Dan Kamal Gives Voice To Thrasherville, Pt. I

“He shoots…SCOR-R-R-R-R-RES”!!!!! “Ilya Kovalchuk goes upstairs where momma stashes the cash… ‘cuz it’s safer than a bank these days”!

The voice that comes booming from the speakers, treating residents of Thrasherville to those type of calls for the past eight seasons, is none other than that of Dan Kamal…delivering the games into our homes and vehicles from his WCNN AM-680 “The Fan” broadcast nest high atop Philips Arena.

There are many fine radio guys in the NHL these days, but I regard Kamal as one of the best. He brings the excitement and thrill of Atlanta Thrashers hockey to listeners in a way only he can and we are fortunate to have the Grand Kamalian giving voice to the team. His official title is Senior Director of Radio Operations and he oversees the programming, production and distribution of Thrashers broadcasts for the team’s network.

Kamal grew up in Lawrence, Massachusetts where he learned the love of hockey by playing the sport outside on the frozen ponds. “Growing up in New England”, Dan told me, “It’s that old story of not having enough money to buy the equipment but wanting to play hockey…and we’d skate on the ponds and wrap whatever we could find around our legs to keep from killing ourselves [by being] hit by sticks and pucks”.

“You appreciated the game by playing the game”.

Kamal attended U-Mass/Amherst where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in communications studies and he holds a Masters degree in communications from Boston University. Although he had aspirations of becoming a writer, he soon found another interest.

“When I got to college I had a chance to work with the college radio station…WMUA…and I had this thick Boston accent and for whatever reason, even though the school was only 80-something miles from my hometown, they had a pretty neutral accent. So the program director said, ‘I’ll let you on the air when you lose your accent’”.

So at the tender young age of 18 he started trying to take the edge off of his New England style of pronunciation. As he became successful at it, they let him on the air and he began working hockey and baseball games for the school…and he also began to generate the love for radio.

Then it was off to the corporate world for Kamal. “When I look back on it, [corporate life] probably had more influence than I would readily admit”.

The company he went to work for as director of corporate communications was called Herco…a sister company of Hershey Foods… and they owned the Hershey Bears. “They knew my radio background in hockey”, he recalled, “And so I became the third guy in the broadcast booth… for home games only because I had, obviously, major corporate responsibilities”.

“Well, the very next year, our play-by-play guy graduated to the NHL…and this happened very close to the season and so my boss asked me if I’d fill in for a few games”.

With the help of a “wonderful” office assistant who helped him manage the office load, Kamal was able to handle both the work at the corporate level and in the broadcast booth. But that kind of schedule couldn’t go on forever.

“So the next season, (1983), much to the dismay of the company and to my wallet, I asked the general manager if he thought enough of the job I did for his team and I could do the job full time”.

He was indeed given the job…at a 70% pay cut…and started his career in hockey play-by-play.

After 12 years in Hershey…11 as the full-time broadcaster…he came to Atlanta in 1994 where he worked for two years in radio and television for the Atlanta Knights. He then went to work for Turner Sports, CNNSi. During that time he was also getting involved with some projects for the new NHL franchise that had been awarded to the city of Atlanta…building the radio department and consulting the organization rearding the sort of equipment that was needed to facilitate the broadcasting aspect of the franchise.

“Essentially I had a bit of a hand in helping structure and create the radio department and when we were ready to get up and rolling the team brought me over in August of ‘99″.

So he’s been with this team since it’s very beginning. He’s seen it being built…put together…start…improve…and un-improve. He’s witness it all first-hand.

And along the way he’s work with a couple of very fine booth partners, Jeff Odgers and Billy Jaffe. “Working with Odgie was like a party every time we turned on the mic. I mean, a guy like that that has so much knowledge of the game, passion for the game, sense of humor…just a charismatic guy to be around…and the same is true with Billy Jaffe. I mean, I was very, very blessed to have two guys I consider to be among the very best”.

“They were very different broadcaster. Odgie was there in the trenches for twelve years in the NHL playing one of the toughest roles the game has ever seen…and playing it very, very well. Jaffe made more of a cerebral breakdown of the game but could do it in a way that the average listener, the casual listener, could understand it”.

“Just being in the NHL booth is exciting enough in and of itself, but to have worked with guys who could bring that much to the table made it even that much more fun”.

