy - November 12, 2010 1:35 PM EST

The top 3 in early rankings for the 2011 NHL draft don't include an OHLer, but that doesn't mean the league has seen a drop in potential talent.
It’s well established that major junior leagues go through cycles in terms of NHL prospect strength and the most recent trend has been utter dominance at the top of the pile by the Ontario League.


THN.com Blog: When it comes to prospects, size still matters

THN.com Blog: When it comes to prospects, size still matters

by Ryan Kennedy - November 5, 2010 10:20 AM EDT

In ranking prospects for the NHL, their size or lack thereof is still a key component and you don't have to look far for proof.
In interviewing various scouts and NHL brass this week, an interesting thread began developing in my conversations: While the clutching and grabbing has vanquished from the “new NHL,” the idea that size no longer matters is still a contentious one.


THN.com Blog: Islanders make the right move to send Niederreiter back to junior

THN.com Blog: Islanders make the right move to send Niederreiter back to junior

by Ryan Kennedy - October 29, 2010 1:35 PM EDT

It's well documented that rushing a player to the NHL can stunt his development, so the Islanders were smart to wait on their fifth overall pick.
Many of the kids who jumped straight from the 2010 draft to the NHL will be staying the duration of the season, including Carolina’s Jeff Skinner and Boston’s Tyler Seguin.


THN.com Blog: How Gary Bettman's expansion era worked

THN.com Blog: How Gary Bettman's expansion era worked

by Ryan Kennedy - October 22, 2010 1:00 PM EDT

While some markets are struggling to attract attendance, a new wave of hockey stars from non-traditional markets are starting to flourish.
The week in hockey has been marked by record-low attendance numbers in locales such as Columbus, Atlanta and Phoenix. The fact that two of those franchises are part of commissioner Gary Bettman’s Sunbelt initiative, while the third was created during the NHL’s last stage of a rapid decade of expansion, lends credence to those who regard Bettman as a Canada-hating villain or, as ESPN’s Bill Simmons famously wrote, a plant sent by NBA commissioner David Stern to keep basketball ahead of hockey in the sports landscape.


THN.com Blog: Making a living between the AHL and NHL

THN.com Blog: Making a living between the AHL and NHL

by Ryan Kennedy - October 16, 2010 8:50 AM EDT

There's a huge difference between pulling in an AHL salary and an NHL salary, so players who move back and forth between the two have to watch their finances carefully.
For every aspiring hockey player, the dream is to suit up in the NHL. It doesn’t hurt that jumping from the minors to the big show also comes with a pay bump often in the range of 10 times the old amount.


THN.com Blog: Loyal Leafs fans not unlike any other

THN.com Blog: Loyal Leafs fans not unlike any other

by Ryan Kennedy - October 15, 2010 12:16 PM EDT

Cheering for a team that hasn't won since 1967 is all part of the fun and refusing to change allegiances is what being a fan is all about.
Let the record show that on Thursday, Oct. 14, the Toronto Maple Leafs were the best team in hockey, all by their lonesome. With a pristine 3-0 record, the Buds would be joined at the top that night by Dallas, Nashville and Tampa Bay, but it is worth mentioning nonetheless.


THN.com Blog: Selanne expects success in his final NHL season

THN.com Blog: Selanne expects success in his final NHL season

by Ryan Kennedy - September 22, 2010 12:19 PM EDT

As future Hall of Famer Teemu Selanne gears up for one more season, he thinks the Ducks have what it takes to compete.
It’s something he has mulled over and sometimes come close to doing ever since the Anaheim Ducks won the Stanley Cup in 2007, but Teemu Selanne believes this will be his final season in the NHL.


THN.com Blog: Liambas tryout with Maple Leafs a head-scratcher

THN.com Blog: Liambas tryout with Maple Leafs a head-scratcher

by Ryan Kennedy - September 8, 2010 3:40 PM EDT

If the Maple Leafs want a fighter for their AHL team, why would they turn to Michael Liambas, who doesn't bring any other on-ice intangibles to the table?
I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around the Michael Liambas situation. Liambas, formerly of the Ontario League’s Erie Otters, became infamous for fracturing the skull of then-16-year-old Kitchener Ranger Ben Fanelli on a gruesome hit that was, at the least, an extreme case of charging.


THN.com Blog: European players only benefit from CHL experience

THN.com Blog: European players only benefit from CHL experience

by Ryan Kennedy - August 25, 2010 1:15 PM EDT

A recent hot topic at the World Hockey Summit, the CHL came under fire from European constituents for reasons that just don't fly.
It goes without saying that having hockey strong in a number of nations is great for the sport, but it’s tough to hear the potshots at North America coming from across the pond lately.


THN.com Blog: Hockey's next generation full of championship potential

THN.com Blog: Hockey's next generation full of championship potential

by Ryan Kennedy - August 18, 2010 11:20 AM EDT

With the most recent Cup-winning captain being only 22 years old, it's continuing a trend that's seeing the new wave of stars taking over the game.
In the basement of the Duchene house in Southern Ontario's cottage country, Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene has a section of the floor dedicated to his workout equipment.


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