Time for our annual trip to Thrasherville’s NHL team adoption center

One of the nice things about subscribing to the NHL Center Ice package is that fans in the east can follow teams out west…and vise-versa I suppose. Given that we only get a chance see west teams once, maybe twice, a year when the Thrashers play them, Center Ice provides fans of the sport with a great way to follow them throughout the season.

Though Eric Staal was able to get this shot past him, Kari Lehtonen has had success with his new Dalas Stars team so far this season (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)

Though Eric Staal was able to get this shot past him, Kari Lehtonen has had success with his new Dallas Stars team so far this season (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)

One of the things I wind up doing is picking one or two teams in the Western Conference to watch consistently…or “adopt”, if you will…and follow their progress through the NHL campaign.

Some of you have made your way to Thrashervillefrom cities like Chicago, Detroit or some other Western Conference town. So for you the choice is always an easy one. But being a semi-native Georgian…lived here most of my life…I hold true loyalties to just one team, the Thrashers Anyone else is but a passing fancy.

But for a number of seasons, my adopted team was the San Jose Sharks. They’ve iced very good squads throughout the years, consistently jockeyed for playoff positioning and usually played a very entertaining style of hockey.

But last fall I moved away from the Sharks…partly because of so many playoff disappointments, partially because of Dany Heatley and partly because, well, I just wanted to find a new team.

To that measure, I began watching the Chicago Blackhawks closely. I’m certain I wasn’t alone in that given how good they were coming into the season. It was the “chic” pick, I suppose.

But as things turned out, I was able to follow them all the way to the Stanley Cup. And when Byfuglien, Ladd, Eager, Sopel and Torchetti made their way here last summer, it was as if familiar faces were heading to town as I had kind of gotten to know them and had an appreciation for what they brought with them.

Which west coast team will you be adopting this season?

  • Anaheim (4%, 6 Votes)
  • Calgary (8%, 13 Votes)
  • Chicago (7%, 12 Votes)
  • Colorado (12%, 19 Votes)
  • Columbus (3%, 5 Votes)
  • Dallas (8%, 13 Votes)
  • Detroit (9%, 15 Votes)
  • Edmonton (5%, 8 Votes)
  • Los Angeles (9%, 15 Votes)
  • Minnesota (1%, 2 Votes)
  • Nashville (10%, 16 Votes)
  • Phoenix (7%, 12 Votes)
  • San Jose (3%, 5 Votes)
  • St. Louis (5%, 8 Votes)
  • Vancouver (9%, 15 Votes)

Total Voters: 164

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So now that we’re roughly a quarter of the way through this season, and we have a few days between games, let’s take our annual trip down to the Thrasherville NHL Team Adoption Center and see if there’s one you’d like to adopt from the west coast. Of course, maybe some of you have already picked out a favorite. Either way, I’d like to know which one(s) you’ve chosen and why.

As for me, well…I’m torn between a couple of them.

First there’s the Dallas Stars who are trying to work their way back to the playoffs after failing to qualify last year. They are doing so without longtime star and fan-favorite Mike Modano and with former Thrashers netminder Kari Lehtonen. Kari has done pretty well for himself in the Lone Star State, currently with a record of 13-7-2, a .915 SV% and 2.59 GAA. Maybe a little change of scenery was just what the doctor ordered for Lehts, eh?

Like the Thrashers, Dallas as been getting some very balanced scoring as four players have 9 or more goals and four have 20+ points on the year. Brad Richards leads the way with 12 goals and 19 assists going into Wednesday night’s action in Chicago.

The Stars are currently atop the Pacific Division, but Phoenix is right on their spurs.

The other squad that’s caught my attention is the Edmonton Oilers. Not because I think they are going anywhere soon, but I’m curious to see how that franchise works themselves back into a contenting team in the season’s to come.

They certainly are seeing dividends already from taking Taylor Hall with last summer’s first overall draft pick. He’s scored 9 goals and 6 assists already and he’s really going to be something special in this league as he grows and matures.

Edmonton is currently showing some signs of improvement over last year’s disappointing showing. Prior to dropping a 3-2 loss in a shootout to the Anaheim Ducks, the Oilers had rattled off four straight and are now 6-2-2 in their last 10 games played.

Oh yeah…and there’s always the Flames. I guess I’ll always keep an eye on what they’re doing given their Atlanta roots. I especially like watching them play homes games…that sea of red jerseys is nothing but impressive.

115 comments Add your comment

SomaAtl95

December 9th, 2010
11:00 pm

I think a great thing that I seem to be seeing on some other sports websites is that people outside of Atlanta are starting to adopt **us** as a “team of interest”. Did any of you ever see that coming? :) Excited for the future, can not wait to see a couple of games this weekend…

DWTOO

December 10th, 2010
7:41 am

R/L – us disagree? Only when we discuss our second favorite teams. And I’ll look into that new western team.

