April 19, 2018

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Dump & Chase

Getting pucks deep and giving 110%

Mike McIntyre and Jason Bell take you on a trip around the hockey world

Welcome to the debut edition of Dump and Chase, wherein Winnipeg Free Press hockey writers Mike McIntyre and Jason Bell take you on an interactive tour around the hockey world.

This exclusive online feature will appear weekly and include all the juicy morsels Mike and Jason collect during their travels to NHL rinks throughout the league -- plus plenty of insight, analysis and observations about all aspects of the game we love.

They’ll take you inside the locker rooms, give you a front-row view to morning skates and post-game pressers and bring you into conversations with the movers and shakers – from superstars to fourth-line grinders – about the action both on and off the ice.

Since Jason called dibs on “Chase,” Mike has reluctantly agreed to play the role of “Dump.”

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Welcome to the debut edition of Dump and Chase, wherein Winnipeg Free Press hockey writers Mike McIntyre and Jason Bell take you on an interactive tour around the hockey world.

This exclusive online feature will appear weekly and include all the juicy morsels Mike and Jason collect during their travels to NHL rinks throughout the league -- plus plenty of insight, analysis and observations about all aspects of the game we love.

They’ll take you inside the locker rooms, give you a front-row view to morning skates and post-game pressers and bring you into conversations with the movers and shakers – from superstars to fourth-line grinders – about the action both on and off the ice.

Since Jason called dibs on “Chase,” Mike has reluctantly agreed to play the role of “Dump.”

Let’s hit the ice!

PRE-GAME WARMUP

We've been working hard at practice. Putting in extra time reviewing film. Staying hydrated. We've heard the rousing locker room speech from our bench boss, sports editor Steve Lyons.

"Good luck, boys. You're going to need it. And don't make me regret this!"

Almost brings a tear to the eye, doesn't it? Eat your heart out, Herb Brooks.

As we hit the ice, let's all get pumped up to the playlist the Winnipeg Jets are currently skating to before every game at Bell MTS Place these days. (And yes, we needed to use our Shazam app to identify nearly all these tunes.)

1. VICTORY by Puff Daddy Feat. The Notorious B.I.G. & Busta Rhymes
2. FUEGO by Alok & Bhaskar
3. FAMOUS by Kanye West
4. UP ALL NIGHT by Beck
5. ROLEX by Ayo and Teo
6. POWER by Hardwell & KSHMR
7. JETFUEL by Uberjak'd & Joel Fletcher Feat. Cris Gamble
8. TRANSPORTIN' by Kodak Black

Just FYI, it's worth noting the censored version of these songs are the ones being played in the arena.

1ST PERIOD

The San Jose Sharks raised some eyebrows this week with a tongue-in-cheek video portraying Winnipeg as a dark, frozen wasteland with crummy hotels and barely-functional Internet service.

Of course, being the hardy, thick-skinned bunch that we are absolutely nobody blew it out of proportion and over-reacted.

 

  

  

 

 

  

Fortunately, Winnipeg Jets coach Paul Maurice had a slightly more reasoned take on the whole thing, as Jason posed the question to him Tuesday in Buffalo. His response was fantastic.

 

 

 

For the record, the Sharks have one of our favourite Twitter accounts in the NHL. Their current bio simply reads "Please stop pulling our beards," which is a reference to Toronto's Nazem Kadri taking the term "face-off" a bit too literally in a wild scrap with Joe Thornton last week:

 

2ND PERIOD

Alex Ovechkin had a most interesting take on what's making the Washington Capitals power play click.

***

He is one of the most promising defensive prospects in the Jets pipeline. But Nelson Nogier, just 21 and coming off a terrific first pro season, has been rendered an afterthought suffering a major injury on the first shift of his first exhibition game with the Manitoba Moose last fall.

It happened during a seemingly innocent-looking play when an Iowa Wild skater rubbed him into the boards. He required surgery for an upper-body injury, and the initial timeline had him missing up to six months.

It was a major blow for Nogier, who was expected to be a key player with the Moose this season as well as providing some valuable depth for the Jets.

Moose coach Pascal Vincent told us recently they're doing everything possible to keep Nogier in the loop.

"It's going to be March, April," Vincent said of when Nogier could potentially return to action. "But what we do is we're providing some video clips that he has, to watch. So we keep his mind pretty busy as far as learning the game and what we do. So when he comes back his mind will be right. It's just going to be a matter of working on his game conditioning. But he's been working really hard. Now he can do some lower body workouts. We expect he's going to have strong legs when he comes back, because he's been working on it quite a bit."

