Updated: Chelios on the ice for morning skate

Chris Chelios has taken to the ice for his first practice as an Atlanta Thrasher. He will be the second oldest player to appear in an NHL game, second only to Gordie Howe, when he plays tonight at age 48.

Eight Thrashers were not born when Chelios made his NHL debut. They are – Ondrej Pavelec, Zach Bogosian, Boris Valabik, Evander Kane, Bryan Little, Niclas Bergfors, Tobias Enstrom and Clarke MacArthur.

With Chelios’ arrival, the Thrashers have changed defensive pairings: Chelios will play with Johnny Oduya (giving the team a left and right shot from the point), Ron Hainsey returns to play with Pavel Kubina and Zach Bogosian and Tobias Enstrom are reunited (in an effort to get more offense).

Chelios said he’s more than willing to lead his experience to the team, but acknowledged it will be difficult this late in the season. He said it would be more a one-on-one thing.

He also said he felt he could still play after being with Detroit in 2008. AHL Chicago made the most sense to him, because of his family, to play with the plan on returning to the NHL.

Slava Kozlov is back in the lineup. He is there to help the struggling power-play unit. Eric Boulton is also back in. Evgeny Artyukhin and Marty Reasoner are out as forwards, Mark Popovic on defense.

Johan Hedberg will be back in goal.

One note from Blue Jackets skate. Rich Nash did not participate. He is listed as day-to-day on injury report.

101 comments Add your comment

CrazyDiamond

March 11th, 2010
11:35 am

CrazyDiamond

March 11th, 2010
11:36 am

We are so old.

Don W

March 11th, 2010
11:37 am

My new 5 year plan starts with Chelios.

Irish-Heel

March 11th, 2010
11:39 am

Rumor has it, Reggie Dunlop has signed a minor league deal with the Trashers and will skate in Chicago and could join Atlanta first part of next week.

boone7

March 11th, 2010
11:41 am

Bring back the Hanson Bros…

Sam

March 11th, 2010
11:50 am

I wonder how Chelios feels about missing games withe the Wolves. Sounded like, in previous articles online, that he was tight with that squad and wanted to help them make the playoffs. I mean, its not like he’s got anything to prove on an NHL or international level.

Why all this focus on his age, of all things? How about how many Stanley Cups he’s won?(Three) Or how many times he’s been selected to the All-Star game? (Eleven) Or how many US Olympic teams he’s been selected for? (Four)…or captained (Two)? And how many Olympic medals he’s won? (One-silver)

And he’s been voted the Norris Trophy for best defenseman THREE times: 1988, 1992 and 1995.

C’mon man, PRIORITIES. Talking about Cheli’s age is the easy way out. How ’bout an article with the man’s creds. He’s earned that level of respect.

Russian

March 11th, 2010
11:51 am

Come on. Just Injoy a Game. We have no choice to make PO this year, but you can see Chris Chelios to play a game. Did anybody see him in Game? I saw him once in Detroit. It will interesting show.

Sam

March 11th, 2010
11:52 am

Bob

March 11th, 2010
12:01 pm

I for one am going to enjoy this. Chelios has long been one of my favorite players, even though he played for the dreaded Wings for a time, but he’s a Thrasher now and this is history being made. Sit back and enjoy it.

Irish-Heel

March 11th, 2010
12:06 pm

Great history lesson. Dunlop led the Chiefs to the championship of the Federal League also. They are all completely irrelevant. Go Canes.

[...] Chelios will be in the lineup tonight when the Thrashers take on the Blue Jackets in Columbus, and from what Chris Vivlamore says it sounds like Johan Hedberg will be in goal. No word yet on who the scratches are going to be, but [...]

Chelios = Julio Franco

March 11th, 2010
12:07 pm

Sam,

He was actually captain of Three Olympic squads (98, 02, 06)

Don Waddell

March 11th, 2010
12:21 pm

Look at it this way. We now have an Atlanta Thrashers that will for sure be in the Hall of Fame.

