Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Waiting for Radulov...

The saga of the recalcitrant Predator is starting to take on the aura of a Le Carre thriller, as the Nashville Predators, await the arrival of their playoff ace in the hole, Alexander Radulov.

The once was, still is (apparently) but perhaps not future Pred was rumoured to be on his way back to North America last week, an announcement that put Preds GM David Poile on the top of the dirt list of the Mean Girl like GM's of the NHL, a number that probably was close to 28 (Phoenix can't have a vote since they are wards of the NHL and thus would we imagine sign off on such things) as the collective cried foul, though if in Poile's shoes would have done the exact same thing.

Regardless of their anger, the transit papers were in motion we were told and now some four, five days later we still await our first Radulov sighting along the streets of Music City.

And yet, a strange thing happened on the way to the Bridgestone Arena, Alex, seemingly hasn't boarded a plane yet.

The Predators have been filing updates with the same kind of regularity that Peyton Manning watchers posted pics of the Manning road show, so yesterday's rather terse announcement that no more comments will be made until Tuesday is something to give some thought to.

We're not sure whether Radulov ever makes it across the ocean or not (though the latest update suggests rather breathlessly that he's on his way), nor whether he finally slips on that Predator jersey that they seemingly have been keeping in dry cleaning all these years, but one thing is certain.

We imagine that a rule change is going to be considered for the season's to come, something along the lines of a player must actually have skated with his team prior to a date much earlier than two weeks before playoff time.

It may be allowed, but it sure seems wrong to be able to start airlifting players from their restful schedule of Europe just in time for the hard gruelling marathon of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

A drop dead date (for lack of a better term) would seemingly be a must if these kinds of scenarios are not to repeat themselves.  Perhaps tie it in with either the All Star Game or the Winter Classic, if a player has not skated on the active roster by that point, he is then considered to be not available for the remainder of the regular and post season.

Unless you're a fan of Nashville, this current silliness just seems wrong.

The Tennessean-- Alexander Radulov's return to Nashville Predators appears imminent
The Tennessean-- Nashville Predators on Alexander Radulov:"cautiously optimistic'
The Tennessean-- Nashville Predators would welcome Alexander Radulov back
Nashville City Paper-- Predators poised for Radulov's return...
Russia Today-- Wandering Russian: Radulov strengthens Nashville ahead of Stanley Cup
Globe and Mail-- Predators GM says 'every indication" is that Radulov will return
Globe and Mail-- Radulov could be the piece to push Preds to playoff success
National Post-- Alexander Radulov is on his way to the Predators: agent
Edmonton Journal-- All is forgiven as Radulov returns to Music City
USA Today-- Why Alexander Radulov's return is a major event
Toronto Sun-- Radulov a true power forward

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