Yesterday when I started the morning bullets, I wanted to check in with you all and see how you were doing. See how your summers were going. So on cue, when I want to take a bit of a cleansing breath on the team, there happens to new information and new developments in the lawsuits and allegations against the Blackhawks and former video coach Brad Aldrich.
• The new details, in a report from TSN’s Rick Westhead, stem from former skill coach Paul Vincent’s interview with Jenner and Block regarding his involvement in the 2010 incidents involving Aldrich and the team.
Report: Paul Vincent Explains His 2010 Meeting With Blackhawks Front Office Members https://t.co/izcphBgAox
— Bleacher Nation Blackhawks (@BN_Blackhawks) August 12, 2021
• Vincent gave details in his interview of the meeting that he was called into with Blackhawks front office members prior to the beginning of the Western Conference Finals in the 2010 postseason. In the meeting was John McDonough, Stan Bowman, Al MacIsaac, and James Gary. Vincent says that it was MacIsaac that essentially ran the meeting and did most of the talking.
• MacIsaac, who is the Senior Vice President of Hockey Operations with the club currently, reportedly told Vincent in the meeting, “We’ve got it handled…we’re going to look into it. You don’t need to look into it anymore.” The suggestion that the Blackhawks brass would handle the situation is likely the main reason why players and staff who knew of the allegations did not do much more about it following Aldrich leaving the club following the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
• As we know now, the Blackhawks did not “handle it.” The chain of events leading to the alleged incident in 2010, plus what happened after Aldrich left the team, feels even more like a 100% avoidable timeline. There were red flags surrounding Aldrich in his time with Chicago prior to May of 2010, but nothing was done about it. I find it hard to believe he was that irreplaceable as a video coach that the team didn’t think cutting ties with him earlier would have been a better choice to make.
• Then we get this bit of information from Westhead today regarding the operations of the Jenner and Block investigation process…
— Mario Tirabassi (@Mario_Tirabassi) August 13, 2021
• While the law firm did end up agreeing to have both parties record the interview session, the optics of the law firm potentially cancelling the meeting because they couldn’t be the only ones recording the session just feels off.
• I have my reservations still regarding the “independent review” Jenner and Block are conducting and what the scope of what they are looking for or are finding will ultimately end up being. We’ve been told the findings will be made public, but that was a decision made later in the process. I’m just blindly spit-balling and speculating, but could the team already know what has been found and know that it won’t sink their ship, so they are OK with it being public? I don’t know.
• This is not an enjoyable process, but it is necessary to hold those involved responsible and accountable. We will see where this continues to go.
• Changing gears real quick, it’s a double Blackhawks Birthday today. Newest acquisition Jujhar Khaira turns 27 today, while former one-time Blackhawks goaltender Marty Turco turns 46!
— Bleacher Nation Blackhawks (@BN_Blackhawks) August 13, 2021
• And how about a first-look at Khaira in a Blackhawks sweater?
• I’m still upset that we don’t have numbers yet for Khaira, Tyler Johnson, and Jake McCabe.
• Speaking of new sweaters, the Winnipeg Jets announced today that they will be using their Navy blue Heritage sweaters as their thirds this season. A move that seems universally loved.
• I’ve been saying this for a few years now, but I think that the Jets should just make the two versions of their Heritage Classic sweaters as their regular home and away sweaters…
There’s nothing necessarily wrong with the Winnipeg Jets’ sweaters now, but they should just make these their regular home and away setups. They are just so, so nice. pic.twitter.com/UAwAheredd
— Mario Tirabassi (@Mario_Tirabassi) August 13, 2021
• They just look so great and the color scheme is a throwback to the original Jets franchise from the 80’s and 90’s.
• Speaking of the 90’s, Joe Thornton has found a new home for what may be his final year of his illustrious NHL career.
Welcome to South Florida, Jumbo 😎
We’ve signed Joe Thornton to a one-year contract!!
— Florida Panthers (@FlaPanthers) August 13, 2021
• Jumbo Joe is headed to South Beach on a one-year deal at league-minimum. Thornton still has some game left in his 42-year-old body…
Here's Thornton's 08-21 projected WAR timeline. Followed an… atypical age curve I would say. pic.twitter.com/RWkvBefNIX
— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) August 13, 2021
• And yes, that beard is still going strong…
The beard. Still epic. pic.twitter.com/S8zfMmCBf8
— Tracey Myers (@Tramyers_NHL) August 13, 2021
• Yesterday, Former Blackhawks goaltender Robin Lehner had some time to kill while on vacation in Morocco and decided to open up his mentions for a quick Q&A.
How about a q/a ? I got some time. Bad or good question. Friendly or hostile I’m up for it. @ me and I’ll see how honest I can be.
— Robin Lehner (@RobinLehner) August 12, 2021
• I highly recommend browsing through the replies, there are some amazing nuggets in there from the always honest Lehner.
• Ending today’s bullets on a note from another Chicago team, the White Sox and Yankees played in the Field of Dreams Game yesterday in Iowa. It was a game that had the feel of the first Winter Classic the NHL held back in 2008, in that the atmosphere and the action lived up to the billing of the special game that it was. Including the epic finish…
— Bleacher Nation White Sox (@BN_WhiteSox) August 13, 2021
• Tim Anderson rules, by the way. (Peep that Twitter account, too…)
• That will do it for today. Enjoy your TGIF Friday!