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Quick Strikes: AGM Pat Verbeek could be heading to Detroit

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and Gritty wins the Kentucky Derby.

Pat Verbeek #15
Pat Verbeek with the Detroit Red Wings in 2000
Getty

The Bolts

As the Tampa Bay Lightning player grade series continues, we reach our evaluation of Dan Girardi. Safe to say his tenure with the Bolts was at best mediocre, and at worst a detriment to the team. Nothing against him personally, of course. He sounds like a really nice and caring guy, but in the cold world of sports, his icetime and cap dollar could be much better used elsewhere. [Raw Charge]

It was a very serviceable season from Dan Girardi on the Tampa Bay Lightning. He was a regular defenseman for the team that finished first in the NHL. There was concern when he first joined the Bolts following several trying seasons in New York that he was going to be unplayable, and his contract an albatross. Nevertheless, we are at the end of the two-year journey and nothing is on fire. Except the fanbase.

In Bob McKenzie’s podcast, the TSN Bobcast, the Bob Father provided a minor scoop that Tampa Bay’s assistant general manager and director of player personnel Pat Verbeek appears to be heading to Detroit to serve as AGM to Steve Yzerman. Detroit is in an interesting situation currently because Ken Holland, who was technically promoted to a senior role when Yzerman was hired, is being heavily pursued by the Edmonton Oilers. If Holland takes the Edmonton job and/or Verbeek leaves outright, that would leave current GM Julien BriseBois without an assistant and less depth in the front office everywhere else. He’s going to need some help.

Contracts used to be held completely private, but since the Mike Babcock sweepstakes, reporters have been able to get executives to brag about their salary enough to get concrete numbers. The Holland number has been rumoured to be $25 million over five seasons. Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet had the scoop.

The Prospects

On Instagram, goaltender Connor Ingram shared his admiration for the Orlando Solar Bears after their season ended in the second round. Will he be back in Orlando for next year? How about Syracuse? Will he still be in the organization after getting exiled to the lowest tier in the system? Time will tell.

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What a ride. Appreciate you @solarbearshockey

A post shared by Connor Brent Ingram (@connoringram) on

The Game

So the Kentucky Derby (horses?) was last night and there was some controversy surrounding which horse (team?) won the race (trophy?). But none of that matters as Philadelphia Flyers mascot and influencer Gritty stole the show with the release of his newest music video. This is the biggest moment in music since Kanye ruined Taylor Swift’s VMA win by macking on Beyonce. You just have to see it for yourself.

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old McGritty had a farm... #derbyday

A post shared by Gritty (@grittynhl) on

And once you’ve seen it, head over to Russian Machine Never Breaks where they did a breakdown of the video. Yes, someone actually did that. [RMNB]

The Flyers didn’t get enough wins during the regular season to qualify for playoffs, but their mascot Gritty has already won the off-season. In anticipation of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday night, Gritty dropped a music video based on the viral meme which spawned from Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” song.

Two full days after 200+ women hockey players went on strike from league games in North America in order to fight for better working conditions, the NHLPA decided to provide . press release. It was, in short, short. And patronizing.

Twitter had a fun time ridiculing the PR gaff, especially Namita, whose tweet ended up being more popular than the PA statement itself.