Let me first start out by stating that I appreciate and commend everything Brendan Shanahan has done in being a big part of the NHL.
Whether it was as a talented player or rule modifier hosting the "Shanahan Summit" during the lockout, or even as Vice President of Hockey and Business Development. He has done more in these capacities to help and promote the great game of hockey than any other player, past or present, that I can think of. I think Brendan has found himself in a tough place recently, though. About a week ago, he had an opportunity to send a tough message about needless violence to Shea Weber who, at the end of game one against the Detroit Red Wings, tried to punch and then slam the head of Henrik Zetterberg. Shanahan decided to just fine Weber 2500.
The uproar from fans and the media was instantaneous. It became a NHL public relations nightmare. Later it was learned that had Zetterberg been injured on the play, there would have been a suspension.
Zetterberg, a teammate of Shanahan for a few seasons, said that, and I'm paraphrasing here, "they had an opportunity to set the bar, and they did" meaning they set the bar pretty low and as a result there has been an escalation of incidents on the ice. I think those words from a former teammate hurt Shanny.
Which brings us to Andrew Shaw. Shanahan now has another chance to send a message, and it's a severe one to Mr. Shaw. I'm not going to discuss the intricacies of the collision behind the net. Bottom line is that Shaw can't even go near the goaltender in a situation like that. Nothing good can ever come out of it. But he was given a five-minute major for charging at the time. That is a potential game-changer in any game. Phoenix did score one goal on this power play and they could have had more. And he was kicked out of the contest. That was for more than half of the game.
I could certainly see Shaw getting a one-game suspension, which in the playoffs sends a pretty clear message. But to suspend a player for what could be the rest of the series, after having witnessed what has gone on in a lot of these playoff games, is certainly disappointing, and it feels as if Shaw is being made an example by the NHL. But he'll take his medicine, be a better player for it, and hopefully the Blackhawks can win without his energy and enthusiasm.
The Bears 2020 offseason feels like it's been underway for a while, but the reality is it's just getting started. The fun gets underway in March when unrestricted free agency kicks off, followed by the 2020 NFL Draft – when GM Ryan Pace will try to flip Chicago's two second-round picks into potential starters for a team that isn't that far away from contending for a Super Bowl.
Here are the key dates to bookmark in your calendar for the Bears' offseason:
- Feb. 24-March 1 – NFL Scouting Combine
- Feb. 25 – Ryan Pace/Matt Nagy meet with media at NFL Combine
- Feb. 24 – March 1 – NFL Scouting Combine
- March 18 – Free agency and new league year begins
- April 7 – Ed Block Courage Award presentation
- April 20 – Bears may begin offseason workout programs
- April 21 – Brian Piccolo Awards presented to rookie and veteran
- April 21 – Ryan Pace will speak with the media ahead of NFL Draft
- April 23-25 – 2020 NFL Draft in Las Vegas
- May 8-10 – Bears rookie minicamp at Halas Hall
- May 16 – Bears Care Gala at Soldier Field
- May 27 – May 29 – OTA practices
- June 2-4 – OTA practices
- June 8 – 11 – OTA practices
- June 16-18 – Mandatory full-squad minicamp
David Haugh, Alex Maragos and Chris Bleck join Kap on the panel.
0:00 - The NBA All-Star Game is over and the city was the biggest star of the weekend. The guys weigh in on the thrilling finish and if the rule changes saved the All-Star game.
5:30 - Michael Jordan was not in the "House That MJ Built." Should his Airness have had more of a presence?
9:00 - Michael Reinsdorf and John Paxson spent the weekend asking some of the sport's heavy hitters about how to fix their front office. Will the changes work?
13:00 - Jesse Rogers joins Kap from Cubs camp in Mesa to talk about Javy Baez's comments about not being ready to play some days. They also discuss Kris Bryant's candid comments about his contract and his future with the Cubs.
18:00 - The guys weigh in on Tom Rickett's comments on the state of the team's baseball budget.
26:00 - Chuck Garfien joins Kap from Sox camp in Glendale. They talk about the excitement level with everybody in camp, the team's thoughts on the Astros scandal, the chances Nick Madrigal breaks camp with the team and the Carlos Rodon's progress from Tommy John surgery.
Listen here or in the embedded player below.
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