BLACKHAWKS DID BEST THEY COULD IN BELFOUR DEAL : PENALTY BOX.
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You would think acquiring a two-time Vezina Trophy The Vezina Trophy is awarded annually to the National Hockey League's goaltender who is "adjudged to be the best at this position". At the end of each season, the 30 General Managers of the teams in the National Hockey League vote to determine the goaltender who was winner for a backup goalie, two underachieving players and a conditional draft pick would be a steal.
But in the deal sending veteran Ed Belfour Edward John Belfour (born April 21, 1965 in Carman, Manitoba, Canada) is a professional ice hockey goaltender who plays for Leksands IF in HockeyAllsvenskan, the second highest-level Swedish ice hockey league.
Belfour was born in Carman, Manitoba and grew up playing hockey. to the San Jose Sharks The San Jose Sharks are a professional ice hockey team based in San Jose, California, United States. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). , give Chicago Blackhawks The Chicago Blackhawks are a professional men's ice hockey team based in Chicago, Illinois. They are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). general manager Bob Pulford Robert Jesse "Bob" Pulford (born March 31, 1936 in Newton Robinson, Ontario) is a former Canadian professional ice hockey forward who played for the Toronto Maple Leafs and Los Angeles Kings in the National Hockey League. credit for getting as much as he did for the disgruntled dis·grun·tle
tr.v. dis·grun·tled, dis·grun·tling, dis·grun·tles
To make discontented.
[dis- + gruntle, to grumble (from Middle English gruntelen; see goalie.
Pulford was dealing from a position of weakness because it had become a foregone conclusion that Belfour would be traded.
Unhappy splitting time with Jeff Hackett Jeff Hackett (born June 1, 1968 in London, Ontario) is a retired Canadian professional ice hockey goaltender. He is currently the goaltending coach of the Colorado Avalanche. , Belfour became a divisive influence, reportedly telling Hackett that he was nothing more than a backup and to stay on his side of the dressing room.
Complicating matters for the Blackhawks was Belfour's uncertain contract status. An unrestricted free agent after this season, he turned down a contract extension worth $3.3 million per season because he wants to be paid in the Patrick Roy Patrick Jacques Roy (IPA pronunciation: [ʁwa]), (born October 5, 1965, in Sainte Foy, Quebec, Canada — a suburb of Quebec City) is a retired ice hockey goaltender. range. Roy is getting $4.5 million this season.
With those conditions, there wasn't much of a demand for Belfour, but Pulford made a deal that could work out for the Blackhawks. Emphasis on the word could.
The Sharks parted with defenseman Mychal Sykora, right wing Ulf Dahlen, goalie Chris Terreri Chris Terreri (born November 15 1964 in Warwick, Rhode Island) was a goaltender for several NHL teams. Terreri was drafted by the New Jersey Devils in the fifth round (85th overall) of the 1983 NHL Entry Draft. and a conditional draft pick in 1998.
The Blackhawks know what they're getting in Terreri, a reliable No. 2 to Hackett. But Sykora and Dahlen are the question marks.
Sykora is untapped potential. At 6-foot-5, 225 pounds, he has the size to be a force defensively, but he was so unwilling to be physical for the Sharks that coach Al Sims Allan Eugene Sims (b. April 18, 1953, in Toronto, Ontario) was a professional hockey player and later a head coach in the NHL. Career
In 1972, Sims was the first round and first ever draft pick of the New York Raiders of the World Hockey Association, but he chose to sign made him a regular scratch from the lineup in recent weeks.
But he's only 23, meaning his best years should be ahead of him, and the Blackhawks are hoping some of Chris Chelios' meanness will rub off on Sykora.
Dahlen, meanwhile, has lost his scoring touch. A two-time 30-goal scorer, he had only eight goals and 11 assists in 43 games this season. The Blackhawks are expected to put him on their top line with center Alexei Zhamnov and left wing Tony Amonte, a move that should increase his scoring.
If Sykora approaches his vast potential, Dahlen starts scoring again and Hackett ranks among the best goalies in the NHL NHL Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, see there , Chicago fans could learn to like the trade.
Add trade: Things could get interesting in the Sharks dressing room between goalies Kelly Hrudey and Belfour.
During his seven-plus seasons with the Kings, Hrudey fiercely protected his position as No. 1 goalie. Not only was he at his best when his position was threatened, he was so competitive that he was known for his sometimes unfriendly manner toward some of the other goalies on the team.
