Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Mark Zwolinksi of the Toronto Star,
When the Leafs open their home season tonight against Montreal, the first official critique of the new ice will arrive for the ice crews and management, who have been building ice for over a month now with the help of a reverse osmosis water filtering system from Newmarket-based ice experts Jet Ice.
“Fans are going to notice the ice is clearer and stronger, there will be less snow build-up and less ruts ... players will feel the ice is faster and harder, and the puck will travel smoother with less bumps,” said Bryan Leslie, director of building operations for the Air Canada Centre.
The reverse osmosis process essentially removes contaminants and sediment introduced to the ice under the old ice making methods.
from Bertrand Marotte of the Globe and Mail,
The tryouts are over and Therma Blade Inc. is dying to know if it made it into the big leagues.
The fledgling Montreal-based company has been working for the past year-and-a-half to win converts in the National Hockey League and get its heated blades onto the skates of pro players….
“It’s frustrating for us in terms of the time it’s taking to get this done,” he said.
“I doubt very much that there is any other hockey equipment that has to live through the process we are living through.”
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
Watched any exhibition games? Seen any difference in the goalie equipment that would lead you to believe scoring will be up this season? No? And no? Well, you’re not alone and it isn’t your eyes deceiving you either.
more and a huge amount of NHL bits too plus some Avery talk…
from Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette,
Toronto inventor Bill Forster received his patent last month, and every goalie in organized hockey wants to stand him naked and blindfolded in the net and let Bruins human cannon Zdeno Chara use him for target practice.
Forster’s patent is for the bevelled goal, that is, a net with a crossbar that bends upward from the posts, and posts that warp outward from crossbar to ice.
The result: a slightly larger target for shooters, and pucks more likely to deflect into the net than away.
from Jim Kelley at Sports Illustrated,
Protection is the most oft-stated reason for the overall lack of change. That’s valid, but only to a point. There is new equipment on the market that is so good that serious goalie injuries, once the bane of the game, are virtually non-existent. Slimming down the equipment without threatening the health and well- being of the players is known to be a doable deed.
What seems to be the obstruction here is that no one has or is willing to exert the necessary authority to make change happen. The goalies have power on the ice, with the players’ association, and with a strong, powerful voice in the media.
from Dave Waddell of the Windsor Star,
Brian Heaton, the Kingsville resident who helped revolutionize goalie equipment design in the past 25 years, died Tuesday after suffering a heart attack while competing in a horse-riding competition in London.
The 58-year-old Heaton built up a world-wide reputation in hockey by offering a customized service and design to NHL goaltenders.
Among the innovations Heaton has been credited with included introducing coloured equipment, using new man-made materials and coming up with several flap and safety designs that allowed goalies to enjoy superior protection in lighter equipment.
from the Winnipeg Sun,
Hockey player, coach and enthusiast Bob Unger can now add successful inventor to his list of credentials.
The Winnipegger has been generating attention and gaining big-name support for his Goalie Band, an original tool that prevents goalies from sinking back into their nets.
Visit the GoalieBand site…
from Jason Botchford of the Vancouver Province,
The subtle changes the NHL has made to goalie equipment this season won’t be obvious to most fans, but they will have an impact on several netminders, including Roberto Luongo.
The new specifications, which have already been sent to NHL goalies and equipment manufacturers, won’t result in significant shrinkage. In fact, the NHL, on recommendation from the league’s goalie equipment working group, hasn’t cut back any size limits this year. But some tweaks in the wording of the rules will mean equipment will be more contoured around the calves, knees and shoulders.
One of the key targets for change has been the padding around goalie’s knees, which can be used to close off the five-hole, an issue Marty Turco awkwardly put on the front burner during last season’s widely misunderstood “pad flap” with Luongo.
110 degrees outside? Why not play hockey?
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TORONTO, July 28 /PRNewswire/ - More than 100 National Hockey League players say they are ready to hit the ice this summer to participate in a trial of Thermablade heated skate blades, Therma Blade Inc. announced today….
NHL players reporting excellent performance results to date with Thermablades include centre Marty Reasoner of the Atlanta Thrashers and Nashville Predators winger Martin Erat.
“I wore Thermablade for the full 2007-08 NHL season and they gave me a real advantage,” said Reasoner, who played last season with the Edmonton Oilers before joining the Thrashers this month. “I’m going to keep wearing them.”
“I’ve got more speed when I come out of the corners,” said Erat.
Therma Blade Inc. also announced the creation of a new advisory board that will provide guidance on work being done with the NHL, the NHL Players’ Association and other stewards of the game.
more at Yahoo…
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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