Two more UFAs off the market, Natalie off to Ohio and Talbot goes off on Ovie

Frolov And Ponikarovsky Off The UFA Market

Two more unrestricted free agent forwards are now off the UFA market. Alexander Frolov is leaving Los Angeles and will be winging his way east to sport a Rangers blue shirt. Shortly after learning of this, the Kings then announced that they had signed Alexei Ponikarovsky.

Frolov played in 81 games last season for the Kings and scored 19 goals, 31 assists and was a –1. In six playoffs game he scored a goal, three assists and was a –5.

The Rangers snagged the 28-year old Russian for one year at $3 million.

The 30-year old Ponikarovsky scored 21 goals and 29 assists in 78 games last season, splitting his time between the Maple Leafs and Penguins. In the 11 playoff games with the Pens he netted a goal and four assists. He was a +5 in 61 games with Toronto and a –5 during 16 games in Pittsburgh.

The Kings acquire his services for one year at $3.2 million.

Natalie Heads Off To Ohio

When Thrashers players are being interviewed between periods and after games this fall, the person holding the mic will be someone other than Natalie Taylor. As many of you already know, she is leaving us and will be reporting for the ABC/FOX affiliates in Columbus, Ohio.

Taylor’s hometown is about two hours away in the northwestern part of the state.

Natalie Taylor interviews Zach Bogosian (Photo/Atl. Womens Magazine)

Natalie Taylor interviews Zach Bogosian (Photo/Atl. Womens Magazine)

“It’s a great move for my career because I will get to anchor, report and even dabble in news”, Natalie told me recently. “With the various assignments I will be given, it’s a position where I’ll have room to grow and add to my resume”.

“My primary focus in the fall will be covering the Buckeyes, and hopefully some hockey too”, she added. “But don’t worry, the Thrashers are still my favorite hockey team in the east”.

Natalie also wanted to let the people of Thrasherville know that her time here was a wonderful experience and she’ll not soon forget the team and fans.

”I am very sad to leave Atlanta and will miss covering the team and working with people”.

Talbot Goes Off On Ovechkin

The NHL season is still some five-dozen days away…and the 2011 Winter Classic is over five months off. But that didn’t keep Penguins forward Max Talbot from taking a few verbal open ice shots at Alex Ovechkin.

While on the air with Pittsburgh radio station 105.9 The X to promote the upcoming New Year’s Day game at Heinz Field, Talbot left no question about what he thought of the Washington Capital’s star player.

“You hear a lot of stories about a guy, but sometimes they’re not true”, Talbot said while on The X. “You hear of guys who are not good guys, and you’re like, ‘Yeah, okay, I’ll give the guy a shot’. The first time I met [Ovechkin], let’s say he didn’t give the best impression to me, so better reason to hate him even more”.

Not satisfied with leaving his comments at that, Talbot when on to express what he really thought of AO.

“I was actually at the NHL Awards last summer with [Evgeni] Malkin, and we brought the Stanley Cup over there after the season. Malkin knew Ovechkin, and introduced me to him, and the first impression wasn’t great. I’m not really gonna say what happened, but I’m like, ‘Ok, this guy is a real (expletive).”

What word did he use to discribe Ovie? Well, I’m not sure if my online editor at the AJC.com would be happy with me if I were to put it in print. But suffice to say I’m sure you can figure it out yourself on this hot, steamy Summer’s Eve.

85 comments Add your comment

Tears For Beers

July 27th, 2010
10:20 pm

Smitty

July 27th, 2010
10:24 pm

Why do people have to open their mouths and remove all doubt about how big a jerk they are?

World Be Free

July 27th, 2010
10:35 pm

Can’t wait for the season to start. I already know that I will not be at the season opener due to a prior commitment, but I’ll be there alot this season.

Good luck Natalie-nice girl, she will do well as a reporter. She better not become a Blue Jackets fan.

kracker

July 27th, 2010
10:39 pm

So Rawhide…that description of Ovechkin would be more appropo for him if he were an Islander??

kracker

July 27th, 2010
10:49 pm

As for Frolov and Poni (gone) and possibly adding Max or Stemp….it’s looking like we may be going w/ the group of vets we currently have signed while depending on getting growth from our young guns and giving plenty of ice time for Rammer to teach the soon-to-be ex-prospects. And looking for better defensive play from all the skaters and counting on Mason to be solid.

