Kukla's Korner Hockey
by George Malik on 07/15/11 at 07:29 PM ET
The NHL made an announcement within an announcement as they stated that Dave Tippett and Dan Bylsma will coach teams of top prospects for the 2012 Entry Draft at this summer’s ” NHL Research, Development and Orientation Camp,” which will take place on August 17th and 18h in Etobicoke, ON. The news that the NHL’s officially going to hold a second annual post-lockout “Shanahan summit” is good news in itself, and the NHL’s new disciplinarian spoke to ESPN’s Scott Burnside about the agenda for the “RDO camp”:
The NHL will head back to the laboratory next month with Brendan Shanahan reprising his role as Dr. Frankenstein. The former NHLer and now top league executive will gather some of the top young prospects for the 2012 NHL draft and set them to work in front of the league’s hockey operations department, GMs, coaches, scouts, executives, union types and, of course, a smattering of media, to test out new ideas, gadgets and rules in Toronto on Aug. 17 and 18.
“It’s a pretty good collection of hockey people, a good collection of hockey minds,” Dr. Frank ... er ... Shanahan told ESPN.com this week.
For its many ownership dramas and ongoing issues over player safety, the NHL has managed to stay on the cutting edge when it comes to blue-skying the game.
Whether narrower nets or different netting or headset communications that allow on-ice officials to communicate with each other, a la NASA astronauts, during a game ever become part of the NHL isn’t really the point. The fact that some of the game’s leading minds are open to gathering regularly under one roof to discuss different ideas and see how they might look in action adds a different texture to the proceedings and may ultimately have a greater impact on future changes to the game.
Without Shanahan’s research and development festival, the process of effecting change would be more theoretical with ideas moving from GMs meetings to the competition committee to the board of governors. Experimentation of new changes may be imposed on the American Hockey League, but the R & D exercise allows the game’s top hockey eyes to see how things might look and if there is reason to pursue them.
“It’s a big leap to go from the boardroom to the NHL ice,” Shanahan said. “This is a smaller step.”
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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.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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