Angus here - one more post for the Province is up today. Handing out some (made up) hardware to a few Canucks players. Check it out and give it the thumbs up here. Thanks!

 

What’s your take on Milan Lucic clearly running Ryan Miller in a race for the puck tonight? Miller’s helmet came flying off as he went sprawling to the ice. The puck and play were around the faceoff dot to Miller’s right. Lucic received a charging minor, but what’s your general feeling when a goalie goes wandering? Miller had this to say to reporters after the game: "I just stuck around because I wanted to say what a piece of (s**t) I think Lucic is." And also, "Fifty pounds on me, and he runs me like that? It's unbelievable. ... That was gutless. Gutless. Piece of (s**t)."

 

Jeff Carter returned to action tonight and opened with Rick Nash and R.J. Umberger on the first line. That left Prospal-Letestu-Johansen/ Vermette-Pahlsson-Dorsett in the top nine. Ryan Johansen starred in this one though, with his first career multi-goal game at the NHL level. Nikita Nikitin was also in the line-up and he was paired with Fedor Tyutin. Not only did Nikitin pick up an assist, but he played a career high of just shy of 25 miutes. Top PP times with Carter back: Nash (3:36), Carter, (3:36), Wisniewski (3:33), Umberger (3:32), Tyutin (3:28). It’s also definitely worth noting that Steve Mason had a strong game. Dude needs some confidence and maybe Carter’s presence can help give this team a nudge in the right direction.

 

On the other side of that trade coin, Kris Russell scored in his debut with the Blues. He was paired with Roman Polak.

 

Three games for Ken Hitchcock. Two shutouts. Two wins. One OTL. Elliott was between the pipes tonight, but this is why I was excited for Jaroslav Halak when the coaching switch was announced. What Hitchcock did with Columbus was unreal, for both Steve Mason and Pascal Leclaire. He’s just a damn smart coach.

 

Dan Bylsma, another coach for whom I have a tremendous amount of respect, used Evgeni Malkin and Jordan Staal together in the third period with his team trailing 3-0. Several wingers rotated in with that dynamic duo. It was James Neal on the line when the Pens collected their first goal. Staal and Matt Cooke were killing a penalty when Staal scored. Then it was Chris Kunitz with Staal and Malkin when PIT struck for No. 3. They lost the game 5-3 (see next paragraph on why), but fans love to see those two when they’re put together, especially when they produce so well.

 

Headed into Carolina’s game tonight Paul Maurice told The Raleigh News & Observer Eric Staal might be used some on the wing. “"Just trying to change the focus of the game to get him going again and get him skating a little bit more, free him up a little bit," Maurice said. "Clearly he's the driver of our offensive bus and we need to find a way to get him going." Maurice did have him winging it with Brandon Sutter and Chad LaRose, although both Sutter and Staal took faceoffs. Staal and LaRose combined for two clutch Carolina goals after Pittsburgh had erased a 3-0 hole. Jeff Skinner... wow. Another beauty game. Tuomo Ruutu, who’s on that line with Jussi Jokinen, had a pair of goals and it’ll be good to see him get something going offensively.

 

Lubomir Visnovsky owners had been suffering through a subpar season before learning the news that the talented blueliner will miss around a month with a broken right finger suffered Friday night near the end of the Canucks game. No surgery required. The upside is he’ll have time to rest the broken finger on his left hand that he endured a few weeks ago. Visnovsky is a power play TOI beast, so who will man the other point with Cam Fowler now? Francois Beauchemin and Luca Sbisa are next in line in terms of guys who currently see second unit time and Kurtis Foster might finally have the opportunity he needs to get something done. He’s had trouble even cracking the line-up this season, but his shot is a good power play tool.

 

Dustin Penner hasn’t done much this season, but he’ll be out with a hand injury for an unspecified length of time. Longer than day-to-day though. That moved Brad Richardson into the top six for tonight, with the lines opening Simon Gagne - Anze Kopitar – Justin Williams/ Richardson – Mike Richards – Dustin Brown.

