Mike Halford

You've heard the expression "let's get busy?" Well, Mike Halford is a blogger who gets "biz-zay!" Consistently and thoroughly.

Interested in hiring Patrick Roy? Go talk to the Avs first


QUEBEC CITY (AP) Patrick Roy is looking forward to his first winter off in memory.

“I never really travelled, other than hockey-wise,” Roy said Thursday at the Centre Videotron. “I’m certainly planning to do some trips. It will be very different but I’m excited about it.”

Roy resigned as coach and vice president of hockey operations of the Colorado Avalanche in July, saying he needed more input in decision-making. He isn’t seeking another job for the moment and, with a year left on his deal with Colorado, anyone interested in hiring him would need to go through the Avalanche.

“I have a year left on my contract with the Avalanche and right now, I just want enjoy myself,” he said. “It’s been a great journey and it’s nice now to take some time off.”

Roy got a big ovation at the packed new arena when he the dropped the puck in the ceremonial faceoff before a World Cup of Hockey pre-tournament game between North America and Europe. The Quebec City native, a Hall of Fame goaltender with Montreal and Colorado, coached and managed the junior Quebec Remparts before taking his first NHL coaching job in Denver.

He said he had no regrets about his time with the Avalanche or how it ended.

“We had different philosophies and sometimes it’s better that way,” he said. “I took my time (deciding to resign) because I was close to my players and I really enjoyed them.”

He was impressed with the turnout at the 18,259-seat Centre Videotron, where fans are hoping to get an NHL team back after losing the Nordiques in 1995.

“It’s pretty impressive,” he said. “They did a really good job. We’ll see in time if it’s going to happen. It would be a great market for the NHL, but there’ll be 31 teams next year and they’re all good markets.”

Another ‘Hawk banged up during World Cup exhibitions — this time, it’s Kruger


Chicago Blackhawks fans were gritting their teeth yesterday upon learning that Marian Hossa needed x-rays after playing in Team Europe’s World Cup exhibition loss to Team North America.

Today, they’re gritting ’em some more.

Versatile penalty killer Marcus Kruger, who signed a three-year, $9.25 million extension in March, suffered an upper-body injury during Sweden’s OT loss to Finland:

Kruger plays an important role in Chicago, one that could increase this season given Andrew Shaw was shipped off to Montreal.

And the good news for the ‘Hawks is that Kruger’s being held out as a “precaution,” suggesting the ailment isn’t severe. But that likely won’t settle down the angst over mounting injuries, which has been a prevalent storyline throughout the WC exhibition campaign.

Hossa, as mentioned, got banged up in Europe’s first game. Same went for the Czech Republic’s Vladimir Sobotka, who suffered an upper-body injury in a 4-3 loss to Russia.

Journeyman Fraser signs in Swedish League


Matt Fraser, perhaps best remembered as one of the parts of the Tyler Seguin-to-Dallas trade, has taken his game overseas to sign with Rogle of the Swedish Hockey League.

Fraser, 26, broke in with Dallas in 2011-12 before getting shipped to Boston, where he scored five goals in 38 games over a two-year stretch.

That stint also included the biggest highlight of his NHL career, scoring a playoff OT winner against Montreal:

The B’s waived Fraser during the ’14-15 campaign, and he was claimed by Edmonton. He then proceeded to score five goals and nine points in 36 games for the Oilers, but wasn’t given a qualifying offer and later signed with the Jets in free agency.

Fraser never played for Winnipeg, though. He spent all of his time with AHL Manitoba before getting flipped to Chicago in the Andrew Ladd deadline blockbuster.

Fraser then closed out last year with AHL Rockford.

Montreal prospect Reway hospitalized with virus, will miss camp

On Thursday, Habs GM Marc Bergevin announced that Martin Reway — the club’s fourth round pick at the 2013 draft — would miss this month’s training camp due to a virus.


Reway, 21, is currently hospitalized in Slovakia where he is undergoing treatment for a virus.

The Canadiens’ head physician, Dr. David Mulder, is closely monitoring Martin Reway’s health status, in collaboration with the medical team in Slovakia.

There were no details on what virus Reway is currently dealing with.

A former offensive star with QMJHL Gatineau, Reway’s spent the last two years playing professionally in Europe, split between Sparta Praha of the Czech League and Swiss club Fribourg-Gotteron.

Reway was also a driving force for Slovakia’s surprise bronze medal win at the 2015 World Juniors, finishing with nine points in seven games.

‘It’s the perfect fit’ — Preds officially name Fisher captain


Nashville did the expected on Thursday, naming veteran forward Mike Fisher the seventh team captain in franchise history.

“It is the right time for Mike to be the captain in our history,” GM David Poile said, per the Preds website. “In my mind, he could’ve easily been the captain many times in his career, but this is his time; it’s the perfect fit.”

Fisher, 36, certainly seems like the ideal pick. He’s one of Nashville’s longest tenured players, having been with the club for the last six seasons, and served as an alternate with both the Preds and Senators.

He’s well-established in the community, married to country music star Carrie Underwood, and has earned the respect of both his peers and his head coach, Peter Laviolette, who called Fisher “probably one of the best pros I’ve ever seen.”

Fisher takes over the captaincy from Shea Weber, who was shipped to Montreal in this summer’s blockbuster trade that saw P.K. Subban join the Preds.

Roman Josi and James Neal — who, along with Fisher, all served as alternates last season — are expected to retain their A’s, though the Preds didn’t confirm that in today’s release.

Updated: Worth noting that, per the Tennessean, Poile said he doesn’t view Fisher’s anointment as a “one-year captaincy.” That declaration is key with regards to the Subban acquisition. Destined to be a star in Nashville and a potential face of the franchise — for a long time, too, armed with a contract through 2022 — Subban was thought, by some, to be a future Preds captain.