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October 18, 2005

October 18, 2005

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.

DEPARTMENTS

Spitfires left to deal with attack on rookie

OHL commissioner David Branch remained silent a week after Windsor Spitfires rookie Akim Aliu was attacked by teammate Steve Downie during practice. Reports indicated the incident stemmed from a rookie initiation party that got out of hand, although the league has a zero-tolerance policy toward hazing. Aliu, 16, lost two teeth when crosschecked in the face by Downie, 18, a Philadelphia first-rounder in his third year. Downie, a right winger, attended Canada’s national junior summer camp and is a candidate to make the team for the 2006 World Junior Championship in Vancouver. Downie walked out on the Spitfires and demanded a trade after he was suspended five games and Aliu one game by the team. Each was ordered to take counselling. The Spitfires said they would not trade Downie. “I don’t want him to be traded…

IN THIS ISSUE

Goals, goals goals!

What’s wrong with an 8-7 score, anyway? What’s wrong with having 20 or more 100-plus point scorers in a season? Or watching a superstar pick up the puck in his own end, gaining speed through the neutral zone and then, after deking a defenseman, score a goal on a 20-foot blast to the top shelf? Nothing, that’s what. The emphasis in the new NHL is on goal-scoring and I, for one, am glad. I played hockey to score goals; I watch hockey to see goals scored. Don’t count the penalties each team is assessed. Count the number of scoring chances each team gets. Don’t count the number of power plays in a game. Sit back and watch Sidney Crosby light it up the way Wayne Gretzky and Phil Esposito did with the man advantage. Watch…

IN THIS ISSUE

Real feelings, real deal

As I watched my son play his video game system the other day, anguishing over the maneuvers of microchip-created athletes with whom he has no connection, it dawned on me that games aren’t “just games.” Here’s an eight-year-old, who wouldn’t know the difference between Paul Martin of the New Jersey Devils and Paul Martin the Canadian Prime Minister, yet, at that moment in time, the game was his entire world. His expressions of frustration, anger, joy and relief were core feelings, emotions shared by hundreds of millions of sports fans worldwide. Some of our most cherished and upsetting memories are connected to games. If you’re (still) reading these words, in all likelihood you’ve experienced those emotions while watching NHL hockey. Coupled with the economic impact the business has on thousands of people, it’s…

DEPARTMENTS

MINUS

SAD ENDING After a sterling career, Team USA’s Cammi Granato deserved a heads-up from coach Ben Smith if he was going to cut her. DALE, DALE, DALE Great start to the year for the Rangers’ Dale Purinton – he’s suspended 10 games for eye-gouging in a pre-season fight. GET A GRIP Pittsburgh’s Andre Roy is suspended two games for making a throat-slashing gesture at Washington prospect Robin Gomez.…