The NHL Players’ Association has reorganized, ousting a cartel of cooperation led by the deposed Paul Kelly and setting the stage for Bob Goodenow-style hardliners to assume control in advance of the current CBA’s expiration on Sept. 15, 2011. That’s not good news. Hockey has long been its own worst enemy. In this case, NHL players just refuse to accept hockey’s status as a fringe sport. It’s not the NFL, MLB or even the NBA. TV ratings, in fact, give the nod to the World Series of Poker. The NHL isn’t New York. It’s Saskatoon. Hockey players tend to forget that. NHL superstars are quite happy with their level of pay even though Oliver Perez makes more than Sidney Crosby. Within the context of the revenue produced by hockey, the Crosbys, Malkins and Ovechkins do fine. They are fairly compensated. Fading older players are reportedly behind the union’s new-found militancy.Read More »

Fleury to begin full-training regiment next week


Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Marc Andre Fleury has had a short off-season after winning his first Stanley Cup on June 12th, 2009. It has only been six weeks since the Penguins ended their season but it’s back to business for Fleury next week as he will begin his full training regiment in Montreal. Fleury will train in Montreal with a number of established NHL players including teammate Ruslan Fedotenko who resides in Montreal during the summer. Fleury will attend Team Canada’s 2009 orientation camp in Calgary from August 24-27. Goaltenders Martin Brodeur (Montreal, Que./New Jersey, NHL), Marc-André Fleury (Sorel, Que./Pittsburgh, NHL), Roberto Luongo (Montreal, Que./Vancouver, NHL), Steve Mason (Oakville, Ont./Columbus, NHL) and Cam Ward (Sherwood Park, Alta./Carolina, NHL) have all been invited to camp. The Penguins open training camp on Wednesday, September 16th. Goligoski bulking up?

Addition of McKee gives Penguins a strong mix on their blueline


The signing of veteran defenseman Jay McKee to a one year deal rounds out the Penguins top 6, following the losses of Hal Gill and Rob Scuderi to free agency. McKee a shot blocker who prides himself on clearing the front of the net, toughness, will be a perfect compliment to young defenseman Alex Goligoski, who still has a ways to go when it comes to his play in the defensive zone. The subtractions of Hal Gill and Rob Scuderi and the additions of Goligoski, McKee, give the Penguins a strong mix on their blueline. Penguins general manager Ray Shero is a believer in having three puck moving defensemen in his lineup and the Penguins will have that for the upcoming season in Sergei Gonchar, Kris Letang and Alex Goligoski. Gonchar at age 35, still has some good hockey left in him, scoring 19 points in 25 regular season gamesRead More »

With a full training camp, Bylsma expects team to play even more aggressive


On the heels of a Stanley Cup Championship and a three year contract, Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma is already looking towards next season. With the opportunity to conduct a full training camp this September, Bylsma expects the team to become more familiar with the Penguins new system, which he believes, will lead the Penguins to playing even more aggressive than they did during the final three months of the season. A key to the Penguins up-tempo system under Bylsma, is aggressiveness in the neutral zone and moving the puck up efficiently through the neutral zone from their defensemen. On the backend the Penguins have their pieces in place with three puck moving defensemen in Alex Goligoski, Sergei Gonchar and Kris Letang. Pittsburgh expects Kris Letang to continue his development towards a high/end #3 defenseman, while the team is very excitied about what Alex Goligoski will do next season.Read More »

Penguins sign Alex Goligoski to three year contract


The Pittsburgh Penguins have signed defenseman Alex Goligoski to a three year contract. It is a one way contract. Goligoski, 23, had six goals and 14 assists in 45 games with the Penguins this season and was scheduled to be a Restricted Free Agent on July 1. It has been confirmed that the deal is worth $5.5 million over 3 years. Goligoski will be paid $1.25 million in 09-10, $1.5 million in 10-11 and $2.75 million in 11-12. Pittsburgh is also currently in talks with

Penguins callup Alex Goligoski, Gonchar not ruled out for Game 5


Dan Bylsma just met with the media and the team has recalled defenseman Alex Goligoski. Bylsma would not confirm if Goligoski will be in the lineup tonight as Sergei Gonchar traveled with the team and will be a game time decision. Still, it is doubtful that Gonchar will play tonight. Gonchar suffered what is being described as only a minor right knee injury and will be