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Splintered Blades 8-27-08

"August was the cruelest month..."

Or so T.S. Eliot would have written if he were a hockey fan. (Of course, if Eliot were a '90s-era fan, "The Wasteland" may have been "The NHL.") August is so slow that you get concoctions like a not-very-funny assignment of various NHLers to respective Summer Olympic events. The lone highlight of that one, I suppose, is naming the Sedin Twins for synchronized diving. (I know, comedy is hard.)

So I'm turning over stones around the Internet for hockey items I missed or meant to mark:

  • I wondered why an Islanders game from 1997 was a "Cats Classic" on the Panthers' site. So I had to laugh when I checked it out and saw the commentary at the opening faceoff -- from the Panthers TV feed, mind you -- was: "Todd Bertuzzi, the goat -- according to Coach Rick Bowness -- on the game-winning goal last night by Randy McKay." Retroactive schadenfreude, baby. Bertuzzi's immature Island act enshrined is one thing; Bowness throwing a player under the bus to a TV announcer is another. I think Bowness meant to call it "direct disobedience," though.
  • If slow hockey August has you yearning for a dose of good-natured Islanders-Rangers trash talk, the Gallof brothers are at it again. I give the nod in this one to B.D., naturally. Of course I'm as reliable as the Russian judge in this competition.
  • We know the Isles have seven D-men under NHL contracts. But what if Jack Hillen shows in training camp what we secretly hope he can? If he makes the big club without an injury to another defenseman (not likely), it's a good sign for our blueline. A solid, month-old interview with Hillen at NY Sports Day.
  • Finally, an interview of MLB pitcher Tom Glavine by ESPN's underrated Davide Amber that was as fun to reread now as it was back in March. Everyone knows the story of Glavine being an NHL draftee. But it's funny to think of him being picked in the fourth round before Brett Hull and Luc Robitaille. Presumably, the perception of his skating skills was better than those two future Hall of Famers, whose draft stocks were hindered by their lack of speed.