As for specific Thrashers moments that stick out in his mind…”Certainly I remember opening night and how electric the atmosphere was…[also] the first victory”. He continued on,  ”Then I remember that first overtime win in the franchises history…Ray Ferraro scored it. It was almost like a moment of passage, like we moved from expansion hockey to part of the NHL”.

He went on to discuss how the team grew while making their way through their initial seasons, “Then there was the way the team got really good really fast in that second season… and come November people are looking around saying, ‘Whoa, what’s going on here’. Ya know, they had that line of Audette, Brunette and Ferraro which was as good as any line there was”.

“But that team lacked depth and injuries caught up to it”.

The smile that beams from his face while remeniscing about such times reveals just how passionate he is about the team and how much pleasure he gets from being a part of it.

He also went on to cite certain eras and time frames…like when Heatley and Kovalchuk were drafted and started playing with each other as well as the three or four seasons in the middle of this decade as the team continued to show improvement.

“Then there was that run the team made when they went through all those goaltenders in ‘05-’06 but still managed to make a playoff run in the second half of the season. It was probably the best team we ever had, even better than the one that made the playoffs…it just needed goaltending. They went through, what, five goaltenders in the first ten games and even at that, what a second half run and still had a chance to make the playoffs up until that next to the last game of the year…then of course there was the next year with the run to a playoff spot”.

He described the playoff games as “electric”, like nothing he’s ever witnessed prior. “When Kovalchuk scored that goal in game two to tie it…between then and when they dropped the puck, the area was the loudest I’d ever heard”.

Like I said…he’s been here for it all.

In part two of my interview with Dan Kamal, we discuss his son Chris and his play at prospect camp as well as where this Thrashers team is right now and just where they might be heading.

104 comments Add your comment

R. Stroz

July 19th, 2009
8:44 am

World Be Free

July 19th, 2009
10:03 am

Having heard many of the other PBP announcers in the league, I’d say Kamal does a pretty good job.

Glovesave29

July 19th, 2009
10:19 am

I guess i’ll be the dissenting voice today. Atlanta play-by-play went from GREAT (Jiggs McDonald) to good (Ken Double) to merely serviceable (Dan Kamal). I am purposefully forgetting the horrible season that was Scott Ferrell – he was unlistenable.

Billy Jaffe is missed. I think he does a fantastic job as the color guy. I enjoyed him here, and still do on the college game of the week on ESPNU.

World Be Free

July 19th, 2009
10:46 am

Tough to judge anyone up against Jiggs.

five_hole

July 19th, 2009
11:29 am

I appreciate the job Dan does. I think he’s more than “serviceable”. He may hot be hall-of-fame caliber, but he keeps up with the action and creates interest in the game.

Personally, I really enjoy Darren Elliot as a color guy. He’s articulate and innovative.

Sage of Bluesland

July 19th, 2009
11:48 am

Kamal needs to stop with the ridiculously annoying voice/trill inflections on the players’ names…Agree with the above, Ferrell was beyond terrible. Kamal is simply average, despite the sheep-swooning which will take place here…

If he’d keep-it-simple and straightforward, I might start listening again.

Jameson

July 19th, 2009
12:35 pm

Sara- Re: Last blog: I think Bob was referring to the Overcoming Hangovers part.

Ice Dog

July 19th, 2009
2:15 pm

World Be Free, I had to reply to you and Brendan on that last blog but am not going to repost it here. Enjoyed the posts even though I disagreed.

ben

July 19th, 2009
3:52 pm

Bruuuuuuuuunetttttttttttttttt, Audet, Ferraroooooooooooh!

Jeeze i still remember that call every time they scored back when i was living in Tallahassee. His voice reminded me of home and family in the lonliest year of my life. Thankyou Dan, please keep it up.

World Be Free

July 19th, 2009
4:30 pm

Ice Dog-I appreciate the work you put into your post. You bring up some very good points.

My side is that I have been a Sabres fan since 1970, first game (2-1 Sabres win over Pittsburgh if I remember right) and every day since then. It’s tough to see the long list of players who have left town, because the Sabres do not negotiate with players during the season. You can also go to BuffaloNews.com under the Sabres’ blog and see what the locals think of Buffalo’s willingness to spend

Looking forward to a great Thrashers season, an improvement over last year. Keep up the good work.