 

Joni Pitkanen could miss a week with what may be an injured foot. Jamie McBain and Tomas Kaberle saw the most PP time this evening from the point.

 

Brooks Laich and Roman Hamrlik paired on defence? It happened tonight for the Caps. Here’s why.

 

Sheldon Souray and Trevor Daley were on the point of one power play unit for the Stars tonight, sans Alex Goligoski. Goligoski has been leading the team in PP TOI this season, with Daley, Souray and Stephane Robidas all within a few seconds of each other behind Goligoski. There’d be no better fit than Souray on the whole, IMO.

 

Niklas Kronwall didn’t start well offensively, but has crept up on poolies with a five-game point streak after tonight’s action. He’s still generally PP2 behind Nicklas Lidstrom and Ian White. White, incidentally, took a puck to the face as he dove to (successfully) prevent a goal and he left the game afterward. Johan Franzen scored again and has eight points in his past four outings.

 

1000 games for Barry Trotz behind Nashville’s bench. That’s truly just an incredible feat.

 

Could you use a second opinion on your fantasy team? Sunday afternoon I’ll be posting my bi-weekly Q&A, so drop me a line at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it Give me enough info to answer your question, but not so much I’m drowning in it. Roto vs. H2H, single-season vs. keeper, number of teams in league, scoring categories and pertinent roster info as it relates to your question are all key pieces of info. I’d also love to know your first name and hometown. Q&A runs every other Sunday during the regular season.

 

Should you be so inclined, you can follow me on Twitter.


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Comments (22)add comment

Buffalo87 said:

Buffalo87
Miller/Lucic Everybody who is crying no foul on Lucic realizes that that is explicity against the rule, right? Stated directly in the rule book, Rule 42.1:

"A goalkeeper is not “fair game” just because he is outside the goal crease area. The appropriate penalty should be assessed in every case where an opposing player makes unnecessary contact with a goalkeeper. However, incidental contact, at the discretion of the Referee, will be permitted when the goalkeeper is in the act of playing the puck outside his goal crease provided the attacking player has made a reasonable effort to avoid such contact. "

Not only was the contact avoidable, but it was clear that Lucic had plenty of time to get out of the way but clearly made no attempt to. You can give me that he only had 3/4 of a second to 1 second and he's not the best skater, the dude is a professional hockey player, if you can't avoid a hitting somebody that you could see clearly was going to beat you to the puck (and you can't hit) a couple seconds ahead of time, you have plenty of time to avoid it.

As far the Miller stick swinging, I certainly do not condone that at all, but he missed so it's a non-issue. Just like if Lucic went for the hit on Miller and missed, nobody would be talking suspension.
November 14, 2011 | url
Votes: +0

James said:

jimywho1
... to start, miller is not having a bad year. is he having a bad november? yea. so he has had 3 bad games in november, but in october he had a 2.14 GAA, .930 SV%, and a shutout. i think the solid 8 games played in october outweighs the 3 poor games in november, so overall he is having a solid season.

@ch
there are 5 sabres in that corner, 2 or going after lucic, so clearly someone stepped up for miller.

@lcbtd
the reason millers stick wasnt mentioned on HNIC was because the swinging stick debate is a total joke and doesnt deserve media attention. its debatable whether his stick swung intentionally or from the hit, but if intentionally, then its a pretty lame attempt at injuring a huge dude in lucic. lucic wouldve been lucky to feel it through his shin guards.

disclaimer: i am a ny rangers fan. second favourite team is avs. no opinion on eastern conference northeaster division teams.
November 13, 2011
Votes: +0

Jason Banks said:

Jason_Banks
Miller and Lucic To me the collision was fair... Lucic was driving for the puck and Miller whent out to meet it, is Lucic suppose to peel off when a goalie is going for a puck. It was a hockey incedent of 2 players going to the same place... It was about 3/4 to a second after Miller touched to puck that the hit happened, Lucic at high speed can't do much in that situation to get out of the way.

