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Working the Corners With Daren Millard

Working the Corners With Daren Millard

By @darenmillard

Before we start, I apologize for any spelling, grammar or factual mistakes.  They are unintended, and you will be granted a full refund.    Please feel free to follow me on twitter for more of the same you will read here.

The @nhl schedule is underway, and I would like to invite you to check-in here every Monday for a skip around the league. I will evaluate what has taken place before glancing ahead, and as always I will aim to entertain myself first and everyone else second. (I am committed to revisiting this when I start cashing big checks)

I will keep track of the contenders for hockey’s best efforts of the season right here every week. Most of the submissions will come from the National Hockey League but with social media what it is, I am guessing there will be a few performances from the @kHL, @theahll @canadianhockeyleague #mensleagues or #backyardrinks.

The categories are as follows.

He just lost it…

This can be anything from the coaches post-game media conference to someone yelling at the official. The basic premise is simple. Emotional control must be absent for a period.

 

How did that go in?

It’s what the coaching staff says when they walk into the office after their goaltender allows a terrible goal. I am not talking a weak shot that slips through the legs; this has to be something that would not even happen at your Thursday night pickup skate.

 

Did he stop that?

The exact opposite of How did that go in, with the minor difference being some of these types of saves will happen at your Thursday night skate.
We are looking for the most dynamic stop with bonus points if it’s not merely to bail yourself out after making a poor decision.

 

Can you believe that?

Our version of the best goal of the season. It’s a freak show of some crazy combination of speed, skill, luck, hockey sense, and guts even to try something that cool.

 

AaaandIt was clean

Most significant hit and in today’s way of thinking, best hit of the year. Where the title of the award comes in is when the announcer shows it on TV and tags the play with “and… it was clean…” If a player is penalized or suspended for the hit, then the play will not qualify.

Greasy…

Something that happens during a game that is ugly, mean, antagonistic, or dirty. Biting, stinky glove, pre-game warmup crap are areas the winner could come from.

 

Too good to ignore…

Off the map happenings. Something that does not fall under any of the other umbrellas but is far too impressive to the left disappear into the world wide web.

I will maintain a running list of the contenders and at the end of the year hold some vote to determine the winners. Or I may get lazy and pick the winner myself; it will depend on my mood and your passion.

Onto the stories that caught my attention.

You can’t go a day without hearing somebody toss out the phrase, “it’s a young man’s game today”  That is easy to say given the number of 20 and under stars in the NHL. What may be more accurate however is that the NHL isn’t for OLD GUYS anymore.

Opening weekend alone sent 39-year-olds Joe Thornton and Roberto Luongo, along with 32-year-old Jonathan Quick to the sidelines with injuries.

Sharks Coach Peter DeBoer called it great news when learning there was no structural damage for Jumbo. Infection appears to be responsible for the swelling that occurred after the season opener.

Thornton and the two goaltenders have been placed on Injured Reserve. Luongo had to be helped off the ice in the midst of game one while Quick survived his opener only to suffer his ailment at practice.

At some point, over the last two years, I was told by a higher up with the Vegas Golden Knights that the club would never turn down an invitation to a community event. (I am paraphrasing here as I can’t even remember the exact timing of the discussion but the basic idea is 100% accurate)  To say something like that is a massive pledge that requires the players to buy in, and they have.

In just over a year the relationship has arrived at the trust phase. The clubs local in-house newsman @garylawless brainstormed the idea, rewrote the lyrics and then handed it off to the production people who and then executed the Happy Days spoof that only builds on the likeability of the Vegas brand. Nice work by the VGK insider who likes me doesn’t have to be asked twice to share his  Manitoba and PEI connections.

I was kinda waiting for Max Pacioretty to do his Fonz impression after scoring the shootout winner in the Knights first win of the season.

The Knights beat Minnesota for that night, a game that featured Wild forward J.T. Brown wearing #23. Brown donned the number in Tampa but wore #71 during his brief stay in Anaheim. Sporting #23 for the Wild is special because it’s the same number his dad wore when he played professionally in the Twin Cities. Ted was a full-back for the NFL’s Vikings in the early 1980’s and carried the #23 on his chest and back for eight seasons with the Vikings. The Wild also deserve credit with making this happen. J.T. was set to be #71 but asked to switch when a trade made his favorite number available. A lot goes into players numbers. The gift shop has sweaters for sale, programs are printed, and scoreboard videos and graphics get created for each player with those numbers. To switch requires more than a needle and thread to move a players name bar. Great job all around and a lovely tribute to pops.

