I'll do my best to open up the fantasy mailbag tomorrow evening./
Try your hand at naming the "farm team" section on the DobberHockey forums. We have had some great talent step up with their contributions since putting this idea into place a few months ago!
Jason Labarbera was great against the Canucks last night. Stopped 46 of 47 shots.
Phoenix had Mikkel Boedker playing the point on the first power play unit. Safe to say Dave Tippett is showing some faith in the rookie.
Another strong start from Al Montoya last night. Now 7-4-3 on the season.
That sound you heard was Dale Tallon kicking himself (again). He does have a Stanley Cup ring to comfort him… but Michael Grabner is now only one goal away from 30 last night. It seemed like he had 20 shots on goal last night – he is one of a handful of players who can create plays purely because of his speed. Like Bure/Gaborik – a breakaway threat every single time he steps over the boards.
The guy the Canucks kept in favour of Grabner (Mason Raymond) centered the fourth line last night. Raymond has been pretty mediocre all season (he has played through various injuries). I wonder if the Canucks would have given Grabner as long a leash to produce as the Islanders did, though?
Derek Stepan and Wojtek Wolski combined for less than 20 minutes of ice time last night.
My next top 10 list to tackle – the best defensive keepers. Where will Mike Green rank? I can promise you one thing – Keith Yandle will be ranked a lot higher than his ranking last year (7th, which I took some flak for at the time).
David Desharnais has points in consecutive games and six in his last 10. He refuses to give the Habs a reason to demote him.
James Wisniewski needs seven points in the final 10 games to hit the 50-point mark.
Alex Edler has been skating, but he won’t be able to return before the start of the playoffs even if healthy, as the Canucks are right up against the cap even with him on the LTIR. He should be good to go by game one of the first round, though.
Brian Boyle scored his 21st goal of the season for the Rangers last night.
Vaclav Prospal has 12 points in his last 10 games, and has points in eight straight. He seems to thrive under Tortorella and has stepped up in a big way. He isn’t seeing a ton of ice time, though. Over the 10 game stretch, he is averaging about 13 minutes per game.
Jeff Skinner scored his 25th of the season last night, and assisted on the game-winner in OT (an absolutely huge goal for the Hurricanes). Skinner now has 52 points.
Frans Nielsen is a fantastic player who is producing more this season than many (myself included) figured he was capable of. He had two points last night and now has 40 on the season – in the long term, he projects as the perfect checking center behind Tavares and Bailey.
Isles fans would have a better formed opinion on this issue than me… but has there been any thought as to moving Tavares to wing? He wouldn’t have to skate or defend as much, and it would allow him to linger deeper in the offensive zone. Perhaps a defensively responsible winger would help in that regard.
Mark Streit may return at the end of the month. Don’t forget about him this summer… he could hit 60 or 65 next year on a very dangerous PP (think of the impact Visnovsky has had with the Ducks).
Your move, Holtby. Neuvirth was awesome for the Caps last night, stopping all 33 shots he faced.
Nick Backstrom returned to the lineup and played over 17 minutes. Marcus Johansson saw just over 15, but managed three shots on goal.
Mike Knuble had two goals and a helper for the Caps, and Ovechkin (who has been on fire over the past few months) had two helpers.
I may be mistaken, but last night was the first game all season in which Ovechkin failed to register a shot on goal.
A bit more on Stefan Elliott, who claimed the top spot on my latest top 10 list: