Brian Burke and Kevin Lowe were actually going to rent a barn and fight over their feud a few years ago? A great piece on Burke here.

 

Saturday picks from Marty, as well as this week's Looking Ahead from Dave Poleck will be posted in a few hours.

 

Allan Walsh wonders why his client Derick Brassard isn't playing much? Well, to be frank, it is because he isn't a good player. Brassard is too weak on the puck and at faceoffs to play center, and he has been passed over by numerous other players for the vacant wing positions.

 

He's a great trade candidate as he could benefit from a fresh start elsewhere, but to blame his lack of production on not getting an opportunity is quite ridiculous. Brassard hasn't been the same player since he wrecked his shoulder in a fight with James Neal a few years ago.

 

What is up with Drew Doughty? Been a steady decline in his play since the Olympics in February of 2010.

 

There are only four players in the league who have more points than Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. Wow.

 

Six goals last night for the Preds represented an offensive explosion. They were quick in transition and made some nice plays around the net. Colin Wilson and Craig Smith both had three points. Wilson was the most dangerous Pred forward. Fisher and Erat also had really strong games.

 

Nashville's lack of defensive depth was apparent. The Canucks managed to get the Sedin line away from Weber/Suter for many shifts, and they were absolutely dominant against the bottom four defensemen. Vancouver outshot Nashville almost 2 to 1, and the scoring chances were probably a similar ratio as well.

 

Cody Hodgson continues to shine in limited minutes. He scored a goal, created a few chances, and hit a post near the end of the game. Still only 11 minutes, though. Tough to play more with the depth Vancouver has. He's still seeing a regular shift on the second PP unit, though.

 

David Desharnais had a great game - three points and almost 20 minutes of ice time in San Jose.

 

The Thornton/Marleau/Pavelski line was a combined minus-8, while Clowe/Couture/Havlat combined for five points.

 

Sean Bergenheim scored Florida's lone goal last night. He has yet to record an assist and is on pace for just over 10 points.

 

Nazem Kadri was named AHL Player of the Month after posting 17 points in 12 games. He’s been underwhelming at the NHL level, but it is never a good idea to write off a young forward who is producing like Kadri is.

 

Mike Brophy has a solid piece on Kadri here.

 

From Kadri himself:

 

"Just being able to recognize danger is the biggest change in my game," Kadri said. "Turnovers have been pretty bad news for me; especially in junior when I kind of did whatever I felt like doing. Since junior I'm trying to be more of a complete player and I'm limiting my turnovers. I'm starting to be less of a risky player and more of a reward player. It is tough to change. It has taken me some time to adjust, but I think each day I'm getting better. I just keep working hard and if I do that, things will pan out for me."

 

My piece for the Canucks Army yesterday – I take a look at some interesting numbers to do with the Canucks and some of their players.

 

Cory Schneider and Pekka Rinne were both pulled in a weird game yesterday in Vancouver. Schneider let in three of the first five he faced (to prove he is human after all), while Rinne allowed four in the second period.

 

Mason Raymond was all set to make his season debut yesterday, but his paperwork wasn’t filed to the league on time, and he was declared ineligible to say. A screw up by the Vancouver front office, and expect Raymond to play on Sunday against Calgary.

 

I snagged TJ Brodie in a few leagues yesterday, and I’d recommend you do the same. Great young defenseman with an opportunity in front of him with Giordano out.

 

Ondrej Pavelec stopped all 33 shots he faced last against the ‘Yotes. The Winnipeg fans went from booing Shane Doan to later cheering him.

 

Bryan Little scored the only goal of the game.

 

Crosby vs. Ovechkin didn’t exactly transpire last night, as both players had quiet games. Jason Chimera scored his team leading 10th goal for the Capitals.

 

Simon Despres recorded an assist in his NHL debut for the Pens. He’s big and mobile, but doesn’t possess a ton of offensive upside.

 

Crosby was a very un-Crosby-like 6-for-22 in the faceoff circle. Nick Backstrom won 14 of the 16 he took and absolutely dominated the faceoff matchup.

 

The Carolina Hurricanes are such a bad team. This is news to no one, but Kirk Muller has his work cut out for him. The Rangers scored five goals last night, and a whopping 14 different players recorded points.

 

Gaborik has 21 points in 22 games. Not sensational, but solid numbers considering his poor season in 2010-11. He should be above a point-per-game, but the Rangers have struggled to find cohesive line combinations through the first part of the season.

 

Sean Avery has three goals in 11 games this season, matching his total from all of last season (76 games).

 

Cam Ward is a very good goalie but he’s having a very bad season. In one of my leagues, he is single-handedly killing my teams chances of winning any of my matchups.

 

Without Goligoski, Dallas’ PP leaders among defensemen were Souray (2:31 of ice time), Larsen (1:48 of ice time), and Robidas (1:59 of ice time). The Stars really need a puck moving defenseman, even when Goligoski is healthy.

