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Blue Jackets’ Sergei Bobrovsky makes stellar no-look stick save

- September 28th, 2014

The number one cop on the force is already in mid-season form.

Sergei Bobrovsky, starting goaltender for the Columbus Blue Jackets put on a little mini-clinic for those that decided to tune in to their pre-season game against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday night.

The 26-year-old Russian netminder may want to save some of this for when the games actually matter.

And this.

The Jackets made some real noise in the NHL Playoffs last season, losing to the Penguins in a six game thriller of a series.

This may be an early indication that Bobro and his boys will be turning more heads this season.

Ohio State football coach delivers one big bodyslam to fan

- September 27th, 2014

When you commit to jumping from the stands and running onto the field of a live sporting event, there’s one thing you’re praying for.

“Dear Lord, I hope I don’t get decked by some massive grown man”.

Maybe you get lucky and the security guard is a skinny soft-spoken man who grabs you by the wrist, or even a group of game day staff who surround you and just let you surrender.

Unfortunately this visor-clad Ohio State Buckeyes fan who ran onto the field during their game against the Cincinnati Bearcats (shout-out David Wilcox), met his maker.

The Ohio State strength and conditioning coach Anthony Schlegel.

It looks like Anthony was waiting to pull this move out on an idiotic frat-boy for a while.

I mean, goodness, look at that neck-vain.

(H/T to FTW)

Flames make whack of cuts; Granlund joins injured brigade

- September 27th, 2014

Calgary Sun
Josh Jooris didn’t even know he’d survived the axe which went through the Calgary Flames dressing room.
The forward was more focused on preparing to suit up for Sunday’s pre-season game in Denver against the Colorado Avalanche.
“I told myself that whatever happens, I’m just gonna keep going and know the organization has a plan and not get too high or too low. If I get sent down, it’s not the end of the world. I’ll go there, learn and compete and try to get back up here,” Jooris said.
“I’ve come to realize that work ethic and compete here outweighs talent. That goes a long way in this organization, so I’ll keep doing those little things and keep working on the details.”
The Flames dispatched a dozen players on Saturday. Keegan Kanzig, the 2013 draft choice, was sent to the WHL’s Victoria Royals, while 11 were assigned to the AHL Adirondack Flames.
Goalies Doug Carr and Brad Thiessen, defencemen Curtis Gedig, Dustin Stevenson and forwards Mathieu Tousignant, Trevor Gillies, Kenny Agostino, David Wolf, Bryce Van Bradant, Ben Hanowski and Garnet Hathaway will report to Glens Falls, NY, for the AHL team’s training camp that opens Monday.
The Flames have 45 players remaining in camp.
“It’s a sad day. You saw the camp and there are no disappointments there,” head coach Bob Hartley said.
Sad for some. Happy for others, Jooris being one of them.
“He’s been a great story,” Hartley said. “I felt that in Sylvan Lake, he was probably one of our best players. In OT, we were still on four-on-three penalty killing and I put (Joe Colborne) and then I put Jooris on the ice. I felt he was skating very well.
“He’s skating right now with confidence, he’s creating, he’s on the puck. Right now, he’s pushing.”
Lofty praise for a young player in his second pro season.
“When you get noticed, especially by the head coach, it’s nice to hear,” said Jooris, who admittedly had an up-and-down 2013-14 season in the AHL. “It give you an extra jump in your step. It’s better to hear those things than not hear those things.”
There weren’t any surprises among the cuts. Even some given the bad news left feeling good about their performance.
For example, Garnet Hathaway – the Brown University grad who is signed to an AHL deal – opened camp being named the fittest prospect and turned plenty of heads.
“He basically came out of nowhere and caught our attention. That’s what you need,” Hartley said. “There’s many Garnet Hathaways playing in the NHL today. They had to spend a year, two years, three years in the AHL, but they kept pushing and kept believing and made it. I believe he’s one of those guys that sooner or later could play in the NHL.”
Hathaway could parlay his degree in business entrepreneurship and economics into the real world but wants to first chase his hockey dream.
The winger whose father owns a lobster processing business in Maine and opened his own pushcart selling lobster rolls while in college, left the Saddledome knowing he’d made big strides.
“My goal coming in was make it difficult for them to cut me. I have an AHL contract, so I wanted to get noticed, turn some heads, and I think I did that,” he said.
Hathaway, who joined the AHL Abbotsford Heat last season and suited up in nine games, also left with an understanding of how much he must learn.
“You see how guys are moving and where guys are going to be, and you understand the mindset of how to anticipate things. I think that’s the biggest thing,” he said. “You have to know the next play and you pick up on those things.”
On Twitter: @SunRandySportak

