By Ellen Chlumecky
March 19, 2015
The Bowling Green State University hockey program is no stranger to exceptional alumni. We have the notable Dan Bylsma who is a former professional hockey player and the former head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Two of their alumni, Rob Blake and Ken Morrow were inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. George McPhee received the Hobey Baker Award when he was a hockey player here at Bowling Green. Gino Cavallini scored the winning overtime goal for the Falcons in the NCAA National Championship game. Most recently we gained an alumnus who is quickly making a name for himself on the Ottawa Senators. That rookie hockey player is Andrew Hammond.
Or one might know him as Hammy, Ham, Hammer, Hamsie, or the Hambone. More recently he might be referred to as “The Hamburglar” to his teammates and NHL and Ottawa Senators’ Twitter followers. You might know him as this because the National Post did a whole story on the development of his name and how he’s been having a breakout season as a rookie. Now like I said, the Bowling Green State University hockey program is no stranger to standout rookies and players who numerous accolades.
However, it’s especially exciting for someone who went to Bowling Green State University while he was playing, even if some of us only got to see him play when he was a senior. Besides the attention he’s been receiving on Twitter and his article in the National Post and one in Sports Illustrated, he’s having a great year for himself. Hammond’s current record in the goal right now is 9-0-1 including his win against the New York Islanders, only letting one goal in during the game. He is now only the third goaltender since 1928 to allow two or fewer goals in his first ten NHL starts, an incredible feat in and of itself.
Andrew Hammond has remained incredibly humble in all of his post-game interviews. His respectability not only on the ice but off the ice is another truly great feat for the Bowling Green State University hockey program. It makes me proud to go to a university that not only tries to raise tremendous athletes but athletes who go off and try to make respectable careers for themselves whether they continue to pursue their chosen sport or not. I wish Andrew Hammond luck in the rest of his hockey career and I know that he will continue to make his alma mater proud of his accomplishments.
By Savannah Malnar
When a sports team starts to slip in the standings, the blame can be placed on multiple people. In hockey that blame frequently is directed at the coach. With that in mind, in was announced on Monday that the Ottawa Senators had fired coach Paul MacLean who led the team to an 11-11-5 start this season.
This was a shock to a lot of Senators fans and media. The Senators are placed 7th in the Atlantic division and 10th in the entire Eastern Conference, but had just come off of a huge overtime win at home against the Vancouver Canucks. MacLean recently won the Jack Adams Trophy, which goes the NHL coach of the year, in the shortened 2012-2013 season and was awarded with a contract extension in the offseason. In roughly four seasons, the Senators are 114-90-35 under MacLean and made the playoffs in his first two seasons as coach. Despite this, reports stated that his locker room attitude had changed and he was more demanding than ever.
Just days before his firing, MacLean was quoted saying that he was “scared” of any team the Senators had to face. He did not elaborate on it anymore, but the media took it as a lack of trust in his players.
MacLean’s termination garnered a lot of attention in the hockey media as it was the first coaching change in the NHL this season. Larger media entities remained objective in their reporting, but each still drew attention to his recent Jack Adams award. One local media outlet, CBC News Ottawa, took a different approach and instead just presented multiple screenshots of the media and fan reaction to MacLean being fired.
The result? A lot more blame placing, but not on MacLean; instead, many fans showed support for the coach and instead said the problem was a cheap owner (the Senators currently have the lowest payroll in the entire league) and an underperforming team. One tweet in particular said, “Good coaches lose their jobs when their team doesn’t perform.. Which is exactly what happened with Paul MacLean in Ottawa.”
This personnel move by the Senators is questionable, especially this early in the season. But with the rumors of his change in attitude and a lot of critique of his poor defensive strategies, the Senators ownership must feel they need a new person in charge in order to get back into the postseason. That new person will be MacLean’s assistant Dave Cameron, who has now been promoted to head coach.
By Ellen Chlumecky
October 22nd, 2014 is a date that will now live in infamy in the hearts of all Canadians. At 9:52 a.m. when Michael Zehaf-Bibeau entered the Canadian National War Memorial, everything changed. Zehaf-Bibeau fatally shot Corporal Nathan Cirillo and then attacked the members of the Canadian Parliament. Two days before, a terrorist attack occurred in Quebec which resulted in the killing of another Canadian soldier. This tragic week has hit Canada like a wrecking ball. Citizens of Canada’s lives were put on hold while they tried to absorb what happened. During this time, everyone tried to put activities on hold until people could grasp what had happened, notably they cancelled the Ottawa Senators and Toronto Maple Leafs game.
This Saturday, October 25th the same week of the tragic shootings, Canada held a commemorative night honoring the fallen soldiers at the Ottawa Senators and New Jersey Devils game. In combined efforts with the Montreal Canadiens and the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Ottawa Senators and the New Jersey Devils organized the game at Canadian Tire Centre to be a night dedicated to the two Canadian soldiers who had fallen in order to protect others and their country. The ceremony honored not only them, but the Canadian soldiers who were first respondents to both of the shootings.
The Ottawa Senators and the New Jersey Devils stood shoulder to shoulder on the center ice circle for the ceremony. In the middle of center ice were representatives of the Canadian military. The anthem singer sang “O Canada,” which the crowd joined in singing loudly with him. The Senators also showed on the video board the Montreal and Toronto arenas pregame where the crowd sang the Canadian anthem as well.
While the shoulder to shoulder is not something you usually see in these types of ceremonies, it was conveyed a powerful message. That message was the unity of these players symbolized the unity of the players and the unity of America and Canada. This message of the ceremony was to honor the fallen soldiers who gave their lives to protect the lives of other citizens. However, the NHL was also trying to make the statement of unity through hockey. Hockey holds great importance in Ottawa and Canada as a whole, and for the NHL to come together to show support towards Ottawa says a lot about the power of sports and the compassion that the NHL organization holds for these fallen soldiers, their families, and all that were affected.