Cribbster

March 11th, 2010
12:28 pm

Dude, I want a photo. I was to see Chelios in uniform.

GaVaHokie

March 11th, 2010
12:34 pm

Viv, any idea who he’s being paired with tonight?

Russian

March 11th, 2010
12:37 pm

**to Hockie**
I hope it will Bogus with Cheli. Bogus needs a Teacher on ice.

J.B.

March 11th, 2010
12:38 pm

Chelios/Oduya – Hainsey/Kubina – Enstrom/Bogosian for tonight…

Not what I would have chosen, but I’m not exactly a hockey expert.

J.B.

March 11th, 2010
12:39 pm

Apparently Reasoner is scratched along with Artyukhin and Popovic tonight. That hit the other night must have rattled his cage. No one has said anything about him not practicing, so I wouldn’t think he could be too bad off if he’s skating.

J.B.

March 11th, 2010
12:40 pm

Garon v Moose in net

J.B.

March 11th, 2010
12:41 pm

Rick Nash is out for CBJ too. So we’ve got that going for us… which is nice.

Savannah Blueland Fan

March 11th, 2010
12:41 pm

At least we now have a reason to watch.

Smoothie

March 11th, 2010
12:59 pm

The best thing about the D-pairings is the fact that you’ve got 3 lefty-righty combos, which makes D to D passing easier. That does help move the puck quicker out of the zone on set plays. However, why would you not let Cheli play with Bogosian so Zach can get some verbal direction and reinforcement? Guess they think this is a best step towards bettering our chances to win and thus vie for the playoffs….hmmmmm.

Jeff97

March 11th, 2010
1:22 pm

I remember seeing Chelios play when he was with Montreal way back in the day. not only was he one of the best 2 way defenseman, he was an absolute pest to play against. I doubt we will see that side of him, but I hope he can just give our D some stability.

The next three games should give us an indication of what this team is really made of and if they really want it.

Smoothie

March 11th, 2010
1:23 pm

C-Viv – any word on the line combos?

Cribbster

March 11th, 2010
2:00 pm

Take a damn photo!

thebighairybeast

March 11th, 2010
2:04 pm

“My new 5 year plan starts with Chelios.”

This cracked me up!

Bob

March 11th, 2010
2:17 pm

“Chelios/Oduya – Hainsey/Kubina – Enstrom/Bogosian for tonight”

Are these truly the pairs? If yes, I hope that means they’ve demoted Enstrom and Bogosian to third pairing, they both have been stinking

Don Waddell

March 11th, 2010
2:22 pm

POST PICS OF CHELIOS!!

J.B.

March 11th, 2010
2:27 pm

Those are the pairs per dan kamal’s twitter feed.

woody

March 11th, 2010
2:35 pm

Not exicited. Thank God I have center ice to watch other games.

Don Waddell

March 11th, 2010
2:36 pm

Inglewood Jack MFer

http://www.youtube.com/watch#!v=ek9m9n8uiw0

kracker

March 11th, 2010
2:47 pm

I expect Bogo will get schooled by Chelios on the bench, between periods and in film sessions.

Chris Vivlamore

March 11th, 2010
3:10 pm

J.B. Dude, those are the D pairings from MY twitter feed and this updated blog.

J.B.

March 11th, 2010
3:18 pm

Whoops! Sorry Chris. Scrolling throught he twitter feeds too quick on the cell phone. My apologies!

J.B.

March 11th, 2010
3:21 pm

i don’t think you’d listed the pairings in the initial blog unless i missed it… was that part of the update? I was going soley by twitter.

StateBird

March 11th, 2010
3:22 pm

Not pairing Chelios with Bogo defeats half the purpose of him being here.

Lee

March 11th, 2010
3:24 pm

Viv – Did you see him at all talking with Bogo?

