Puck Headlines: NHL All-Star leaders; HBO 24/7 ratings

Puck Daddy

Here are your Puck Headlines: a glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.

• From reader Paul Feiner: "Not sure if there this is a foul or something happened to his jersey during play but one of the Spokes around the B is white... Caught it while watching the fights from the Flyers game."

• HBO's "NHL 24/7" viewership? Down. "You just can't predict television sometimes, and the double-digit losses for the premiere of Season 2 of the critically adored 24/7 Rangers/Flyers: Road to the NHL Winter Classic drew 248,000 viewers on Wednesday night. This was down 26% from episode one, featuring the Penguins and Capitals, which drew 383,000 viewers on December 15th of last year. Just as an example, the Chicago-Minnesota game on VERSUS drew 540,000 viewers on the same night." Remember, kids: DVR numbers and additional viewings. They matter. [Puck The Media]

• Phil Kessel, Daniel Alfredsson and Sidney Crosby lead the NHL All-Star Game vote for forwards; Erik Karlsson and Dion Phaneuf for defensemen; James Reimer for goalies. The League has effectively killed interest in fan voting with the new format. [NHL.com]

• We would agree with Pierre LeBrun: Detroit, Minnesota or Washington could be the next Winter Classic. [ESPN]

• Buffalo columnist Jerry Sullivan would like the Buffalo Sabres to explore a Ryan Miller trade: "Miller is the $6 million face of the franchise, but you wonder if his head is elsewhere, maybe with his wife out in Los Angeles. The Sabres should give serious thought to trading him, before the memory of his 2010 Vezina Trophy and Olympic heroics fade from memory altogether." [Buffalo News]

• Nick Foligno vs. Marcus Foligno is such a great hockey story. Said Nick: "I got to play against my dad last year and now my brother. Hopefully, we'll get to do that for a long time." [Senators]

• What, no Jagr? [Daily News]

• B.D. Gallof on Mike Milbury: "If you notice, during Milbury's rich history of bullying, it has rarely been against someone his own size. Such is the lot of a bully, passive to those more powerful, viciously aggressive and pointed to those they see as weaker." [WFAN]

• Look, we don't want to say the majority of hockey fans in the U.S. are upper middle class Caucasians, but the NHL just cut a deal with Vineyard Vines, "a company best known for its whimsical neckties and smiling pink whale logo, founded in 1998 on Martha's Vineyard." [Business Wire]

• The first of many Year In Hockey story lists. The return of the Winnipeg Jets was more important of the deaths of three players and an entire Russian hockey team. Why yes, this was written by the Canadian Broadcasting Company why do you ask? [CBC]

• Coolness: "Mike Knuble will become the 269th player in NHL history to reach the milestone, and during warmups tonight at Verizon Center, the Capitals will all wear jerseys with the No. 22 on the back. The sweaters will be auctioned off during the contest outside of section 109." [Capitals Insider]

• Six straight starts for Richard Bachman with the Dallas Stars come Wednesday. [Dallas Stars Blog]

• Henrik Lundqvist's Winter Classic mask. Don't adjust your monitors: It's supposed to look weathered: "Henrik is really creative and knows what he likes and he had the idea to make the mask look really old and dusty and very used," David Gunnarsson told NHL.com. "Like a mask that has been laying in the attic for 30 or 40 years." [Hank]

Devils coach Pete DeBoer on Kovalchuk: "I like what he'd doing defensively." Wait, ILYA Kovalchuk?! [Fire & Ice]

• The Puck Stops Here on Montreal Canadiens coaching vs. language: "If Montreal's coaching decisions are made for non-hockey reasons then the wrong decision will likely be made.  When the wrong decisions are made the team is less likely to win.  This is done because Quebec politicians and French language activists are given input into the Montreal coaching decisions.  They are not interested in building a winning hockey team and are preventing it from being accomplished." [TPSH]

• Mario Lemieux begins his comebac … er, "plays in an alumni scrimmage." Surrrre. [Penguins]

• It's Hanukkah night for the Florida Panthers, and … "There's also a rumor some of those popular Panthers yarmalukes may be given out as prizes." [On Frozen Pond]

• An interesting look at the Edmonton Oilers' special teams improvement from year to year. [The Copper and Blue]

• Looking at the standings from a year ago, and comparing them to the standings today. The Devils are awesome! [Backhand Shelf]

• Bob and Ryan Suter go to the White House. [The Tennessean]

• Jay Feaster of the Calgary Flames on the Rene Bourque suspension: "While we respectfully disagree with the League's interpretation of the hit, we nonetheless recognize that Brendan Shanahan has issued his ruling and both the Flames and Rene Bourque will abide by his decision." [Flames]

• Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook looked like he was done after that Bourque hit. Apparently he's Wolverine, and intends to play this evening. [Chicago Tribune]

• Puck Daddy officially endorses T-Bone and the Hockey Doggz, a hockey blog that makes us chuckle. [T-Bone and the Hockey Doggz]

• Finally, here's some fun from the ECHL, as the Ontario Reign and the Alaska Aces get their line brawl one. Sucker punches! Crease wrestling! Old tyme hockee!

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