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philly.com
By Tim Panaccio
Inquirer Columnist
Sun, Aug. 20, 2006

Rookie camp is set for Sept. 6-12. The Flyers' training camp opens with physicals on Sept. 14, with on-ice workouts the following morning.

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Will hockey make permanent inroads in Carolina now that the Hurricanes have won the Stanley Cup? GM Jim Rutherford says season-ticket sales are up 60 percent from a year ago. The club already has sold 15,000 season tickets, about 3,000 shy of capacity.

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Following Evgeni Malkin's defection to North America to play for the Pittsburgh Penguins this season, Gennady Velichkin, general manager of his former team, Russia's Mattalurg Magnitogorsk, told Itar-Tass that Americans engage in "sport terrorism." Like the Russians haven't been blackmailing the NHL on the transfer agreement over the years?"

Is it not clear that Evgeni left for America at the invitation of the people overseas?" Velichkin told Soviet Sport. "The Americans' arrogance is beyond bounds. This is the theft of the century. They don't care that Malkin is Russia's national treasure." In the purest James Bond sense, that makes Bettman the head of S.P.E.C.T.R.E. (Special Executor for Counter-Intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion), eh?... Strange but true:

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Thanks to inflated free agency, Kim Johnsson will make more money ($4.85 million) this season than high-scoring Daniel Alfredsson ($4.67 million).

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Finally, the Flyers will spend two days at the U.S. Naval Academy at the end of training camp. Hitchcock wanted to take the club to the Jersey Shore and practice at the Skate Zone in Atlantic City. That's a short walk from the Hilton Casino Resort. Let's see now, that would connect NHL players and casinos at a time when authorities are investigating a gambling ring that allegedly involved former Flyer Rick Tocchet (whose lawyer has said he will be vindicated). "Atlantic City didn't go over too well," Hitchcock said. Really?
 
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