Cam Fowler is doing everything he can to avoid the sophomore slump and aside from the mandatory Scott Niedermayer comparison that follows the young defenceman in virtually every article written about him, Fowler notes how a simple four or five-pound difference in his playing weight can noticebly affect his speed. His keeper league upside is just outrageously good, but aside from that he's just fun to watch out there.


Jamie Benn and Loui Eriksson are turning into a LETHAL combo in Dallas. Benn was a point-per-game player in the second half last season and with Brad Richards gone, Benn's emergence has been a pivotal part of the Stars off to such a strong start. 5-2 Stars over Carolina in the third period as I write this. Eriksson is just such a good hockey player too. Catch the highlights of this game and see Ryder's goal to put the Stars up 4-1. Eriksson's stick-lift before the goal? So smooth. His work on the OT winner of that crazy game with the Avs a few days back, which I wrote about in my live recap at the time, was fantastic. He and Benn both worked so hard on that same play, in different areas, to create the goal. Michael Ryder, it should be noted, has back-to-back multi-pointers in November now and is reaping the rewards of being on that line.


Hawks host the Canucks tonight in a battle of teams who just love each other. Duncan Keith will miss his third straight game with that hand injury. Jonathan Toews offered this to reporters this morning: "There are always games that are marked on your calendar during the regular season. You can't say that every game is the same because it's not. It's the first game since that seventh game loss last spring and we'll be ready for it. Even during the regular season the pace is always elevated between these two teams and I don't think that's changing yet. It seems like it builds every time we play Vancouver, something new comes up that kind of adds to the mix.

"It's always two really good, really competitive teams going head-to-head. It's more than just hockey out there against guys that get into it pretty good. Multiple things add to it as to why it's so competitive and so personal out there. Little things happen, whether it's hit or plays, things that you remember from previous series or previous games during the regular season that you want to get even with them for every time they take it to you."




Ray Whitney on After Hours, after mentioning Devan Dubnyk and Pekka Rinne's size: "If they want to look at rule changes, 5'10 goalies and under would be a great one to start with."




In case you went to bed early and missed the third period of the EDM/PHO broadcast, Scott Oake interviewed Don Maloney and the GM said what he's been saying... there's no way, under any circumstances, that Kyle Turris will be traded this season.


One of my favourite tweets of the night was from Sportsnet’s Ian Mendes, sent near the end of the second period of these games: “I'm covering Sens-Sabres, but I'm PVR'ing BOS-TOR & PHI-CBJ to watch when I get home. Nobody spoil it for me.”


Indeed. The Leafs ended up losing 7-0 to the Bruins and... shhhh... If you listen closely, you can actually hear the sound of the goodwill the Leafs have earned in the last month begin evaporating in Toronto.


So how about them Columbus Blue Jackets? I never like to be the one who slowly drives by the car wreck on the side of the road, but it’s hard not to in this case. A 9-2 loss at the hands of the Philadelphia Flyers and a forgettable season to date in general.


A few of Aaron Portzline’s (Columbus Dispatch writer) tweets from as the evening progressed...


After the first period, when it was 5-0: “I've covered this team for 11 seasons. Never have I seen a worse period. This was NHL vs. ECHL, and I expect a letter of complaint from ECHL.”


Also from tonight:

#Leafs were borderline mocking #CBJ in post-game dressing room Thursday.”

#Flyers were marveling this a.m., off record, about what a mess the #CBJ are right now.”

#CBJ coach Scott Arniel: "We've hit a lot of bottoms this year. This was another big one."”


For what it’s worth, from a fantasy perspective I’d still be chasing after really good deals on Jeff Carter, James Wisniewski and Rick Nash. The two healthy ones have decent point totals and all, but often poolies are quick on the trigger to sell when the stench emanating from a team is as bad as this one here. The Jackets can’t possibly be this bad all season and whether it’s a coaching change, Divine intervention from the Hockey Gods or just the players actually, you know, trying hard... the ship will turn around on some level. Vinny Prospal, incidentally, added his 11th point in his 14th game here.


