Good morning, everyone, and happy Friday. This break in Leafs games has been a nice rest, but they do play a back-to-back this weekend. First up is Florida and then Washington.
We don’t expect a lot of news today beyond will Auston Matthews play in tomorrow’s game. I don’t think the NHL will have anything Toronto-related to announce. It’s been four days since DoPS fined Mat Barzal, so maybe they’ll do something today to some other team that played last night.
The Growlers playoffs start tonight:
Ty Voit and the Sarnia Sting got absolutely blasted by the Windsor Spitfires last night.
The Sarnia Sting lost its first game of the OHL playoffs Thursday night against Windsor 3-0. https://t.co/ENtuttFTUV— Sarnia News Today (@sarnianewstoday) April 22, 2022
The NHL announced their Global Series yesterday:
The Predators, Sharks, Avalanche and Blue Jackets will play in the 2022 NHL Global Series.— NHL.com (@NHLdotcom) April 21, 2022
There will be two exhibition games and four regular-season games played in four cities outside of North America next season.https://t.co/qM5OoTWVfa
This interview is worth your time even if women’s hockey is the last thing you care about. I’ve read this site’s reporting, and it is standard bland facts-first stuff, not anything like what I’d say about the PHF.
Interviewed PHF Chairman John Boynton yesterday and got some clarity on a few things (commissioner timeline, league expansion, Digit Murphy).— Alex Azzi (@AlexAzziNBC) April 20, 2022
Still have questions about other stuff (role of BTM partners, minimum player salaries).
It was interesting...https://t.co/nLvjZK5oIs
John Boynton does that fun modern trick where he goes right for the interviewer for picking on his wonderful league that tries so hard, and she doesn’t ever even say the word Russia! This is what ordinary reporters face from the people who want publicity. Think about that the next time you’re super mad they aren’t saying exactly what you like in the way you like it about William Nylander or someone’s contract.
Meanwhile in Russia, Boynton’s other business interest is not having a great time:
Now even @yandex (the Google of Russia) is suspending much of its planned investments in Russia & abroad, due to a struggling economy amid sanctions. The company has also withdrawn its financial guidance for 2022 (which predicted upwards of $6.2 billion in consolidated revenue).— Kevin Rothrock (@KevinRothrock) April 22, 2022
Everyone was talking about this thread yesterday:
a little thread on what betting on hockey is really like as the gambling industry continues to push itself every second of every day onto unsuspecting people who may not know better— dom at the athletic (@domluszczyszyn) April 21, 2022
starting with an annotated chart pic.twitter.com/pLTD0ehfct
And I think it’s worth thinking about that there is no one in hockey that isn’t trying very hard to get in on the gambling money spinner in some way. The NHL cannot easily be extricated from gambling interests even if they ever wanted to be. It’s here to stay, and like a lot of new industries, there will be too much of it, then it will consolidate, and eventually there will be a Coke and Pepsi of sports betting and we’ll feel like it’s part of the scenery.
How long does it take to normalize something new? Attacks on journalists for asking reasonable questions, promotions of gambling disguised as reporting, a pretence of “player safety” in rule enforcement. It’s just how it is.
Okay, to possibly happier things. The Marlies have a fan appreciation night coming up:
From all of us to all of you, Thank YOU for your support all season long— Toronto Marlies (@TorontoMarlies) April 21, 2022
Join us this Sunday, April 24th for a special evening dedicated to YOU, the fans
>> https://t.co/fizEKjXSgf pic.twitter.com/yRUWMB7D5R
And also, they really need to win some games right quick or their playoff hopes will be over. They play Laval tonight, so Go Marlies Go!
Happy Friday, everyone. Hockey is back tomorrow.
You can draw a straight line (or maybe it dekes and dives around lesser players) from Guy Lafleur to Trevor Zegras. He was the flash and sizzle when the NHL needed it most. He was the 70s to many of us who remember him. He was new and exciting and glorious, and he was cool:
1/2 Guy Lafleur has left us at age 70 following a 31-month cancer battle, cutting a hole in Quebec’s heart forever. The most exciting player of his generation, Flower wrestled his challenges to the very end, working to improve and support the lives of fellow cancer patients. … pic.twitter.com/Ze3vkCvemX— Dave Stubbs (@Dave_Stubbs) April 22, 2022