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NHL coaches on the firing line
The last 24 hours or so have seen 3 NHL coaches either step down or be fired. New York Rangers bench boss Glen Sather stepped down as coach to concentrate on his GM role, with assistant Tom Renney taking over the reigns. In a bit of a surprise move, the St Louis Blues fired their winningest coach, Joel Quenneville and replaced his with Mike Kitchen. Lastly the struggling Phoenix Coyotes continued to clean-up house by firing Bob Francis and replacing him with assistant Rick Bowness.
Goalies under the microscope
Recent events are making it quite clear that goaltenders are now clearly in the NHL's sights. Not only regarding rule changes that would disallow them to handle the puck, but a lot of talk has focused on goalie equipment. It doesn't talk much to see that what a goalie wore 30, 20, and even 10 years ago was a lot 'less' than today. Pads, blockers, trappers, pads, etc have all grown to a point where goalies are usually wearing XXXL jerseys and seem like behemoths.
Put up your dukes
The NHL All-Star weekend in St Paul, Minnesota looked like it was going to be its usual drab self. The 'young guns' game was quite good, the skills competition was as expected, but the actual game was somewhat low scoring. But what the game may have lacked in excitement was more than made up by the back and forth barbs traded by the NHL and its players association. Gary Bettman and Bob Goodenow were up to their usual antics, as if we needed more labour antics from these two.