Tag Archives: Scotty Bowman

More news on Blackhawks scouting, Hockey Analytics and off season front office changes and info: Major Name Gone

By Chris Block

We have further information on Chicago Blackhawks front office and hockey operations shakeups from the off season before we advance into the heart of the matter now that training camps are active.

Michel Dumas, the last remaining relic generally associated with the Bill Wirtz / Bob Pulford era of Blackhawks hockey, has moved on.

Dumas, 65, briefly served as Tony Esposito’s backup on the Hawks during the mid-70’s. Dumas suffered a career-ending right eye injury during a game against Colorado at Chicago Stadium on December 26, 1976. With his playing career over, he was given a job by Bill Wirtz as an amateur scout the very next season.

Dumas tenure on the Blackhawks scouting staff spanned the next 37 years. This lead to a running joke in circles for many years that the Blackhawks top scout was ‘legally blind.’

In 1992, Dumas would be promoted to Chief Amateur Scout. He held that position until Bruce Franklin, who has been on the Hawks scouting staff now for over 20 years, took over from Dumas in 2010. Read more »

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A look at the non-drafted Free Agent Invitees at this week’s Blackhawks prospect camp

By Chris Block

On Monday, the Chicago Blackhawks will open their annual summer prospect camp over at Johnny’s Ice House West on Madison Street west of the United Center.

Blackhawks draft picks such as Mark McNeill, Phillip Danault, Stephen Johns, Mac Carruth, Dillon Fournier and Carl Dahlstrom among others will draw most of the attention.  However, filling out the practice groups and intra-squad scrimmages are a host of undrafted free agents from across the globe.

With 2012 first round pick Teuvo Teravainen skipping this year’s camp and 2013 first-rounder Ryan Hartman missing out while on the mend from a recent shoulder surgery, more opportunity for other less recognizable names and faces to leave an impression on Blackhawks management now exists.

In the past some of these camp invitees have gone on to earn contracts with the Blackhawks, Rockford IceHogs or other organizations in the NHL and AHL.  This year’s crop is likely to be no different.

Today we’ll be profiling some of the more interesting names attending this year’s prospect camp under invitation.

JACKSON WHISTLE, 18 – Goaltender – Kelowna Rockets (WHL)

Perhaps the most intriguing name on the list of free agent invitees at this summer’s prospect camp is Kelowna Rockets goaltender Jackson Whistle. Read more »

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5 unanswered goals erase Hogs slow start in Charlotte

By Chris Block

Rockford continued its recent road winning ways with a 5-2 come from behind win before a crowd of 6,549 in Charlotte on Saturday night.  The IceHogs handed the Charlotte Checkers, the second-place team in the Western Conference, their 6th loss of the season though it was Charlotte’s 4th in 7 games in its home rink.

With the team’s hottest goal scorer, Andrew Shaw, out of the lineup serving a one game, and most recent, suspension Rockford looked to its big guns to pull them out of another big whole the team dug itself early on Saturday night.

The IceHogs got unanswered goals from Brandon Saad, Ben Smith, Jeremy Morin and two from captain Martin St. Pierre.  The captain, recognized as one of the slickest set-up men in the AHL, also fell an assist shy of registering the Gordie Howe Hat Trick on Saturday.

Rockford has now strung four consecutive road wins together after starting the season 1-4-0-1 on opposing ice surfaces.

And, for the first time this season, the IceHogs sit two games above the .500 mark at 11-9-0-1 with their win in Charlotte. Read more »

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PuckChatter Radio: 75-minute interview with former Chicago Blackhawk Steve Ludzik

By Chris Block

We were so pleased tonight to be joined once again on PuckChatter~Radio by former Chicago Blackhawk and National Hockey League coach Steve Ludzik.

In this candid 75-minute interview, Ludzik discusses his recent announcement that he’s been battling Parkinson’s disease for the past twelve years.  Ludzy talks about the concussions and punishment he incurred during his playing career and why he believes it contributed to his illness.  He also shares his thoughts on today’s game and his advice for players such as Sidney Crosby.

