Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Kerrzy’s Notebook: Around the Rinks

Kane You Dig It?

It’s been quite an exciting few days for Patrick Kane.

Last Friday, he received a compliment from the President of the United States and on Monday he became the third youngest Chicago Blackhawk to score 100 career goals in a rout of the SJ Sharks at the United Center!

Let’s start with that trip to the White House: As the defending Stanley Cup champions, the Hawks were invited to meet the president on Friday in Washington. Barack Obama, a Chicago native, seemed pretty happy to have some Illinois flavor in DC and cracked some jokes about how it usually takes teams from Chicago a while to win a title (think: Chicago Cubs and their 104-year drought). The best part was yet to come though:

“I don't want to jinx anything, but with the Blackhawks having won eight of the last 10, it's about time for Patrick Kane to start growing the playoff mullet. I thought that looked pretty sharp!”

Is that not an absolutely classic statement from the US President?

It was another great day for Kane on Monday too, when he potted the final goal in a 6-3 win over the Sharks, part of a five-goal second period for his club.

It was Jonathan Toews to Patrick Sharp to Kane in the slot and he put a quick one past Antero Niittymaki late in the frame for his 100th career goal (and 292nd career point) in his 305th NHL game. At 22 years and 115 days, Elias Sports Bureau says he’s the third youngest Hawk to hit that milestone behind Jeremy Roenick (21 years, 325 days) and Bobby Hull (22 years, 68 days).

Elias also noted that the other Patrick, Patrick Sharp’s four assists in the second tied a Chicago record that had only been reached five other times in the history of the club!

Yzerman Speaks Up

The NHL’s general managers are meeting in Florida as they usually do at this time of year, and obviously concussions are a hot topic again this time around (no, not because of you Air Canada).

Commissioner Gary Bettman kicked things off by presenting his five-point plan to deal with concussions and make the game safer, which included new protocols for diagnosing those injuries. The NHL and its GMs are also discussing different possible rule changes that could be put in to further protect the players, just like last year when they brought in the blindside hit to the head rule.

While we won’t know exactly what rules they are floating around until someone spills the beans, at least one GM doesn’t seem overly thrilled with what has been discussed so far.

Tampa Bay’s Steve Yzerman made some interesting comments on Monday that will probably only make total sense to those privy to what types of things are being thrown about in Boca Raton:

"It's kind of odd that we're talking about rules to slow things down. Players are bigger athletes. They're faster and stronger. The equipment is designed to shoot the puck harder and faster. But now we're going the other way and looking at, 'Okay, how do we make it slower?' "

I wonder what types of things they are talking about that would slow down the game?

Hit or Miss

There’s no question that hockey is a tough sport, but it’s even tougher when you’re an agitator and you do some embarrassing.

The situation gets even worse though if you’re an agitator and you do some embarrassing while trying to slam another agitator into the boards - just ask Minnesota Wild forward Cal Clutterbuck!

Late in the first period of Monday’s game between the Wild and the Canucks, Clutterbuck tried to take a run at Alex Burrows, missed, and ended up going head over heels into the Vancouver bench!

How much would you have paid to hear what the Canucks had to say to Clutterbuck after that one? I bet he didn’t hear the end of it all game long!

Other stuff…

Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby was back on the ice on Monday but says he’s still a long way from getting back into a game…

Calgary’s Jay Bouwmeester is the NHL’s ironman, playing in his 496th straight game tonight

Vancouver’s Ryan Kesler talks about “interview bombing” (with hilarious picture from Yahoo’s Puck Daddy)

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