Angus here - have created my own blog, and wrote on the headshot hypocrisy in the NHL right now. Here is my piece over at Angus Certified.
My THN column from yesterday is here.
I missed the first two periods. Martin Brodeur is probably embarrassed that I tuned in just in time to watch him let in two goals. Or not. I pick apart his play a little, point out his decline… and then I miss him stopping all 18 shots that he faces, but watch him allow two goals on nine shots.
With two points last night, Chris Kreider has five points in 13 playoff games. He also has two game-winning goals. Great start to his career and in case you missed my thoughts on him earlier – I see low 40s for him next year, and a Blake Wheeler-like progression (so fourth year – boom).
Identical stats to Kreider (five points, minus-2, 13 games) – Patrik Elias. These stats from the latter player is considered disappointing, but from the former player it’s considered fantastic.
Henrik Lundqvist has faced 23 or fewer shots in four straight contests.
Besides Lundqvist, Dan Girardi has to be the MVP of the Rangers in these playoffs, no? Leads them in ice time – important ice time at that – third in points, and his 52 blocked shots lead the league by a mile.
You know how to get the other team to stop blocking shots? Shoot harder.
Dumbest thing I’ve seen in hockey. (Clarification - I refer only to diving in front of shots to block them - some readers didn't get that) Sure, it’s working. And if it wins a Cup good for them. But I don’t think it’s beneficial 99 times out of 100. If the Rangers win the Cup, they’d win without the shot blocks too. One goal in 10 shots go in, generally speaking. So if your team lays down and blocks 10 shots a game, they’re stopping one goal per game. If one player gets injured for every 50 shots that are blocked – how many goals are allowed as a result of that player missing time? What if Girardi is out for a month because he blocked a shot? If that happened, the Rangers let in five extra goals over 10 games. In the long run, over a large sample size, more goals will go into the net because of a ‘block shots’ trend.
Also – why not, after you just take the lead, just lay five players on top of each other in the net until the game is over? Stupid.
Over the next 16 days, a lot of quality prospects will be signed. June 1 is the deadline for signing players drafted in 2010 (excluding college and certain European). The Red Wings fully intend to sign Calle Järnkrok, Teemu Pulkkinen and Tomas Jurco – all three of whom rank pretty high on my Fantasy Prospects List.
Ovechkin, Semin and Backstrom are off to the World Championship. I’ve never heard of Round 2, Game 7 losers still getting into that tourney before. Interesting stuff.
I got this from Puck Daddy – Todd Richards coached the Jackets to an 18-21-2 record. Not bad, considering what the record was before that. A healthy and unsuspended James Wisniewski, a free agent acquisition goalie, and of course Yakupov or whoever they get with the pick... and this team may not be so bad next year. Not good, but not terrible either.
This guy thinks that the Blackhawks could be putting Patrick Kane on the trade block. I’m inclined to agree. I think, in terms of value, Patrick Sharp and Jonathan Toews are superior. Kane being moved would give nice return and free up cap space.
Despite the fact that Simon Gagne has been cleared for contact, he is not joining the team. He’ll need to take some hits, usually this is close to a two-week process, which would put a return for the Stanley Cup Final if they get there. But at that point, if they’re winning, do they bother?
Nashville prospect Austin Watson was named the OHL’s playoff MVP. He’s still a couple of years away…
Vladimir Tarasenko, who didn’t make Team Russia at the World Championship due to questions about his conditioning, is expected to make a decision about the NHL or the KHL (for next year) within the next couple of weeks.
Valtteri Filppula is having a great WC tourney – he had four points in Finland’s 4-1 win over Kazakhstan and he has nine points in seven games.
Our friend Chris Nichols from sportsnet.ca has the ramblings tomorrow, subbing in for me. He’ll pop in from time to time throughout the offseason.
This was an interesting breakout move, getting it out of the Rangers zone. Led to the opening goal by Girardi:
Did you guys see this funny DJ mix of John Tortorella pressers?