Tim

July 19th, 2009
4:35 pm

Having XM radio, least season, my friend who is a Canadiens fan and not a Thrashers fan (we live in BC Vancouver), made a comment about how the Thrashers guy (Kamal) can make a simple play amazing and made the game listenable. I have to agree with him. Kamal make the game exciting to listen to compare a lot of other guys, including Pittsburgh and Montreal.

Hockey Biltong

July 19th, 2009
4:48 pm

Kamal takes some getting used to. But he is unique in his his playcalling and once used to him , it can be hard to listen to anyone else. Going out of town and hearing the others or getting the away feeds, there are some good ones, however I’ll stick with Kamal. He stands out.

Ice Dog

July 19th, 2009
5:53 pm

World Be Free, thanks. I’ll just reply to your latest post. First off, I never put an ounce of credibility into what fans complain about. In every city there are always fans who cry for the sake of crying and you can see it here as well. How many of those fans from Buffalonews.com look at the points I made? And even if you look at the longer list that you refer to, what I said about Campbell, Drury, Briere, McKee also applies to Satan, Zhitnik (do I really have to go there?), Peca, etc. They were all overpaid when the Sabres let them go and history clearly shows Buffalo was smart, not cheap. Most fans don’t look at that. They just look at someone who left (even though at the price tag they got you should be happy they weren’t retained). Aren’t you happy that WE didn’t sign Campbell to that contract?

However, what you can accuse them of is not getting the top tier free agents from other teams. That is where you can accuse them of being cheap. The Sabres should have gone after Bouwmeester this offseason but instead they got Montador. A buddy of mine up there said they needed another Rivet. But they do draft well and they have a guy coming up who can be that Bouwmeester that they don’t need to sign the big free agent. And of course, there are so many NYR/Montreal/Detroits in the league that can go sign the ludicrous contracts. Even Chicago is already getting badmouthed for the Hossa signing.

Thanks for the exchange.

Smoothie

July 19th, 2009
7:27 pm

WBF and Ice Dog,

Speaking of overpaying, what do u think of the rumor that we offered M Malhotra 4 yrs and ttl of $8M? I for one don’t think its true. IMO, the only way we offered MM was if it was a 2 year deal for around $1.5M per yr max.

Unless they thought they could convince Marty to play LW with Manny “manning” (sorry) the pivot. I certainly wouldn’t mind if they brought in a versatile guy like him AT THE RIGHT PRICE.

But $2M is NOT the right price. Not to mention it’s a slap in the face of Reasoner who is coming off a career year. Does a 3 year diff in age really merit that much more money in FA?

Smoothie

July 19th, 2009
8:14 pm

Nice write-up on the Grand Kamalian Bill. Good read thru and thru. Look forward to many more pulse-racing calls from our entertaining and learned PBP man.

Brendan

July 19th, 2009
8:27 pm

Not to get into a huge Sabres discussion here, in this forum, but some of those Buffalo players should have been retained. J.P. Dumont only took $2.1 million from Nashville, (as a UFA,) after Buffalo refused to pay the $2.5 million arbitration award. Perhaps a $2.25 million contract, over a few seasons, could have been offered to Dumont at the 11th hour, to avoid the hurtful feelings of an arbitration hearing? Bygones. Was Mike Grier’s salary breaking the bank? Briere, Drury and Campbell were all overpaid in free agency, but shouldn’t one of them been retained? Before you SCREAM, “Heck nooooo!” Were the Sabres back in the playoffs these past two seasons, after letting the future overpriced players go? This is where, sometimes, SOME fans, cite, “I don’t care what it costs. Just get me results. Show me commitment to the project. Get us the players we need to win and be successful.” I think that’s a bit short-sighted, as I think salary does matter, especially to future budgets. But I digress. Drury or Briere had to be retained. And if each player’s agent structured their argument such that each one said, “I won’t re-sign without the other likewise re-signed,” then ask them BOTH to compromise on salary. If their answer is “no,” then the response back is “How do you expect me to keep you BOTH while you’re both extorting me at the same time?” If Drury would have agreed to a PROACTIVE 5 years/$25 million, they could have let Briere go, or used a “re-signed Chrus Drury” as proof of INTENT to continue gunning for a Stanley Cup, and then begged Campbell to come down to $6.0 million, maybe $5.85 million. At least something resembling something reasonable, to work within the framework of the Buffalo market. Who knows what that approach might have brought? It was generally thought that Jay McKee would be the sacrificial salary cap lamb. And that was a good call by Buffalo. Ty Conklin seemed like a decent backup to retain. What would he have cost, with a proactive contract? I don’t know. I do realize he had a better year LATER ON, with Pittsburgh. Buffalo should get going on Stafford, Sekera, Clark MacArthur, etc. Maybe they have? I don’t follow the Sabres. But, in light what’s happened in the current CBA years, I think the Sabres organization needs to send a message that they’re improving on player retention. Otherwise, the lockerroom talk will be … “They won’t re-sign me when I hit UFA status. I’m gonna have to look ELSEWHERE. Look what happened with (supply player name here).” Not only that, a GM who thinks his 1st round draft pick might fall somewhere about pick #24, #25, #26, or even higher, just might get his “special pen” that he uses for RFA poaching. Those are “crapshoot” picks anyways. And coupled with a 3rd round pick, is totally within the realm of “throw away” draft picks. The problem with that is … such a team does NOT have a 1st and 3rd pick to go “rent” a player at the deadline. And therein lies more DISCRETION … when it comes to making the RFA offersheet.

