Everybody loves Val Nichushkin...but how well do you know him? The Dallas Morning News delved deep into the info banks on the Stars' teenage Russian phenom and brought back this.
Hockey wasn't his first sport.
Though hockey is the sport of choice in Russia, Nichushkin didn't gravitate to it immediately. Nichushkin told Russian newspaper RIA Novosti in May that he also played tennis and handball growing up, adding "When I was a child, I didn't care much about hockey." Nichushkin said he settled on hockey at eight or nine.
He didn't have much use for the NHL Combine.
Nichushkin did make an appearance at the 2013 NHL Draft combine, but said he did absolutely no physical preparation for it so he wouldn't burn himself out, telling RIA Novosti, "To be honest, I don't care about these tests."
Which may be a non-Russian Factor explanation for this.
If you hadn't heard much about Nichushkin before the 2013 draft, it's because almost no one thought he'd last long enough to land in the Stars' lap at No. 10. Of the 10 prominent NHL mock drafts, Nichuskin's average draft position was No. 5 overall, and nobody had him falling lower than 8th.
There's much more at the link. Enjoy. [SportsDayDFW]
Has Tyler Seguin proven he "gets it" in Dallas? According to the Boston hockey media, no. No, he has not. Not bitter or anything, just no. [CBS Sports Boston]
The Calgary Flames finally have their D-core set, and yikes.
Brad Treliving says Giordano will be "a great mentor" to brand-new Flame Dougie Hamilton, and you probably just read that and died a little inside. [SportsNet]
Where do athletes draw the line on chirping? Ken Warren recounts an abbreviated history of players giving each other the business. Trigger warning: This article contains A Name That Must Not Be Named. (I just bring the links. How you use them is up to you.) [Ottawa Citizen]
Meanwhile, Dan Rosen says Kessel fits better with Evgeni Malkin. Discuss, also. [NHL.com]
Mats Sundin, Nicklas Lidstrom and Daniel Alfredsson have joined the front office of the Swedish men's national team. Even more, they're offering their advisory service free of charge. Imagine John Klingberg and Patrik Nemeth on this World Cup/Olympic team, and discuss.
Sundin, Lidstrom, Alfredsson join Swedish national team in advisory roles — free of charge http://t.co/8rx4Xz6MLW— The Hockey News (@TheHockeyNews) August 25, 2015
There's a(nother) post you should read at The Players' Tribune. Oklahoma City Thunder point guard D.J. Augustin writes about the New Orleans where he grew up, and New Orleans as it nears the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. [The Players' Tribune]
Mike Babcock helped raise more than $71,000 at Breakfast with Babcock yesterday morning. The event benefited Team 55, an organization that identifies and assists individuals at high risk for ongoing or repeated suicidal behavior. It's a cause close to Babcock's heart: He's lost two family friends to suicide. [The Peterborough Examiner]
Remember the Connor McDavid linemate who wasn't Remi Elie? Alex DeBrincat, the free-agent winger and OHL 2014-15 Rookie of the Year whose 5'7" frame "scared off" every other team, is ready to prove he can be The Man for the Erie Otters. [SportsNet]
Finally: Oh, those wacky folks at the KHL! Metallurg Magnitogorsk coach Mike Keenan stars as Vladimir Lenin in this silent, black-and-white preseason promo short, because why not. [Puck Daddy]