Skip to main content
Original Issue

In The Crease

Coyotes managing partner Wayne Gretzky was impressed with highly
touted center Jeff Taffe's first on-ice workout with Phoenix two
weeks ago. The reason? Taffe, a first-round pick in 2000 who
played for the Minnesota Golden Gophers last season, refused to
wear a visor, as he was required to in college. Gretzky, an
old-school type, thinks that Taffe, whom he expects to be a
regular in 2002-03, proved his willingness to play the game as
tough as necessary.... The NHL's award voting needs to be
changed in light of last Thursday's results. How could the
Professional Hockey Writers' Association (PHWA) honor the
Canadiens' Jose Theodore with the Hart Trophy yet name Patrick
Roy the first-team All-Star goalie? The same writers don't
necessarily cast votes for both the awards and the All-Star
teams.... The Red Wings think they landed a draft gem when they
chose 5'9", 178-pound Czech center Jiri Hudler with their first
pick (58th overall) last Saturday. Hudler, who was nicknamed
Shrimp by many NHL scouts, was ranked 15th on Detroit's draft
list. Thanks to European scout Hakan Andersson, the Red Wings
have found good talent late in the draft with players such as
forwards Tomas Holmstrom (257th pick in '94) and Pavel Datsyuk
(171st in '98).... At last week's meeting of the NHL Coaches'
Association, several members voiced concern about the increasing
incidence of obstruction. Among the association's
recommendations, which would need approval by the NHL board of
governors, is to more clearly define what constitutes
obstruction, making it easier for officials to call.