Brendan

July 19th, 2009
8:40 pm

Rawhide, nice blog on Dan Kamal. I like the Kamalian. But yes, he does exaggerate some situations. Put the TV on, turn off the sound, then turn up the radio. A puck controlled by the opposition, behind their own net, that was temporarily stolen, with an intercepted centering pass, never touched by the Thrasher player in front of the net, gets described, by Kamal, like this. “Thrashers SWARMING THE ZONE, stealing puck, and just missed on an opportunity right in the slot!!” Huh?

Kamal makes it sound like a goal almost happened. It does make the radio broadcast of the game sound a whole lot more exciting. Then you phone up a friend, “I don’t have Center Ice, how close was that last scoring chance?” The friend replies, “Scoring chance? What scoring chance?”

But I’d take Dan Kamal any day of the week over Scott Ferrall. Dan Kamal is a decent play-by-play man. I’m glad he’s here. Aggrandizements and all.

Ice Dog

July 19th, 2009
9:08 pm

Smoothie, I respectfully disagree on Malhotra. I’ll answer two basic questions and I think that will let you know where I am coming from.

WHY IS MALHOTRA WORTH MORE THAN REASONER? Both are good 3rd line centers. Both get about ½ point per game. Both have positive +/- numbers. But, Brind’mour is the only guy in the league that is 60+% in faceoffs. And Malhotra is right behind him just below 60%, so he is one of the best in the league there. Reasoner on the other hand is in the low 50’s (which don’t get me wrong, in the NHL is you are over 50% that is good because you win more than you lose). But Malhotra is far more valuable there and for a 3rd line center, that is key. And as you say, he is 3 years younger.

WHY SHOULD WE GET MALHOTRA EVEN AT $2 MILLION/YEAR? We have our top 6 forwards, top 4 defensemen and at least 2 goalies. So where do we improve from here? PENALTY KILL. We were last in the NHL in that. Also, Perrin and Stuart are both gone. So not only did we suck, but 2 of our top 3 PKers are gone (Reasoner’s still here) which means we will suck even more this year shorthanded which can kill our season right there. Malhotra on the other hand is the leading PKer for CBJ who were one of the better units in the league last season. This gives us two solid centers for the PK units to win faceoffs and kill penalties.

I like this signing if it is true. The question is if Reasoner can slide over to LW and does that make sense? And we do have a hole in the lineup right there. I say this is the kind of move that can be a quality, cost effective pickup “Atlanta Spirit style” but if it helps our PK the way I think it can it will be worth much more than $2 million. On a final jab, Malhotra lasted in this league longer than Stefan.

Brendan, nice catch on Dumont, I forgot about him and he was only $2.1 million. But as for all those other guys I just don’t see it. Also, while it may be bad mgt, I just don’t see it as “cheap”. I can however see the “at least get Drury or Briere – one or the other” argument.

World Be Free

July 19th, 2009
9:16 pm

Ice Dog – I like the conversation. Let me close my Sabres take with a few points.

Drury, Brier, Campbell being overpaid by other clubs-correct; most players that are signed within 24 hours of July 1 each year are overpaid, especially as long as the Rangers are in business. Buffalo had the chance to resign each of the guys while they had exclusive rights for months and failed to do so.

