Puck Headlines: Sundin Derby field narrows down to lose/lose

Here are your Morning Puck Headlines: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.

• Ed Moran of the Philadelphia Daily News reports that Philadelphia Flyers GM Paul Holmgren has admitted his team isn't going to have the cap space to sign Mats Sundin, and that Sundin's agent told the Ottawa Sun that the final four for his client's services are the New York Rangers, Montreal Canadiens, Vancouver Canucks and Chicago Blackhawks. [Philly.com]

• Oh, yeah, about those Blackhawks: They took their name out of the Sundin Derby, too. [Bleacher Report]

• Larry Brooks breaks down the Rangers' options with Sundin, including a scenario under which he could begin practicing with the team before he counts against the cap. [NY Post]

• The way Damian Cox sees it, Sundin has two options: Lose and lose. He either goes to a Rangers team that can't score, or he's miserable playing for a Western Conference team closer to Wasilla than Toronto. [Toronto Star]

Sean Avery options for the Dallas Stars, including sending him on a two-week conditioning assignment in the minors and then trading him without "any cap hit or salary remaining." [Dallas Stars Blog]

• The St. Louis Blues would like to open next season against the Detroit Red Wings in Sweden. Because, you know, they're just goofy for Alex Steen and Patrik Berglund over there. And because the Blues would like to sell out a game at some point next season without having to offer to pay someone's mortgage off. [Post-Dispatch]

• If you're playing hockey in an adult league and you're not wearing a cage or a shield, please take note: This could be you one day. (Please note: Link not for the squeamish.) [Third Man In]

• Why are the Ottawa Senators and Tampa Bay Lightning struggling? According to Don Cherry, it's because they dress like thugs off the ice, claiming that some of them are "gonna steal your hubcaps." And the world breathes a sigh of relief that Cherry chose to say this one season after Ray Emery left for the KHL. That apology would have broken some kind of land-speed record. [Sun Media]

• Taking in the Knicks vs. Nets and the Rangers vs. Devils, and analyzing the Enthusiasm Gap between the NBA and NHL in Jersey. If by "enthusiasm" they mean "fights in the stands," we're pretty sure we know who wins. [Puck the Media]

• The Clint Howard of hockey, Sean Pronger, on being a healthy scratch: "Nowadays, almost all home dressing rooms are designed so you can be in the change room or weight room and not get in the way of the 'regulars.' What really sucks as a healthy scratch is when you have friends or family in town - that's always fun. Your parents fly halfway across the country to watch their boy play and you come home to break the news, 'not tonight folks.' (Near the end of my career I'm pretty sure they had it figured out.)" [THN]

Patrick Marleau provided San Jose Sharks fans with a reminder why he "freakin' rules." Hell of a goal, that one. [Battle of California]

Jeremy Roenick will probably miss more than three weeks after going under the knife. [Working the Corners]

• For some reason, it's Darth Vader Day in the hockey blogosphere. First, Rangerland wants to replace Tom Renney with the Dark Lord of the Sith: "Darth Vader is a man who is hell-bent on winning at any cost, and making sure his opponents are crushed and embarrassed when he's through with them. What does Tom Renney do? He tells his boys to ease up when the game is tied, because he wants to make sure that both teams get a point!" [Rangerland]

• Then, Fan IQ finds this ridiculously cool Darth Vader hockey sweater for the holidays. Suddenly, the Vegas Vaders sounds a hell of a lot more appealing for the NHL. "I find your lack of faith in our goaltending disturbing ..." [Fan IQ]

• Christmas presents for the Columbus Blue Jackets. Honestly, what do you get for the Fedor Tyutin who has everything? [HLOG]

• Among the notable names on the Canadian world juniors team: Angelo Esposito, John Tavares, Jordan Eberle, Cody Hodgson and Ryan Ellis, the team's first 17-year-old defenseman since Jay Bouwmeester. [CP]

• Team Canada's next Olympic head coach: Mike Babcock or Barry Trotz? [Snapshots]

Zdeno Chara dropped the gloves last Friday night, and explains why the Boston Bruins are quick to stick up for each other. Wait, guys in Boston like fighting? Since when? [Bruins]

• Alanah McGinley with a nice valentine to the career of Trevor Linden, who will be honored by the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday. [NHL]

• Finally, Gregory Campbell attempted to fire up his Florida Panthers by taking on NHL penalty-minutes leader Shane O'Brien of the Vancouver Canucks. If you've ever wondered what earns someone a 100-percent victory in HockeyFights.com fan voting, here it is:

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