Here are your Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.
• Just a reminder that the new contest, "The No-Foil Stanley Cup Replica Competition," is in full swing. We'll have an update on Friday, including some pot-sweetening prizes. Hurricanes Eulogy will be up later today.
• From the Wyshynski Twitter: "Bobby Hull just told me that he still takes [crap] for winning the Lady Byng in 1965. I love this man." Interview with the legend on Friday.
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• The NHL is rolling out the talent for its Vegas awards show. Robin Thicke and Chaka Khan perform. SNL's bandleader (what happened to G.E. Smith?) will lead the house band. Among the celebs appearing are Snoop Dogg (rapper/anklebiter football coach), William Fichtner (guy with the grenade in his mouth in The Dark Knight), Tricia Helfer (Cylon), Lauren Holly (P.O.A., Dumb & Dumber), Colin Ferguson (the actor, not the Long Island Railroad gunman). Crooner Michael Bublé will also be there, and we'll be watching just to see if he grabs the microphone for a profane rant against Vancouver Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo for "ruining it" this postseason. [NHL]
• Blaming Conan O'Brien for the final's crammed schedule. Hey, if he can affect Finnish election politics ... [Deadspin]
• Actually, we can also blame Kobe Bryant for this weekend's hockey schedule, too. [Watchdog]
• Ignoring the auto-play video, Scott Burnside has a solid preview of the Finals with this conclusion: "Even without the Wings' injuries, this series looked to be tilting in favor of the Pittsburgh Penguins given the exceptional play of Crosby and Malkin. But with the Wings banged up and missing key ingredients (or having key ingredients not at their best), the Penguins are suddenly the clear-cut favorites to win their first Cup since 1992. Penguins in six." [ESPN]
• Amy Shipley of the Washington Post has been nailing down the Washington Capitals' steroid story in the last 48 hours, and her report would seem to indicate a bit of haste in the police reporting rather unspecific information. [WaPo]
• Why the media reaction to the 'roids issue is pretty much slanderous. [Heated Skate]
• If you're someone that loves to gawk at alleged Ted Leonsis emails and reading novel-length stories about Carolina fans hanging out with Penguins players, well then it was Christmas morning on the Pensblog today. [Pensblog]
• The methodology that will lead to a Penguins Stanley Cup victory. [Tribune]
• The NHL unleashes its stunning numbers for the Stanley Cup finals. Of note: "53 -- Games in this year's playoffs in which the team leading after two periods has won. Detroit is 9-0 and Pittsburgh is 8-0. Teams leading after 40 minutes have lost just three times in 56 games." [NHL]
• Someone in yesterday's chat asked about Sergie Zubov's status for next season as a UFA with the Dallas Stars. Here's a good look at the pros and cons, as well as what it would take to bring back a player who's gone from Iron Man to Glass Joe pretty quickly. [Defending Big D]
• From Matt Sebek of Joe Sports Fan, the Bruins Fan/Zambrano Mashup.
• Speaking of the Devils, Brent Sutter continues to sound less-than-solid on returning next season: "I have so much respect for [Lou Lamoriello], I'm not going to let things hang. There's no timetable. I'm just not 100% sure yet." [Sun Media]
• NOT HOCKEY: Tecmo Bowl Wii on hold. Boo. [First Cuts]
• Scotty Hockey's quote of the night. Too true. [Scotty Hockey]
• Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs on the Winter Classic at Fenway Park in January 2010: "Everything I've seen acts like and smells like it's going to be in Boston ... I don't know anybody else that's gone through the process like we've gone through. Traditionally, the league announces it in July. It's probably going to be the biggest Classic." Buffalo disagrees. [Boston Globe]
• Why the NHL is full of itself. [Bleacher Report]
• The Italian Tarantella and the Teddy Bear Toss. Two reasons to love minor league hockey. [Puck The Media]