Around this date every offseason, I feel compelled to warn dear readers that a significant amount of misinformation will find its way onto various Internet sites between now and July 1. I am not one of these Newspaper Guys who believes every website and/or blog can be discredited. Many are informative and right more often than they are wrong. An example in Pittsburgh is www.insidepittsburghsports.com, which has grown into a site that now features many of my accredited media colleagues. I’m not going to knock any specific sites, but please know that some run with wild rumors that have all but discredited them with those of us in the hockey media community who make it our job to stay in touch with team personnel and agents. Personally, I’m a fan of the reach websites provide, especially since many can do what I can’t — entertain. They’ve not always loved me at www.thepensblog.com, but I’ve always enjoyed reading their creative spin on the club I cover.
I’d respectfully hope dear readers check this blog and the Trib’s web site for Pens news, as we break it more than we don’t. You could first read about LW Matt Cooke’s new contract at www.triblive.com around 7 a.m. on Tuesday, and if I can find enough sources to run with something I’ll either post breaking news on the site or update the blog, pending the information’s significance. Contrary to what some Penguins fans might think, I’ve never printed a rumor. I’ve been wrong, and when I’ve been wrong I’ve had several people misinforming me — not one, several. Readers should feel comfortable accepting terms I’ve given to my parents regarding Penguins news: When I am confident I know something, so will you.
Something to remember is that I won’t deny every rumor from other sites, but there is a report about D Sergei Gonchar that I can confirm isn’t true as of Wednesday morning. Here is the report: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/410069-sergei-gonchar-traded-to-san-jose
There will be a lot of rumors regarding Gonchar. When I finally hit the sheets early Wednesday morning in Las Vegas, I believed he was closer to re-signing than leaving. That feeling was based off conversations with his camp, and that feeling could change within an hour. That is how this contract reporting works.
My analysis of what the Penguins should do with Gonchar can be found here: http://bit.ly/goncharanalysis
Keeping reading, and thanks for doing so.
With all the news that developed Tuesday, there wasn’t much time for me to properly break down the NHL Awards. Cs Sidney Crosby and Jordan Staal are up for individual honors tonight, and while Staal is not a favorite, Crosby is in that spot. Some NHL Awards odds from bodog.com:
FAVORITES: (Hart) Crosby, 2/3; (Vezina), Ryan Miller, Sabres, 1/5; (Selke) Pavel Datsyuk, Red Wings, 1/2; (Calder) Jimmy Howard, Red Wings, 5/6; (Norris) Drew Doughty, Kings, 1/2; (Adams) Dave Tippett, Coyotes, 1/9.
Staal has 7/4 odds for the Selke, which goes to the top defensive forward.
I’m tempted to predict Crosby will win the Hart based off an informal poll of my fellow PHWA voters. I won’t go that far, but I’m leaning toward expecting him to win a second MVP tonight. It would be deserved. As I’ve written on this blog and said on Pittsburgh radio, I’ve never seen Crosby better than he was last season. He won the Hart in 2007, his only other nominated season.
I’ll have complete NHL Awards coverage in Thursday’s print editions.