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The NHL Mercy Rule

During any one of the recent trouncing defeats of the Columbus Blue Jackets by basically any team in the entire NHL I decided that the NHL could do more to address the struggling team in the league. Out of this brief thought I constructed a series of new additions the NHL rulebook; these new rules will now and forever be known as the Mercy Rules.

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#StayNegi: Stay Away From Nostalgia

So there seems to be a big push to have this return to these cities of failed NHL teams.  In 1999, Atlanta received the Thrashers after losing the Flames back in 1980 to Calgary.  In 1995, Denver found the NHL back with the Avalanche after their original team relocated it New Jersey in 1982.  In 2000, Minneapolis received the Wild after loosing the North Stars to Dallas in 1993.  Most recently Winnipeg saw the return of the NHL with the Atlanta Thrashers relocated there this summer.  Atlanta, Kansas City, Minneapolis, and Winnipeg aren’t the only cities that have lost NHL teams over the years, and the way things are going, it seems more cities will be joining the club. 

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#StayNegi: Expanding the Canadian NHL

Perusing the internet today, I couldn’t help but notice the study Conference Board of Canada did on the financial stability of Canada and their ability to take their team count from 7 to 9 teams. 

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Break Anchor Makes It Official and Joins Up With Paper + Plastick

Good news everybody. Break Anchor is putting out their first 7" EP titled Blackhearts and Blackouts on Paper + Plastick. Does Break Anchor not mean anything to you yet?

well, Several months back a long time friend of mine shared some demos on bandcamp from Jay Navarro's newest band Break Anchor. The sound was a departure from the thrash metal of Hellmouth and the ska/punk/hardcore sounds of The Suicide Machines, and also features Cris Golan of The Story So Far, King For A Day, plus Kyle Gree and Dan Stover of Seized Up. Since I first heard those demos the bandcamp page went quiet and eventually the demos disappeared off the page altogether. Well, that was until today. 

The band's first officially released song 'A Failure of Epic Proportions' is available over at Spinner (click this link and then look for the little black oval). The song is a really great mid-tempo pop-punk number that shows off the sounds and personality of the band. The lyrics are raw, angry, depressed and mix together perfectly with the throaty growls and melodic tendencies that Jason perfected during his days with the Suicide Machines. Break Anchor also take the often enjoyable route of shared vocals with Kyle lending a smoother sound that balances out Jason's voice. I may be a bit of a Jay Navarro fanboy, but I'm all but certain the rest of the EP is going to totally fantastic.

The current release date for Break Anchor's Blackhearts and Blackouts is set for March 20th, 2012


Eulogy for HockeyPunx.com

[Author's note: This is a crosspost from the HockeyPunx.com blog.
it is being reposted here with permission. For posterity, or something.]


Long before Up The Pucks existed, HockeyPunx was the undisputed source for all things punk rock and hockey. Born in early September of 2009, HockeyPunx was a blog with big aspirations. Dreams of regular news-posts, analysis, interviews, and a general exploration of this strange but fascinating link between punk rock and hockey were just the beginning of what was imagined for the site.

Other ideas were entertained. Some, like a web forum were kids could get together and belittle each other’s tastes in punk music and hockey allegiances were executed with some success. Others, like a podcast discussing punk rock and hockey, were stolen by a rebel faction of visitors to the site, and branched off into its own entity altogether.

Enter Up The Pucks. While KW (of imadethismistake fame) and I were merely kicking the tires of the idea of a punk rock/hockey podcast, discussing primitive plans on our site, some kids that had a lot more drive, a better plan, and much more time on their hands went out and got the job done without us. Peter and Brandon launched Up The Pucks with their very first episode in September 2010.

It didn’t take long for UTP to take off. The podcast medium lent itself to a much more captive audience than the old written word that a simple blog allowed for, and Up The Pucks managed to pick up quite the following. And success begets success: Having a real audience helped UTP net big name guests on their show, like ESPN Insider’s/Washington Post’s Neil Greenberg, or Puck Daddy’s  Greg Wyshynski, and having big name guests on their show helped UTP retain a real audience.

For a while, a lazy HockeyPunx and a motivated Up The Pucks were able to coexist. Though the blog medium is certainly not as attractive as a podcast, the archaic written word had a home on the HockeyPunx blog, while fans of the auditory world found comfort in Up The Pucks. But eventually, despite the best efforts of writers like Bryan, HockeyPunx just couldn’t compete. Updates were too infrequent to retain an audience, and in the event there was an actual article posted to the site, it was often half-assed and uninspired.

Soon, HockeyPunx.com simply became a weekly reminder to listen to that week’s episode of Up The Pucks. The blog failed to attract any new writers, and without real content it failed to attract any real audience.

With HockeyPunx barely surviving on life support, Peter informed me a couple months ago of his intentions to add a motivated collection of writers to the Up The Pucks family, and launch a regularly updated UTP blog. With an audience already built in from their podcast sucess, and actual unique and fresh content already in the pipeline, I knew Peter’s plans were the final nail in HockeyPunx.com’s coffin. Today, the revamped Up The Pucks site, blog and all, has been launched.

An idea that HockeyPunx.com attempted to pioneer and innovate has been surpassed by the efforts of its successor. HockeyPunx has become the MySpace to Up The Pucks’ Facebook.

Now, although Peter and Brandon are undeniably two of the biggest dream-killing shitheads that you’ll ever meet, I certainly can’t blame them entirely for the death of HockeyPunx. As mentioned above, content and quality fell dramatically, and I was clearly not motivated enough to even attempt to bring it back to life prior to Peter's news. Had I invested the time and effort to build an exciting HockeyPunx experience, today’s post might go a little different. Perhaps an announcement of the new incarnation of Up The Pucks that welcomed a new era of corroboration between our two sites. Two different takes on a shared idea. Regrettably, I can’t pretend this to be the reality.

While I do plan to participate in the new Up The Pucks, stopping by occasionally to write an article here and there, perhaps being invited on to future podcast episodes, I cannot say that HockeyPunx can reasonably coexist. There’s simply no room for it in a world where Up The Pucks does everything HockeyPunx was envisioned as doing (and more).

With that in mind, consider this HockeyPunx’s eulogy. It’s been an interesting couple of years, and I’ve made some good friends through the endeavor. I’m excited to see where the legacy of what I created takes Up The Pucks, and I’m excited to be a part of the new version of Up The Pucks (even if marginally so).

I’ll leave this post on the main page of the HockeyPunx website for now, and eventually I imagine the domain name will simply redirect to the UpThePucks.com website. I can’t imagine finding a better use for such a domain name, but if for some reason something comes up, perhaps Up The Pucks will keep you up to date on any new endeavors.

With that, I leave you with the best of HockeyPunx. I’m determining the “best of” by a variety of factors, from most read stories to simply my personal taste. They’re posted here in no particular order.


Some of my personal highlights, written by me:

Everything Bryan ever wrote for us:

Submissions from assorted other writers: