After two days of testing a shallower and more video review friendly version of hockey nets, Brendan Shanahan believes they could make their way into NHL arenas sooner than later. In addition to implementing these new knee hockey nets, Shanahan and his cronies were also impressed by the results of testing the green “verification line” that sits behind the traditional goal-line, and the curved glass designed to limit Zdeno Chara’s ability to decapitate Montreal Canadiens also received positive reviews.

Shanahan on potential changes via Chris Johnston, The Canadian Press:

“I think that the shallow nets are something that I’d really like to try in at least an exhibition game and see how players react to it.”

“We’re talking about the process and the steps that would go forward for that.”

“The curved glass, I think there’s a really good chance we’re going to see that in NHL games this year. I think we all agree that the curved glass makes the playing environment safer for our players so we want to have it in the game.”

The skinny nets, curved glass, and “verification line” are all proposed changes that wouldn’t have an impact on the NHL rule book, which could drastically cutdown the procedure for implementing them in time for the upcoming season. Of course, the bigger test will be to see how NHL players react to the changes, specifically the extra room created by the alternative nets.

Here’s a clip of Shanahan talking about the purpose of research and development and impressions of testing potential changes:

This Shanahan fella isn’t afraid of change.

The straight dope on painkillers in hockey

Justin Bourne served up one of the summer’s more captivating reads with a piece on the prevalence of painkiller addiction in pro hockey. Bourne on his own experience and those around him that got hooked on pain medication:

They’re truly tough to stop taking — I wouldn’t say I was addicted, but there’s no doubt that my body had become physically dependent. I’m proud I was able to leave them behind once the medical need was no longer there – some people aren’t so fortunate.

I can think of one ex-teammate in particular that I have no doubt would be farther up the hockey ranks if it hadn’t gone farther than that for him. I haven’t talked to the guy in years — maybe he’s kicked it — but when we played together, the kid was in the fog more often than not. He’d refer to morning sluggishness as his “pill hangover.” I didn’t feel close enough to him to say anything, and was convinced it wasn’t my place anyway. He seemed happy with his pills, and he’s certainly not the only pro player who feels that way.

When you’re playing in the minors, they’re always around. You don’t have to stop. I have no idea if use is as prevalent in the NHL as they are in the ECHL, but there was certainly plenty of casual use by guys on the way up.

The thing is, they stop some guys from climbing.

Quickies:

The Devils will be without Travis Zajac for three months following achilles surgery. [Fire & Ice]

Jason Gregor talks advanced stats with Tom Renney and we’re left to wonder if the Oilers head coach knows what nerds actually call these things. [Oilers Nation]

National television schedule for all 30 NHL teams. [Puck The Media]

A name surfaces in the Phoenix Coyotes ownership mystery. [Phoenix Business Journal]

Is Jeremy Roenick America’s answer to Don Cherry? [The Globe and Mail]

Can the Ilya Kovalchuk right wing experiment work in New Jersey? [In Lou We Trust]

Latest on Luke Schenn and Matthew Lombardi in Toronto. [Pro Hockey Talk]

What if Roenick wasn’t God?