The Best of the Nation - 9.24.12

Jonathan Willis
September 24 2012 10:34AM

Nathan MacKinnon is the consensus pick as the best player eligible for the 2013 Draft. Who else is available? What NHL list that nobody wants to be on did Ryan Kesler just make? What kind of livestock did an NHL executive compare NHL players to? Why is Toronto slamming the “best goalie coach on the planet”? When will the NHL lockout end?

All that and more, after the jump.

The consensus top-30 for the 2013 NHL Draft. With no NHL season as of yet, expect to hear a lot about at the guy at the top of this list: Nathan MacKinnon. Particularly since an entire season down the drain would likely mean that any team in the league could end up drafting first overall. Derek Zona explains how such a lottery would work, and recaps the consensus top-30 prospects. [NHL Numbers]

Ryan Kesler is going on a list of NHL divers. My suggested name was Colin Campbell’s List of Little Fake Artists, but whatever (lamer) title the league chooses, Kesler’s going to be one of the guys listed. The really awkward part is that teammate Kevin Bieksa’s a big fan of a diving list. [Canucks Army]

Red Wings’ executive refers to players as “cattle.” Not only does Jimmy Devellano compare the players to livestock, he also talks about the “unwritten rule” not to give restricted free agents massive offer sheets. Naturally, the NHL quickly responded with a fine to the team (reportedly worth $250,000). [Oilers Nation]

Interview with Pat Quinn. When it comes to hockey, Pat Quinn’s seemingly been everywhere and done everything. The well-respected, well-travelled player, coach, executive and owner talks to Patrick Johnston. [Canucks Army]

On Rebuilding: The Calgary Flames. Rex Libris’ epic series on the art of rebuilding an NHL franchise hits Part 10 with this look at the situation in Calgary. While Flames-specific, a lot of the points Libris considers are translatable to other franchises. [Flames Nation]

Maple Leafs G.M. blasts the “best goalie coach on the planet.” In March, Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke was bragging that Francois Allaire the world’s best goalie coach. By September, Burke was tossing the world’s best goalie coach (I wonder if that comes complete with a coffee mug?) under the nearest bus. Why? The answers are here. [Leafs Nation]

Remember when Sweden wasn’t going to take NHL’ers? Well, now they’ve lost a court case, and NHL’ers are starting to sign with Swedish Elite League teams. [Canucks Army]

Deconstructing Cody Franson. We recently added the talents of Gus Katsaros, the professional scouting coordinator with McKeen’s Hockey to the Nation Network. He takes apart Cody Franson’s game in this piece, which features a combination of scouting reports, video review, and advanced statistics. [Leafs Nation]

Zone Entries: Comparing the Flyers and Wild. Eric T. has been doing some ground-breaking work on the importance of how players enter the offensive zone, and now with extra information (oddly enough, on the Minnesota Wild) he expands on what he’s done so far. [NHL Numbers]

When will the lockout end? The NBA went through a lockout last season – can their timeline help us determine when NHL hockey will return? [Leafs Nation]

Interview with Stuart Percy. The Toronto Maple Leafs prospect talks to Cam Charron about his game and the upcoming season. [Leafs Nation]

Winners and losers under the current CBA, part 3. An awesome series concludes here. Our “Graphic Comments” section is known mostly for humour, but here does serious digging into the NHL’s finances and reveals a lot. [NHL Numbers]

The IIHF fires back. It’s been implied that the International Ice Hockey Federation is holding up the transfer of NHL players to European leagues, and it seems the IIHF is sick of such implications. The organization lashes out, calling such reports “entirely incorrect, false and fabricated.” [Oilers Nation]

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#1 RexLibris
September 24 2012, 11:06AM
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My favourite Kesler dive compilation.

http://vansunsportsblogs.com/2012/04/18/the-six-best-ryan-kesler-tumbleweed-gifs/

Who knew?

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#2 T&A4Flames
September 24 2012, 11:52AM
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Perhaps the chances are low, but CGY winning this lottery could REALLY help things get back on track in terms of youth. And all without having to move Iggy.

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#3 ChinookArch
September 24 2012, 12:31PM
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I've been thinking a lot about the 2013 lottery pick. If this season actually gets started (say early in January 2013), then a good slow star from the Flames may put the team far down into the (Oiler) basement. It would be perfect, 3 - 4 months of pain for a great pick in the next draft.