World Be Free

December 10th, 2010
7:49 am

Things are getting worse in Tronna. Leafs fans spent the last 4 mionutes of the game booing their home team last night. The Maple Leafs’ major problem is that they are not owned by people that have a passion for hockey, like the Wings. The club is such a money maker, they ahev been used more as an investment than a source of pride and hockey excitement-this has been an issue for 30 years. The place is full every night, with sheep who show up no matter how bad the team is. Have fun Colby.

World Be Free

December 10th, 2010
7:51 am

Let me clarify one thing-the Wings owners DO have a pasison for hockey, that’s why they have a winning tradition. I think my last post could have been taken the wrong way.

DWTOO

December 10th, 2010
8:21 am

Speaking of the Leafs has anyone noticed that MacAurthur has something like 9 goals and 12 assists? At 1.5 mil he would be a bargain. Where was this scoring touch during the few months he spent here? He was invisible.

Tom

December 10th, 2010
8:34 am

If you have a few minutes here is some old time hockey from England. The bench clearing brawl was fun, but the announcer’s excitement was hilarious.

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

The quote of the fight was 3:17 “He should get beaten to hell for that” .

World Be Free

December 10th, 2010
9:02 am

Tom-I’ll catch it tonight when I am home but I am sure it’s good.
DWTOO-Clarke had a touch when he was in Buffalo, then lost it. He doesn’t like the physical play, so he has a tendency to shy away from the prime scoring areas where he can use his talents. Wonder if Mac and Colby are getting sick of the Tronna media and fan questions like “why do you guys stink?”

The power of anonymity in Atlanta-being an Atlanta Thrasher player

DWTOO

December 10th, 2010
9:17 am

Tom – A good old fashioned Donnybrook! Right out of slapshot.

WBF – Anonymity in ATL – friend goes into one those shipping stores, inquires about the Thrasher sweater hanging on the wall, clerk says some Hedberg guy comes into the store to ship his skates to be sharpened. Imagine that in Toronto!

kracker

December 10th, 2010
9:21 am

DWTOO – If MacArthur played here for Rammer and Torch, and with a newly energized bunch of players, he might have actually tried here. I think he was just loafing and playing out the string here, wanting to get out. Call it a miss, character-wise, for Dudley on a trade deadline deal. Nine points in 21 games here didn’t earn Mac much in the way of a retainer offer.

rob

December 10th, 2010
9:28 am

Tom,
Excellent link. Don’t see much of that anymore. Players can’t police themselves and the refs can’t do the job either, so you end up with punks like Avery and Carcillo just to name a few going around getting away with whatever because no one can go after them without getting penalized out the wahzoo. The game actually played better when you knew there was a beating coming for any cheap play. I remember a Buffalo/Bruins game when they ran our goalie (think it was Barrasso and his knee got hurt). The next face off Kevin McGuire dumped the puck in and ran the Bruins goalie and his net through the endboards and turned around and challenged the entire Bruins team….who gladly obliged. Can’t remember the last brawl like that I have seen.

World Be Free

December 10th, 2010
9:47 am

DWTOO-I remember when I went to Ice Forum to get my skates sharpened, they told me I had to leave my skates and pick them up in “a couple days”. Huh?
rob-now there’s a great name from the past, Kevin McGuire.

Joe Friday

December 10th, 2010
10:23 am

“Perhaps you’d like to put the Huet one on e-Bay and maybe some idiot in Switzerland will buy it?”

Pffft. BTW, I guess you don’t know that Tallon is the idiot that got the Hawks in that cap mess. He’s the who signed Huet to that contract and he’s the same maroon who missed the deadline for the various qualifying offers and put them in a bind by having to up the pay for some restricted players. Tallon’s probably the reason we have Ladd and Buf now and why Versteeg is in Tronna. They replaced Versteeg with Morin but Ladd and Buf were irreplaceable.

BTW, speaking of being on the radar, a lot of Chicago fans are following, and rooting for, our Thrashers. Lots of people lamenting Tallon’s boneheaded moves and wondering what if he hadn’t signed Huet, what if he hadn’t missed the deadline on those qualifying offers.

That’s alight, I just hope the rumors we heard about them starting negotiations with Ladd are true and they can extend him, long term, like 5 to 7 yr. long term . . . same with Buf.

Rawhide

December 10th, 2010
10:44 am

Hey Dandylions…guess what. It’s FRIDAY!!!!!!!

And the Thrasher are set to get back in action with a back-to-back weekend set against the Avs and Isles.

TGIF indeed.

R. Stroz

December 10th, 2010
3:42 pm

Rawhide

December 12th, 2010
8:15 am

R. Stroz – Nope