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April 29, 2008

April 29, 2008

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.

THE STANDARDS

COLUMBUS

COMEBACK PLAYER Nikolai Zherdev, RW. After scoring 26 goals and 61 points, Zherdev has re-emerged as a budding elite talent for the Jackets. But his dramatic turnaround from a brutal 2006-07 season – 10 goals, 32 points – went beyond the ice. Zherdev, once the most detached player in the room, took giant steps toward fitting in this season, playing cards on plane trips and hanging out in the dressing room after some practices. GO AWAY PLAYER David Vyborny, RW. This is a tad harsh, as Vyborny was a very good player on some very bad teams this decade. But he has clearly lost a step and his NHL days appear finished. Once a sublime playmaker and a lock to score 60 points a year, Vyborny had only 26 this season.…

IN THIS ISSUE

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IN THIS ISSUE

2007-08 WINNERS

● ROD LANGWAY AWARD BEST DEFENSIVE DEFENSEMAN Zdeno Chara, Boston Trying to beat him is like trying to scale a 100-foot cactus ● JOHN FERGUSON AWARD TOUGHEST PLAYER Dion Phaneuf, Calgary Fifth in blueliner scoring, he also served 182 PIM ● CAM NEELY AWARD BREAKOUT PLAYER Patrick Sharp, Chicago Went from 20 goals and obscurity to 36 goals and stardom ● GUY CARBONNEAU AWARD TOP PENALTY-KILLER Daniel Alfredsson, Ottawa Mr. Everything for the Sens shot seven shorthanded goals ● PAVEL BURE AWARD BEST SHOOTOUT SHOOTER Patrick Kane, Chicago Connected on seven of nine chances for 77.8 success rate ● GILLES VILLEMURE AWARD BEST SHOOTOUT GOALIE Mathieu Garon, Edmonton The stingy Oiler was 10-0 in the shootout allowing two goals on 32 shots…

PROSPECTS UNLIMITED

KEY KROG IN CHICAGO

WHEN JASON KROG came back from Europe to chase the NHL dream, he was hoping for one more chance to compete against hockey’s best. He wanted one more opportunity to deny scoring chances, to kill penalties, score goals and win big faceoffs. One more chance to win the Stanley Cup. When that opportunity evaporated this season and Krog realized he’d be spending the entire year with the Chicago Wolves instead of playing for the Atlanta Thrashers, the realization set in that his chase, at 33, was probably over. So Krog spent the season doing whatever he could to get Atlanta prospects ready for the NHL. There was no period of pouting, no what’s-the-point attitude. “I’m not really one to think like that,” said Krog, who knew Atlanta – at best – had one spot…