Nogier appeared in 60 games with the Moose last year, putting up two goals and 11 assists. He was rewarded with a late-season call-up to the big club, playing 10 games with the Jets.

3RD PERIOD

The Manitoba Moose they have a great thing going these days with their Twitter GIFs. Each player recorded one celebration at the start of the year, and the video is sent out by the team's official account every time they light the lamp in a game.

Of course, the Moose have been scoring plenty this season as they rocket up the AHL standings. So we've had a chance to see just about everybody's. And while the majority just involve some form of fist-pumping, a few stand out for their creativity.

Here, then, are our top three:

3rd star: Patrice Cormier: The captain began the year with a subtle video, beginning with the saddest look he can muster and then quickly switching to Mr. Smiley Face.

 

 

More recently, he switched to blowing out his stick as if it's on fire. It's fitting, considering he's up to 15 goals this season.

 

 

2nd star: Buddy Robinson: The towering, six-foot-six forward brings all the intensity of scoring the Stanley Cup winner to his GIF as he furiously shakes his fist like it owes him money. Well done. With 16 goals already, it's getting plenty of play.

 

 

1st star: Sami Niku: The rookie defenceman from Finland has a glorious flow. And he shows it off every time he scores with a flip of the head that would make Fabio jealous.

 

And if that's not your cup of tea, Niku has a second GIF where we're not sure exactly what he's doing, but it's certainly interesting.

 

  

***

Social media can be a great place to enhance your fandom, sharing immediate feedback and ideas with other like-minded folks. But it can also be a pretty dark place, as one local pro hockey player has found recently.

Chase De Leo, the speedy forward with the Manitoba Moose, has sent out several recent warnings that someone is trying to impersonate him on various platforms including Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.

"These are fake and not my account. Please spread the word and report!! Thank you," De Leo recently told his nearly 12,000 online followers through his verified Twitter account @Dels9.

 

 

He's even tried reaching out to Nev Schulman, the host of MTV's Catfish show, for some help.

 

 

Members of the True North security team have been working to try and track down the imposter.

OVERTIME

One of the things we'll do every week in this space is single out a local Tweeter for their 140 character brilliance — or 280 if they got the update.

This week's winner of our inaugural "Tweet Of The Week" hardware is TSN 1290'S Andrew "Hustler" Paterson (@hustlerama), who had some advice for Jets coach Paul Maurice just before Tuesday night's game in Buffalo.

 

 

If you aren't sure about the Jeff Fisher reference, this story explains it all.

***

You like goals, right? Then you'll want to check out these beauties from the past week.

SHOOTOUT

Get ready to debate, mock and ridicule: It's time our first-ever NHL power rankings!

1. Tampa Bay: Class of the league

2. Boston: No team is hotter

3. Vegas: Is there a faster team?

4. Washington: But can they do it in playoffs?

5. Winnipeg: Huge homestand looming

6. Dallas: Don't sleep on the Stars

7. Nashville: Central division is a beast

8. New Jersey: Still hanging tough

9. Columbus: Coming on strong

 

 

10. St. Louis: Injuries taking a toll

11. NY Rangers: Struggling on the road

12. Toronto: Defence still a question

13. Los Angeles: Hard to score against

14. Pittsburgh: Need to get it going

15. Colorado: Exceeding all expectations

16. San Jose: Slumped into player break

17. Minnesota: Consistency a problem

18. Anaheim: Finally getting healthy

19. Chicago: Down, but not yet out

20. Carolina: So much young talent

21. Calgary: Watch out for flying sticks 

22. NY Islanders: Defence, goaltending major flaws

23. Philadelphia: So streaky

24. Detroit: Rebuilding year for Red Wings

25. Florida: Mediocre in many ways

26. Ottawa: Starting to score

27. Montreal: Too late to turn it around?

28. Edmonton: Leaking oil everywhere

29. Vancouver: Brock Boeser vs the world

30. Arizona: Slightly better of late

31. Buffalo: Indoor or outdoor, they can't win

 

Got a suggestion for a future edition of Dump and Chase? Let us know about it! mike.mcintyre@freepress.mb.ca and/or jason.bell@freepress.mb.ca.

And: follow "Dump" and "Chase" -- aka Mike and Jason -- on Twitter.  Mike is @mikemcintyrewpg, while Jason can be found @WFPJasonBell.

 

Your weekly trip around the world of hockey.

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History

Updated on Wednesday, January 10, 2018 at 11:54 AM CST: Updates headline.

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