Author: Jason Brough

Tampa Bay Lightning v New York Rangers - Game Seven

Bishop: ‘Taller guys…can be just as athletic as the smaller guys’


TAMPA — The tallest goalie in NHL history isn’t quite ready to call an end to the days of sub-six-foot netminders. However, he concedes there’s a reason smaller guys will have a tougher chance of making it.

“I don’t know if it’ll be the end of the era, but I think you see taller guys that can be just as athletic as the smaller guys,” said Tampa Bay’s 6-foot-7 starter, Ben Bishop. “It seems to be the way it’s trending here.

“You look at [Blackhawks backup Scott Darling], he’s 6-6, and that guy can move pretty well. You see bigger guys that can move just as well as the smaller guys, and that’s probably why teams have started going in that direction.”

Chicago’s starter, Corey Crawford, is no shrimp either, at 6-foot-2. In fact, of the four starters to reach the conference finals, Henrik Lundqvist was the shortest at a mere 6-foot-1. (Anaheim’s Frederik Andersen is listed at 6-foot-3.)

So, given the size of goalies today compared to the past, and given the drop in scoring compared to the past, what does Bishop think of the idea of making the nets bigger?

“Let’s make ‘em smaller,” he joked.

But then, more seriously: “I don’t know, I guess they could. It’s just going to lead more goals. A couple of games ago, we won 6-5. What do you want the scores to be? 12-10?”

Well, not all the time.

Related: Does Bishop, the tallest goalie in NHL history, mark ‘wave of the future’ in net?

Santorelli would sign with Canucks: agent

Mike Santorelli

Not even 30 years old, Mike Santorelli has already played for five NHL teams.

In fact, the 29-year-old has bounced around so much that he just finished his second stint with one of those teams, the Nashville Predators.

According to his agent, he’d consider a second stint with another of his former teams, the Vancouver Canucks, when he officially becomes an unrestricted free agent on July 1.

“I’m sure he would — he loved playing for his hometown team,” J.P. Barry told News 1130 Sports.

Santorelli, a Vancouver native, had 10 goals and 18 assists in 49 games for the Canucks in 2013-14. But despite “100 percent” wanting to stay in Vancouver, he signed a one-year, $1.5 million deal with the Maple Leafs this past summer, as the Canucks lacked a roster spot for the versatile center.

The Canucks may have room now, however, as Brad Richardson and Shawn Matthias are both pending UFAs. And while Henrik Sedin, Nick Bonino, and Bo Horvat are all expected to play center next season, 23-year-old Linden Vey failed to prove he can be an effective, everyday NHL center this past season.

That’s not to say the Canucks will definitely have an interest in Santorelli, but if they can get him for a hometown discount, it may be something they consider.

Related: They were chanting Mike Santorelli’s name last night in Vancouver

PHT arrives in Tampa, gets soaked (oh, and today is Media Day)


So Halford and I arrived in Tampa yesterday. Within hours of our arrival, we learned about Florida thunderstorms:


Lesson learned. Take taxis everywhere.

Anyway, today is Media Day. Both teams will be available for interviews in the concourse area of Amalie Arena.

Among the themes that will probably be pursued by the throng of reporters:

— How the Blackhawks would cement their dynasty status with a victory, making it three Stanley Cups in six years. A pretty tough thing to do in the salary-cap era.

— How the Blackhawks, whether they win or lose, will face a number of tough choices this offseason.

— Is Duncan Keith tired yet? No? …….. OK, how about now?

— How the Lightning have achieved so much with such a young roster. According to the NHL’s media website, Tampa Bay’s average age is 25.6 (compared to Chicago at 28.0).

— How the Lightning will have their own tough choices to make over the next few years. Steven Stamkos can become an unrestricted free agent next summer, Victor Hedman the summer after that. Can they sign those two and keep the “Triplets” too?