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February 7, 1992

February 7, 1992

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.


Great divide proves painless

During last season’s negotiations to rewrite the player swap with San Jose, the Minnesota side wanted everyone to believe its reserve list was turning into Shark food. “Our situation really isn’t that bad,” said Les Jackson, the North Stars’ director of player personnel. “Sure, we’ll miss some of the players San Jose took but I don’t think anybody’s going to get fired over the players we lost.” Looking ahead, the Stars seem to think Kitchener’s Mike Torchia is the heir apparent to Jon Casey in goal. That tells you how far down the road they are looking since Casey signed a lucrative four-year contract last fall. Forward Steve Maltais, who is playing for the North Stars’ International League affiliate in Kalamazoo, is probably the closest prospect to joining the North Stars. Here are the…


Younger - generation is in good skates

The NHL faces a Catch-22 situation at center ice. Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Mark Messier dominated the 1980s down the middle. They were the game’s three best pivots, its three best players, and remain among the premier players today, although Gretzky has experienced some difficulties this season. That is both comforting and confounding for a league that has come to rely so greatly on so few. A changing of the guard might lend some vitality to the league but the three are such extraordinary players they will dominate as long as they don skates. Waiting in the wings (actually at center) is a trio of 22-year-olds who may not achieve the level of statistical superiority as their predecessors but promise to be long-term impact players. Joe Sakic, Jeremy Roenick and Sergei Fedorov represent the younger…


Future lies in North America

For the first time in several years, the New Jersey Devils’ pipeline to Russia’s deep hockey talent pool appears to be drying up. In the coming seasons, the club which has welcomed Russian players with open arms and has been referred to as Team United Nations, will turn to North American prospects to lead them through the decade. With the arrival of Valeri Zelepukin and Alexander Semak this season, the only Russian remaining in the Devils’ system is Moscow Dynamo right winger Sergei Svetlov, a ninth-round choice in 1988. Alexander Chernykh, a 10th-round pick in 1983, quit playing after being involved in a serious automobile accident nearly two years ago. Here are the top five prospects in order. Scott Niedermayer: There is no guesswork involving the graceful defenseman the Devils drafted in the first round…



TOP PLAYERS BY POSTITION ADAMS DIVISION BOSTON Forward: Joe Juneau Defense: Bob Beers Goalie: Marcel Cousineau BUFFALO Forward: Viktor Gordijuk Defense: Richard Smehlik Goalie: David Liftman HARTFORD Forward: Patrick Poulin Defense: Martin Hamrlik Goalie: Mike Lenarduzzi MONTREAL Forward: Vladimir Vujtek Defense: Patrice Brisebois Goalie: Andre Racicot QUEBEC Forward: Eric Lindros Defense: Rich Brennan Goalie: John Tanner PATRICK DIVISION NEW JERSEY Forward: Jarrod Skalde Defense: Scott Niedermayer Goalie: Mike Dunham N.Y. ISLANDERS Forward: Zigmund Palffy Defense: Scott Lachance Goalie: Danny Lorenz N.Y. RANGERS Forward: Alexei Kovalev Defense: Mike Stewart Goalie: Mike Gilmore PHILADELPHIA Forward: Peter Forsberg Defense: Darren Rumble Goalie: Dominic Roussel PITTSBURGH Forward: Shawn McEachern Defense: Chris Tamer Goalie: Bruce Racine WASHINGTON Forward: Steve Konowalchuk Defense: John Slaney Goalie: Jim Hrivnak…