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FlightZone: Patrick Sharp's Calming Presence

Get excited for his boring veteranness. And no, that isn't a word.

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Do stories of hockey-related corn mazes ever get old? No, no they do not:

And now the news.

Central Division

Patrick Kane is the DJ Chicago deserves, but not the one it needs right now. Or at least not until he gets One Direction out of his system. (Fox 32 News Chicago)

Chicago 6th round selection Joni Tuulola had a very solid season as a teenage defenceman in the Liiga, as did Mr. Irrelevant John Dahlstrom as a forward in the U20 SuperElit. Also, I for one am excited to see what Radovan Bondra might do with the Vancouver Giants. (Hockey's Future)

Forwards Joey Hishon and Nick Spaling will be participating in a charity hockey game this Thursday. (Bayshore Broadcasting)

The Stars are looking for Patrick Sharp to provide an even-keeled, calming presence, which sounds odd considering the post-trade hype train but actually makes a lot of sense. Seeing Sharpie in that Dallas green is going to take some getting used to, though. (Dallas Morning News)

Mike Russo is skipping town, but he was good enough to leave us this updated Minnesota Wild depth chart and a couple news tidbits before leaving. (StarTribune)

Despite going through with the arbitration hearing, it sounds as if the process between Nashville and Craig Smith was a downright cordial affair. That's a good thing, I guess. (The Tennessean)

On the eve of his final season at the Blues' helm, here's a quick rundown of Ken Hitchcock's time as an NHL Head Coach. (The Hockey Writers)

In case you missed it: the Jets are talking to both Ladd and Byfuglien about contract extensions, though the former seems to have been prioritized over the latter. (The Score)

Andrew Ladd points to Paul Maurice as the Jets' turning point and I'm inclined to agree with him. Also, reset the clock people: he referenced Evander Kane. (NHL)

And All The Rest

Women's hockey is potentially losing an electrifying talent, with Amanda Kessel's NCAA career ending due to lingering concussion issues. Regardless of whether it would lead to professional hockey, here's hoping time will allow her a full recovery. (Yahoo! Sports)

With only two expansion bids from Las Vegas and Quebec City, expect rampant speculation over which applicants will get a team to be somewhat dampened. (Sportsnet)

Cody Franson is somewhat unbelievably still available as an unrestricted free agent. He openly talks about Boston as an option and it would be a tremendous fit, if only they could make the financials work. (ProHockeyTalk)

After signing Teemu Pulkkinen, otherwise known as Finland's Brett Hull, the Detroit Red Wings now have a somewhat crowded looking forward corps and that's before inking Tomas Jurco. Landon Ferraro's hold to a roster spot seems increasingly tenuous, though I'm very curious as to Johan Franzen's health. (The Morning Sun)

This probably won't come as much of a surprise, but being the play-by-play guy for EA's NHL games can be an agonizing process. (Sportsnet)

I'm quite enjoying this news wave of team vs. player salary requests, the latest of which involves Ottawa's Alex Chiasson. (Ottawa Sun)

Remember when Sharks GM Doug Wilson traded a 3rd round pick for 33 games of Tye McGinn, only to then lose him on waivers? Anyways, he signed a one-year, two-way deal with the Tampa Bay Lightning. (FOX Sports)

Ryan Lambert with news which may surprise you: Braden Holtby has been a world-class goaltender. (Yahoo! Sports)

And finally, Kevin Woodley's article on new Maple Leafs goalie coach Steve Briere makes for a very good background piece, but it becomes an instant winner by having not one but two "Children of the Korn" references. It's no surprise that the headline writer got in on the action as well. (NHL)

Thanks for reading! Be sure to say in the Comments section below who you think Ken Hitchcock would be a good fit for in 2016-17.