Interesting to see Sidney Crosby wearing a headset last night up in the management box for the Penguins - apparently he was in close communication with Tony Granato, who runs the offense and forwards.
Dallas prospect Perttu Lindgren recently completed a fantastic season in the SM-liiga. He recorded 66 points in 56 games. Does he come back over to North America for 2011-12? He's an NHL quality player. Any DobberHockey readers from Finland care to weigh in?
Roberto Luongo has allowed six total goals in his last seven starts. He had the shutout last night (second of his playoff career).
Chicago's stars looked great - Sharp/Kane/Toews were either robbed by Luongo or the post on a number of chances. However, the depth players didn't accomplish much.
Michal Frolik was pretty bad, Victor Stalberg isn't a top nine player, and Troy Brouwer is playing with a bum shoulder.
Corey Crawford settled in nicely after a shaky start - he still spat out a number of bad rebounds, but he did all he could to hold the Hawks in the game. He isn't a world beater but he plays well within his means. Unless he completely fizzles out this postseason, would Chicago bother to change things for next season?
Michal Neuvirth got the start for Washington and had a very solid game, stopping 24 of 25 shots.
Between the OHL and AHL, Neuvirth is 14-0 in playoff series.
Ryan McDonagh saw over 27 minutes of ice time – there was a full OT period, but still impressive for a rookie.
Martin St. Louis – slashed in the face last night, lost two teeth, had a double root canal. Of course, he is playing Friday. Would you expect otherwise?
Dan Ellis was yanked after allowing four goals last night – he wasn’t horrible, but four goals is four goals. Ray Emery replaced him. I wonder if they make the switch for game two?
Pekka Rinne was fantastic – the Preds showed why many teams didn’t want to face them – offensive depth, smothering defense, and an all-world goaltender.
Detroit got goals from both Franzen and Hudler last night – they will need the two to continue to contribute as it sounds like Henrik Zetterberg won’t be back any time soon.
Kyle Turris scored a goal early into the game, but he played only 11 minutes. Don’t sleep on Turris – the Coyotes rushed him to the NHL when he wasn’t physically ready, but he still has the skill set to be a very good NHL player.
Alexander Semin has the best shot in hockey – his OT winner last night was an absolute rocket.
Mike Green had a helper in his first taste of NHL action in over a month.
Elliotte Freidman’s most recent 30 Thoughts may be his best yet – and that is saying something.
Mike Colligan, my partner in crime from the Business of Fantasy Hockey series, put out a fantastic piece yesterday breaking down the coaching matchup in the Pittsburgh/Tampa Bay series. Well worth the read.
I am getting knee deep in Prospect Report stuff – my first year as a part of the team. Get excited – the 2011 Report is going to be the best yet.
Marc-Andre Gragnani hasn’t received a ton of hype for his phenomenal AHL season (best d-man in the league, near PPG). Buffalo has a need for a true PP QB, and they will give the 24-year-old Gragnani every chance to earn the spot. They’ve been patient with him but it looks like they will be rewarded for it.
Goldie Says: Very proud to have my playoff goalie previews published on NHL.com today. It's part of a new feature where myself and E! chief correspondent Ken Baker each chose our 4 favorite goalies in each conference. Then we argued why that goalie is more likely to win the series. In the East I chose Lundqvist, Miller, Thomas and Roloson. In the West, I had to defend Niemi, Howard, Crawford and Ellis/Emery. Enjoy!
Things don’t sound good between Dallas and Richards – not a surprise. Toronto or New York (my money is on the Big Apple). What would this mean for Dallas? More ice time for Ribeiro, a full-time center gig for Jamie Benn, and an open winger spot for Scott Glennie (or another prospect) in the top six.
Benn is more of a scorer than Richards. I could see the Stars sticking with two duos (Benn-Eriksson and Ribeiro-Morrow) and sliding various wingers around. This is all very premature, but speculation is one of my favorite parts of hockey analysis!
Michal Neuvirth was selected as starter over Semyon Varlamov. Why? More consistent, unflappable, calm under pressure. He’s the better goalie, but I’d still be wary of owning him until the situation is cleared up. Holtby’s emergence only added another layer of confusion.
Toronto prospect Jake Gardiner will play for the States at the upcoming World Championships. It sounds like James Reimer is going start in goal for Canada as well.
32 of 34 goals scored by Michael Grabner came at even strength or on the penalty kill in 2010-11.
Of Alex Burrows’ last 89 goals (the past three seasons), only five have come on the PP. Pretty impressive statistic, even considering the fact that he plays with the Sedins.
Hansen with a beauty – set up by a Ryan Kesler shot block:
Welcome to the playoffs, Stamkos!