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October 15, 1999

October 15, 1999

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.

FEATURES

NHL pre-season wonders

Stan Drulia didn’t fall off the face of the earth. It just seemed that way for the career minor-leaguer, who played a grand total of 24 NHL games in one season six years ago. Now, the 31-year-old journeyman is back in the bigs for the first time since 1992-93, named to the Tampa Bay Lightning’s 23-man roster. The Ontario League’s all-time leading scorer-479 career points over five seasons in the 1980s-qualifies as this year’s unlikeliest NHLer. Drulia is expected to be a role player for Tampa bench boss Steve Ludzik, who coached him the past three seasons with the Detroit Vipers of the International League. “Loyalty (to ex-Viper captain Drulia) got him the tryout, but he made the team on merit,” said Lightning GM Rick Dudley, the Vipers’ former GM. “Stan has the offensive…

DEPARTMENTS

NHL ignores size of little men’s skill

In reference to the article on Vancouver Canucks’ 5-foot-7, 165-pound rookie Steve Kariya (THN, Oct. 8) and the perception he is too small for the NHL: When will the powers-that-be realize smaller players are doing well, in fact excelling, at the NHL level? There are others like Kariya out there. Todd Robinson, formerly of the Western League’s Portland Winter Hawks, was WHL rookie of the year in 1994-95; was among the league’s leading scorers for four seasons; was the top scorer in the 1997-98 playoffs; and won the 1998 Memorial Cup. However, he was never drafted, not even as a flyer in the late rounds. Robinson is bigger (5-foot-8, 165 pounds) than Kariya and played in a rough league. An NHL GM should take a look at this skilled Canadian kid. Dale Donaldson, Castle…

IN THIS ISSUE

Seitz set on trophy

There is no doubt in Dave Seitz’s mind as to what he needs to do when he takes the ice for the South Carolina Stingrays this season. “I’ve been here three years and my role is to produce,” said the 5-foot-10, 184-pound center. “That’s my job. To score and make plays and free other guys up so they can score.” If Seitz produces as expected for the Stingrays and leads them to the East Coast League’s Brabham Cup-awarded for regular season supremacy-he 11 likely emerge as the MVP. But the former Clarkson University standout would prefer another championship ring over the MVP honor. “I’d be a lot happier if we won the Brabham Cup and the Kelly Cup again,” said the 25-year-old native of Buffalo. “We’ve got a great team and we’re very team…

NHL TEAMS

Simon says stay healthy; winner wants full season

For year after frustrating year, left winger Chris Simon could not put together a complete season. There were shoulder problems (right side) followed by back problems followed by shoulder problems (left side) followed by-you get the idea. This huge (6-foot-4, 235 pound) fearsome creature was fragile, hockey’s Chuck Wepner. With the Caps having a longer than usual summer vacation (no playoffs will do that), Simon spent a full and uninterrupted three months with T. R. Goodman, his Los Angeles-based personal trainer, and got the job done right. He is in shape and said he intends to stay that way. “Right now, I’m 100 per cent healthy,” Simon said. “This is the best I’ve felt in three years, since Colorado won the Cup (1996). It’s going to be great to go back out…