It wouldn't surprise me if all of these people here read In Lou We Trust. I know of at least one person in this photo does. (Photo by Andy Marlin/Getty Images for the New Jersey Devils)
Sometime yesterday, a milestone has been hit with respect to In Lou We Trust. We've had our one millionth page view and several thousand more. Here's the snapshot of the all-time stats I'm privy to as managing editor.
The past week really put the site over the top between the NHL Draft, the moves made prior to the opening of NHL free agency, and, of course, the first two days of free agency. In fact, July 1 smashed day records for the site with 4,146 unique visitors and 15,289 page views. The people do get up for Free Agency Frenzy, especially when the New Jersey Devils signed 3 new players in Henrik Tallinder, Anton Volchenkov, and Johan Hedberg as well as a re-signed player in Rod Pelley.
In any case, let me take this moment to thank all of you. In Lou We Trust moved to SBNation in November of 2008 thanks to the recruitment by James Mirtle, and I debuted with this post. Since then, my own writing has improved; the Devils have done, well, a lot; and the site has grown dramatically to the point where you can even buy an In Lou We Trust shirt. From 2008 on, I've added new writers (Tibbs and Steve Lepore came on in 2009; Matt, Kevin, and Tom, this summer); more people have joined the site with some who have contributed plenty via comments, FanPosts, and FanShot; and even more have read it.
I'm really impressed that I've done nothing more than just write something Devils-related every day when possible regardless of whether people want to read it or not. The only self-promotion I've done is that tell people I meet at Devils games that I do this site (and I thank them double for having to put up with me in the process). I'm very proud that the attention has grown largely due to word of mouth. I'm very thankful to any and all sites who have linked to and continue to link to something they liked on the site - be it from a forum, a Devils blog, another blog on the SBN network, or a big hockey site like Puck Daddy.
Most of all, I thank you - the reader. Again, I am constantly amazed that people of all kinds from all over the world, from a Devils fan in NJ to someone who works for the Devils to hockey fans far away from NJ, are interested enough to what I have to say - long-winded as it may be. I appreciate you all and I hope to keep up the quality in the future.
In any case, please use the comments in this thread as an Open Thread for NHL Free Agency or the site for the three-day weekend. Talk about what other teams are doing, what the latest reports are from credible people, and what you want the Devils to do going forward. With Ilya Kovalchuk still undecided, there's plenty of intrigue out there. Of course, if something big breaks Devils-wise, then we'll be on it. Please follow the rules at all times, and please, please, please do not report rumors as news or fake news. Link to sources (actually link to them, don't just dump the URL in the text box and hit post - this includes Tweets); give credit to sources; and actually listen to good, reliable people (e.g. Gulitti, Chere, anyone at TSN or CBC, CapGeek, Not Hockeybuzz). This gives respect to the sources and let's everyone who's reading this know what's really up.
And again, I cannot say this enough, thank you.