2 things I didnt like in that play was Lucic finnishing off the hit with his hands pushing out, That shows intent rather than absorbing the contact... Then there is the Miller swing... He is lucky he didn't make contact, if he did it woulda been belt high and unlikely to have phased Lucic... But he did intend to swing it considering he turned over for a second or 2 before he swung...

The more dangerous incedent was the stick swing and it brought back memories of Alex Perezhogin on Stafford...

Lucic getting a charging call on the play is kinda bullshit, his skating strides were for the puck not the hit.

Personally I hate that play by Miller... James Reimer has a history of it too, thust his injurys in the AHL past 2 years... Goalies making plays like Miller, Reimer, Hasek Osgood to meet a puck take away a players ability to get out of the way... Miller could have easily poked the puck to the side likely making Lucic to over skate the play and a D man turn the play up ice and no contact would have taken place. Instead Miller chose to meet and handle the puck puting himself in a vulnerable position to the play attempt being made by Lucic. The bad decision was made by Miller in 2 instances on the play before and after... Lucic was just train coming through the Crossing...
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

lcbtd said:

germant
@ Hugo Nope, not a Bruins fan. Also not a Sabres fan or Habs fan (are you?) just a guy who has played a lot of hockey, enough to know that if somebody takes a baseball like swing at somebody they deserve something in the way of suspension regardless of whether they connect or not, regardless of where they would connect had the hit, regardless of whether they were seated at the time.

All I know is those crying foul on Lucic are definitely in the minority and that'd be you.

November 13, 2011
Votes: +0

Seth said:

Fast Tony DeNiro
Miller Seriously people are talking about a suspension for Miller's stick swing? He swung his stick at Lucic's legs....people take chops to the legs about 1000 times a game but now we're talking about a suspension?

The fact is the rule does not say a goalie is fair game outside his crease or trapezoid. If you think the rule should be changed that's fine, but that's not how the rule is so saying "Miller was out of his crease Lucic did nothing wrong" is flat out wrong.

Like someone else said 99.9% of the time players avoid the goalie, so of course Miller isn't expecting to get rail-roaded by Lucic. It really was a stupid play by Lucic and there was really no reason for it.
November 13, 2011
Votes: +0

derek said:

buck0198
Miller If goalies are out of their general area then they should be free game. Lucic def. shoulda gave him room but if its bang=bang then sorry...you are getting hit.
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

Hugo Twigg said:

yougo
Miller's hockey swing I hope people are kidding about a possible Miller suspension for his hockey swing. He swung his stick while he was spinning around getting hammered by a goon. You need to be a Bruins fan to say something like that because his stick swing was weak and even if it hits Lucic, it's gonna hit him slightly higher than the knee.

Get overyourself. Lucic is a gutless jerk, like all Bruins. They are a good hockey team though, a good classless hockey team.
November 13, 2011
Votes: +2

lcbtd said:

germant
It's Miller Time Okay, horrible pun that's probably been used a billion times in the Buffalo media.

The question shouldn't be whether or not Lucic had the right to run Miller as I think that's fairly clear.

The question that should be asked, and wasn't even mentioned on HNIC, was how Miller gets away with the vicious stick swing afterwards? Is it suspension worthy? To answer that, you have to ask whether it matters if he connects or not (he doesn't). If it matters, then no suspension. If it doesn't, which it shouldn't, then he deserves a game or two.

Ironically, Miller getting suspended might be good for Buffalo.
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

fzusher said:

fzusher
goalie protection Inside the crease and trapezoid, goalies should enjoy 200% protection. Outside, they should be treated no different than any other player. Goalie wants to be protected? stay in the paint. Coach wants to build team game around goalie's puck moving ability? Know your goalie will be treated just like any other puck mover.
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

tim crowell said:

tcrowell
Miller was fair game I'm a Miller fantasy owner but Miller was out of the crease and playing the puck. Miller is probably just frustrated that he's not at the top of the game.
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

mike hess said:

SharkMeat
Miller Goalies have rule/honor protections but Goalies playing a sixth skater role with the puck way out of the general crease area should expect to get hit and since when is it all right to swing your stick and not get a penalty.
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