 

Milan Michalek’s strong season continues. I’d be looking to sell high, as he won’t sustain his48 goal pace, and he’s a huge injury risk.

 

Andrew Raycroft continues to play very well in relief of the injured Kari Lehtonen. Raycroft had 33 saves against the Senators, and he’s really turned his career around after a stint with the Canucks a few years ago.

 

Jamie Benn has been very streaky lately. Starting November 4th, he had seven points in three games, one point in his next six, four points in his next two, and then zero points in his next three.

 

Ty Rattie was named WHL Player of the Week. He has 27 goals in 27 games this season. The undersized winger has a ton of skill and top six upside. He’s another great prospect in the St. Louis system. At some point, that team is going to figure things out and become really, really good.

 

Nikita Nikitin had a game to remember for the Jackets. Three points, five shots on goal, and almost 27 minutes of ice time. Three Columbus defensemen played over 26 minutes (the other two being Wisniewski and Tyutin).

 

Blake Comeau scored his first goal with the Flames. He also added an assist and three shots on goal.

 

Without Giordano, Derek Smith, Brodie and Hannan saw increased minutes. Cory Sarich drew back in to the lineup, but he played only 13 minutes. One of the worst contracts in the league right now.

 

People (I am guilty of this) keep jumping the gun with that team, as they have so much young talent at every position. I think the biggest issue is the lack of a true game breaking forward. Unless your goaltender is Dominik Hasek, it is tough to win without a true star forward. David Backes is really good, but I wouldn’t classify him a star. Berglund hasn’t put his massive potential together yet (nor has he really come all that close to doing so).

 

Sami Salo didn’t play last night due to a groin injury. Aaron Rome drew in to the lineup. Salo owners should expect this kind of thing.

 

NHL’s three stars for November – Thomas, Toews, and Lupul. I wouldn’t disagree with any of the selections.

 

Marc Staal continues to skate, but in his own words a return is “a long ways away.”

 

Tyler Ennis may play tonight. He’s been out for over a month with an ankle injury.

 

Three years with a cap hit of $5.25 million for David Krejci as he signs an extension with the Bruins. The money seems high, but when you factor in the ever-increasing salary cap, it isn’t all that bad. Solidifies the center ice position for the Bruins. Probably not the greatest news for Seguin owners, but he’ll continue to find opportunities to produce if he keeps this level fo play up.

 

This was the first time I had seen anything like this before:


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Comments (11)add comment

GB said:

Front89
Harding I have to complain somewhere and thought this might be the best place since its related to tonight's games....Harding comes in to replace Backstrom for the 2nd & 3rd periods shutting out the Devils after Backstrom let in 2 goals on 9 shots and was injured/pulled. Backstrom somehow gets the win...how the F did he earn the win over Harding? I know the NHL rule, but it is a lousy one that really needs to be changed. Harding was 2nd star of the game and he gets no win? Ludicrous
December 02, 2011
Votes: +1

Brandon Davenport said:

Wildcat84A
O'Reilly Understanding that it's only been two games, however...what was all that talk about Ryan O'Reilly not being ready for a top-six center spot? Watch the Avs games and see--he's been the number one center, and he's been a factor in many a game. Another multi-point night and the shootout winner to boot. If I'm not mistaken, he's out to prove his doubters wrong.
December 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Austin said:

austeane
Crosby *"I didn't expect Crosby to go on a 40 game point streak"
December 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Austin said:

austeane
... Kesler with the new trend! Net surfing! It is like planking but on a hockey net.... Do it strapped on a pickup truck.... In a train station... First it's Keslurking and now Net surfing... Who needs planking and Tebowing?

I am still holding out on my last glimmer of hope that Brassard can turn it around if he is given a fresh slate with a new team... I have pretty much given up hope for him in CBJ.

I have been noticing something I think and I would like to find out whether the numbers back me up. I seem to have seen a bunch of defencemen break into the league lately who have scored quite a lot in their first year (for some it continues into their second year) and then the numbers dry out as either the league figures them out or they are told to try and figure out the defensive game more. Subban, MDZ, Doughty (sorta) etc... Am I just seeing what I want to see or is there something there?

Hodgson is sooo close to becoming a 70 point player.. You can literally see him getting better every game. I think that next time he gets a chance in the top 6 that lasts more then 2 games it will be for good. The guy is magic on the PP too.

I have Thorton and I saw 4 goals for the Sharks and I was thinking "sweet I have at least a point or two!"... No points and a -3... Little Joe is bigger then Jumbo Joe!

