facebook Twitter RSS Feed YouTube StumbleUpon

Home | Forum | Chat | Tours | Articles | Pictures | News | Tools | History | Tourism | Search

 
 


Go Back   BanglaCricket Forum > Other Sports > Other Sports

Other Sports Talk about other Bangladeshi and International sports.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old July 19, 2006, 02:53 PM
edueche edueche is offline
Street Cricketer
 
Join Date: July 19, 2006
Posts: 1
Default NHL Winners And Losers, By Rich Carlson

NHL Winners And Losers

By Rich Carlson
Inspin.com
Contributing Writer

The 2005-06 NHL season has come to an end, and members of the Carolina Hurricanes are taking turns traveling with Lord Stanley’s Cup to points near and far across the world. Even though the season has barely ended, training camps will open in a little more than two months, and teams throughout the league are looking to upgrade their rosters through free agent signings and trades. The free agency signing period started July 1, and more than 100 players signed new contracts during the first week. Let’s take a look at some of the early winners and losers of the NHL offseason.

Offseason Winners

Minnesota Wild

2005-06 record: 38-36-8, 84 points, (5th place – Northwest Division)
2005-06 postseason results: missed playoffs
2005-06 offense rank: 25th (2.76 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 5th (2.58 goals allowed per game)

Reason for improvement: commitment to higher payroll, good free agent signings, good trades.

Last season, the Wild entered the season with a payroll of $25 million, lowest in the NHL. The low payroll resulted in a predictable finish for the Wild: last place in their division. This offseason, the Wild’s management has decided to loosen its purse strings in an effort to get out of the Northwest Division cellar, and the increased spending has produced some immediate improvements. The Wild’s offense, which ranked in the bottom third of the NHL last season (2.76 goals per game), was significantly upgraded with the acquisitions of center Pavol Demitra, right winger Mark Parrish and by re-signing their leading goal scorer, Marian Gaborik. Demitra is a consistent scorer who has averaged 29 goals and 70 points the past seven seasons, while Parrish scored 29 goals last year for the Islanders and Kings. Gaborik recorded a career-high 38 goals last year and emerged as a dominant offensive player on Minnesota’s first line. Minnesota’s also managed to improve its already stout defense, signing tough defensemen Kim Johnsson, Keith Carney and talented Finnish defender Petteri Nummelin. Minnesota would be a smart wager to make some noise in the Northwest Division next season.

Carolina Hurricanes

2005-06 record: 52-22-8, 112 points, (1st place – Southeast Division)
2005-06 postseason results: won Stanley Cup
2005-06 offense rank: 3rd (3.49 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 20th (3.15 goals allowed per game)
Reason for improvement: re-signing key players, good free agent signings

After a team wins the Stanley Cup, fans and players alike express a hope that team management will keep the roster intact, giving the champs a chance to defend their title. Carolina had a large number of players who became free agents on July 1, and the Hurricanes managed to re-sign many of the key pieces of their 2005-06 roster, including leading scorer Eric Staal (45 goals/55 assists), LW Erik Cole (30 goals/29 assists) and defensive anchors Glen Wesley and Mike Commodore. Re-signing Staal, who emerged as one of the top goal scorers in the league last year, and Cole should allow the Hurricanes' high-flying offense (3.49 goals per game) to continue putting up big numbers. Wesley is entering his 19th NHL season and is a stabilizing, veteran presence on defense, and the 6-foot-5 Commodore is a big, physical defender who helped anchor Carolina’s defensive corps. With the emergence of Cam Ward as a No.1 goaltender, the Hurricanes allowed former starter Martin Gerber to leave via free agency, and signed John Grahame away from Tampa Bay to back up Ward. With these offseason moves, Carolina will be a sportsbook favorite to repeat as Stanley Cup champions.