Bob

March 11th, 2010
3:38 pm

I actually think he can help Bogo more from observing him from the bench and then talking to him in practice, in between periods, or when they’re sitting next to each other on the bench while the 3rd pairing is out there

StateBird

March 11th, 2010
3:43 pm

I hope you’re right Bob. However I based my opinion on his work at Chicago (Wolves), which was done on-ice together with Kulda, which appears to have been very successful. Therefore I would have hoped to see the same tactics employed here with Bogo.

Midfield

March 11th, 2010
3:47 pm

The bench small talk is the key. It could go like this:

Chelios: You don’t know what you’re doing kid, do ya?
Bogosian: You’re just so old, man.
Chelios: Shut up.
Bogosian: Bite me.

SportSouth should set up a mike in there. This would be more entertaining than watching the rink, I think.

Sam

March 11th, 2010
3:50 pm

It’ll be great to see Kozlov playing again. He’s a link to a blogger in Buffalo re: Slava, dated March 8th. The guy’s still keeping up with Kozlov. Its a great read…especially if you don’t know about Slava’s early days in life and in hockey, both in Russia and Detroit.

http://www.diebytheblade.com/2010/3/8/1362824/vyacheslav-kozlovs-incredible-path

An excerpt:
“For a winger who is under the six-foot mark in height, he had to have the hockey IQ, playmaking efficacy and a misleading shot to bring himself to success.

The aging veteran has been in a position he’s not very accustomed to in the past month which is on the outside looking in as a healthy scratch. Atlanta head coach John Anderson has opted to keep Kozlov out of action for 12 of 14 matches. Coming up is an analysis of Slava’s brilliant career and how much he has fought through in his life…

With a pair of Stanley Cup victories, Kozlov did his part in the postseason collecting 79 points in 114 career playoff games. Two records he still holds with Detroit are his 12 postseason game-winning goals and two overtime winners in the Stanley Cup finals…

Scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent next season, a change of scenery could renew the value of someone who just last year, recorded 76 points. Regardless of what happens, something tells me that Vyacheslav Kozlov isn’t too worried and will get through it just fine.”

LOL…gotta love it. And I totally agree.

Hollywould

March 11th, 2010
3:56 pm

Just read this one Chelios is so old that the zamboni in his high school rink was steam powered.

Ferraro's Bobble Head Doll

March 11th, 2010
4:00 pm

Panoka Flash

March 11th, 2010
4:27 pm

In addition to 3 Stanley Cups, he also won a NCAA Championship at Wisconsin in 1983. I remember it like it was 27 years ago….

Hollywould

March 11th, 2010
4:32 pm

Panoka/try this one Chelios is so old he got Avery’s sloppy firsts.

[...] johan hedberg (4:30 [...]

Awkward Sentence

March 11th, 2010
5:00 pm

Did anyone else read that sentence about Chelios and Howe and take a second and third look at it? The age information withstanding, did you think it was saying both Chelios AND Howe would play for the Thrashers tonight?

Sure, the Thrashers want guys in the locker room they can depend on, but are they that desperate that they would sign players who actually are wearing Depends?

Just sayin’ . . .

Old Time Hockey

March 11th, 2010
5:16 pm

I saw Howe play at the end of his career and he was still a nasty cuss. Pretty sure I know what he would say about the hit to the head whiners…Keep your head up dummy and you won’t get it handed to you. Good luck Chris!

Chris Vivlamore

March 11th, 2010
6:21 pm

Lee: Perhaps not coincidentally, Chelios’ locker stall is right next to Bogosian here. Not sure what the configuration will be in Atlanta or Duluth.

HockeyChump

March 11th, 2010
7:23 pm

Chris Chelios deserves all the respect in the world. 48 and still going strong! I wish him nothing but success.

A lot of people are having fun with his “veteran” status, if you will, and there’s an online joke going on that starts out “Chris Chelios is so old . . . ” and then you kind of take it from there. You can read some of the better ones here:

http://hockeychump.blogspot.com/2010/03/oh-yeah-well-chris-chelios-is-so-old.html

Good for a chuckle :-)