This week marks my 52nd week writing this column. Although I’ve been writing Blake’s Takes for a bit over a year, this felt like the perfect time to celebrate. I want to thank everyone who reads this column each week. I appreciate all of your support and I have really enjoyed the experience. A special thanks to my number-one fan, Aaron Walters, for all of the kind words. Here’s to another 52 weeks!
The NHL is buzzing right now and takes are easy to come by. For this week’s Blake’s Takes, you can expect a Jack Hughes update and additional Devils’ news. Also, I’ll feature one of the best rivalries in the sport that flared up over the weekend and highlight what could be this year’s best goal.
Continue reading “Blake’s Takes: Drew Doughty is Back and Happy One-Year!”
It’s so easy to fire off hot takes when the season is rolling. Last week, we saw another major market team announce their newest captain. I’ll share my thoughts on an unsurprising reunion and a very surprising career resurgence for a pair of key veterans.
Continue reading “Blake’s Takes: There’s a New Captain in Vancouver”
There was no shortage of storylines this week as the season is officially here. The Maple Leafs decided to name their next captain right before puck drop, we saw a few contract extensions handed out, as well as a little ice in St. Louis. I’m excited for what this season has in store and the takes that will come with it.
Continue reading “Blake’s Takes: There is a New Captain in Toronto”
Today is the start of the 2019-20 NHL season — and with that, a bevy of new game-night promotional items will be given away to ticket-buying fans in most cities.
Many of these giveaways sound pretty fun. For example, the Philadelphia Flyers will give away a Gritty Chia Pet, which seems so obvious that I’m mad that I didn’t think of it first. The Chicago Blackhawks will give out Alex DeBrincat and Dylan Strome salt and pepper shakers, while the Red Wings are giving out nesting dolls. The San Jose Sharks are giving away a badass 3-D sculpture of their secondary logo (shown above).
Surprisingly, only nine teams are giving away bobblehead figures. Perhaps last year’s Joe Thornton bobblehead that was missing a chunk of its beard made most other teams’ marking and PR people realize that they could never, ever top that — so why even try? That didn’t stop some teams from trying, though. The Blackhawks and Nashville Predators are each giving away six bobbleheads over the course of the season. The New Jersey Devils will give out a bobblehead of P.K. Subbam as “The Subbinator,” while the Anaheim Ducks will give away a John Gibson “bobble legs” figure.
Here is a list of the coolest giveaway items from each NHL team. I’ve skipped the mundane stuff like t-shirts and hats instead focusing on items that are collectible or kitschy.
Continue reading “The Best 2019-20 NHL Game-Night Giveaway Items”
The NHL offseason is officially on fire after all of the high-profile RFAs have signed. That’s not the only news around the league. The NHL announced a major partnership that will go against the grain. We also saw one of the bigger trades of the summer and a new captain was announced. Read on to find out why this week’s set of takes is about muffins.
Continue reading “Blake’s Takes: No More Bran Muffins”
The dominos continue to drop around the league as another few RFAs finally broke their respective stalemates. I’ll give my takes on those deals, the great, the good, and the decent. There was also some huge news that could prevent another lockout. The NHL offseason is exciting once again!
Continue reading “Blake’s Takes: The Dominos Continue to Fall”
Today, after several months of inspired and feverish work, I would like to finally announce the launch of the Puck Junk Shop, an online store for this site. I’m excited that everything came together to make this happen.
Currently, the Puck Junk Shop is selling hockey t-shirts that feature original designs that my girlfriend and I created. Hopefully, the Shop will soon expand to sell other hockey-related merchandise.
Do you collect hockey cards? Do you play hockey in a recreational league? Do you love all things hockey? Then check out the Shop, which has six different hockey t-shirts — in multiple colors — with more creations in the works.
The Puck Junk Shop is currently taking pre-orders, with shirts expected to ship the first week of the hockey season. Place an order between now and October 1 and save 10% off your first order with coupon code SHOPLAUNCH at checkout.
Even if you don’t buy anything, please help spread the word about the new online Shop, and consider signing up for the mailing list. This is something that I’ve dreamed about doing for a long time, and every share, like, retweet and repost will help. Also, please leave a comment below and let me know what you think about the designs — or what hockey shirt designs you’d like to see. Wish us luck, and thank you for your support! ■
Follow Sal Barry on Twitter @PuckJunk.
How many synonyms can I use for the word extension? You will have to keep reading to find out because this edition of Blake’s Takes is all about extensions. Mitch Marner finally signed an extension. Many of the other big-name RFAs followed suit, making last week one of the most memorable weeks of the summer in the hockey world.
Continue reading “Blake’s Takes: The Marner Bomb Drop and Other Extensions”
NHL GMs were busy this week dishing out a ton of money in extensions. I’ll look into four of the most impactful deals and why one of them could open the floodgates for the many unsigned RFAs.
Continue reading “Blake’s Takes: Extension Season”
The offseason has been slow, but with so many RFAs unsigned, that should change soon. For now, there were a few interesting things to happen in hockey this week, most notably the NHL’s decision to not opt-out of the current collective bargaining agreement. Also, potentially-huge extension and another big jersey announcement.
Continue reading “Blake’s Takes: NHL Sticks with CBA”