Marc said:

MGW
Pac And who saw that shot by Max Pac in OT? Did he look at Rinne, see that he wasn't covering every inch of the net, and sniper it shortside on him? I didn't see it close up, but that looked special.
November 13, 2011
Votes: +0

Rob Verhelle said:

Rob
Desharnais did any one see that line with Pacioretty and Desharnais last night , Desharnais is starting too play like the guy i saw for 4 years up here in Chicoutimi, too small Yeah Right smilies/tongue.gifsmilies/tongue.gif he makes his forwards so much better and Martin and Comp. in MTL are starting to realize it, been saying all along that this Kid is special.
November 13, 2011
Votes: +0

slufoot said:

slufoot
Miller vs Lucic Lucic should be able to make that hit every time. Goalies don't get run playing the puck behind the net because: a) they are not in a position to generate a quick couter attack; b) creation of the trapezoid serves as a pseudo-extension of the goalie crease denoting an area where goalies are off limits.

But when a goaltender chooses to play the puck at the faceoff dot, in the face of forechecking pressure, he is choosing to act as a 6th skater and should be treated as such. You can guarantee that if it was Myers, Ehrhoff, Regehr back there, lucic would have finished his check the same way.

ch - its quite possible Sabres' teammates were thinking "don't put me in a position to get my face pulverized just because you won't stay in your net and make a save"
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

ch said:

christopher929
Miller
Hey Miller - how many of your teammates stepped up in your defense ZERO. You want to bitch and moan start with your own team.
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

Vince Mathews said:

old man hockey
Miller So all of a sudden goalies are fair game to be run over if they want to play the puck? OK, then nobody should complain when a Sabre runs over Thomas or Rask the next time the Sabres and Bruins play. 99 times out of a 100, a player coming full speed down towards the goalie will avoid hitting the goalie. So what should Miller expect??? He should expect Lucic to come down towards him but avoid running him over. Any way you slice it, it wasa dirty, cheap play by Lucic. End of story.
November 13, 2011
Votes: +4

Marc said:

MGW
Miller D M took the words right out of my ummm...fingers? Miller tries to whack him with his stick after Lucic bowls him over. I'm not sure what Miller was expecting; if he's going to come out of the net to play the puck, he should be expecting some type of challenge. Also, to say that Lucic has 50 pounds on him. That's got nothing to do with anything, Chara and Buff has 50 pounds on almost everyone, does that mean they're not allowed to hit?
Miller's gotta step up, stop whining, and quit acting like little baby Luongo

Ok, rant over!
November 13, 2011
Votes: -1

fajita123 said:

fajita123
Malkin "you gotta mention malkin's 12 SOG...what a beast!"

and no goals... could have really used a couple this week
November 13, 2011
Votes: +1

Pokey Reddick said:

Chucker10
Lucic and Bruins Pick your event, Lucic's dirty hit on Miller tonight, the game earlier in the season when they gooned it up vs Carolina, Chara's cheap shot on Pacioretty, Thornton giving the finger to the fans. I could go on and on, this is only this year and last years playoffs. This is just a classless team and organization. The NHL needs to do something about them already. I just wish the playoffs were officiated the same way as the regular season. Then the Bruins wouldn't have made it passed the first round as they would have made a constant line to the penalty box. They are an embarrasment to the league, couldn't think of a worse teamm to represent the league as the reigning Stanley Cup champs. I guess your owner being best friends with the commisionaire has it's benefit. A tainted cup to say the least.
November 13, 2011
Votes: +0

Ken Shultz said:

kshultz
... When Lucic hit Miller, Miller had the puck.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4rYgKqDMB9Q

Miller was all the way out to the faceoff circle--and Miller had the puck.

November 12, 2011
Votes: +1

praba said:

praba
... you gotta mention malkin's 12 SOG...what a beast!
November 12, 2011
Votes: +2

D M said:

saywhaaaaat
... Miller should be disciplined for that deliberate stick swing after the hit. Now THAT was gutless...
November 12, 2011
Votes: -2
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