Drury and Briere were go-to guys in Buffalo. They adapted to the new rules and came out of the lockout flying. Most of all, they were leaders, co-captains who were allowed to walk on the same day. The leadership in Buffalo was so bad, they traded for Craig Rivet and made him captain within weeks.

Last season, Buffalo came into Atlanta “fighting” for a playoff spot with 2 weeks to go in the season. The Thrashers ran the out of the rink. Dominic Moore was about the only Sabre hitting anyone and now he’s gone. The point per game boys (Pominville and Roy) vanished down the stretch, Vanek played hard with a broken jaw. Buffalo signees Tallender and Hecht, folded; they are both untradeable.

They had to match the Edmonton offer sheet for Vanek, because they had just lost their 2 captains, let them go for nothing. Now they are pulling the same crap with Drew Stafford. No good free agents come to the Sabres, becuase of the perception that they jerk their players around. They pick and chose who they give their money to, in most cases they pick the wrong guy (Miller being the exception).

Buffalo is a 10th place team, probably not getting any better this year even with Tyler Myers. They have missed the playoffs 5 of the last 7 seasons. The building is full most nights in a hockey town.

Sabres fans-you’d be pissed to if you watched your team go from conference finals to out of the playoffs, because management decided to let the heart of your team walk.

World Be Free

July 19th, 2009
9:30 pm

Malhotra-Ok guys, you know what I think about getting veteran help, so on the surface I like the idea. Manny played well in Columbus under Ken Hitchcock’s system. I am not sure how that will translate to our system, but I think it would be a good move brining him in especially at center.

I am not comfortable with paying him more than Marty, but we may have to pay him more to get him to come here. I also don’t like the thought of 4 years, 3 at the very most.

FYI-the loss of Dumont was cheap. Buffalo had the chance (again) to iron out a deal with JP and they tried to low-ball him, so Dumont took the Sabres to arbitration. The Sabres didn’t like the ruling, so they let him walk-again for nothing.

Ice Dog

July 19th, 2009
9:33 pm

World Be Free, I can buy into some of that but here is where I disagree with you overall – last year Buffalo was in 6th place and then Ryan Miller got injured. Lalime couldn’t carry the load, they brought in Tellqvist from Phx who didn’t help either, and that’s why they missed the playoffs by only 1 win (I think they lost the tiebreaker with Fla for 9th). So it’s not as grim as you say.

I know it won’t happen but here’s what I would do as fantasy GM: buyout Lalime (he has 1 year left at $1 million) and bring back Marty Biron (for Marty it’s looking like a backup role or KHL at this point). That way they can say they are fixing the problem of what went wrong last year and the fanbase would get totally energized.

I’ll leave it at that and go start my Manny Malhotra fan club.

Smoothie

July 19th, 2009
9:37 pm

So Ice Dog, you’d pay him an additional $900 K just because he wins 1 more faceoff out of 20 compared to Marty? He may very we be an exceptional PK’er, but I don’t ever get to see him play so I’d have to take someone else’s word on it. If he is as savvy as Marty, gives up the body like Marty and has a knack for setting up and finishing short-handed bids, then perhaps he is just the guy we need to round out our Top 9. I just don’t like the price-tag, but perhaps Marty is guilty of undervaluing himself as he likely could have commanded $1.5 M somewhere else or even over 1 year in ATL. I hope Marty’s gut feeling is correct and the Thrashers really are a team on the rise.

Just a few notes on Manny:

– had a career high 35 pts and a career high +9 last season in 77 g
– has averaged exactly 30 pts per season over the last 4 with the CBJ’s
– has only been a cumulative -1 over that same 4 yr span
– has averaged .311 pts / game over his 634 game career
– earned $1.2 M per season for each of the last 3 seasons

Marty’s same stats for comparison:

– had a career high 36 pts in ‘05-’06 in 77 games split between EDM & BOS (his 14 goals last season with ATL were a career high too)
– has averaged 27.25 pts / game and a cumulative -35 over 4 last 4 yrs
– has averaged .379 pts / game in his 544 game career
– is 3 years older than Manny Malhotra

I know +/- can be a misleading stat, but I suppose Manny’s -1 over the last 4 is much more impressive compared to Marty. But then again, considering the style of play employed by the CBJ’s, I’m a bit surprised his +/- is not better than that. However, just as the argument can be made that Marty hasn’t had the best linemates over the last few years, the same can be said for Manny. And on top of that, Manny has probably had to play some of the toughest mins in the NHL over the last several seasons going head to head with DET, CHI and other western conf teams on a regular basis.

