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IN THE CREASE
Pierre McGuire
December 25, 2000
During a game against the Wild last week, Capitals assistant coach Tim Army could be seen showing forward Richard Zednik a sequence of plays from the match on a handheld computer. The XOSketch system, which costs $50,000, allows Washington to tap into the in-house video feed and almost immediately show replays. The Caps are the only NHL team using such a system, but others are sure to follow....
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December 25, 2000

In The Crease

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During a game against the Wild last week, Capitals assistant coach Tim Army could be seen showing forward Richard Zednik a sequence of plays from the match on a handheld computer. The XOSketch system, which costs $50,000, allows Washington to tap into the in-house video feed and almost immediately show replays. The Caps are the only NHL team using such a system, but others are sure to follow....

At the Dec. 11 Board of Governors' meeting, Blues owner Bill Laurie was chastised by other members of the board for lavishing defenseman Chris Pronger, who won the Hart Trophy last season, with a three-year, $29.5 million extension in November. That contract raises the bar for free-agents-to-be such as the Kings' Rob Blake....

Give Flames coach Don Hay credit for tapping into the expertise of Brian Skrudland, special assistant to Calgary general manager Craig Button. Two weeks ago Hay asked Skrudland to devise a game plan to help beat the Stars. Skrudland, who retired last summer after finishing his 15-year career as a center with Dallas, did just that, and the Flames pulled off a 4-3 upset....

Penguins goalie Garth Snow, who came out of his crease and attacked Panthers wing Peter Worrell in front of the Pittsburgh bench last Thursday, wasn't the only player who deserved to be suspended in that brawl. (Snow was given two games.) Penguins forward Matthew Barnaby, who was on the bench, escaped punishment despite grabbing Worrell during the scrap....

After a quick start, rookie defenseman Andrei Markov is in the Canadiens' doghouse. The 22-year-old Markov wasn't dressed for two games last week because Montreal coaches were unhappy with his uninspired practice habits....

Senators defenseman Chris Phillips is one of the most improved players in the NHL. Phillips, the No. 1 pick in 1996 who had been plagued by inconsistency and injury, has been more aggressive this season and looks comfortable with the puck. He also has switched to skates that have a more pliable boot than the ones he used to wear.

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