It sounds like the rumors are true: True North Sports and Entertainment will reportedly introduce Chicago Blackhawks assistant GM Kevin Cheveldayoff as Winnipeg’s new general manager on Wednesday. This announcement will come on the heels of True North’s decision to part ways with former GM Rick Dudley, who served as the Atlanta Thrashers’ general manager for just the 2010-11 season.
This work mark an interesting transition from a Blackhawks front office member from the Dale Tallon days (Dudley) to one more closely associated with Stan Bowman (Cheveldayoff).
The Blackhawks connection obviously helps – Cheveldayoff was an assistant GM and director of hockey operations for two seasons – but it’s probably his minor league experience working closely with players in Winnipeg’s organization that matters the most. Cheveldayoff ran the AHL’s Chicago Wolves (aka the Atlanta Thrashers’ feeder team) for 12 years, which means that he has intimate knowledge of Winnipeg’s prospects and younger players.
It seems a bit unfair that Dudley lost his job without really getting a chance to prove himself, but Cheveldayoff could be a natural fit in Winnipeg. Perhaps the only real question remains: will True North name their team in the same press conference as they name their first GM?
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.