Boston Bruins

2005-06 record: 29-37-16, 74 points, (5th place – Northeast Division)
2005-06 postseason results: missed playoffs
2005-06 offense rank: 24th (2.78 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 19th (3.15 goals allowed per game)

Reason for improvement: good free agent signings

The Bruins suffered through another disappointing year in 2005-06, finishing in last place in the Northeast Division, 37 points behind first-place Ottawa. Both their offense and defense ranked near the bottom third in the league last year, so help was needed on both sides. To help shore up their defense, Boston signed star defensemen Zdeno Chara away from Ottawa. Chara was the leader of a Senators defense that allowed the fewest goals in the Eastern Conference last season. At 6-foot-9, 261 pounds, Chara is a monster defender who can also score, as he tallied a career-high 16 goals and 27 assists last year. To add some more punch of the offense, Boston signed center Marc Savard, who had 28 goals and 69 assists last year for Atlanta. Chara and Savard are both impact players who will make immediate contributions for Boston.

New York Rangers

2005-06 record: 44-26-12, 100 points, (3rd place – Atlantic Division)
2005-06 postseason results: lost in 1st round of playoffs to New Jersey (4-0)
2005-06 offense rank: 14th (3.05 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 4th (2.57 goals allowed per game)

Reason for improvement: good free agent signings, re-signed key players
After a grueling regular season campaign in which they finished one point behind New Jersey and Philadelphia in the Atlantic Division, the Rangers were rewarded with a first-round playoff matchup against the division-winning Devils, which N.Y. lost 4-0. The Rangers' offense disappeared in the playoffs, as it could only muster four goals in the four-game series. To give some support to star forward Jaromir Jagr, the Rangers signed free agent left winger Brendan Shanahan, one of the top 15 goal scorers in the history of the NHL. Shanahan was revitalized under the new NHL rules that cracked down on clutching and grabbing, as he logged his first 40-goal season since 2000. The Rangers’ already potent power play, which ranked 8th in conversion percentage (18.9%), will be even more formidable with Shanahan in the lineup, as he scored 14 power-play goals last season for Detroit. The Rangers also signed forward Matt Cullen and defenseman Aaron Ward away from the Carolina Hurricanes. Cullen scored a career-high 25 goals and 49 points for Carolina last year, and Ward is a solid defenseman who will add depth to the Rangers' strong defense.

Nashville Predators

2005-06 record: 49-25-8, 106 points, (2nd place – Central Division)
2005-06 postseason results: lost in 1st round of playoffs to San Jose (4-1)
2005-06 offense rank: 10th (3.08 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 8th (2.73 goals allowed per game)

Reason for improvement: good free agent signings, re-signed key players

The Predators were one of the surprise teams in the NHL last year, as they won 49 regular season games and finished second in the Central Division behind Detroit. Nashville’s season ended with a disappointing first-round playoff loss to San Jose, in which the Predators offense scored one goal or less in three of the five playoff games. So how do you make an instant upgrade to your offense? Simple – sign free agent center Jason Arnott. Arnott is one of the top offensive centers in the league, as shown by his 32 goals and career-high 44 assists last year with Dallas, and he will add an immediate spark to the Predators offense. The Predators also re-signed backup goalie Chris Mason, who played the final eight games for Nashville when starting goalie Tomas Vokoun was injured. Mason went 6-1-0 with two shutouts in those eight games, and helped push Nashville into the playoffs. Mason gives Nashville a capable backup netminder and an insurance policy in case Vokoun is unable to return from injury.