Perhaps Manny really is worth the money?? Marty, can you play LW?

World Be Free

July 19th, 2009
9:42 pm

Has anyone figured out why nobody has signed Dennis Seidenburg? I thought be played well for Carolina down the stretch and in the playoffs last year.

Either he’s priced too high or I am missing something.

Ice Dog

July 19th, 2009
9:44 pm

Smoothie, I think this is all about improving the worst penalty kill in the league. If we don’t have him, who else are we going to get on the PK? Slater? Crabb? Crabb might not even make the team. Besides, we don’t know what Columbus or anyone else is offering him, so perhaps we had to sweeten the pot.

Ice Dog

July 19th, 2009
9:55 pm

Smoothie, one more note about Manny and you only wanting to offer him $1.5 million. His last contract was 3 years at $900k, $1.2m, and $1.5m. So the cap hit was $1.2m (the average of the contract), but his last year was $1.5m. So the negotiations would probably start at $1.5m, right? So if CBJ offers him $1.5m, we can’t offer the same and expect him to leave his current home. We would have to give him $2m to give him the incentive to leave a team that he is probably quite comfortable with now and just went to the playoffs. A touch of speculation there but am I really reaching?

Smoothie

July 19th, 2009
10:16 pm

Ice Dog, fair enough. That would make sense if indeed his final year paid him $1.5 M. Capgeek.com showed the breakdown as 1.2 X 3, but perhaps I was on the wrong page. My connection is real slow here and my patience was running thin thanks to the bandwidth of NHL.com for the Manny vs Marty stats (sounds like a bantam-weight prize fight).

Obviously, Marty felt pretty good about his prospects here in ATL and was inclined to give us a bit of the ol’ hometown discount. And I have a feeling the stability and safety of staying in ATL after the recent birth of their first child really factored into Marty staying put without testing the market.

Marty is a true professional and he probably has no issue at all playing alongside Colby and perhaps Manny as it certainly would make us a better team. Manny is a little bigger at 6′2″, 215 lbs and probably a bit speedier than the 32 y/o Marty, who is still a very good skater. Having those three, although I would prefer Marty up the middle and Manny’s speed on the wings at ES, on the same line would certainly give us quite the 3rd line to send out against other team’s 1st lines.

And with Manny taking face-offs on the PK, with 2nd, 3rd and 4th options of Marty, Pevs and Slater makes us look pretty good on paper when it comes to puck possession on special teams. Since the market has really cooled off, perhaps we can convince Manny to “settle” on ATL. I would prefer Crabb on the 4th line anyway as I personally think he’s better suited for that role and a better option than Thorburn, or at the very least, a good 50/50 platoon option.

Smoothie

July 19th, 2009
10:22 pm

WBF, rumor is that Seidenberg may very well end up back with the Canes. I was a bit surprised that he didn’t capitalize on his playoff performance in free agency, but probably another case of his agent over-valuing his client by a few hundred thousand dollars.

Smitty

July 19th, 2009
10:30 pm

I would like to think there are some similarites in the financial management of the Sabres and the Thrashers. In the past both have not negotiated any contracts during the regular season. Both have been restrained in contract negotiations by small market considerations. Both have had serious ownwership issues.

Whereas ASG has paid little attention to the Thrashers in the past, I believe ASG has committed to the Thrashers more this off-season. The addition of Andropov via free agency was a big step. Whether this works out is a question that will be answered as the season progresses. The trade for Kubina and his contract also is a step in the right direction. I had hoped we could have signed Colby and Kari to longer contracts, but I am thankful they will be here for this coming year. Thinking back several years ago, could we have signed Savard if we negotiated during his last year here? Could we have brought in top notch free agents after our playoff run? Not with the ownership problems we had.

