SUN Hockey Pool

NDL Preview

Toronto Sun staff

, Last Updated: 9:03 AM ET

With the National Hockey League on ice, we're rolling the dice.

The Toronto Sun's National Dice League has picked up the 2004-05 NHL schedule so readers will get that shinny scoreboard fix through a long winter's lockout.

Follow the Maple Leafs or your favourite NHL team in the Bettman and Goodenow Conferences, through all 82 games and the playoff chase for locked-out hockey's new championship trophy -- The Salary Cup.

We'll have nightly scores, player interviews, injury updates, expert analysis and exciting game-action photos, all originating from NDL's headquarters, a kitchen table somewhere in Riverdale.

Here's the format. Each team gets one roll of a pair of dice (hey, we want to encourage scoring).

The higher score prevails and we've adjusted certain dice combinations for shutouts, ties and overtime.

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GOODENOW CONFERENCE

LUXURY TAX DIVISION

Boston Bruins

Hello: G Hannu Toivonen, C Tom Fitzgerald, C Brad Boyes

Dice dirt: Pray, send out Joe Thornton and pray again.

Toronto Maple Leafs

Hello: D Carlo Colaiacovo

Dice dirt: Old, cranky team shines when old and cranky.

Ottawa Senators

Hello: G Dominik Hasek, coach Bryan Murray

Dice dirt: Don't run at first sight of a Leaf this spring.

Montreal Canadiens

Hello: G Cristobal Huet, C Radek Bonk

Dice dirt: What about Bob?

Buffalo Sabres

Hello: G Ryan Miller

Dice dirt: Someone dial the French Connection.

ARBITRATION DIVISION

Philadelphia Flyers

Hello: RW Mike Knuble, RW Turner Stevenson

Dice dirt: Playoff payoff for Hitchcock.

New Jersey Devils

Hello: D Richard Matvichuk, LW Krzysztof Oliwa, RW Darren Langdon, C Pascal Rheaume

Dice dirt: Cup threat still lurks in the Swamp.

New York Islanders

Hello: RW Jim Campbell

Dice dirt: Mike Milbury is the next host of Survivor.

New York Rangers

Hello: D Jason Strudwick, C Blair Betts

Dice dirt: Send high-priced pouters packing from Park Ave.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Hello: RW Mark Recchi, RW Ryan VandenBussche

Dice dirt: Super Mario should splurge on some wingers.

SHARED REVENUE DIVISION

Tampa Bay Lightning

Hello: C Vaclav Prospal

Dice dirt: Time for Stanley to get out of the sun.

Atlanta Thrashers

Hello: D Jaroslav Modry, RW Scott Mellanby

Dice dirt: Heatley and Kovalchuk back to run amok.

Carolina Hurricanes

Hello: G Martin Gerber, D Frantisek Kaberle, C Matt Cullen

Dice dirt: Carolina dreaming, again.

Florida Panthers

Hello: G Jamie McLennan, D Sean Hill, D Alexander Karpovtsev, D Joel Kwiatkowski, D Eric Cairns, GM Mike Keenan, coach Jacques Martin

Dice dirt: Hurricane Mike heading for landfall.

Washington Capitals

Hello: LW Alexander Ovechkin

Dice dirt: No. 1 pick and Calder Trophy rarely match.

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BETTMAN CONFERENCE

COST CERTAINTY DIVISION

Detroit Red Wings

Hello: C Jiri Hudler

Dice dirt: Octopus' garden needs weeding.

St. Louis Blues

Hello: G Patrick Lalime

Dice dirt: Headed for a Mississippi mishap.

Nashville Predators

Hello: D Andreas Lilja

Dice dirt: Most excitement to hit town since Minnie Pearl.

Columbus Blue Jackets

Hello: G Arturs Irbe, D Radoslav Suchy

Dice dirt: Clone Rick Nash.

Chicago Blackhawks

Hello: D Jassen Cullimore, LW Matthew Barnaby, C Curtis Brown

Dice dirt: Daylight ahead, but Bill Wirtz still in the hole.

LOCKOUT DIVISION

San Jose Sharks

Hello: LW Milan Michalek

Dice dirt: This season's Lightning?

Dallas Stars

Hello: LW Jaroslav Svoboda

Dice dirt: No D in Big D.

Los Angeles Kings

Hello: G Mathieu Garon, D Stephane Quintal, C Craig Conroy,

Dice dirt: Hotel California now Hospital California.

Anaheim Mighty Ducks

Hello: G Ilya Bryzgalov, D Tomas Malec

Dice dirt: Stick a fork in Wild Wing.

Phoenix Coyotes

Hello: D Sean O'Donnell, D Keith Ballard, LW Jason Chimera, LW Boyd Devereaux, RW Brett Hull, C Mike Ricci, coach Rick Bowness

Dice dirt: New roster, new rink, same old weaknesses.

IMPASSE DIVISION

Vancouver Canucks

Hello: G Wade Flaherty, GM Dave Nonis

Dice dirt: Bertuzzi storm will cloud the season.

Colorado Avalanche

Hello: LW Antti Laaksonen, RW Ian Laperriere, coach Joel Quenneville

Dice dirt: Genius of GMs put to the test.

Calgary Flames

Hello: C Byron Ritchie, C Jason Wiemer

Dice dirt: Flames must fight flash-in-the-pan syndrome.

Edmonton Oilers

Hello: D Jeff Woywitka

Dice dirt: Not even their provincial bragging rights remain.

Minnesota Wild

Hello: C Brian Rolston, C Mikko Koivu

Dice dirt: Best rink in the NHL houses most boring team.


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