So outlandish it might just work: Hockey in Jamaica


Call it “Cool Icings” if you want, but one former Toronto Maple Leafs skating coach is attempting to grow hockey in Jamaica to the point that they might compete in the Olympics, according to a fascinating story from the Toronto Star.

Graeme Townshend seems like the right man to do it as the first Jamaican-born player. He appeared in 45 NHL games spread over five seasons between the New York Islanders, Boston Bruins and Ottawa Senators; he scored 10 points in that span. (His best season came in 1990-91 with Boston when he managed two goals, five assists and seven points … all career-highs.)

Townshend laid out his bold vision to the Toronto Star:

“If we can pull this off, you’re looking at an inspiring story and the idea that anything is accomplishable if you put your mind to it,” Townshend said.

“If Jamaica can get a team in the world championships or the Olympics, that’s like a miracle. It’s something that’s so outlandish that I think it actually might work.”

They might want to keep Disney in the loop on this one, just in case.

The NBC Olympics feed helps to kindle imaginations on such a subject:

Here are the 10 oldest players to play a game this season

Jaromir Jagr
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This isn’t breaking news or anything. We just thought you’d like to know that three of the NHL’s 10 oldest players (who’ve played at least one game this season) are members of the Florida Panthers.

Oh, and the Panthers’ starting goalie? He’s the oldest starter in the league. (Scroll down.)

Here’s the list of skaters, topped by 43-year-old Jaromir Jagr:


Yet another veteran Panther, 36-year-old defenseman Brian Campbell, ranks 17th on the list.

Granted, the above list does not include 39-year-old Patrik Elias (who’s hurt) or 39-year-old Eric Boulton (who just re-signed with the Isles). As soon as those two play, Thornton will get pushed out of the top 10.

Now here’s the list of goalies who’ve started at least one game this season, topped by 36-year-old Roberto Luongo:


For the record, Luongo isn’t the oldest goalie under contract. That would be Minnesota’s Niklas Backstrom, who’s 37.

Related: Can Florida’s old guys hang on while the young guys get better?

Hamburglar (groin) returns, Sens demote O’Connor

Andrew Hammond
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Matt O'Connor‘s time in the Canadian capital was brief, but still noteworthy.

O’Connor, the losing netminder in Sunday’s “Battle of the Backups” against Montreal — Habs No. 2 Mike Condon got the win — has been sent down to AHL Binghamton to pave the way for Andrew Hammond‘s return from a groin injury, per the Sun.

The Hamburglar has been out since the preseason, but his return is earlier than expected.

He was originally supposed to miss the first two weeks, yet now sounds as though he’ll play one of Ottawa’s two games on an upcoming road trip through Columbus and Pittsburgh.

It’s going to be interesting to see if Hammond can replicate the success he had last season, when he came out of nowhere to go 20-1-2 with a 1.79 GAA and .941 save percentage, and finish seventh in Vezina voting.