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IN THE CREASE
Pierre McGuire
November 23, 1998
Oilers forward Bill Guerin (below), who led the NHL with 12 goals at week's end, is the perfect example of a talented player who excels when the restraints of a rigid system are taken off. The 28-year-old Guerin, who was acquired last season from the Devils, never scored more than 29 goals in any of his five full seasons with New Jersey, which played a defensive style throughout his tenure....
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November 23, 1998

In The Crease

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Oilers forward Bill Guerin (below), who led the NHL with 12 goals at week's end, is the perfect example of a talented player who excels when the restraints of a rigid system are taken off. The 28-year-old Guerin, who was acquired last season from the Devils, never scored more than 29 goals in any of his five full seasons with New Jersey, which played a defensive style throughout his tenure....

Edmonton general manager Glen Sather, who stole Guerin from the Devils, made another outstanding deal on June 16 when he pried the rights to gifted forward Josef Beranek from the Penguins for journeymen Bobby Dollas and Tony Hrkac. Sather then persuaded the 29-year-old Beranek to leave the Czech Republic, where he'd played in 1997-98, and return to the NHL. With center Doug Weight sidelined for 10 weeks with a right knee injury, Beranek had been outstanding, scoring six goals....

Two general managers you shouldn't invite to the same party: Bobby Smith of the Coyotes and Pierre Lacroix of the Avalanche. When Smith excused himself from a conference call among G.M.'s, Lacroix made disparaging remarks about him and some of the contracts he had negotiated. When Smith found out, he fired off a letter to Lacroix questioning his integrity and then sent copies to other G.M.'s....

Flyers general manager Bob Clarke must be scratching his head about the lack of production from his three supposed young stars, forwards Alexandre Daigle, Chris Gratton and Dainius Zubrus, who had combined for only two goals at week's end. Daigle, 23, needs to start concentrating on hockey and stop complaining about his ice time; Gratton, 23, must be moved back to his natural position, center; and Zubrus, 20, should be given more ice time with skilled players and be allowed to get creative with the puck.

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