Over the course of our discussion Ludzik shared his insight, thoughts and little known behind the scenes stories on many of the various players and personalities from the 1980’s Blackhawks including Bob Pulford, Orval Tessier, Steve Larmer, Al Secord, Denis Savard, Tom Lysiak, Rich Preston, Darryl Sutter, Curt Fraser, Terry Ruskowski and many more.

Ludzik also recounts the story behind a trip he and Steve Larmer made a year ago to visit their first pro coach, Orval Tessier.  [See the video at the bottom of this post]

Ludzy tells us why Steve Larmer should be in the Hockey Hall of Fame, and how, had it not been for Tessier, Larmer may never have been a Blackhawk.

This is truly a great interview that’s worth checking out.

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*You can buy Ludzik’s book “Been There, Done That” at Ludzy.com

*Check out the new social networking site we discussed on the show of which Ludzik is a part of at – OldTeammates.com


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Steve Larmer and Steve Ludzik visit Orval Tessier at his home in Cornwall, Ontario [Video after the jump] Read more »

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Audio: HockeeNight PuckCast talking NHL Draft and the Blackhawks off season

By Chris Block

On Sunday night I joined CT and Forklift of HockeeNight.com for their annual NHL Draft preview show.

You can listen to the show here by clicking the play button below.

For those who prefer… I’ve uploaded an MP3 of the show you can download here.

Topics included on the show…

– Which position and who the Blackhawks may be looking to draft at #18
– A look back at the 2012 Draft and how well the Hawks did
– Joel Quenneville’s coaching future
– Prospects of trading some core, and non-core veterans
– Justifying the Johnny Oduya re-signing
– Phillip Danault
– Mark McNeill
– Please Stan, no more Bryan Bickell
– Looking ahead at familiar names coming out in ’13 & ’14 Drafts
– Ridiculous Blackhawks free agency speculation
– Trading Patrick Kane
– Barry Smith
– Adam Clendening and Shawn Lalonde
– Moving the Coyotes from Glendale back to Phoenix
– NHL expansion
– All this an much, much  more in this 2-hour PuckCast extravaganza

And a reminder, the HockeeNight boys will be hosting an outing this Friday night, June 15th at Galway Bay at 500 W. Diversey Parkway in Chicago.  The event is sponsored by Jeppson’s Malort.  Arrive early for an hour of open bar.  I’ll be there as well.  Check HockeeNight.com this week for more details.

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PuckChatter~Radio, e.109, Email bag edition

The Thursday June 7th edition of PuckChatter~Radio

Chris Block answers (in come cases; or tries to) listener questions on topics ranging from Joel Quenneville’s dysfunctional coaching staff, the Bowmans, Adam Clendening, Derek Boogaard, the NHL Finals, update on Block’s door woman, first date horror story, the Chicago Blues Festival, express lanes, the upcoming draft and to his ascension to the role of relationship and romance adviser.

Click the player below to listen here in your browser….

Or Right-Click here to download episode 109 in MP3 format

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Chris Block will be the guest this Sunday night on Hockeenight.com‘s PuckCast previewing the NHL draft.

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PuckChatter~Radio e.103 w/ Al Cimaglia of XM Radio and MyFoxChicago.com

By Chris Block

Tonight on PuckChatter~Radio we were joined by Al Cimaglia, Blackhawks writer at MyFoxChicago.com and also the Chicago correspondent at XM Radio Home Ice.

Al joined me for the first 50 minutes to give us his take on the 5-game suspension league disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan handed down to Duncan Keith last week for his flying elbow smash on Canucks’ star Daniel Sedin, whether it was fair and Al’s ideas to improve the suspension process in the future.

We take a look at that inept Blackhawks’ power play, standing in front of the net, whose to blame and the roll-down effect problems with that special teams creates.  We also discuss Corey Crawford’s recent performances, good and bad and Joel Quenneville’s handling of the goaltending position.

