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April 4, 2006

April 4, 2006

The Hockey News has been providing the most comprehensive coverage of the world of hockey since 1947. In each issue, you'll find news, features and opinions about the NHL and leagues across North America and the world.

DEPARTMENTS

2005-06 Statistics

Significant Movements for March 16-22 ANAHEIM No injuries or significant movements. ATLANTA None. Injuries P. Stefan, C, sports hernia, day-to-day. J-P Vigier, RW, ACL, season. S. Aubin, C, knee, early April. BOSTON March 18 T. Thomas, G, three-year contract extension. Injuries P-J Axelsson, LW, knee, day-to-day. M. Jurcina, D, shoulder, day-to-day. I. Moran, D, back, indefinite. H. Toivonen, G, ankle, early April. A. Zhamnov, C, ankle, indefinite. BUFFALO March 22 J. Novotny, C, from Rochester (AHL). Injuries J. Hecht, LW, knee, early April. T. Connolly, C, knee, day-to-day. A. Mair, RW, concussion, indefinite. CALGARY None. Injuries R. Warrener, D, knee, early April. M. Leclerc, C, wrist, indefinite. CAROLINA None. Injuries J. Vasicek, LW, knee, day-to-day. E. Cole, LW, vertebra, season. A. Hutchinson, D, wrist, early April. D. Weight, C, groin, day-to-day. CHICAGO March 18 J. Wisniewski, D,…

DEPARTMENTS

Second-chance city; Edmonton gets team

One failed Edmonton experiment has not deterred WHL governors from approving an expansion franchise for Alberta’s capital. The WHL’s 22nd franchise – owned by the NHL’s Edmonton Oilers – will make its debut in 2007-08, less than a decade after the Edmonton Ice melted. League commissioner Ron Robison cited the success of the Calgary Hitmen and Vancouver Giants as evidence that junior teams can thrive in big markets alongside NHL squads. “The Oilers demonstrated what they can do from a marketing standpoint,” he said. “They control the facility. They control the marketplace, and we’re confident it will be successful.” The new team, as yet unnamed, is to play at Rexall Place. The Edmonton (now Kootenay) Ice were owned by former WHL president Ed Chynoweth. That team played before sparse crowds for two years before…

DEPARTMENTS

2 MINUTES IN THE BOX

Chris Mason Nashville Predators Pos G Age 29 Birthplace Red Deer, Alta. START THE CLOCK… What was your first-ever job? “Paperboy.” What is the strangest superstition you’ve seen? “Paul Kariya’s stretching routine. He just has these funny breathing techniques.” Favorite movie? “The Boondock Saints.” Worst movie you’ve ever seen? “Just Married with Ashton Kutcher. I wanted to leave, but my wife and I were there with another couple.” Ideal vacation spot? “Going over to Europe. I went last year (to play) and I’d love to go back.” Most embarrassing CD in your collection? “The Spice Girls. They were hot when I was in junior.” Favorite youth hockey memory? “After my first year of junior, I went back to my midget team. We were underdogs, but we made a run to the Air Canada Cup. We lost in triple-overtime, but it was the last time I got to play…

DEPARTMENTS

Stable of young cats ready to pounce

EYE ON 2006-07 The recent signing of Olli Jokinen took care of one of Florida’s top two priorities for next season. Goalie Roberto Luongo is the other, and there’s optimism that will get done, too. Luongo is eligible for restricted free agency this summer – and potentially unrestricted free agency in July 20 0 7, if he’s unsigned. Beyond that, all the key veterans are among the 12 players signed through 2006-07, meaning management’s attention will focus on a healthy list of restricted free agents with arbitration rights. Topping that list are defensemen Jay Bouwmeester, Branislav Mezei and Mike Van Ryn and center Stephen Weiss. The team will try multi-year deals with some of these players. Majority owner Alan Cohen has committed an extra $ 10 million to this year’s $28-million payroll, figuring…