This tweet was sent out by the New York Islanders tonight: “The #Isles apologize for any fans that needed to be moved tonight due to the leaking ceiling. Thank you for your patience.” The jokes write themselves there, but kudos to the Isles for taking advantage of their new lines tonight and overcoming an 0-2 hole in the first period to beat the Caps 5-3.


They opened with these new combos: Matt Moulson - John Tavares - Michael Grabner/ Brian Rolston - Frans Nielsen - P.A. Parenteau/ Blake Comeau - Marty Reasoner - Kyle Okposo. Nielsen and Parenteau each delivered three-point nights.


Adam Henrique had a pair of goals tonight, giving him goals in two straight five points in three November games. He was with Zach Parise and David Clarkson (Clarkson since Ilya Kovalchuk was unable to play) on the first line and Henrique has been making the most of his chance. Said the third rounder from 2008 after the game, "It’s nice to be able to contribute and I feel more and more confident every game playing with two great linemates.”


Milan Lucic has goals in five of six and his 2G, 1A effort tonight was nice, although David Krejci owners were even happier with Krejci’s three-point night since he only had one point coming into this evening’s game.


You either have Nicklas Backstrom or you don’t and he’s a high-priced item in fantasy stores again, as he should be, but I’m really happy to see him thriving again this season. Another two points against the Isles and that makes eight separate two-point results in 12 GP and six in his past seven games. Backstrom and Henrik Lundqvist jerseys, incidentally, occupy the slots in my two shadow box frames in my office.


Sean Avery was back with the Rangers tonight. Fourth line role and he didn’t even see five minutes of ice time. Ugh. I’ve wasted too many words on him already. Michael Del Zotto has points in four of six on D though. He gets so much power play time and has really struggled with results, so hopefully he can keep this trend up and capitalize on his prime spot with Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik on PP1.


Henrik Zetterberg scored tonight in a convincing 5-0 Wings win over Anaheim. He only has five points this season, so the window could still be open to get him at a decent price. He’ll be sizzling hot before we know it and his real bonus in standard leagues is that great SOG total. Johan Franzen ended an ugly six-game pointless streak – where Detroit collected only one point as a team - and has 10 points in 12 GP. It was his second three-pointer of the young season.


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Ross The Boss Palmer said:

Ross The Boss Palmer
Hindsight Hindsight is 20/20. Both can play. As it stands now, the deal appears to be mutually beneficial for both teams. Who knows what the future will hold for either team and either player. I can't wait to see how it all unfolds.

There are obviously many talking points for both sides. For me, I still can't get over the Sens keeping Redden over Chara. Hindsight may be 20/20, but that is crazy.
November 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Mark said:

Kessel vs. Seguin @JTT:

Comments like this allow any credibility about your own hockey knowledge and objectivity to vanish into this air:
"any GM in the league would rather take Seguin over Kessel".

Really? How many GM's have you spoken to exactly? And which ones?

Do you actually watch hockey, or are you one of these geniuses that can tell the future simply by reading boxscores?

I will admit that I have not spoken to any NHL GM's. (No, I don't roll in those circles like JTT does). But I will say that while Seguin is a fine young player today at the age of 19, Phil Kessel is in almost every way a superior hockey player here and now. I would also hazard to guess that the majority of NHL GM's, were they asked this same question, would concur.

Maybe Seguin will emerge as an elite-level forward some day. And maybe that day will come sooner rather than later. But to suggest that Seguin is already a better, more dynamic, more valuable player than Kessel today, is simply asinine.

As for, most Leafs fans being in denial about that trade, this couldn't be further from the truth. Most of us realize that the price paid to get the best player in the deal (at that time) may well end up to be too high. Seguin is living up to the hype. Hamilton and Knight also appear to have lots of promise. So it appears that Boston is a pretty safe bet to win the trade when history is told. But the trade cannot be truly judged for a few years yet, because it would take Seguin at least that long to match Kessel as a player....if that ever happens at all.

At the end of the day, it was a ballsy move by Burke to seize a rare opportunity to acquire an elite talent such as he did, and one that was only 21 at the time. Leafs fans are thrilled to have a GM with the balls to make bold yet calculated moves such as these in an effort to improve their team. Thanks Brian for bringing us Phil the Thrill, Lupul, Gardiner, Colborne and others...the future is bright in Leafland, and our day of reckoning will come! Naysayers-be-damned!!!
November 06, 2011
Votes: -1

JTT said:

Kessel vs. Seguin Mark, you know why people keep bringing up Kessel vs. Seguin.