But where ASG has seemed to make improvements with the Thrashers this off-season, the ownership/management of the Sabres has stood pat with the exception of the Montador signing. Larry Quinn and Tom Golisano are taking complete advantage of what some would consider some of the most loyal fans in the NHL. The Sabres sell out most if not all of their games in what most would call a rust-belt region of the country. It breaks my heart every time I return home to the Buffalo Niagara Falls area. As depressed as it is the Sabres still sell and they have missed the playoffs the last two years. Yes Buffalo has drafted well but they let Randy Cunneyworth go and I believe most here in ATL can see what he has done with the young guys we have here. Could they have resigned Drury, Briere, Grier or Campbell if they negotiated during their last years in BUF? Maybe but I believe their management philosophy is why spend the money if they do not have to.

Maybe ASG is finally seeing the light.

Teams are going to lose UFA’s, but the Thrashers and Sabres did not change negotiating tactics when the new CBA (cap) came into effect.

World Be Free

July 19th, 2009
10:40 pm

Thanks Smoothie-

Smitty, I feel you pain.
Let’s hope ASG can keep it going and help us forget some of the missteps we have seen up north. I did like getting Old Vienna on tap at the Aud.

Ice Dog

July 19th, 2009
10:51 pm

World Be Free, for you Gorin’s is going to start having Genny Cream Ale. It’s a new promotion they are running called “a headache in every bottle”.

On a side note, if you or Smitty wants seats from the old Aud there are still some floating around up there.

ranallo10 (in AT)

July 20th, 2009
3:51 am

I’m still not a Kamal fan…his change of pace from about to fall asleep to HOLY CRAP I’M HAVING A HEART ATTACK for every shot or offensive zone pass just gets annoying. The purposefully elongated inflections just makes me want to turn the radio off (Leeeeh Tone in), and the unneeded use of full names and places of birth just gets annoying. When he keeps it simple to last names, keeps up with passes, and doesn’t yell so loud that i have no idea what happened on the goal…then I can bear listening.

I’m sure he’s a great guy, but I’m not a fan.

LAC

July 20th, 2009
4:30 am

Have to agree with Glovesleve, Jiggs was the BEST !

Loved Da Boom on color,makes Darren look like a rookie…

Jiggs right up there, but Dan Kelly (St.L)I feel was the best I’ve heard, The Buffalo announcer Jenerett is THE Worst in the NHL and pierre mcguier simply sucks !

World Be Free

July 20th, 2009
7:47 am

Pretty good Ice Dog, but you have to remember Genny Cream Ale was not only rough on the head, it was rough on the other end as well! Time to turn the page I guess.

LAC-you really think Jeannrett is that bad? I have heard worse, that’s for sure. Dan Kelly(St. Louis) and Danny Gallivan (Montreal) were the best ever.

Sage of Bluesland

July 20th, 2009
7:58 am

“…The purposefully elongated inflections just makes me want to turn the radio off (Leeeeh Tone in)…”

That’s precisely what I’m talking about–I’m glad I’m not the only one who bristles at this amateurish shtick. Utterly amateur and laughably silly.

(Gravity-check time as Ranallo and I agree on something…)

ranallo10 (in AT)

July 20th, 2009
8:19 am

Crazy…we should all stock up on water and canned goods.

Tom

July 20th, 2009
9:24 am

Anyone here this:

The Atlanta Thrashers are hoping to add another body to their roster and the Columbus Dispatch reports they’ve offered former Blue Jackets center Manny Malhotra a four-year deal.

Malhotra, 29, registered 11 goals and 24 assists in 77 games with the Blue Jackets last season.

http://www.thefourthperiod.com/news/atl090719.html

Not another 3rd line center…

Tony C.

July 20th, 2009
9:30 am

he does make the game exciting….maybe not the most timely P-B-P call but if you’re just crawling through the dial looking for something to listen to, Kamal makes you stop and listen.

Sara

July 20th, 2009
9:36 am

I pretty much never tune in to the radio broadcasts so I have no real opinion of Kamal other than he’s been fun to talk to the time or two I’ve come across him at events.

Ice Dog I have to disagree with one of your earlier statements. I think to discount what fans are saying is very short-sighted and omits some of the best critical insight available. You can read through blog comments at other websites or articles in other papers and see quickly that most of the regular contributors on this blog know way more about this franchise than outsiders do – even the “paid professionals.” Sure you have to take some things with a grain of salt and weed through some nonsense, but ultimately I’ve found reading the opinions of fans tends to give me a better perspective and context for stats or MSM articles.