I hope that’s enough.

R. Stroz

July 27th, 2010
11:05 pm

Did he call him a slang name for Richard?

Budder

July 27th, 2010
11:43 pm

Mr. Rawhide, you are a cunning punner…your photo caption, along with the reference to the high humidity on a sweltering July night, leaves little doubt that Talbot wasn’t referring to a sauna or a sitz.

Brendan

July 27th, 2010
11:49 pm

Look, folks. Atlanta’s not a high profile spot for attracting free agents. Truthfully, I’m surprised we even got Chris Mason to sign. I am expecting some RFA contracts to be signed soon. The end of July is nearly here.

Sigh. I’ll say it one more time. Zach Bogosian is eligible for a proactive RFA contract. If Dudley and Ramsay want to wait to evaluate him, then they must also set a deadline during the season for re-signing him. Say, Thanksgiving? Christmas at the latest. Much past that, Bogosian gets too close to thinking, “Ya know what, fellas? I’m not amenable to contract negotiations. I was willing to do a deal during the 2010 offseason, but all I heard was crickets chirping. I’m going to reach RFA status, and then … I’m going to listen to my best option.” Including some potential 12-14 year deal to fraudulently manipulate a cap hit. Well, the CBA rules don’t preclude it. At least Atlanta would have the right to match it. But would they? On the other hand, maybe it’s not an issue at all. Bogosian’s not thinking about it, or stewing about it in the slightest. Atlanta’s not thinking about it, nor considering it anything that merits concern on their part. Maybe they’re confidently thinking, “If an RFA offersheet comes, we’ll just match it, like Buffalo did with Vanek, when Edmonton tried to poach him.” Truthfully, Vanek probably wouldn’t be a Sabre today, had Edmonton not made that RFA offersheet. That’s something to ponder.

I guess, in the end, if the Thrashers are willing to pay Bogosian his fair market value when it comes time to “pony up,” and they’re comfortable with doing that, then it’s not an issue at all.

Jason

July 28th, 2010
12:00 am

Natalie being gone makes me wish I had renewed my season tickets.

TrueBlue

July 28th, 2010
12:46 am

All I know is that birthday is the exact night of the season opener….so I will be celebrating the big 2-8 at the arena cheering on the boys in blue!

glovesave29

July 28th, 2010
1:07 am

Natalie being gone is almost as upsetting as no longer having a GM named Waddell.

Sage of Bluesland

July 28th, 2010
7:12 am

“Natalie being gone is almost as upsetting as no longer having a GM named Waddell.”

Well, according to one of the owners, half of the email he gets from the fans support Donny…

That’s either a bald-faced lie–or it confirms what I’ve long suspected of the wittle fwag-wavers?

Maybe it’s both?

You decide. Either possibility isn’t pretty. But, whoever believes anything spouted from this organization simply proves P.T. Barnum was absolutely correct…

World Be Free

July 28th, 2010
7:51 am

Shaone Morrisson is still out there; we could use some experienced NHL depth to support our current set of defenseman. And I do believe Sopel is a one year contract, bridging us to one of the youngsters who will hopefully be ready next season.

All of the folks in support of Winnipeg as an NHL city should take a look at what has happened in Edmonton. The Oilers have become a shaky 2nd tier NHL team. Talk about not being able to attract UFA talent, the last name UFA the Oilers snagged was Sheldon Souray, who had to be grossly overpaid to go to Edmonton. The Oilers would gladly take a bucket of pucks for any team to take Shelly off their hands. So who is going to be enticed to take their UFA talents to Winnipeg? Maybe the ownership in Winnipeg will be more solid than the current “whoever” owners claim the Oilers, but overall, I do not see Winnipeg as a preferred destination for the Yotes.