Calgary Sun
The good news for the Calgary Flames with their list of wounded players is that most of them are skating, albeit not all-out.
The bad news is that list appears to be growing daily.
Centre Markus Granlund is now on the shelf due to a head injury suffered in Friday’s 3-0 pre-season loss to the Vancouver Canucks.
“I think it could be a concussion,” head coach Bob Hartley said Saturday.
As well, right-winger David Jones was supposed to play Sunday’s pre-season game in Denver against the Colorado Avalanche but left the ice early in Saturday’s practice and is listed as day-to-day with a lower-body injury.
On the positive side, defenceman Ladislav Smid was skating with the injured crew.
Smid had an infected tooth worsen to the point he needed a few teeth removed.
“There was serious infection,” Hartley said.
Centre Mikael Backlund (abdomen) also was on the ice with the injured crew, although he was taking things easy.
A few days ago, Hartley seemed worried Backlund’s issue was serious.
“It’s encouraging,” Hartley said. “Right now he’s so far behind, we’re going to ramp him but, but at the same time, we’ll be careful with him. We’ll try to get him ready for Game 1. We got some good news and you should see him (practising fully) soon.”
LW Morgan Klimchuk (sprained wrist), RW Emile Poirier (off-season shoulder surgery) D Corey Potter (off-season shoulder surgery) and D Tyler Wotherspoon (off-season shoulder surgery) also were on the ice after the healthy players practised.
“Potts and Wotherspoon are cousins right now,” Hartley said. “We could see them back together basically at the same time. It’s a matter of days.”
Klimchuk, likely headed to the WHL’s Regina Pats, is expected to miss a few weeks, while Poirier is still about a month away from action.
LW Mason Raymond (suspected groin) is expected to be skating again in the next couple of days.
On Twitter: @SunRandySportak

Tampa Bay Lightning prank players, introduce them to fake third jersey

- September 27th, 2014

At a fan festival Saturday, Steven Stamkos put on his modelling hat as the Tampa Bay Lightning unveiled its newest third jersey.

The black and white semi-throwback pays homage to the Dave Andreychuk era, which climaxed with the franchise’s lone Stanley Cup championship in 2004.

Here’s a pumpup video from the big reveal:

Aside from the overplayed ‘BOLTS’ lettering down the middle, I’m impressed. It’s sharp and very sleekly black. Perhaps most importantly, there isn’t a single palm tree in sight.

You might be thinking, why would they wreck a perfectly fine jersey with palm trees!? 

Well, on Friday, the Florida club posted a video of a Lightning staffer pranking players with a fresh third jersey. That particular third — a fake, of course — went hard on the area’s tree of choice.

Despite the jersey’s obvious Christmas sweater feel, some players actually liked it (or at least said they did…):

Lightning centre Stamkos drives a puck 121 yards

- September 25th, 2014

We’ve seen Steven Stamkos shoot a puck 91 yards for a field goal and break a whole bunch of stuff with his slapshot.

For his next trick, the Tampa Bay Lightning centre took a basket of pucks to the driving range. Apparently he knocks one out 121 yards — that’s longer than an NFL field, from the back of one endzone to the other.

It’s the latest in a series of challenge videos to promote some hockey stick, like the lumber has anything to do with it or whatever.

Stamkos also hits a bunch of long-distance targets, including the ball cart.