I didn't expect to go on a 40 game point streak scoring 2 points every game... No I didn't... That would be foolish... Of course.smilies/cool.gif

And mick I was actually glad as a Canucks fan was put in. It means that AV is commited to the hot hand approach. He actually set an awesome precedent tonight. He plays the hot hand but because the backup has just as much skill; if you have a bad night you are out. Gone are the days of ANY of our goalies letting in 8 goals a game. 3 in a period and he is out. Same standard for Luongo. Play great? Get as many games in a row as you are stellar for! Play bad? Hello other goalie! I love it.
December 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Jason Banks said:

Jason_Banks
Kadri Kadri has deffinatly put the offencive game togather. Making defencemen look stupid, stick handleing in phonebooths, strong passes, great job at creating seperation from players in the zone, carryng speed through the neutral zone and being more unselfish with the puck...

He was having a great game vs Grand Rapids Tuesday with 2 strong even strength goals. One of the best games of his I've seen this season...

Until with a minute left in OT he got selfish with the puck, instead of making a pass to Marcel Muller or dumping a puck in deep, Kardi decided to make 2 direction changes at the offencive blue line with Vetrean Garnett Exelby bearing down. Garnett cut off his lane and pushed Kadri rather easily off the puck and fired a pass cross ice to Tomas Tatar and trapped Kadri and Mueller and a D man trying to support Kadri (might a been Holzer)... Marlies never recovered the puck or positioning and the game was dead at 4:11...

The downfalls to Kadri are still his Jr tendancys, which cost us this game and a few others... and defencive play (he is making huge strides and miles ahead of where he was)...

He is at the point where in a strict offencive role he will contribute in the offencive zone... but you wanna match him up against 3rd and 4th lines and 3rd pairings... he isnt at the point where he could play 15 minutes and see shifts against 2nd and 3rd lines or pairings....

He needs the rest of the year in the AHL just to simplify his game. He needs to learn not to force something when there is nothing, and to make the safe play... The talent is there, he is filled out and the body is there (altho still smallish and easier to bump from a puck, altho miles ahead of last 2 years).

Also after 1 more off season of training I think he'll be fully built and physically ready to handle more players.

So if Kadri progresses in those area, he should be ready for top 3 line NHL duties, and never see AHL ice again.
December 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Leftwall said:

Leftwall
Michalek Problem with trying to sell high on Michalek in savvy leagues is that no one is buying - same for Lupul. If he misses 16 games like he has the last two seasons, but maintains his shot totals as they presently are and his shooting percentage drops to just above where he normally is over his career then he is on target for 37 goals. I don't think anyone is going to trade me that kind of value.
December 02, 2011
Votes: +1

Pengwin7 said:

Pengwin7
Doughty Two key things about Doughty (& many young defensemen)

1. Fantasy hockey fans seem to expect ALL young players improve their statistics yearly. We have set concepts like the "magical 4th year breakout" - which I subscribe to as well... for FORWARDS. Some young players, and especially defensemen, will not continue to improve in their scoring. Defensemen scoring can be all over the map - and is often based on how well a team's PP is clicking and time played. Doughty is a smooth-skating defenseman who played 25min/game in his 2nd season: No Time Increase left for improvement. He also put up 31 PPP in that season: No Increase left for improvement. 31PPP is a very good season and most PP-QBs put up 20-25pts +/-5pts. Unlike forwards, defensemen usually have a full-sheet of ice in front of them to read when they get the puck. You can throw a young defenseman on PP1 and he CAN put up 50+ points (Tyler Myers, Fowler, Doughty, Karlsson). But it is unreasonable, IMO, to expect that number to constantly increase and it can be unreasonable to even expect that number to be repeated. What's not unreasonable is that Doughty's 59pt season will be his best season ever: 25min/game & 31PPP. A smooth skating defenseman on PP1 can do that, even at a young age.

2. Doughty just got a nice, fat contract. Motivation is a very, very hard thing to maintain. Some players bring it every day, some muster it for contract seasons, some muster it for playoffs. Some players only show up when called-out. For Doughty, I'm not sure the same motivation is there.

Summary: Doughty = 45pt D-man, with a +/-10pts based on PP chemistry.


ps. Awesome rambling - but I only felt like talking Doughty today. (I player I don't own in any leagues!)
December 02, 2011
Votes: +1

mick said:

hawkdog
AV Anyone else cringe when he put in Lou?
Seemed to spark the Canucks but wow can't say he played better than Schneider.

I thought Lindback played exceptional when he came in though, some big timely saves.
December 02, 2011
Votes: -1

grimey22 said:

grimey22
Jets Fans The Jets fans weren't booing Doan himself - they were booing the jersey he was wearing. They gave him a standing ovation during a break to acknowledge the fact that he was a Jet once too, but then they went right back to booing any Yotes player that touched the puck, including Doan. There was nothing personal about it
December 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Jeff Sabatine said:

marsid6687
Ward Welcome aboard Jeff. He's killing my chances too.
December 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Tuco said:

slink
Cam Ward Is this is great time to buy low on Cam Ward in one year leagues or is he a lost cause this season due to how bad Carolina is? Is Carolina really this bad?
December 02, 2011
Votes: +0
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