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Morning Musings

I am going to catch the Sabres’ morning skate so I will be skipping my usual preamble for two consecutive days. The normal Morning Musings format will return on Tuesday.

On to the morning papers:

  • According to Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Ryan Malone is in the best shape of his career and coach Michel Therrien believes Malone has matured as a player and person.
  • President John Davidson thinks the Blues have played “sloppy” thus far in the pre-season and need to get rid of some of their bad habits so the team doesn’t have a bad start like it did last season. The Blues lost 4-3 to Chicago in exhibition play on Sunday.
  • Dan Boyle severed three tendons in what can only be termed as a freak accident after the Bolts’ pre-season loss to the Capitals on Saturday. The good news is the surgery to repair the wrist went “perfectly.” Boyle is expected to miss 4-6 weeks. (Writer’s note: This is a big loss for the Bolts. I am interested to see how the team will start off the season w/o their best defenseman by a country mile.)
  • Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star takes a look at the forward options for the Leafs heading into the season without Kyle Wellwood or Mark Bell for significant time. (Writer’s note: After looking at these forward lines, Leaf fans may cancel their subscription to Leafs TV.)
  • Alain Vigneault was not happy with the play of Brad Isbister and Curtis Sanford in the team’s 5-0 exhibition loss to the Ducks on Sunday. To make matters worse, former Canuck Todd Bertuzzi had a goal and two assists in the first game against his former club.
  • Pierre LeBrun of the Canadian Press has Gary Bettman’s thoughts on the NHL in Europe and the success of the salary cap system thus far.
  • Scott Taylor of the National Post has a good article about the NHL and the city of Winnipeg. (Writer’s note: In the article an unnamed TSN commentator questions whether Winnipeg can support a team if they can’t even sell out one game a year. I’d love to know who this genius is. Last season the MTS Centre was sold out for an exhibition game between Edmonton and Phoenix. First off, no one cares about either team in Winnipeg. Secondly, you are paying regular season prices to watch wannabe NHL’ers who will be in the AHL, playing in the MTS Centre the next week, for a quarter of the price. I have one question: Who else sells out arenas for exhibition games?)
  • As Dan Wood of the Orange County Register details, Bobby Ryan is making his case to stay up with the big club when final cuts come in the next week. The youngster had four assists in the Ducks 5-0 victory over the Canucks on Sunday night.
  • Coach Bob Hartley wants to see a more intense attitude and an increased number of battles at Thrashers’ camp.
  • It looks like Bobby Allen will be in a fight to make the Bruins as a seventh defenseman. Fluto Shinzawa has this story and other notes from around Bruins’ camp in this morning’s Boston Globe.
  • With eleven games before the Bruins’ first game, Stephen Harris of the Boston Herald takes a look at how the team’s forward lines might look heading into the season.
  • The Sabres defeated the Blue Jackets 3-2 in a shootout on Sunday.
  • Blue Jackets’ camp is about to get more serious as cuts are expected to be handed down today. Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch has that story and other notes from Jackets’ camp.
  • Flames’ prospect Brent Krahn can’t catch a break and the injury he incurred in the first rookie skate has cost him a chance at beginning the season as the team’s backup goaltender.
  • As Scott Cruickshank of the Calgary Herald writes, David Moss is doing his best to forget about the missed opportunity he had to win game six for the Flames in last year’s first round. (Writer’s note: He shouldn’t feel bad. The Flames were thoroughly outclassed and were lucky to take the series to six games.)
  • The Canes somehow only scored one shootout goal all of last season and are hoping Matt Cullen’s ability to score in the one-on-one battle will rub off on his teammates. Here are some notes from around Hurricanes’ camp.
  • Hawks’ forward Jason Williams had a goal and two assists in his team’s 4-3 victory over St. Louis on Sunday. Hawks’ coach Denis Savard is encouraging his players to go to the net to generate more scoring chances.
  • The SakicBrunetteSmyth line has yet to develop good chemistry but the Avs aren’t overly worried.
  • The Stars fourth line may be all “goons” this season but, as Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News writes, Dave Tippett likes to have that presence and energy on the ice.
  • It is rather evident that age is just a number to Chris Chelios as he goes into the 2007/08 season at age 45.
  • Andrew Cogliano is impressing the Oilers‘ brass at training camp and is looking to secure a full-time roster spot. However, he is not the only youngster turning heads at Oilers‘ camp.
  • With the roster being slimmed down, Jacques Martin is getting down to what he does best and that is teaching.
  • Lonnie White of the L.A. Times details the Kings’ plans in Europe before they play the Ducks on Saturday in London, England.
  • With roster spots still available, coach Jacques Lemaire wants one of the Wild’s youngsters to prove that they warrant a roster spot with their play.
  • While Carey Price is the future in Montreal, Cristobal Huet is the present writes Dave Stubbs in this morning’s Montreal Gazette.
  • Tomas Plekanec had a hat trick on Sunday as the Habs defeated the rival Bruins 4-3 in Halifax.
  • John Glennon of the Tennessean tells us that the Preds may lose Josh Langfeld is they place him on waivers.
  • Kevin Weekes of the Devils will be back on the ice today after a CT scan proved his head is in normal shape.
  • While most of the attention goes to the big-name signings, the Islanders’ signings of Jon Sim and Josef Vasicek have looked good so far in Isles’ camp.
  • The Coyotes could be icing one of the bigger forward lines in the entire league writes Jim Gintonio in this morning’s Arizona Republic. Meanwhile at camp, even after being sent down, David LeNeveu still believes he can be a solid NHL goaltender.
  • After turning down the Flyers‘ captaincy twice during the 2005-06 season, Simon Gagne says he will now proudly accept the captaincy if it is offered to him.
  • Ken Warren of the Ottawa Citizen documents the worry surrounding the injuries to keep players at Sens’ camp. Ray Emery’s wrist isn’t fully healed, and he is being joined on the sidelines by Wade Redden and Mike Fisher.

For Illegal Curve, I’m Richard Pollock.