Mike Murphy had a 44-save shutout for Carolina's farm team the other night in the AHL playoffs. He'll battle Justin Peters for the backup spot behind Ward. I think the Hurricanes realize that they overplayed Ward this season, so expect the backup (whichever goalie wins the battle) to see at least 15 starts in 2011-12.

 

Eddie Lack is continuing his strong play for the Manitoba Moose as well. He stopped 43 of 44 shots against a superior Hamilton team on Wednesday night. Hamilton's top line of Nigel Dawes, Dustin Boyd, and Aaron Palushaj has been dominant all postseason.

 

San Jose prospect Charlie Coyle has a shot at playing in the NHL next season. He's big and plays a pro game already, but the Sharks don't need to rush him and they'll probably keep him in college for at least one more year. Coyle had 26 points this past season as a freshman at Boston University.

 

Stefan Elliott was named WHL Defenseman of the Year. Future top pairing stud for the Avalanche. Big, mobile, skilled, dynamic. The best fantasy prospect defenseman (drafted) in the world.

 

Ryan Ellis was also named CHL Defenseman of the Year. How many awards is that for him in his junior career now, a baker’s dozen?

 

Cha-ching – that is the sound Christian Ehrhoff’s agent keeps playing over and over in his head. The free agent to be leads the playoffs in scoring amongst defensemen. His defensive game has been average (good at times, bad at others), but he can create offense like few other defensemen in the game.

 

The puck moving defenseman is the rarest of player types in the league – no shortage of 10-12 teams would be after Ehrhoff. Will be interesting to see if he takes a cut to stay in a great situation (I don’t think he is a 50-point defenseman outside of Vancouver and a few other teams).

 

Kesler was a monster for the Canucks last night – one goal, two assists, six shots on goal. He’s dominating against a very tired Weber/Suter pairing right now.

 

Henrik Sedin’s first goal of the post season (empty netter) came last night. He had a good game with two helpers. The Sedins still weren’t great, but they were better. If the Canucks do end up winning this series, they should have more room against the Sharks than they do against the Predators.

 

Those close-fought games in March and April are catching up to the Preds.

 

Nashville’s top line is still pointless through four games now. Pretty tough to win when the top offensive unit is continually shut out.

 

Hornqvist played only 10 minutes, so perhaps it isn’t fair to label him a top liner?

 

Joel Ward scored his fifth of the playoffs – he is playing great hockey for the Preds in a variety of situations right now.

 

Ryan Kesler walks through Weber and O'Brien - no Suter because he was in the box:


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Comments (15)add comment

Sanstanya said:

sanstanya
... @Trevor - that's not the play kevinsrangers is talking about, though that happened also. Kesler did stick a NSH player under the visor in front of the NSH goal. I missed it during play but saw it on the replay. I can't recall the rest of that play now but I think NSH took a penalty seconds later. Might have been the gnarly Suter takedown on Kesler. Either way it was unintentional but Kes sticked him good and got lucky.

That said I think there were as many missed calls in NSH's favour as in Vancouver's. The differnce being NSH pp/pk are both terrible and Vancouver's are superior. Legit and otherwise, both teams have had special teams opportunities to change the course of this series and only 1 team has been capitalizing on them.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +1

Trevor said:

Brady19
... Kevinsrangers - Let's at least get the story straight... Kesler didn't high stick anyone. Smithsson slashed Kesler, and Kesler elbowed him straight in the nose. From a more old school hockey standpoint... I loved that play. smilies/smiley.gif
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Steffen said:

Steffen
No joke. Not in jest, Angus. I'm almost as happy as you are that the Canucks are clicking when it matters.

Keep up the good work.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Jeff Angus said:

angus
... Steffen - not sure if your post was in jest or not. Anyway, there was one game in the NHL last night. I haven`t gotten to the point where I am going to fabricate news yet, so I report on the games that actually happen.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +1

kevinsrangers said:

kevinsrangers
kesslers winner gretzky high sticks someone from toronto in 92-93 and no penalty is called, He comes out and scores the game winner. Everyone screems bloody murder as the worst call in history.
kessler high sticks someone from nashville yesterday and gets no penalty (should have been 4 min. cause he was bleeding). kessler comes out and on the pp scores the game winner. Nobody says anything.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Steffen said:

Steffen
Bias? What bias? What's with all this Canucks talk? You'd think they were in the playoffs or something. Seriously, you must be on cloud 9 seeing your team do this well. Congrats.

Keep on keepin' on...
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Jeff Angus said:

angus
... Elliott - fantasy, yes. Not many I'd take over him in real life, either, though.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Anthony L said:

messierforlife
Ryan Ellis' Awards........Baker's Dozen+1 Now we can also officially tack on OHL's Most outstanding player award (Red Tilson trophy)---Simply Amazing!!

Full junior accolades for his OHL and International career include........
http://www.milwaukeeadmirals.com/home/news/2011/05/0504ellis.html
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... To be fair Angus, the top line in Nashville is comparable to other teams' third lines.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

blackaces said:

blackaces
... I'm surprised Cal O'Reilly didn't get the call to play for the Preds last night. They need offense & he was their leading scorer when he went out with a broken leg.

I think even if they put him in next game it will be too late.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

General McScrubs said:

Big Ev
... I hope you mean for fantasy, because there's definitely a lot more prospect D I'd rather have in real life than Elliott.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

chris hayward said:

christopher929
...
Charlie Coyle plays for BU not BC.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Jeff Angus said:

angus
... I'd say: Elliott: upside of 60-65 points, 50-60 percent shot at hitting it.

Ellis: upside the same, 30-40 percent shot at hitting it.

All about risk/reward.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

tradejunkie said:

tradejunkie
Elliott > Ellis? As an Elliott owner, I'm loving your comment
The best prospect defenseman (drafted) in the world.


How would you compare and contrast him to the other stud D prospect you mentioned, Ellis?
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Austin said:

austeane
... Kesler has been great the whole playoffs but ha just started finding the net. I am going to go out on a limb (well sorta) and say that he will lead the playoffs in scoring at the end of the day.

Either Bieksa or Ehrhoff will say with Vancouver. Van is in a unique situation with Edler, Ehrhoff, Bieksa, Hamhuis, Salo and Ballard all 6 being puck-moving defensemen (that is my personal ranking of them.
May 06, 2011
Votes: +0
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