For the Love of Hockey

For St Patrick’s Day Weekend, I returned home (Charlotte, NC) for two reasons:
1) family/friends
2) Charlotte Checker’s Old Time Hockey Weekend.

I am just so honored to be a fan of such a great organization and team. This video below explains how much the team does for the community and how much the community supports them.

My Thoughts on the Ryan Callahan – Martin St. Louis Trade

God, I love these moments in trade periods during the NHL seasons…there is nothing more exciting than seeing what your favorite team(s) move or don’t move.

The one that actually made me say “Holy shit” out loud to co-workers was the New York Rangers trading Ryan Callahan to the Tampa Bay Lightning for Martin St. Louis.

There were rumors that Callahan might be traded but he was also playing well for the team so those rumors were more than likely to be a post-season trade (or so the professional hockey writers, announcers, etc felt). As for St. Louis, it wasn’t a secret he wanted to be traded especially after being initially snubbed by his GM Steve Yzerman to play for Team Canada during the 2014 Olympics.

Callahan – possibility.
St. Louis – it was coming, just where he would land, no one knew.

I would have never guessed these two teams would have traded captains. I would not have even guessed that St. Louis would want to play for the Rangers, but I’m no expert, just a fan who listens/reads the trades and such as it pertains to my favorite teams or players that I like.

As a Rangers fan, I am happy to see Martin St. Louis were the Blueshirt. Callahan was a good player and a solid player, but I always felt he kind of played like former NYR captain, Chris Drury. Lackadaisical. Sometimes Callahan’s “A” game was on and sometimes it was as if he was anywhere other than on the ice. I never felt Callahan was always focused on the game. Again, that’s my opinion.

Even though I am a Rangers fan, I know Martin St. Louis and his game. You kind of have to be half assed hockey fan to not know St. Louis and his passion for the game. When I see St. Louis on the ice, you as a spectator, fan, or player know he’s on the ice. There is no doubt his presence is there and you know where his head is at: IN THE GAME.

I sent a text to my fellow Rangers friend, JEO* and he replied “Eh. I didn’t want such an old player.”

First, I balked and thought, well, goddamn that’s my age. I’m not old! The difference is that Martin St. Louis is a 38-year-old hockey specimen that is freaking amazing this year. Is he the perfect human like Niklas Lidstrom is know for? No, but he’s damn near close.

*not his real name

NHL Trade Thoughts

Here are my opinions on the following trades:

Detroit Red Wings send Patrick Eaves, forward, Calle Jarnkrok, forward, and 2014 cond. 3rd round pick to Nashville Predators for David Legwand, forward: Legwand waved his no-trade clause to join the Red Wings. Eaves has been a healthy scratch by the Red Wings in the past 5 games. The Red Wings need help with Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Weiss, and Clearly out with injuries. It’s not a trade that shakes the team the core, just adds a body that is needed with the “superstar” players out.

Florida Panthers send Tim Thomas, goalie, to the Dallas Stars in exchange for Dan Ellis, goalie: Thomas is having a rough year, but then again, he also took a year off. I think the Panthers win this trade. If the Panthers stick with Luongo, they have two goalies who could be starters or at least a starter and a back up.

Columbus Blue Jackets send Marian Gaborik, forward, to L.A. Kings for Matt Frattin, forward, and some 2014 draft picks: I enjoyed Gaborik playing for the Rangers and really thought them letting him get traded to the Blue Jackets was a mistake. When Gaborik is healthy, he can be a beast on the ice. The L.A. Kings need help scoring and Gabby should be just fine doing/helping with that.

Vancouver Canucks send Roberto Luongo, goalie, and Steven Anthony, forward, to the Florida Panthers for Jacob Markstrom, goalie, and Shawn Matthias, forward: To be honest, I don’t know enough about Markstrom to say anything about him. Luongo has been on and off for a while. Maybe a new team and new teammates will do him good.

St Louis Blues send Jaroslav Halak, goalie to Buffalo Sabres but he doesn’t stay long. Washington Capitals send Michael Neuvirth, goalie, and Rostislav Klesla, defense, to Buffalo Sabres in exchange for Jaroslav Halak, goalie, and 2015 3rd round pick: The Caps goalie situation will be interesting. Branden Holtby is their starter so the rest of the season could be testing to see who the starter is for the 2014-15 season.