Smoothie

July 20th, 2009
9:48 am

Sara’s right. I attempted to wade through the crap on the Columbus Dispatch blog to see what the fans up there thought about Manny Malhotra. It was laughable how ill-informed or naive most of the people who post on that crap excuse for a blog really are. And they love to slam ATL for being such a lousy hockey town, but the level of knowledge showcased on this blog by the regular (and even guest posters) gang far outstrips what you would find in CLB, FLA, TAM and dare I say CAR?

Odd Man Rush

July 20th, 2009
9:54 am

Nice article on Kamal, and an interesting divergence of opinions. Personally, I find Kamal unique, creative and entertaining. He certainly brings the game to life. One of my favorite Kamalism- describing a heads up break out pass to the neutral zone, “….what a beautiful interruption of the spatial symmetry.” You never know what he will come up with next. Reminds me of Woody Durham calling UNC basketball games. Thanks Bill, looking forward to part 2.

Alan

July 20th, 2009
9:55 am

Tom, I won’t believe it until I see “Thrashers sign Malhotra”.

Spud Webb

July 20th, 2009
9:58 am

I love Kamal, I think he’s great on the dial. Keep up the good job. Not to mention, Dan loves the thrashers and shows more excitment and energy than anyone else I’ve seen in the orginazation. Last but not least, Dan is an A+ as a person.
As for the sabres, I see it as the same situation as the Steelers (minus the championships!). They don’t over pay or negotiate during the season. I don’t miss JP dumont, I don’t miss Briere, I DO miss Drury, but lets face it the Rangers paid WAY TO MUCH. We had the window, two years, UGH, still makes me sick, game 7 in carolina, down our top 4 D and WE STILL had the lead going into the 3rd period. Damn rod brindamour!!!! We will wait another 10 years or so!! Tallender sucks, I’ve never been a fan of his, and he is not tradable. We do have some serious talent, but we need to BRING IT EVERYNIGHT, for some reason we don’t. Love Kaleta, probably my favorite player in the league and would love for the thrashers to pick up an agitator like him. I think we can be a playoff team this year, but wtf do I know!!!!!!!!!

Ice Dog

July 20th, 2009
10:08 am

“Pretty good Ice Dog, but you have to remember Genny Cream Ale was not only rough on the head, it was rough on the other end as well!”

World Be Free, that’s not Genny Cream Ale. You are thinking of the “Stroh’s blows”. Let’s move on.

Sarah, you’re right, I phrased that wrong. I meant to say something more along the lines of what Smoothie is arguing and what you said later. While fans know more of the details, you do have to weed through a lot of garbage. I was thinking only of the garbage.

Tom, read above. If Malhotra adds to the horrid penalty kill units we have than this is a fine addition.

Alan, how do you bold or italicize? I too will believe it when I see it, according to the link it is just an offer, not a signing.

Alan

July 20th, 2009
10:16 am

Ice Dog, look up top where it says “Trixie’s Corner” and click there. All you need to know is on that page.

Scotty

July 20th, 2009
10:19 am

Wait a second! Sage is accusing someone else of having an “amateurish shtick” and saying they are “utterly amateur and laughably silly”.

Sage? Seriously?

harharharharharharharhar!!!

Alan

July 20th, 2009
10:20 am

Spud, so long as the Sabres don’t “bring it” against the Thrashers, I (and most everyone else here) will be very happy indeed! ;)

GaVaHokie

July 20th, 2009
10:24 am

So adding to the list… Sage doesn’t like the line-up, the GM and now… the announcers.

Why is it again you follow the team?

Ice Dog

July 20th, 2009
10:27 am

Alan thanks. They switched it to basic html. I just have to remember to not use b’s and i’s and all those other little tricks. Forgive me Rawhide if I make that mistake.

Now is there a page that shows me how to do weblinks?

GaVaHokie

July 20th, 2009
10:47 am

Interesting interview with Colby on 640 Toronto… he was actually looking for a long-term deal, but they ran out of time before arbitration would start up, so they settled on the one year deal… that should make some of you mad that thought Waddell was dragging his feet.

http://www.640toronto.com/HostsandShows/LeafsLunch/Audio.aspx

Probably didn’t help that Army got married and had a honeymoon, I’m sure… but still.

R. Stroz

July 20th, 2009
11:05 am