Hockey Sense with Chris Peters
Talking Hockey Sense
Talking Hockey Sense Episode 13: Craig Custance

Talking Hockey Sense Episode 13: Craig Custance

Chris and Craig chat about the four remaining teams in the Stanley Cup Playoffs and a whole bunch of other topics.

After taking last week off from the podcast unexpectedly, we’re back this week with the first of TWO podcasts as I make up for some lost time. With the Stanley Cup Playoffs in its third round, I brought on Craig Custance, senior managing editor of The Athletic’s NHL vertical and host of the invaluable Full 60 podcast, to talk about the four remaining teams.

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In today’s episode, Craig and I talk about the Montreal Canadiens, Vegas Golden Knights, Tampa Bay Lightning and New York Islanders and some of the things we’re finding particularly intriguing about each club.

Among the topics: the meteoric rise of Habs rookie Cole Caufield who continues to prove doubters wrong, Barry Trotz as one of the NHL’s elite coaches, the Tampa Bay Lightning’s quest to become a legit dynasty in the NHL and the Golden Knights’ incredible entry into the NHL being one of the last four teams standing in three of the last four seasons.

Additionally, Craig chats about his new book project which will be taking a look at NHL general managers including Lou Lamoriello, and how reality doesn’t always meet the public perception of him. With Craig being local in Detroit, we talked about Steve Yzerman who is one of the most impressive, but also one of the most mysterious general managers in the game today.

We also got into some of the career topics, like Craig’s leap of faith moving from ESPN to The Athletic before it had grown into the media giant it has become today. There’s some good lessons about being willing to take risks to get what you ultimately want.

There’s also a discussion about the future of hockey media as we get closer to a post-pandemic world that will now include two new TV rights holders in the U.S. This very well could be a flashpoint for the sport in America and another chance to grow the game.

Lastly, I spent a little time after the interviews detailing some of the numbers that USA Hockey recently released about hockey participation across the country and how the pandemic negatively impacted those numbers. I also shared my reasons for optimism of what the next steps will be to help hockey recover after such a potentially devastating season to its short-term growth. You can read more about that here.

Coming Thursday: Episode 14 featuring Elliotte Friedman of Hockey Night in Canada, 31 Thoughts (the column and the podcast) and a Q&A with more great questions from Hockey Sense subscribers and Talking Hockey Sense listeners. If you have any last-minute questions, leave them in the comments or shoot me a note on Twitter.

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Hockey Sense with Chris Peters
Talking Hockey Sense
A podcast covering all facets of hockey with a special focus on the NHL Draft and prospects with in-depth commentary and frequent guests hosted by hockey writer Chris Peters.