Because it brings great fun for non-Leafs fans.

You know why it's so fun to bring it up for non-Leafs fans?


(a) it's obvious to anyone who's objective about it that Toronto got hosed big time in that trade.... any GM in the league would rather take Seguin over Kessel (not to mention the other players who were included like Hamilton and Knight) and

(b) there are a lot of Leafs fans like yourself who are still in denial about getting hosed in that deal. Your attempt to argue otherwise or spin it to make it not look as bad provides non-Leafs fans with tremendous entertainment.

If all of you Leafs fans just admitted it..... "yeah we got hosed. Sucks to be us".... it would absolutely kill all the fun for Leafs bashers and you would stop hearing the "tired" storyline of Kessel vs. Seguin.
November 06, 2011
Votes: +2

Mark said:

Kessel vs Seguin No mention of it because it's a stale story line and most readers (save for perpetual Leaf bashers) are tired of hearing about it.

Yes, Seguin had a hattie and Kessel was skunked. Just like both Perry and Getzlaf got skunked yesterday while the likes of Franzen and Ian White had multi-point nights.

(Oh and Kessel still leads the entire league in goals and points...for whatever that's worth).

Oh, and about this so-called goodwill evaporating in Toronto after last night's loss. Simply not true. This is a rebuilding team whose educated fanbase understands that the goal this year is to just make the playoffs. The Leafs got embarrassed at home by the defending Stanley Cup champs. Nobody points to the sky falling in Detroit when they get shellacked by the Capitals a couple of weeks ago. Or when the Canucks lose 5-1 earlier this week against the powerhouse Wild.

Yes, it sucks to be shut-out at home in such a big game, but this doesn't change the outlook of most Leafs fans. They'll be on the cusp of their first playoff berth in 7 seasons if they continue to improve as they have thus far, and last night's score doesn't change that.
November 06, 2011
Votes: -1

GMGates said:

Daily Studs & Duds Looking for more morning fodder?

The Black Aces crew in the DobberHockey forums post daily thoughts on the best and worst of the NHL. If interested, take a look!

Saturday night's Studs & Duds -
November 06, 2011
Votes: +0

WootskiWoo said:

Somewhere, Mark Dekanich... Somewhere, Mark Dekanich is getting very amped up about his opportunity to be a No.1 goalie, IMO. CBJ doesn't have one right now - Mason is the model of inconsistency.

Dekanich has been an excellent AHL goalie who worked his way up. To my untrained eye, he's worth a shot at now. He's injured and an unknown so I doubt he'd cost much but he could be a gem. Don't see Columbus being this bad all year long...

On another note, Logan Couture's blind spin pass (for Pavelski's goal) is worth finding a You Tube highlight for - outstanding!!
November 06, 2011
Votes: +0

Nate said:

Maloney Baloney Hit butt should be jealous of all the crap coming out of this guys mouth. He kept saying that the decision was about "business" and running his organization a "certain way"

As far as I'm concerned, the only reason that a GM would ignore ANY offer that came his way on Turris is because of personal reasons. Now how is that any good for business? Why would this guy even want Turris to play for his team when he's so adamant not to!?
November 06, 2011
Votes: +0

BDog said:

Toronto vs Boston No mention of the hattie for Seguin tonight and the big fat doughnut for Kessel?
Lucic and Krejci are nice side notes here but everyone is looking at the other two when these two teams match up.
November 06, 2011
Votes: -1

Uzair said:

... Josh Bailey scored his 1st point...yeah his FIRST (an assist) after 11 games into the season.

Sophomore Spurgeon and rookie Scandella led Minnesota in TOI with 22 minutes for both (Spurgeon had slightly more PP time at around 3 mins).

Also saw some of the Oilers game and it would do MPS good to get a 10 game stint in the AHL when Hemsky comes back in order to get his finishing touch and aggressiveness back.
November 06, 2011
Votes: +0
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