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Quick Strikes: There’s still hockey!

For those of you saying “hockey is over ‘till October,” do I have good news for you!

One year ago, Mike McKenna played for the Crunch. He’s part of the small percentage of hockey players still playing.
Scott Thomas Photography

The Bolts

Another episode of Raw Charge’s own podcast Charged Up! went live yesterday. [Raw Charge]

On this episode, Blueshirts Breakaway hosts Greg Kaplan and Ryan Mead join the show to discuss the McDonagh trade, the Rick Nash trade (and a small argument about Rick Nash’s ability to produce for teams), Alexander Ovechkin finally winning the Stanley Cup, what Tampa Bay’s immediate future looks like, and some early conversations about free agency and what the Lightning could in the free agent market (hint: if it doesn’t include John Tavares, don’t expect a lot).

The Prospects

Crunchman was out on the Central New York community yesterday, representing the Syracuse Crunch:

Todd Cross of the Crunch’s front office helped the team be visible at the Duck Race to End Racism:

The Game

SBNation’s NHL mock draft continues. Yesterday we recapped picks 12, 13, and 14. [Raw Charge]

Of those, the 13th pick pick was the hot spot...or maybe the hot potato because no one seemed to want to pick there. First, Dallas traded the pick to Philadelphia in exchange for the 14th pick and Petr Mrazek. The crew at Defending Big D must be concerned with Ben Bishop as their starter and was willing to move back one spot to acquire some extra goaltending depth.

That trade happened early in the draft but when the time came to make the pick, Philly flipped the pick to Colorado along with the 127th pick in exchange for the 16th and 58th picks. I interpret that to mean that Philly was willing to dump Mrazek to move up a spot but once the pick arrived, they weren’t too excited about any of the options so they were willing to move back.

If we use Michael Schucker’s pick value chart, Philly got the better of that deal. But if Colorado had a player they really liked in the spot, the trade might make sense for them.

Developmental partnerships can win championships. The Washington Capitals and the Hershey Bears are one example of this. [AHL]

Washington’s roster included former Bears Jay Beagle, Madison Bowey, Travis Boyd, Andre Burakovsky, John Carlson, Pheonix Copley, Christian Djoos, Philipp Grubauer, Braden Holtby, Dmitry Orlov, Chandler Stephenson, Jakub Vrana, Nathan Walker and Tom Wilson.

Beagle and Carlson won back-to-back Calder Cups in Hershey in 2009 and 2010, while Holtby helped the club to the title in 2010. Beagle, Carlson and Holtby become the 123rd, 124th and 125th players ever to win both the Calder Cup and the Stanley Cup in their careers.

Pride Tape gives a shout out to Emma from the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation, honoring all she has done to unite the two organizations:

We keep hoping for a day that hockey truly is for everyone. Efforts like Emma’s and others go a long way towards making that a reality.

Goaltender Mike McKenna, featured in the shot accompanying this entry, is just as calm as ever as he continues to try to help guide the Texas Stars to Calder Cup glory. [AHL]

June means hot weather.

Lately it also means goaltender Mike McKenna taking a team to the Calder Cup Finals.

For the second consecutive season, McKenna will have a very late finish to his season.

This season, he has the Texas Stars two wins away from what would be his first championship. Last year, the Syracuse Crunch added McKenna at the NHL trade deadline, and he helped to lead them to Game 6 of the Calder Cup Finals against the Grand Rapids Griffins.

Texas has proven that they’re willing to come out to support their home team:

The ECHL’s Colorado Eagles won the Kelly Cup yesterday, enabling the organization to exit the league with a bang. The team will be joining the AHL next season as the Colorado Avalanche’s affiliate.