All this and much more on this edition of Puck Chatter. Same show, new name.

Thanks as always for listening.

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Training camp begins now, in Switzerland, for Hjalmarsson, Scott and five other Blackhawks


Training camp begins almost a month early this week, and overseas, for a handful of Chicago Blackhawks players.

The Blackhawks have sent seven of their own over to Switzerland this week to participate in the final preseason preparations for Swiss NLA club HC Lugano’s upcoming season.

Niklas Hjalmarsson
Viktor Stalberg
John Scott
Marcus Kruger
Dylan Olsen
Jeremy Morin
Jimmy Hayes

The players will spend a week in Switzerland training with Lugano.

How did this all come about? Read more »

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Bergevin, Maciver promoted; Scotty stays put; notes on Torchetti, Madden and Larmer at 50

Marc Bergevin was promoted today to Assistant General Manager in the role vacated by Kevin Cheveldayoff when he left to take the GM job in Winnipeg.

Bergevin is well-liked by virtually everyone.  He served as the team’s director of player personnel for two years, a position he moved into the day after Dale Tallon was “re-assigned.”  This will be Bergevin’s seventh year with the team.  After Denis Savard was removed from the coaching position and Joel Quenneville was hired, Bergevin was made a third assistant coach.  Prior to that he was pro scout.

“As an organization we’re fortunate to have the depth of talent available that allows us to promote from within,” Stan Bowman said of Bergevin’s promotion in a Wednesday press release.

Bergevin, who turns 46 in August, was drafted by the Hawks in 1983 (59th overall) and spent his first four full seasons with the Hawks before being sent to the New York Islanders with Gary Nylund in exchange for center Bob Bassen and defenseman Steve Konroyd on November 25, 1988.  In his 20-year playing career, Bergevin spent a year on the Island before bouncing from Hartford, Tampa Bay (2x), Detroit, St. Louis (2x), Pittsburgh (2x) and finally Vancouver.

Bergevin won’t have much time to adapt to his new role and will be under fire quickly as the period for qualifying restricted free agents is a week away and then free agency a week after that.

Just as big of news coming out Wednesday is the announcement that Scotty Bowman will be staying on as Senior Advisor.  His three-year contract was coming due and has been extended.  It was not made clear for how long.

With Bergevin moving up, Norm Maciver was promoted into the role as Director of Player Personnel.  Maciver was previously Director of player development.  MacIver had a big influence on the acquisition of Nick Leddy.

The only other change involves Kyle Davidson, who was brought on as video coach this past season, replacing Brad Aldrich.  Davidson will now serve in a new role as Hockey Administration Coordinator, which is apparently different from Ian Gentile’s role (Hockey Operations Coordinator). Read more »

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Say a Prayer for the Dying

The following piece ran in Sunday‘s Committed Indian, before Game 3.

By Chris Block

The Chicago Blackhawks 2010-11 season has entered the ICU.

Many of us saw this coming.  Yet, it’s a bitter pill to swallow when reality comes knocking.  The Vancouver Canucks come to United Center Sunday night looking to put the fatal wound in the 2010 and defending Stanley Cup champions’ repeat bid.

The Hawks simply cannot skate with Vancouver, the league’s best team.  They’re doing all they can just to keep up.  I’m certain Kane, Sharp or Toews will show up this week and the Hawks will win a game or two, but it’ll be too late.

The Hawks have not come back to win a series after dropping the first two on the road since 1968.  Sixteen series with the exact scenario have gone by since and the Hawks 0 for 16.  The Flyers did it to Boston last year, but this year’s Hawks don’t compare to last year’s Flyers.

Cap constraints, turnover, new faces and questionable maneuverings had the defending Cup champs behind from the start of training camp.

Logic figured the Hawks would be a very good team all season, hit a wall at some point and fall short of its ‘One Goal’.  They were, somewhat and they did – and now the Canucks are here to make certain of the latter.

What we didn’t expect out of 2010-11 was for the team to take steps backwards. Read more »

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