Which nickname do you like better for Vancouver phenom Elias Pettersson? People have started referring to the slick forward as EP. In the Swedish Elite League teammates called Pettersson Alien about the fact, nobody on earth can do the things he can.
I am partial to Alien. It works even more because it’s Vancouver where there’s the whole X-Files connection.

When Pettersson scores at Rogers Arena the game ops people can play a snippet of the X-Files theme.

Alien and his Breakfast Club buddies could use some extraterrestrial assistance. The club is in the early stages of a road trip that takes the Canucks to the eastern conference and includes stops against playoff and or Stanley Cup hopefuls Tampa, Florida, Pittsburgh, and Winnipeg with upstart Carolina tossed in.

Make sure you stick around for the postgame celebration should you tune into the Canucks and Hurricanes game. The Hurricanes have a new fan salute that new captain Justin Williams came up with. It’s very European and fun to watch. I saw it for the first time on the weekend as the Hurricanes celebrated an eight-goal outburst that carried on an offensive surge that started in the pre-season. Michael Ferland is one of those responsible. The former Calgary Flame has two goals in 3 games.

William Nylander is not the bad guy. He wants to get paid what he feels is a fair salary not just for today but the next number of years. Digging in during negotiations is the only leverage his camp has. The Leafs may have to cave at some point. As one person tweeted me, it looks like they miss Nylander’s defensive game.

Jonathan Toews played it cool when asked if he trained differently this summer. The Chicago captain said his body feels perfect. Not sure how you quantify this, but he looks faster, and has the early season scoring touch. Joel Quenneville has the veteran between Alex Debrincat and Dominik Kahun.

Good start for the handful of new coaches around the league. Bill Peters and Barry Trotz have won despite saying there is work to do with the Flames and Islanders. Rookies Rod Brind’amour and Jim Montgomery have Carolina and Dallas emphasizing offense.
David Quinn failed to win in the Rangers opening three games. New York doesn’t have the roster to be able to trade chances. Henrik Lundqvist and company might be in for a more challenging season than many of us cared to admit.

Bold statement.

I wouldn’t be surprised if either Annti Raanta or John Gibson won the Vezina Trophy. Both will have to be brilliant for Arizona and Anaheim to succeed, and they have the necessary skills and analytic backing to prove it’s in them. Can they stay healthy enough to make it happen?

Some goal support would help Raanta’s cause. Arizona was shut out in its first two games including a 1-0 loss to John Gibson and the Ducks.

Still in the crease.

Saturday’s Vancouver stop in Calgary offered a unique goaltending matchup. Mike Smith and Jacob Markstrom both showcased retro paint schemes on their new masks. The Markstrom idea goes back a few years to Steve Shields and his artwork that first made it look like a face forming fiberglass mask and exposed ears.


Mike Smith offered something new with a David Arrigo design and painting that looked like a 1980’s CCM helmet and Cooper HM30 cat-eye cage. It was a tribute to Flames great Mike Vernon, and Smith will wear it when Calgary pulls on the throwback sweaters.

The floss dance has been upstaged! If you still think that I am talking about teeth, then you should talk to someone under 20.
There is a new tune played around the NHL, and the dance steps have defencemen all messed up. Viktor Arvidsson supplied my favorite freestyle moves.

Question for next week.
Who is the National Hockey Leagues top villain?

Tweet it to me @darenmillard using the hashtag #topvillian
I am legitimately interested. Is it Brad Marchand? Tom Wilson? Or a player you like to boo when they hit your rink?

I am looking forward to the Edmonton Oilers playing a few games. The first 15 games are as important for that group as any in the NHL.

Jack Eichel is poised to explode. Watch with me. It’s time the four year Centre becomes what we expected. I have no doubt he will do it. I hope it starts to happen this week.

Who scores more, Left or Right shots? I am looking into it. Plus who I took with the second overall pick in my fantasy draft, the drama involving Ottawa and Eric Karlsson may not be over just yet, and what are the social media rules inside NHL dressing rooms. That and more coming your way in the next week.

Oh and by the way, this is effort is by no means designed to compete/challenge/put a sleeper hold on my buddy Elliotte Friedman and 31 thoughts. I am doing it to help keep my head in the game and to have some fun. Nobody can do what EF does. He is a freak, and I mean that as a total compliment. I don’t have a job right now, and I don’t have time to do what Elliotte does.

