Reporting in early from Wednesday’s Thrashers practice.
Here are the line combinations on the ice. Do not know if there is any significance yet. I’ll check after practice.
Light blue: Kovalchuk, Little, Antropov
Grey: Kozlov, White, Afinogenov
Orange: Kane, Reasoner, Peverley
Red: Boulton, Slater, Thorburn
Yellow: Armstrong, Gratton
There is nothing new of the Kovalchuk negotiations at this point. I, obviously, have a lot of catching up to do with Don Waddell and John Anderson a bit later. I have a long list of things to ask about, but feel free to give me your thoughts and I’ll add them to my list.
I will check back after lockeroom and interviews.
UPDATE: Lots to report from locker room interviews and session with Waddell and Anderson.
1. Kovy negotiations continue. Waddell remains optimistic. However, don’t expect it to be done by start of season. Both Waddell and Kovy said they don’t – and won’t – consider the contract talks a distraction. Stay tuned.
2.Without actually saying it, Waddell and Anderson strongly indicated that Ondrej Pavelec will start in goal for Saturday’s season opener.
3. Lehtonen is officially on injured reserve. He has started skating again – without equipment – be is still several weeks away from playing. Waddell refused to speculate a timeline on his return.
4. Nathan Oystrick cleared waivers and remains property of the team.
5. Manny Legace was offered a contract to go to Chicago. He elected to try to find a team in here or in Europe. The Thrashers and he will keep the lines of communication open should he change is mind.
6. Anderson said if the Thrashers don’t make the playoffs, the season will be a failure.
7. Stewart Cink dropped by the locker room – and brought the actual Claret Jug with him.
8. Josh Gratton is waiting until 3 p.m. deadline for the roster to be submitted before he informs his family he made the team.
9. Colby Armstrong, recovering from a groin injury (that was the “lower body injury”) practiced Wednesday. It was the first time he skated in nearly two weeks. He reported that he felt great. Ron Hainsey wouldn’t specify his injury. Said he has too many. I’m sure he was messing with me. He practiced.
10. Anderson said the line combinations above are pretty much set. Also (not to go over an even 10 things), captains and assistants will be named at Thursday’s Face Off Event for season ticket holders.