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Hockey's Darkest Day

There are no words to encapsulate what happened today.

Perhaps the darkest summer in hockey history continued with perhaps the darkest day in hockey history. A devastating tragedy occurred. 27 hockey players­ and the coaching staff—an entire hockey team, full of veteran NHLers we all knew and came to love over the years—completely wiped out.

Lokomotiv Yaroslavl coach Brad McCrimmon, players Pavol Demitra, Ruslan Salei, Karel Rachunek, Josef Vasicek, Alexander Yasyunov, Jan Marek, Karlis Skrastins, among so many others, passed away in the most nauseating disaster in hockey history.

This crash did not just affect the KHL, or Russia alone.

It affec...

BLOG: Updates on Lokomotiv Yaroslavl Plane Crash

Yaroslavl, Russia - A Russian plane carrying KHL hockey team Lokomotiv Yaroslavl from Yaroslavl to Minsk has crashing killing at least 43 people and leaving one critically injured.  The plane is currently believed to have had on board the entire Lokomotiv roster including coaching staff.  Lokomotiv is a three time KHL champion taking gold in 1997, 2002, and 2003.  They finished third last season.

Please read the full article written by The Checking Line's own
Jordan Kuhns by clicking this link.

 

NOTE - This is a blog, all information is not official, and is gathered from various sources that are not confirmed.  I will try to post only i...

Predators Possible Breakout Stars

Every year, it seems as if someone different steps up for the Nashville Predators, in order to help push them into the postseason. Two years ago, it was Patric Hornqvist’s impressive 30-goal campaign in his first full NHL season that helped carry the team. It happened again just this past season when Sergei Kostitsyn came to the team from the Montreal Canadiens and went on to lead the Preds in scoring. Who could top the list of breakout players in 2011-12?

Niclas Bergfors

Drafted 23rd overall by the New Jersey Devils in 2005, Niclas Bergfors has yet to reach his true potential. He’s a player that has shown offensive skill and the willingness to shoot the puck, two th...

Jay Pandolfo Gets Tryout With Islanders

The New York Islanders announced today that former New Jersey Devils forward Jay Pandolfo will be attending the Isles training camp on a tryout basis. Pandolfo's tryout is likely in the hopes of him earning a roster spot with either the Islanders or another NHL organization.

The 36-year old left wing has spent his entire 14-year NHL career with the New Jersey Devils and has won two Stanley Cups after being drafted in the second round at 32nd overall of the 1993 Entry Draft. Last year he played 12 games with the Springfield Falcons of the AHL. 

If Pandolfo were to crack the Islanders line-up, he would have to earn it as the Islanders already appear to be set at forward...

Byfuglien busted on a boat

While some Winnipeg Jets fans are still mourning the loss of teammate Rick Rypien, the pre-season isn't getting prettier for the team – as police say defenseman Dustin Byfuglien was arrested on ‘probable cause for boating while intoxicated’. This means officers have 36 hours to determine if Byfuglien will be formally charged after reviewing blood or urine tests. The news broke early morning on September 1. The 26-year-old Jets star was arrested in Minneapolis, close to where he lives during the off-season. He has since been released from custody. Jets Director of Communications, Scott Brown, says he is aware of the repo...

Cold As The Cold Wind Blows

The arena lights up and the players fill their lockers while the zamboni cleans the ice. Training camp is upon us and with that, a new season. But there's an unfamiliar chill in the air. Three players are dead, but the show must go on and Wade Belak was all about the show. You could describe Belak as a funny, happy, nice, mean and tough guy and from the surface, it seems that you'd be right. Belak seemed to be enjoying his retirement after playing his last game just a season ago for the Predators. He seemed to be all booked up though, including an appearance on CBC's third season of Battle of the Blades and that's precisely why Belak was ...

Winnipeg worth it? Absolutely: TSN Announced 10-Year Deal

 

Winnipeg is back on the map. The flags are being flown from cars, the digital bulletin boards across the city flash "Welcome Back Jets!", and the Jets t-shirt-sightings are increasing more and more each day. Can you talk too much about the Winnipeg Jets and the pride the citizens there are feeling? You might think so, but think again. There are steps being taken to ensure every Jets fan is 100% satisfied...even the 8,500 fans on a season-ticket waiting list that is full for the next five years. On August 31, True North Sports & Entertainment, owners of the Winnipeg Jets Hockey Club, announced at 10 year deal with Bell Media, and The Sports Network (TSN).&...

Winnipeg's Young Ladd

The initial hype has settled. Things are looking back to normal in the so-called Heart of the Continent. Summer is ending, days are getting shorter, and the fall is right around the corner. Winnipeg now waits in the wings like a flock of hungry thrashers (too soon?) for the puck to drop.

In the meantime, it is time to look at the Jets roster for their inaugural season in the National Hockey League. 

One idea to remember is...the new Winnipeg Jets are the Atlanta Thrashers from last year. The Thrashers only made the playoffs once since 1999. Having said that, the Jets have much better fan support and are guaranteed to be sold out for at least the next five years. Let's...

NHL rules debate leaves Crosby on the sidelines

No one ever accused the National Hockey League of being pro-active. On anything. If the NHL was in charge of the fight against cancer, it would still be debating whether dying prematurely was an issue worth addressing.

A week or so ago, the league got much pre-season attention when it held a camp in Toronto to evaluate a few possible tweaks to the rules. Maybe nets should be shallower, so players had more room to manoeuvre and could score more often on the wraparound.

Maybe a green line should be painted inside the goal to make it easier to judge when pucks had fully entered the net. Maybe penalized players should have to serve out the full two minutes, producing more short-ha...

Will El Nino Strike The Island?

We all know that an earthquake in Virginia was felt throughout Long Island and upwards into Canada yesterday, but the question that is looming on most minds of Islanders fans is if Nino Niederreiter will be cracking the line-up this season.

El Nino, (which is Spanish for, "the Nino"), is a 6'2, 203 pound left winger that is coming off a spectacular year with the Portland Winterhawks of the WHL. After a 60 point season in 2010, Niederreiter tallied 41 goals and 29 assists for 70 points in 55 games played this year; a 10 point improvement in 10 fewer games played. He also captained Team Switzerland in this year's World Junior Championships and was second on the team ...