Now go outside and play.

 

 

By @darenmillard

Before we start, I apologize for any spelling, grammar or factual mistakes. They are unintended, and you will be granted a full refund. Please feel free to follow me on twitter for more of the same you will read here.

The @nhl schedule is underway, and I would like to invite you to check-in here every Monday for a skip around the league. I will evaluate what has taken place before glancing ahead, and as always I will aim to entertain myself first and everyone else second. (I am committed to revisiting this when I start cashing big checks)

I will keep track of the contenders for hockey’s best efforts of the season right here every week. Most of the submissions will come from the National Hockey League but with social media what it is, I am guessing there will be a few performances from the @kHL, @theahll @canadianhockeyleague #mensleagues or #backyardrinks.

The categories are as follows.

He just lost it…

This can be anything from the coaches post-game media conference to someone yelling at the official. The basic premise is simple. Emotional control must be absent for a period.

How did that go in?

It’s what the coaching staff says when they walk into the office after their goaltender allows a terrible goal. I am not talking a weak shot that slips through the legs; this has to be something that would not even happen at your Thursday night pickup skate.

Did he stop that?

The exact opposite of How did that go in, with the minor difference being some of these types of saves will happen at your Thursday night skate.
We are looking for the most dynamic stop with bonus points if it’s not merely to bail yourself out after making a poor decision.

Can you believe that?

Our version of the best goal of the season. It’s a freak show of some crazy combination of speed, skill, luck, hockey sense, and guts even to try something that cool.

Aaaand…It was clean…

Most significant hit and in today’s way of thinking, best hit of the year. Where the title of the award comes in is when the announcer shows it on TV and tags the play with “and… it was clean…” If a player is penalized or suspended for the hit, then the play will not qualify.

Greasy…

Something that happens during a game that is ugly, mean, antagonistic, or dirty. Biting, stinky glove, pre-game warmup crap are areas the winner could come from.

Too good to ignore…

Off the map happenings. Something that does not fall under any of the other umbrellas but is far too impressive to the left disappear into the world wide web.

I will maintain a running list of the contenders and at the end of the year hold some vote to determine the winners. Or I may get lazy and pick the winner myself; it will depend on my mood and your passion.

Onto the stories that caught my attention.

You can’t go a day without hearing somebody toss out the phrase, “it’s a young man’s game today” That is easy to say given the number of 20 and under stars in the NHL. What may be more accurate however is that the NHL isn’t for OLD GUYS anymore.

Opening weekend alone sent 39-year-olds Joe Thornton and Roberto Luongo, along with 32-year-old Jonathan Quick to the sidelines with injuries.

Sharks Coach Peter DeBoer called it great news when learning there was no structural damage for Jumbo. Infection appears to be responsible for the swelling that occurred after the season opener.

Thornton and the two goaltenders have been placed on Injured Reserve. Luongo had to be helped off the ice in the midst of game one while Quick survived his opener only to suffer his ailment at practice.

At some point, over the last two years, I was told by a higher up with the Vegas Golden Knights that the club would never turn down an invitation to a community event. (I am paraphrasing here as I can’t even remember the exact timing of the discussion but the basic idea is 100% accurate) To say something like that is a massive pledge that requires the players to buy in, and they have.

In just over a year the relationship has arrived at the trust phase. The clubs local in-house newsman @garylawless brainstormed the idea, rewrote the lyrics and then handed it off to the production people who and then executed the Happy Days spoof that only builds on the likeability of the Vegas brand. Nice work by the VGK insider who likes me doesn’t have to be asked twice to share his Manitoba and PEI connections.

I was kinda waiting for Max Pacioretty to do his Fonz impression after scoring the shootout winner in the Knights first win of the season.

The Knights beat Minnesota for that night, a game that featured Wild forward J.T. Brown wearing #23. Brown donned the number in Tampa but wore #71 during his brief stay in Anaheim. Sporting #23 for the Wild is special because it’s the same number his dad wore when he played professionally in the Twin Cities. Ted was a full-back for the NFL’s Vikings in the early 1980’s and carried the #23 on his chest and back for eight seasons with the Vikings. The Wild also deserve credit with making this happen. J.T. was set to be #71 but asked to switch when a trade made his favorite number available. A lot goes into players numbers. The gift shop has sweaters for sale, programs are printed, and scoreboard videos and graphics get created for each player with those numbers. To switch requires more than a needle and thread to move a players name bar. Great job all around and a lovely tribute to pops.