I saw somebody quoted a TSN article yesterday, concerning the viability of Winnipeg, Quebec City, Hamilton and Tronna (2nd team) as NHL cities. Of the 4 mentioned, in my opinion, only a 2nd team in Toronto makes any sense. None of the other 3 cities are worthy, they just don’t have the continual cash to make them long term options based on the current NHL landscape. As for TSN, they are the Canadian equivalent of the Russian Pravda during the Cold War. I took them off my Blackberry because I was sick of their propaganda.

Jarndyce

July 28th, 2010
7:52 am

“More persons, on the whole, are humbugged by believing in nothing, than by believing too much” –PT Barnum

Dwayne

July 28th, 2010
8:23 am

Summers Eve??? I know what word he used. Touche’

GaVaHokie

July 28th, 2010
8:31 am

Jarndyce… good line. My father-in-law could stand to read that.

Most of our so-called reasoning consists in finding arguments for going on believing as we already do. ~ James Harvey Robinson

GaVaHokie

July 28th, 2010
8:33 am

I’m sure Talbot felt the same about meeting Ovechkin as I did meeting Scott Stapp from Creed.

KTS

July 28th, 2010
8:59 am

Thank goodness Natalie Taylor is going. She’s an embarrassment to the profession of journalism and female journalists in general, of which I am one. There are so many really good, knowledgable female sports journalists (Deb Placey comes to mind), why do we need mindless grinning goofballs to interview players between periods? I’d much rather have Darren Eliot doing the job, though he probably would prefer not to hoof it downstairs. Bring on someone capable and who can look and act less like a kid in a candy store and more like a respectable journalist during interviews.

rob

July 28th, 2010
9:10 am

Now that the Kings have gotten Poni, say the deal with Kovy falls through at arbitration (as I am SO HOPING IT WILL), that will kinda leave him high and dry wont it? AHH HAAAA!

kracker

July 28th, 2010
9:16 am

ding ding ding I think Dwyane is the winner!

kracker

July 28th, 2010
9:18 am

Dwyane is Dwayne’s dyslexic brother.

thebigharybeast

July 28th, 2010
9:36 am

I never though I would ever soe to a hockey blog and be reminded of Summer Eve’s commercial where the teen age daughter turns to her mother and says, “Mom?, Do you douche?”

Just . . . just . . .great . . .

Joe Friday

July 28th, 2010
9:59 am

Ovechkin is a douche, good for Talbot to call a spade a spade.

“Thank goodness Natalie Taylor is going.” No kidding. She was worthless. Bring back Amanda Jahn (aka “nips”) or Erin Andrews. Now, those 2 were some talent!

Smoothie

July 28th, 2010
10:03 am

Joe F – I think you meant to say “those 4 were some talents!”

Rawhide

July 28th, 2010
10:34 am

Per C-Viv tweet…”Looks like Thrashers and Andrew Ladd will indeed go to arbitration. Hearing set for tomorrow”.

Tim

July 28th, 2010
10:34 am

BREAKING NEWS!!!!

Don Waddell’s head has just been spotted rolling down those strange, sideways steps running from the front entrance of Philips Arena to the CNN Center. (The stains should blend well.)

Many of you can now die happy… or at least go away.

Methinks that’s a bit of wishful thinking.

Smoothie

July 28th, 2010
10:39 am

Oh dear, that doesn’t bode well does it now? I hope they request a 2-year deal from the arbiter at least. Do they not have a clue as to what his market value is? C’mon, 2 years and $6 M should do it! $2.8 the first year and $3.2 the second. He should earn at least what Byfuglien is already making. Easy. Done.

Cornbread

July 28th, 2010
10:52 am

Charissa Thompson on Versus is some serious talent! That girl knows her hockey!

GaVaHokie

July 28th, 2010
11:08 am

Of course, I’m not exactly sure how Talbot can call somebody ELSE a douche…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOrvdvczpEA

Midfield

July 28th, 2010
11:14 am

Not that I care about either, Talbot has not impressed me as a smart guy by making his comment. Apart from what appears to be an unprovoked public badmouthing of someone he does not like (everybody likes you; it’s impossible not to like you… you know), it may limit Talbot’s employment choices going forward. And, of course, being liked does not necessarily pay one’s bills in NHL. Personally, I like Don Waddell. Yet, I still think that he should be let go by the franchise, for example.

kracker

July 28th, 2010
11:24 am

Careful, Midfield. Saying you like DW is hazardous to your blog health. As for Talbot?? phfffft he can marry Maxine Waters for all I care. Maxime + Maxine…made for each other lol

Russ

July 28th, 2010
11:27 am

Tim – Did the breaking news report say if DW’s dismembered head and/or his headless body would still be employed by the ASG? I actually wouldn’t have a problem with them keeping DW in this scenario as it would force them to hand all personnel decision making over to Dudley.

