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February 20, 1998

February 20, 1998

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.

NHL TEAMS

Vets come to rescue

It wasn’t a threat Bryan Murray issued to his veteran players, but rather a warning. On the afternoon before a critical homestand leading up to the Olympic break, the Florida Panthers’ coach-GM said it was time his veterans led this club out from the Eastern Conference cellar. “If they don’t score on some sort of consistent basis,” said Murray of his veterans, “this team will have a tough time winning on a consistent basis. We need some of the experienced guys to do it.” And do it they did. After going winless in their previous 10 games, the Panthers ended a five-game homestand Feb. 3 with a 3-1-1 record. Just as important as the winning ways was the contributions Murray got from his veterans. Eight of the team’s 11 goals during the homestand came…

FEATURES

Border crossings

Adam Deadmarsh used to cheer for Canada. Heck, the guy used to play for Canada. The cheering part was back in 1991 when Deadmarsh was 16 and Canada was beating USA in the Canada Cup final. The playing part was the next year in Japan when he represented his native land in the under-18 Pacific Cup in Japan. That was in an earlier life. Now he’s a member of the of the U.S. Olympic team and wants to destroy Canada. “I feel very comfortable playing for the U.S.,” said the 22-year-old Colorado Avalanche right winger. “I also have some great feelings for Canada, I grew up there. I’m not going to lie to you, I grew up rooting for Canada.” So how is it that good old Canuck boys such as Deadmarsh and Brett…

NHL TEAMS

Rebound time for Alfredsson

By the time Daniel Alfredsson gets back from Nagano, he hopes to be in mid-season form. The Ottawa Senators’ right winger wasn’t having the kind of season he expected. Not only was he troubled by missing all of training camp and the start of the regular season as an unsigned free agent, Alfredsson also struggled with injuries. Alfredsson had played in just 30 of the Senators’ 57 games, recording 11 goals and 24 points this season. “I haven’t been happy with the way I’m playing at all,” Alfredsson said. “I know I can do a lot more.” After missing six games waiting for a new contract, Alfredsson was later out for six with tom ligaments in his ankle. He returned before the all-star break to play one game after being out 13 with…

NHL TEAMS

Caps hope rule crackdown plays right into their hands

The Washington Capitals are clearly in favor of the NHL’s decision to have officials enforce existing rules on obstruction. Their only hope is it will last. “The way we play, it might work to our advantage,” said coach Ron Wilson. “I want to play a wide-open, free-flowing game as much as possible, use the skills that we have up front, get our defensemen active in the game. I’m hoping the rules that will be enforced will help our team.” With one game left before the Olympic break, Washington had lost only three games this calendar year, but scored more than three goals in a game only five times. Because of injuries and the defensive nature of games in the NHL this season, Washington was unable to fully utilize the skills of some…