by Patrick Hoffman on 07/30/12 at 10:41 PM ET
From Stan Fischler at MSGNetwork.com:
• Jim Rutherford is turning the Hurricanes into a power. The acquisition of Alex Semin comes at a price, but it’s also a message to Carolina fans that the Canes mean business about becoming a contender. The real challenge—apart from Semin proving his worth—is for coach Kirk Muller, starting his first full season as the lead bench boss. It’s up to Muller to extract the best out of a gifted offensive force who has remained an enigma nonetheless since his NHL debut.
• The NHL’s astonishingly successful Winter Classic concept has spawned new offspring; the latest being on the collegiate level at Chicago’s vast Soldier Field. Dubbed “The Hockey City Classic,” the February 17 double-bill will feature Notre Dame vs. Miami of Ohio and Minnesota against Wisconsin. Promoters figure that the crowd could exceed 60,000.
• One of the most important NHL quiet-hires has evolved into one of Bettman’s Best. That would be ex-NHL defenseman Stephane Quintal. The onetime top Boston Draft pick works under Brendan Shanahan as Manager of Player Safety (alongside Rob Blake), yet another superb addition to the Shanny Group.
Click here for more from one of the best, the “Hockey Maven”.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
For questions, comments and hip checks, feel free to e-mail Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.