Cross Checks

Islanders have base to be great, says Tonelli
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With news last week that New York Islanders team owner Charles Wang was selling a majority ownership of the franchise, there are plenty of changes in store.

Tossup: Watching the Leafs or paint dry?
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Critics might say that the Toronto Maple Leafs are a boring team to watch. So boring, in fact, that it might be more thrilling to watch paint dry rather than attending a game.

Goalies will be Sens' strength, says Lalime
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Though some found it surprising to see the Ottawa Senators ink goaltender Craig Anderson to a three-year deal, amid speculation that Robin Lehner would take the reins as starter this coming season, former Senators netminder Patrick Lalime thinks the tandem will be a strength of the club moving forward.

LeClair: Flyers a playoff team under Hextall
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A member of the Philadelphia Flyers’ legendary "Legion of Doom" line, John LeClair played in front of goaltender Ron Hextall for five years.LeClair knows what Hextall is like on the ice, inside the dressing room and as a pivotal member of a successful team.

Nolan: Sharks are still a 'good' team
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After a short postseason run that ended in stunning fashion, the San Jose Sharks have had an entire summer to live with the bitter disappointment of last spring.

Dionne likes Kings' confidence, character
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Things are not as they used to be back in the days of some of hockey’s most revered dynasties: the Montreal Canadiens, Edmonton Oilers and New York Islanders.

Can Francis change culture in Carolina?
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The Carolina Hurricanes made significant changes in their front office and behind the bench -- Ron Francis took over as general manager while former Detroit Red Wings assistant coach Bill Peters replaced Kirk Mueller as head coach -- following the team’s 13th-place finish last season.

Leetch likes McDonagh, Rangers' D-men
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Hall of Fame defenseman Brian Leetch was named the captain of the New York Rangers after the departure of legendary teammate and long-standing team leader Mark Messier in 1997.

Tkachuk likes the Blues' building plan
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No one was happy in St. Louis when the highly touted Blues made a hasty exit from the 2014 NHL playoffs. The Blues built a 2-0 series edge against the Chicago Blackhawks in the Western Conference quarterfinals only to surrender that lead to their hated division rival in a stunning six-game set.

Roenick sees big things for Kane, Toews
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Former Chicago Blackhawks star Jeremy Roenick remembers what it felt like to sign his first long-term deal. The pressure melted away, the sense of anxiety about contract negotiations dissipated and Roenick was allowed to channel all his energy onto the ice.

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