As he was for every official coming through the ranks in my era, Frank Udvari was a mentor and teacher to me. When I was working my way up to the NHL, I never knew when he might be at a game I was doing. His message was both memorable and startling.
Much to the disappointment of his grand plan - Alfie didn't win a cup by signing with the Red Wings in July 2013 for one year. He did record a respectable season, with 18 goals, and 49 points in only 68 games.
Earlier this week, I was sitting at a hockey game in Matyshi, a suburb of Moscow. I was there to watch three young officials work a junior league game. I had just settled in to watch the start of the third period when my phone rang.
There is so much positive press out there for Toronto being a huge market that could support two NHL teams... I suppose they mean financially support two teams, cause the way I see it -- we can't emotionally support the team we have.
It seems the biggest trend this NHL offseason has been the growth of moneypuck strategies. The entire business of hockey has rapidly expanded in the past 20 years, and as business grows, ROI calculations need to be made.
The man who brought a lot of glory to our nation, Aziz-ur-Rehman Khan was amongst the squad of the national hockey team which represented Pakistan for the very first time in the XIVth London Olympiad. I visited the gentleman in the early hours of the morning to know the legend further while he takes a stroll down memory lane.
What is most notable about this announcement though is the focus on her work ethic, skills, and successes as the new hire. Sure, every headline, including this one, focuses on her gender, but her gender is not the reason she was hired.
If you have been a Leafs fan for long, or any Toronto sports team for that matter, you know not to get your hopes up too high. It's an emotional roller coaster, and we all take the ride.
Hockey is a human game. No one wants to fail, and it can be an internal mental struggle to avoid dwelling on a mistake. A missed call can cause an official to lose his poise. He is more focused on what already happened than what's going on now.
I've learned everything about hockey from watching this man in red and black. I'm a goalie because I wanted to be just like Marty. I play in the number 30, have it tattooed on my left (glove-side) wrist, because that's Marty's number.
Steve Yzerman was one of the greats. He also evolved into a player who commanded a lot of respect among fellow players as a team leader. That does not mean, however, that most officials enjoyed dealing with him.
The NHL conditions its officials to fear the game and to avoid criticism. In more recent years, the NHL has tried to make its officials voiceless as well as nameless and faceless. Officials are also banned from being quoted in the media.
NHL's focus on controlling the use fossil-fuels and limiting greenhouse gas emissions is a mainstream wake-up call confirming that climate disruption poses an existential threat to everything we hold dear, including sports and recreation.
When the team at GY&K Marketing/GY&K Antler was tasked to launch Bauer's new hockey stick, the Vapor APX2, they came up with Operation Vapor.
Why is pay equality good in some settings but bad in others?
The truth of the matter was this: I did not go out of my way to "invent" penalties on Eric Lindros -- or any player -- but I wasn't going to give that guy a break on anything borderline that I might have let slide with a player who had gained acceptability with me.