Offseason Losers

Detroit Red Wings

2005-06 record: 58-16-8, 124 points, (1st place – Central Division)
2005-06 postseason results: lost in 1st round of playoffs to Edmonton (4-2)
2005-06 offense rank: 2nd (3.67 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 3rd (2.51 goals allowed per game)

Reason for decline: lost key players to free agency and retirement

Detroit was the king of the 2005-06 regular season, posting the NHL’s best record with 58 wins and 124 points. However, all that hard work came crashing down on the Red Wings in the first round of the playoffs as the upstart, eighth-seeded Edmonton Oilers won the series 4-2. The offseason hasn’t been much better for Detroit, as Steve Yzerman announced his retirement, and leading goal scorer Brendan Shanahan signed with the New York Rangers. Yzerman was the leader of the team and the face of the franchise, and his retirement will leave a big hole on the ice and in the locker room. Shanahan was the team’s top goal scorer last season, and his departure will be a big blow to the potent Red Wings offensive attack. The Wings' only major offseason signing to this point is re-signing goalie Chris Osgood, who is entering his 14th NHL season. The Red Wings are an old squad, and need to get younger in a hurry if they want to stay on top of the Central Division. For the first time in years, sportsbook odds won't have Detroit among the Stanley Cup favorites.

Carolina Hurricanes

2005-06 record: 52-22-8, 112 points, (5th place – Northwest Division)
2005-06 postseason results: won Stanley Cup
2005-06 offense rank: 3rd (3.49 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 20th (3.15 goals allowed per game)

Reason for decline: lost key players to free agency

One of the perils facing Stanley Cup winning teams is the pillaging of their roster by other teams, and Carolina is no exception. Although the Hurricanes were able to re-sign many of their key free agents, they lost solid players in defensemen Aaron Ward, forward Matt Cullen, center Doug Weight and their former starting goalkeeper, Martin Gerber. Carolina still has a lot of talent on both sides of the ice, but it will need some new players to step up and fill the roles of their departed free agents.

Vancouver Canucks

2005-06 record: 42-32-8, 92 points, (4th place – Northwest Division)
2005-06 postseason results: missed playoffs
2005-06 offense rank: 12th (3.07 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 15th (3.06 goals allowed per game)

Reason for decline: lost key players to free agency

The Canucks' defense has been decimated during this offseason, as defensemen Keith Carney, Ed Jovanovski and Nolan Baumgartner have signed with other teams. Carney was a veteran leader on defense, Jovanovski is a big, physical defender who ranked No. 11 in points per game among defensemen, and Baumgartner was the team leader in plus/minus at +11. The Canucks also lost defensive-minded forward Jarkko Ruutu via free agency. The Canucks finished fourth in the Northwest Division last season, and with cellar-dweller Minnesota making huge moves this offseason, Vancouver could find itself at the bottom of the division next season.

Edmonton Oilers

2005-06 record: 41-28-13, 95 points, (T-2nd place - Northwest Division)
2005-06 postseason results: lost in Stanley Cup finals to Carolina (4-3)
2005-06 offense rank: 15th (3.04 goals scored per game)
2005-06 defense rank: 12th (2.95 goals allowed per game)

Reason for decline: lost key players to free agency

One of the reasons behind Edmonton’s astonishing run to the 2006 Stanley Cup Finals was its outstanding defensive play during the playoffs. Now, the Oilers are faced with revamping their defense after star defensemen Chris Pronger demanded a trade and Jaroslav Spacek signed with Buffalo. Pronger was the centerpiece of the Oilers defense, which ranked No. 12 in goals allowed per game (2.95), and he will be virtually impossible to replace. Spacek is a strong puck-handler who made valuable contributions at both ends of the ice during Edmonton’s dream run to the finals. With an average offensive attack, the Oilers have relied on their defense to win games, and now that defense has been substantially weakened.


.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old July 19, 2006, 04:47 PM
Fazal's Avatar
Fazal Fazal is offline
Cricket Sage
 
Join Date: September 16, 2004
Posts: 15,455

So Carolina Hurricanes are in winner list as well as in loser list? Looks like Rich Carlson is covering all bases in case Carolina Hurricanes goes either ways. Nice way to claim victory, Rich Carlson (at the end of 06-07 season. )
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:16 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
BanglaCricket.com
 

About Us | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Partner Sites | Useful Links | Banners |

© BanglaCricket