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#4 suba steve
September 24 2012, 12:48PM
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@T&A4Flames

Yes the Mackinnon ticket would be sweet. Not the kind of luck that I, as a Flames fan, am accustomed to though.

One other advantage would be that the Flames 2nd selection (that belongs to Montreal) would then be the 60th overall. Then maybe Rex would get off Feaster's back about letting that 2nd rounder go in the Cammi deal. This has been Feaster's plan all along, Rex. :)

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#5 Kent Wilson
September 24 2012, 12:48PM
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@ChinookArch

The next draft has some real talents in it, although Im looking forward to 2014 when Sam Reinhart is available as well.

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#6 The Keystone Garter
September 24 2012, 01:48PM
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That Russian from the best of 4? The 1st Smith reception looked like gimme (or maybe not with chinstrap-needing replacements), but not the 2nd one. I wasn't expecting any performance and figured for a lower scoring game....and performance is the right word the way the receivers darted around the secondary...some of those 1st quarter TDs should've been FGs. And R.Ray, a pocket passer, not playing injured. You don't have to win. Covering the spread sends a msg to the other team. Be tough to practise at all during MLB season... I wish Timmy's showed the local cable games at their coffee shops like in the commercials.

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#7 Dman09
September 24 2012, 02:41PM
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suba steve wrote:

Yes the Mackinnon ticket would be sweet. Not the kind of luck that I, as a Flames fan, am accustomed to though.

One other advantage would be that the Flames 2nd selection (that belongs to Montreal) would then be the 60th overall. Then maybe Rex would get off Feaster's back about letting that 2nd rounder go in the Cammi deal. This has been Feaster's plan all along, Rex. :)

I'm an Oiler fan my self but I do agree that it would greatly help the Flames. Only problem is they need a lot more than just one good prospect, the shelves are bare and need to be filled. If this draft is a stacked as some are saying it wouldn't surprise me to see both Iggy and Kipper be moved for some good picks. Now that could be a huge jump forward for the team.

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#8 RexLibris
September 24 2012, 02:57PM
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suba steve wrote:

Yes the Mackinnon ticket would be sweet. Not the kind of luck that I, as a Flames fan, am accustomed to though.

One other advantage would be that the Flames 2nd selection (that belongs to Montreal) would then be the 60th overall. Then maybe Rex would get off Feaster's back about letting that 2nd rounder go in the Cammi deal. This has been Feaster's plan all along, Rex. :)

NEVER!

Sorry, what was the question?

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#9 RexLibris
September 24 2012, 02:59PM
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The longer the lockout goes, even if it becomes an entire season, the better the Flames chances, in my opinion, of the team drafting higher. Iginla is a tradionally slow starter and the delay may put the organization into a position where either he or Kiprusoff is moved. Subtract either of those players and give the team another slow start to a season and they could be drafting in the top eight fairly easily.

We'll see.

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#10 T&A4Flames
September 24 2012, 03:36PM
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Dman09 wrote:

I'm an Oiler fan my self but I do agree that it would greatly help the Flames. Only problem is they need a lot more than just one good prospect, the shelves are bare and need to be filled. If this draft is a stacked as some are saying it wouldn't surprise me to see both Iggy and Kipper be moved for some good picks. Now that could be a huge jump forward for the team.

I agree. If the season starts very late and the Flames are out by the deadline, they should move some players and take advantage of a strong draft.

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#11 Hammers
September 24 2012, 11:56PM
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Well Katz has called it with his Seattle move .What a slap in the face to we the people/fans . Maybe it starts with no longer shopping in his Rexall Drug Stores . How will he like it if we hit him in his true business . These owners all over the league have other businesses and that may be the best way ALL team's fans can let them know what we think .

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#12 Price per Head
September 25 2012, 03:15PM
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Thanks for putting into perspective as will our NHL. It is for those who love this sport. season and hopefully beyond if.

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#13 The Keystone Garter
September 26 2012, 05:00PM
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I was ready to give up on the NFL if it was blatant, just like I lost interest in MLB after the Jays-St.Louis fix. But it wasn't a hard push. Blatant pass interference could reviewable just like blatant phantom calls. If a tug on the jersey is found don't review, but if a player is pulled nearly down.... If no NHL season, and the youngsters (no NHL contract yet) should be compensated a bit for older players holding out, it might be wise to have a reversed NHL order every other round, and to give away the #1 picking teams picks to other teams; auction them off maybe. But Scouting Consensus can change. McKinnon might get hurt or have his father as an agent. A couple of little mountains =s a big one.

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