Archive for the ‘Boston Bruins’ Category

Joffrey Lupul’s career took a dramatic reversal in 2006 and the worst part is that he had no way of knowing it was in the works or that it would cause a damaging chain of events.

The Anaheim (Mighty) Ducks were Western Conference finalists a few years after their shocking appearance in the Stanley Cup Final, which was pushed by a goaltending feast from Jean-Sebastian Giguere.

A big role was played by Lupul in their 2006 postseason, as the sophomore scored nine goals, four of which arrived in one game against the Colorado Avalanche. In the words of Ian Laperriere, then a forward for Colorado, Lupul was “making a name for himself.”

Anaheim was a well-built club and despite losing out to the Edmonton Oilers in five games, their postseason mettle was growing and another run for the Cup was on the horizon—just not for Lupul. (more…)

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If Teemu Selanne is the ‘Finnish Flash‘, Ville Leino is coming dangerously close to being recognized as the Finnish flash in the pan.

Undrafted, but an accomplished player in Europe, Leino’s first North American contract was with the Detroit Red Wings. Those days in ‘Hockeytown’ didn’t last long and he has since received a look from two other organizations, showcasing mixed results.

Hardly a model of consistency, this puck-mover has played with the emotions of clubs that seen him as a suitor and for the most part, hasn’t warranted a place in their line-ups. While the Philadelphia Flyers saw Leino at his best, at least so far in his career, Detroit and Buffalo cannot share the same opinion.

Obviously, Leino’s status as a controversial and confusing figure aren’t without reasoning, which is why we shall dissect the curves in his National Hockey League dossier.

How does one exactly summarize a career that is merely 220 games old?

Honestly, it’s like one of the rides available at a fair or carnival being held in a mall parking lot: you get excitement, uncomfortable feelings and the occasional vomiting. (more…)

Surprises aren’t appreciated by everyone; these people are insistent on being told if something is in the works behind their back. With the National Hockey League’s latest campaign coming upon us, it’s a chance to pour over the players who shattered their expectations—if they had some to begin with—and whose presence graced an organization. For someone to be included in this list, it had to be their career-year to date; that goes without saying.

Next, the leap in their maturation must be a significant one—we’re not exactly going to cram in individuals who raised their highest production by ten points. And the key words are the ‘regular season’, as the playoffs are not why we’re gathered here today. No disrespect is intended for Sean Bergenheim or Joel Ward, who fired all calibers of bullets round for round during the postseason.

If surprises aren’t to your liking, do not read past this point. (more…)

Few men have enjoyed the illustrious playing career that Steve Yzerman hollowed out. Even less have shown equal brains in the front office so quickly. It’s one thing to to say you’ve played professional hockey and worked in coherence with management, it’s another to claim you’ve been extremely successful in both. Tampa Bay had a lot of changing to do in the summer of 2010, but their first order of business was drawing someone to take care of the business.

After three seasons of turmoil that saw them finish 15th, 14th, and 12th in the Eastern Conference, the club’s brass found the right man to seize control at last. While the Detroit Red Wings’ legend shuffled the deck in the off-season, his agenda in January involved two more subtle transactions to put them over the top.

First, he traded for the rights of Dwayne Roloson, an aging veteran who had playoff pedigree and fighting spirit. He ticked all of the boxes for Tampa Bay and the birth date mattered little, as he still moved well with the New York Islanders. If Roloson was a gamble, Mike Smith (.899 save percentage, 2.90 goals against average) and Dan Ellis (.889 save percentage, 2.93 goals against average) were drugged horses in the Kentucky Derby—and not the performance enhancing kind of drugged. Look at those statistics. Did either of them want the starting goaltender position? (more…)