Which nickname do you like better for Vancouver phenom Elias Pettersson? People have started referring to the slick forward as EP. In the Swedish Elite League teammates called Pettersson Alien about the fact, nobody on earth can do the things he can.
I am partial to Alien. It works even more because it’s Vancouver where there’s the whole X-Files connection.

When Pettersson scores at Rogers Arena the game ops people can play a snippet of the X-Files theme.

Alien and his Breakfast Club buddies could use some extraterrestrial assistance. The club is in the early stages of a road trip that takes the Canucks to the eastern conference and includes stops against playoff and or Stanley Cup hopefuls Tampa, Florida, Pittsburgh, and Winnipeg with upstart Carolina tossed in.

Make sure you stick around for the postgame celebration should you tune into the Canucks and Hurricanes game. The Hurricanes have a new fan salute that new captain Justin Williams came up with. It’s very European and fun to watch. I saw it for the first time on the weekend as the Hurricanes celebrated an eight-goal outburst that carried on an offensive surge that started in the pre-season. Michael Ferland is one of those responsible. The former Calgary Flame has two goals in 3 games.

William Nylander is not the bad guy. He wants to get paid what he feels is a fair salary not just for today but the next number of years. Digging in during negotiations is the only leverage his camp has. The Leafs may have to cave at some point. As one person tweeted me, it looks like they miss Nylander’s defensive game.

Jonathan Toews played it cool when asked if he trained differently this summer. The Chicago captain said his body feels perfect. Not sure how you quantify this, but he looks faster, and has the early season scoring touch. Joel Quenneville has the veteran between Alex Debrincat and Dominik Kahun.

Good start for the handful of new coaches around the league. Bill Peters and Barry Trotz have won despite saying there is work to do with the Flames and Islanders. Rookies Rod Brind’amour and Jim Montgomery have Carolina and Dallas emphasizing offense.
David Quinn failed to win in the Rangers opening three games. New York doesn’t have the roster to be able to trade chances. Henrik Lundqvist and company might be in for a more challenging season than many of us cared to admit.

Bold statement.

I wouldn’t be surprised if either Annti Raanta or John Gibson won the Vezina Trophy. Both will have to be brilliant for Arizona and Anaheim to succeed, and they have the necessary skills and analytic backing to prove it’s in them. Can they stay healthy enough to make it happen?

Some goal support would help Raanta’s cause. Arizona was shut out in its first two games including a 1-0 loss to John Gibson and the Ducks.

Still in the crease.

Saturday’s Vancouver stop in Calgary offered a unique goaltending matchup. Mike Smith and Jacob Markstrom both showcased retro paint schemes on their new masks. The Markstrom idea goes back a few years to Steve Shields and his artwork that first made it look like a face forming fiberglass mask and exposed ears.

Mike Smith offered something new with a David Arrigo design and painting that looked like a 1980’s CCM helmet and Cooper HM30 cat-eye cage. It was a tribute to Flames great Mike Vernon, and Smith will wear it when Calgary pulls on the throwback sweaters.

The floss dance has been upstaged! If you still think that I am talking about teeth, then you should talk to someone under 20.
There is a new tune played around the NHL, and the dance steps have defencemen all messed up. Viktor Arvidsson supplied my favorite freestyle moves.

Question for next week.
Who is the National Hockey Leagues top villain?

Tweet it to me @darenmillard using the hashtag #topvillian
I am legitimately interested. Is it Brad Marchand? Tom Wilson? Or a player you like to boo when they hit your rink?

I am looking forward to the Edmonton Oilers playing a few games. The first 15 games are as important for that group as any in the NHL.

Jack Eichel is poised to explode. Watch with me. It’s time the four year Centre becomes what we expected. I have no doubt he will do it. I hope it starts to happen this week.

Who scores more, Left or Right shots? I am looking into it. Plus who I took with the second overall pick in my fantasy draft, the drama involving Ottawa and Eric Karlsson may not be over just yet, and what are the social media rules inside NHL dressing rooms. That and more coming your way in the next week.

Oh and by the way, this is effort is by no means designed to compete/challenge/put a sleeper hold on my buddy Elliotte Friedman and 31 thoughts. I am doing it to help keep my head in the game and to have some fun. Nobody can do what EF does. He is a freak, and I mean that as a total compliment. I don’t have a job right now, and I don’t have time to do what Elliotte does.

Now go outside and play.

DM

 

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