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December 20, 1991

December 20, 1991

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.

IN THIS ISSUE

IHL’s independently wealthy

Fort Wayne and San Diego are proving independents can thrive. The Komets led the International League’s East Division and were second in average league attendance (7,200 per game). San Diego was third in the West and averaging 5,000. The key ingredients? Stability. The Komets have retained nine players-including their top five scorers-from last year’s club that reached the Turner Cup final. The Gulls have nine returnees. Goaltending. Minor-pro veteran Rick Knickle, 31, and Winnipeg Jet property Mike O’Neill, 24, have been crucial in the Gulls and Komets’ early-season success. Help from NHL clubs. Fort Wayne has eight players from Detroit. Winnipeg and Buffalo; San Diego has eight from the New York Rangers, Minnesota and Philadelphia. Proven veterans. The experience of players such as Colin Chin and Bruce Boudreau for the Komets and former NHLers…

IN THIS ISSUE

All systems go for Czechoslovaks, Soviets

While the best young men in Czechoslovakia have gone west in recent years, the quality of hockey in that country still hasn’t gone south. In fact, the Czechoslovakian invasion in the NHL has proven to be a blessing in disguise. With potential Czechoslovakian Elite League superstars bolting for the NHL at a much younger age-witness Jaromir Jagr, Robert Reichel and Bobby Holik—the league has been forced to develop its junior players sooner to make them battle-ready for the big league. And for that reason, the Czechoslovaks should have one of the strongest teams at this year’s World Junior Championships. In fact, they have already served notice that they will be a contender. Led by coach Bedrich BrUnclik, the Czechoslovakians won the European junior championships last season and the Four Nations Tournament in September. Leadine…

IN THIS ISSUE

Team Sweden plans to put defense to the test

Sweden has never been known for its imposing national defense system. So it shouldn’t be much of a surprise to find its national junior team in need of defensive depth. To counteract an inexperienced blue line corps, Sweden will concentrate heavily on offense and hope to outgun the opposition teams. It will make for exciting hockey and if they can get enough offense to cover up for defensive shortcomings, the Swedes could be in medal contention. “I would like to say we have no weaknesses, but that would be wrong,” said coach Tommy Tomth. “I am concerned about how our defense will handle a player like Canada’s Eric Lindros. I hope there are no more players like him out there.” The seven defensemen on the team are all in their first year with…

IN THIS ISSUE

Look who’s scoring

There was no news conference to herald his arrival. It was not the trade of the decade for the Washington Capitals. It wasn’t even the only trade of the day. When right winger Steve Leach was sent to Boston for left winger Randy Burridge on draft day (June 22) the thought of many was, “Oh, Randy Burridge. Sure, he’ll work hard, but is that really what the Capitals need?” The obvious answer was no. What they lacked last season was scoring and the next question was, “Who are the Capitals kidding if they think Burridge is the answer to those scoring woes?” Well, how sure he was isn’t clear, but it looks very much like general manager David Poile was right: Burridge has been the answer. He was the highest-scoring player on…