We’ve talked about how hockey players will sometimes do curious things to cross-train for the season. Justin Abdelkader of Detroit, for instance, took boxing classes earlier this off-season to be better prepared for the season. Other players, like Carolina’s Tim Gleason, an experienced pugilist in his own right, look for other methods to improve their game.
Chip Alexander of the Raleigh News & Observer tells us that Gleason opted to try and figure skate his way into being a better hockey player for a day with American skaters Amanda Evora and Mark Ladwig.
Ladwig and Evora showed Gleason some of their best moves, while Gleason gave some quick instructions on the proper technique on slap shots.
Gleason’s grade for his waltz?
“I would have to give it deductions for the artistic mark,” Ladwig deadpanned. “But in terms of technical ability and lack of experience, I would give him a 6.0 on that.
“I think he was playing up the fact he’s a hockey player. I think he can skate. I know he could probably whip me nine ways to Sunday if we were out here playing anything.”
Ladwig grew up in Minnesota and is a hockey fan. He said he played the sport until he was 12, finishing his career as a goalie.
“I couldn’t shoot, as you could witness today,” he joked.
While we’re not sure how well Tim Gleason portrayed D.B. Sweeney in his role as hockey-player-turned-figure-skater in “The Cutting Edge” it sure is a lot more amusing to think of a guy throwing on the Olympic uniform and giving it a whirl just because. Thanks to the Carolina Hurricanes, we can at least show you how, ahem, graceful, Tim Gleason looks when flexing his skills.
I think we’re all thankful that he wasn’t outfitted in sequins and a fancy jersey for the day. It’s not as if they don’t make them after all.
(Photo: Carolina Hurricanes Twitter)
The Chicago Blackhawks are on edge on Saturday, and it’s not because of what’s currently a close game against the Anaheim Ducks.
(Not that they’re indifferent toward a match against their opponents from last year’s conference final match, mind you.)
Instead, the Blackhawks are quite concerned about the health of Marian Hossa, who needed help off of the ice following an awkward, scary-looking crash into the boards. (Hampus Lindholm delivered the hip check that sent Hossa sprawling, in case you’re wondering.)
Video isn’t yet available, but My Regular Face’s GIF captures that troubling moment:
It’s too early to tell if Hossa will bounce back or miss some time from this. Stay tuned for potential updates.
If it weren’t for Mike Yeo and the Minnesota Wild, you could argue that the Florida Panthers suffered from the worst night so far.
You can see that Saturday was unpleasant merely from looking at the scoreboard: the Nashville Predators pummeled the Panthers by an unkind score of 5-0.
The pain goes beyond that … literally so.
For one thing, Quinton Howden suffered an upper-body injury and did not return. That’s no good, but if you want to feel sick to your stomach, footage of Brandon Pirri‘s likely lower-body injury (ankle maybe?) may do the trick.
(Seriously, you may be happier if you don’t look.)
The Panthers didn’t make an announcement about Pirri one way or another, so we’ll see if he somehow avoided anything significant.
Either way, it was a night this team would like to forget.
It’s unlikely that Chris Stewart will generate another 30-goal season in the NHL, but he still might be missed by the Anaheim Ducks.
The team announced that the ornery forward is expected to miss four-to-eight weeks with a fractured jaw. If that’s the recovery window, Stewart may go into the playoffs a little rusty (if he can get in any regular season games at all).
The Ducks didn’t elaborate, but the Columbus Dispatch’s Aaron Portzline believes that the injury happened during a fight with Dalton Prout of the Columbus Blue Jackets. You can see that brawl in the video above.
One bright side for Anaheim: if they believe that they need to replace what Stewart brings to the table (rugged play with a dash of offense), then at least this injury happened before the the Feb. 29 trade deadline.
As many expected, the Minnesota Wild will make John Torchetti their interim head coach, according to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune’s Michael Russo.
(He’s not the only one to report as much, as TSN’s Bob McKenzie also stated that he’s likely to take the job.)
The team itself hasn’t made an official announcement about Torchetti, and the reasoning is probably simple enough: he’s coaching their AHL affiliate the Iowa Wild on Saturday night.
Torchetti is no stranger to the NHL, although he’ll probably be frustrated if this opportunity doesn’t turn into a full-time gig. He was also an interim head coach for the Los Angeles Kings and Florida Panthers.
As of this writing, the Wild are in a three-way tie for the first spot outside of the West’s wild card mix, although they could sink a bit depending upon how Arizona and Vancouver handle the one game they have in hand on the Wild.
More importantly, Minnesota’s currently three points behind Nashville for the final wild card spot.
That’s not an impossible goal for Torchetti. For whatever it’s worth, Sports Club Stats gives Minnesota a 34.7 percent chance to make the playoffs.
(Note: photo via the Iowa Wild.)