Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 06/22/14 at 07:51 AM ET
from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,
In the last three years, while fighters have left the NHL via retirement and attrition (and in Boogaard’s case, a death via drug and alcohol overdose on May 13, 2011), younger sluggers have not filled the gloves they’ve left on the ice. Within this window, players who fit this category are Patrick Bordeleau, Luke Gazdic, Tom Wilson, and Anthony Peluso. There’s more going out than coming in.
The NHL revolves around a cycle of refreshing. Mark Recchi goes out on top. The Bruins give most of his shifts to Tyler Seguin, then coming off his rookie season. Nicklas Lidstrom closes out his glorious career. The Red Wings ask Danny DeKeyser and Brendan Smith to assume some of the shifts taken by the best defenseman of his generation. Martin Biron retires last October. Cam Talbot, 26, takes over as Henrik Lundqvist’s backup with the Rangers.
And on and on and on. The exception, however, looks to be in the mitt-dropping segment.
Come July 1, John Scott, George Parros, Mike Rupp, Krys Barch, Kevin Westgarth, Steve MacIntyre, Zenon Konopka, Deryk Engelland, and Arron Asham will be looking for work. They may not get it in the NHL. Their current employers may not replace their pugilistic skills with more of the same.
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