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January 3, 2012 :: 4:04pm ET
New Year's Resolutions
 Tab Bamford offers his advice to the following as we usher in 2012.

CHICAGO, IL -- In the spirit of the New Year beginning, let's look at a few resolutions that might be appropriate for folks around the NHL as 2012 gets going.

Dustin Byfuglien: Re-discover the pre-2011 All-Star Game "Big Buff." After scoring 16 goals and piling up 25 assists in 52 games before the break last season, Byfuglien has only 10 goals and 26 assists with a minus-13 rating in 64 games. The Jets need their highest-paid defenseman to be more consistent.

Brian Elliott: Brew up a never-ending supply of whatever was working in the season's first half. Elliott might have been the most pleasant surprise of the 2011 portion of this season, carrying St. Louis into the middle of the Western Conference playoff picture. If he could bottle whatever he was doing and sell it, the line would be long to buy.

Ilya Bryzgalov: Contact the History Channel, get featured on "Brad Meltzer's Decoded." If they can make sense of the Mayans, and can crash the party at Area 51, perhaps they can get Bryzgalov's focus back between the pipes and off his thermos.

Evgeni Malkin: Make friends with a masseuse. It has to be hard on Geno's back for him to keep carrying the load in Pittsburgh with Sidney Crosby out. Maybe a hot stone massage once a week would help him stay on the ice into April and May?

Patrick Sharp: Get plenty of sleep on the road. Chicago's sniper is a new daddy, but has continued to put the puck in the net despite having to deal with diapers and late night feedings. Certainly every time the Hawks leave town, he's thrilled to get a decent night's sleep.

Alex Burrows: Dye his hair red. Skating with Daniel and Henrik, who are both over 40 points and near the League's lead, Burrows is off to a relatively slow start. I'm not saying the Sedins benefit from their hair, but could it hurt Burrows to give it a shot?

Bobby Ryan: Trademark the phrase "Bobby Ryan trade rumor." His salary isn't anything to be ashamed of, but as long as the Ducks are sliding the wrong direction in the standings, he could make a fortune cashing in on the discussion about his future.

(Editor's Note: Also needing to trademark their names in trade rumors: Sam Gagner, Ales Hemsky, Zach Parise, Ryan Suter, Shea Weber and Alex Semin.)

Finally, the folks with the Players' Association and the NHL need to make a serious New Year's resolution to avoid the same headaches and public relations nightmare that the NBA dealt with during their lockout.

There is too much good going on in the League right now for there to be a work stoppage.

To 2011, thanks for some incredible memories. But there's a lot to look forward to in 2012, and the first 48 hours of the calendar year have set the bar high for the rest of this season.

Tab Bamford is a Columnist for and the Chicago Correspondent for The Fourth Period Magazine.



Dec. 30, 2011 Trading Places
Dec. 13, 2011 Bench clearing changes
Nov. 30, 2011 Plenty of action early on
Nov. 18, 2011 Should Boston have dealt Thornton?
Nov. 15, 2011 Unintentionally gutless?
Nov. 08, 2011 Preds, Blues make big moves
Nov. 01, 2011 Early season surprises
Oct. 28, 2011 The trade that kept Belfour in Chicago
Oct. 25, 2011 It's a young man's game
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