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December 1, 2000

December 1, 2000

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.


Bondra taken off trading block until market expresses interest

Washington Capitals’ owner Ted Leonsis said the shopping of right winger Peter Bondra around the NHL has been suspended because “there is nothing hot or active, there have been no phone calls.”Bondra, a two-time 50-goal scorer who becomes an unrestricted tree agent in July, requested a trade prior to the season in what he termed “a business decision.” There has been little interest. Leonsis said the team would consider an exchange for a big-ticket star to grant Bondra his wish. At the same time, Leonsis did not rule out signing him to a contract depending on his performance, which had been spirited and effective so far. Bondra led the Capitals with six goals and 16 points in 18 games. Problem is, Bondra’s market value isn’t as high as it was a couple…


Torpedo guns down trap

Sweden has exported the Volvo, Bjorn Borg, Abba — and the neutral zone trap. While the trap has at times held the NHL in an iron grip, Sweden has moved on. It is now into the ‘Torpedo,’ an exciting system that is the brainchild of Mats Waltin, coach of the Swedish champions, Djurgarden of Stockholm. Waltin, 47, has support from above in the form of Anders Hedberg, the new GM of the Swedish national team. The former Winnipeg Jet and New York Ranger is using his recently appointed position to brand the trap as politically incorrect and make the hockey world embrace the Torpedo. Waltin has scrapped the traditional setup of two defensemen and a forward line comprised of two wingers and a center. Instead, the former rushing defenseman and member of Team…


Alaska’s Talafous agrees to more northern exposure

Four losing seasons at Michigan Tech cost coach Tim Watters his job. Four straight losing seasons at Alaska-Anchorage got coach Dean Talafous a two-year extension. But while Watters was asked to step down Nov. 7 after a 1-7-1 start - on the heels of a horrendous 4-34-0 season - Talafous is making the same gamble Anchorage athletic director Steve Cobb took this summer, when the extension he agreed to looked like smart money. The Seawolves opened their Western Collegiate Hockey Association season with upbeat showings on the road against powers Minnesota and Wisconsin, including a stunning series sweep of the sixth-ranked Badgers Nov. 10-11. Behind the stellar play of freshman goalie Chris King, who stopped 62 of 67 shots, Anchorage recorded 5-3 and 3-2 wins at the Kohl Center, where the Badgers had been…


Nabokov quietly putting together stellar season for San Jose

It took playing the second night of back-to-back games on the road and three re-directed goals to snap Evgeni Nabokov’s club record-tying 11-game unbeaten streak. The 25-year-old rookie, with just 11 games of NHL experience before this season, went 9-0-2 from Oct. 20through Nov. 14 before losing in Detroit 4-1 Nov. 15. Nabokov came to the Sharks’ rescue following an ankle injury that sidelined No. 1 goalie Steve Shields in October. But Nabokov was playing so well, he got the majority of starts after Shields returned in earlv November. Overall, Nabokov was 10-2-2 with a 1.79 goals-against average and .933 save percentage. While he’s not receiving much attention for his play, Nabokov is earning high praise from those who see him every day. “Nabby makes everything look easy and that’s a good sign,” said…