No clear sailing: Worried about sports gambling, NHL officials are investigating Patrick Roy's investment in a casino boat, according to the Rocky Mountain News The Rocky Mountain News is a daily morning tabloid-format newspaper published in Denver, Colorado. It is owned by the E. W. Scripps Company. (Despite Scripps still running the paper, it's the only newspaper in the Scripps family not to have the corporate lighthouse logo on .
Roy and his father, Michel, invested $175,000 in a floating casino. The ship is being built in Texas for $50 million and is managed by La Societe des Casino de Quebec. Plans call for it to sail from Miami into international waters five times daily.
``There is no gambling on sports games,'' Roy said. ``I don't want to get involved in that. I don't want to get myself in trouble or make people think there is something illegal.``
On the mend: Buffalo captain Pat LaFontaine, sidelined since Oct. 17 because of postconcussion syndrome, is feeling so much better that he is trying to get a checkup check·up
1. An examination or inspection.
2. A general physical examination.
checkup See Yearly checkup. at the Mayo Clinic scheduled for Feb. 10 moved up.
He went 10 days without experiencing a headache and hopes to resume skating, something that seemed out of the question just a couple of weeks ago.
``He has good days and bad,'' Buffalo coach Ted Nolan said. ``He went through a stretch where he didn't have any pain and I think that gave him some hope.''
Waste of time: With right wing Alexei Kovalev out after undergoing knee surgery, the Rangers are trying to talk Steve Larmer out of retirement as a replacement.
Coach Colin Campbell sent defenseman Brian Leetch to speak with Larmer, who quickly characterized his chances of coming back as ``absolutely zero.''
``How am I going to come back?'' Larmer told the New York Daily News New York Daily News
Morning daily tabloid newspaper published in New York City. It was founded in 1919 by Joseph Medill Patterson and his cousin Robert McCormick as a subsidiary of the Tribune Co. of Chicago. The first successful tabloid-format newspaper in the U.S. . ``Physically, I don't think there's any way I can get into shape. And mentally, I think there's a point in everyone's life when you have to walk away.''
On his back: Ron Francis is noted as being one of the game's best playmakers Playmakers is a TV series on ESPN that depicted the lives of the players on a fictional professional football team. The show starred Omar Gooding, Marcello Thedford, Christopher Wiehl, Jason Matthew Smith, Russell Hornsby and Tony Denison. , but the Pittsburgh Penguins are hoping he's an even better nag than center.
Francis has launched a campaign to talk Mario Lemieux out of retiring after this season.
``I'm working on him every single day,'' Francis said. ``I keep reminding him how great this is, how the Olympics next year are a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.''
Apparently it isn't working. Lemieux keeps saying this is probably his last season, and is starting to get fed up with Francis.
``Ron is becoming a pain in the rear,'' Lemieux said.
Sean O'Donnell, Kings
He knocked out Steve Rucchin of the Mighty Ducks with an elbow Saturday. So what if he was coming to the aide of teammate Yanic Perreault? It's still a cheap shot.
Ray Bourque, Boston
The 36-year-old defenseman is one point from tying the franchise record for career points, held since December 7, 1967, by John Bucyk (1,339). But becoming the most prolific scorer in Bruins history won't allow him to escape the considerable shadow in Boston cast by Bobby Orr.
``We have to win seven of the next 10 games or we're going to be out of the playoffs,'' Boston forward Rick Tocchet. The Bruins are in danger of missing the playoffs for the first time in 30 years.
TOP 10 AND NO. 26
1. Colorado - Beat Florida and Pittsburgh on the road last week
2. Philadelphia - Terry Murray is second most underpaid coach in the NHL
3. Dallas - Ken Hitchcock is most underpaid coach in the NHL
4. Detroit - Looked good in tying Philadelphia 3-3
5. Florida - Their lowest ranking of the season
6. Pittsburgh - Lemieux's back spasms weren't serious
7. New York Rangers The New York Rangers are a professional ice hockey team based in New York, New York, U.S.A. They are members of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). - Handed Patrick Lalime first NHL loss
8. Buffalo - Shouldn't plan on getting LaFontaine back this season
9. Edmonton - Consistency remains a problem
10. St. Louis - Team thrives without Keenan
26. Ottawa - How long until Kings claim this spot again?
L.A. ON ICE
Wednesday - at Colorado
Thursday - vs. Hartford
Saturday - vs. Chicago
Monday - at Calgary
Rivalry with Blackhawks always worth watching.
Wednesday - at Dallas
Friday - vs. Hartford
Sunday - vs. Colorado
Stars and Avalanche are best in Western Conference.
Box: PENALTY BOX (see text)