Midfield

July 28th, 2010
11:32 am

Well, ok, I would not buy him a beer or anything…

Zombie Steve

July 28th, 2010
11:57 am

Ovie talks the talk because he can walk the walk. Talbot needs to show some respect.

rob

July 28th, 2010
11:58 am

Midfield,
Too late to backtrack now!!!!

Interesting article on the shootout on nhl.com. Not interesting in that I like the shootout (I hate it and thinks it goes against everything the concept of TEAM play stands for…but enough) but interesting in that 3 of the prominent players in shootout standings were from here. Kozlov, Moose, and Lehtenin are all very good shootout players. While none are still here it is always nice to see “something” positive in print connected to the Thrashers IMO, and also IMO, the fact that they are no longer here doesn’t bother me too much (though I think Lehtinen may not turn out good if he ever grows up). Oh and NOT there is a certain one who will remain unnamed, as I mentioned him once before already today.

Cliff Fletcher

July 28th, 2010
12:11 pm

Looks like everybody is thinking real deep today…..

Some hockey news please?

World Be Free

July 28th, 2010
12:26 pm

I still would like to see us give a 1 year deal to Aaron Asham. I know some don’t like him, but I like his edge. He can score the occasional goal too.

Zombie Steve

July 28th, 2010
1:10 pm

Frolov and Ponikarvsky both gone….. this makes the Max deal seem alot more attractive now

Old Time Hockey

July 28th, 2010
1:18 pm

Natalie was the WORST interviewer ever…she had a list of questions someone gave her and she would ask them and you could tell she had no idea what they were talking about. Can’t imagine how she got that job.

As far a paying Bogosian what he’s worth…what is he worth? The flashes of brilliance his rookie year, or the average looking D-man from last year. Can’t even begin to figure that out until late this year.

Smoothie

July 28th, 2010
1:20 pm

Time to change the marketing campaign at Blueland and I’ve got just the idea to use as the center of the new campaign! “Mule” it over!! LOL

http://thrashingbirds.blogspot.com/2010/07/replacement-for-blueland.html

Spud Webb

July 28th, 2010
1:34 pm

lol, I’m sure Ovie is gonna lose sleep over what max talbot thinks of him!!!!!
I’m guessing we’re (thrashers) done with pickups this offseason??
WBF, I’d take Asham in a second.

Russian

July 28th, 2010
1:59 pm

Did anybody knows about Berg and Little contracts???
I know Ladd and Eager are going to the Court.

ChippersLoveChild

July 28th, 2010
2:30 pm

Pretty happy that Natalie is gone… she was clueless when it came to interviewing the guys… wish her well, but happy she won’t be back.

kracker

July 28th, 2010
2:41 pm

kracker

July 28th, 2010
2:43 pm

Only $22.40. Cheap. Looks like DW is dumping his AB pics…

five_hole

July 28th, 2010
3:00 pm

Natalie Taylor – sweet as a donut (and almost as smart).

Flagstaff

July 28th, 2010
3:19 pm

Personally, I think Waddell is somewhat like George W. Bush. He seems like a really nice guy, like a guy you’d want to go out for a beer with. But they are both completely inept as leaders.

Midifield

July 28th, 2010
3:34 pm

I’ve always thought that George Schultz’s (or as I like to call him, Jack Handy of the Deep Thoughts by Jack Handy fame) columns were the designated for bumper sticker comments.

Hockey Biltong

July 28th, 2010
3:35 pm

+1 to KTS’s remarks….
We may still have a shot at Stempniak or Torres…..

Old Time Hockey

July 28th, 2010
3:57 pm

Oh for the days when Erin Andrews was our “interview girl”!