Some Stanley Cup notes - it's starting to look as though Viktor Stalberg will be out… and Bryan Bollig will be in. Tim Sassone tweeted the line combos in practice, for the Blackhawks:

Sharp - Toews - Hossa

Bickell - Handzus - Kane

Saad - Bolland - Shaw

Bollig - Kruger - Frolik

So Coach Quenneville loaded up with talent on the top line, and gave Kane as much size on his line as possible. So who does Chara cover? If I'm Coach Julien, I try to match him with the Toews line. Leave Kane to Ference and Boychuk.

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I don't have Boston's practice combos, but the lines they used last game, courtesy of Frozen Pool, were:

Bergeron - Marchand - Jagr

Horton - Krejci - Lucic

Daugavins - Peverley - Seguin

 

 

Paille - Kelly - Thornton

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I try to use the Facebook page for some insider stuff about what is going on with Dobber Sports. Little hints of what is to come on the various sites. Yesterday I posted our plans for Frozen Pool. A few days ago I posted a new logo for something that is upcoming. I just want to make it worth your taking the time to "like" Dobber Sports.

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I missed this yesterday, but Bob McKenzie tweeted that he expects Philadelphia to use the compliance buyout on Ilya Bryzgalov. Wouldn't it be funny if they then signed Mike Smith, expecting another miracle goalie before discovering that it was Phoenix coaching all along?

Funnier still - Bryzgalov goes back to Phoenix…

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NHL Conference finals viewership doubled over last year. Just a tiny article, so I'll post it in its entirety here:

The NHL conference finals' television viewership more than doubled from last year. With three large-market teams and three clubs with recent histories of luring audiences, the Blackhawks-Kings and Bruins-Penguins series averaged 2.65 million viewers on NBC and NBC Sports Network despite lasting only a combined nine games. Kings-Coyotes and Devils-Rangers averaged 1.25 million viewers last year over 11 games.

Helped by two double-overtime games, this year's series drew the most viewers for a conference finals in 17 years, when games on Fox and ESPN averaged 2.86 million viewers; the population was smaller then, but that was for 13 games.

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Rossy gives his rankings of the 2013 draftees who he feels have the most fantasy value - his ramblings over at DobberProspects.

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The Sharks signed undrafted prospect Petter Emanuelsson. The 21-year-old had 18 points in 54 games in the SEL last season. In the lower levels he showed some promise offensively, so I'm curious to see how he does in the AHL in the fall.

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The Hockey Writers take a look at Damien Brunner and why the Red Wings need to re-sign him.

Still with THW, they also list five under-the-radar European prospects to watch for at the Draft.

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People are still asking about what went wrong with the Penguins. To me the answer is obvious - too many moves at the deadline. You know that I panned the Jarome Iginla acquisition. It felt wrong to be criticizing the move, given the player that they were getting. But this was a team that was winning hockey games and had amazing chemistry. Then they add Iginla. And yes, he flourished for them offensively. But the chemistry was gone. He took a power-play spot and never fit in there. He pushed Beau Bennett into the press box. He pushed Pascal Dupuis off the top line at times (rarely, but it did happen), and Chris Kunitz off the power play at other times.

On the other hand, I have no problem with the Morrow, Jokinen and Murray acquisitions. They used Morrow as a checker, Jokinen filled in for Crosby when he was injured and was ready to do so again if needed, and Murray filled a hole on defense. Iginla didn't fill any need. He's a just a great player added to a lineup that didn't need a great player. It's not his fault that the Penguins lost. Not even close. But the move that brought him on board, to me, was the move that led to this. It changed everything.

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NHL 14 - the Enforcer…

 


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rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
...... Lol. Pittsburgh entire game is basically predicated on a "fast break" type of offense. Adding Bouw is about more than just his defensive ability. He would have instantly been the first or second best puck moving Dman on that roster (Letang is good, but also makes some bad decisions). He would have really helped Pittsburgh's offensive game and helped them generate the type of game flow they like.
June 12, 2013
Votes: +0

Teh Doktor said:

Teh Doktor
Bouwmeester Outside of game three, they lost 3-0, 2-1, 1-0.

Not that their D couldn't have used an upgrade, but D wasn't thier issue.
June 12, 2013
Votes: +0

rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
Bouw I agree. However is a cup worth a compliance buyout? Not saying it would have been the exact same trade to get Bouw, or that his addition would have guaranteed a cup, but a buyout would have been about 4 mil over 2 years.
June 12, 2013
Votes: +0

angus said:

angus
...
RA - Bouwmeester has a year left on his contract - no way Pitt could have afforded him.
June 12, 2013
Votes: +0

Teh Doktor said:

Teh Doktor
Iginla/Pens The Pens losing was not Iginla's fault.

Despite the fact that they got swept, the Pens easily could have won games 1, 3, 4. Game one, a couple of flukey goals did them in. Games 3 and 4 were lost by a combined score of 3-1.

Still. As far as Iginla goes, the first blow was losing Crosby until the playoffs started. This meant that Bylsma set his lineup when the playoffs started instead of when the trades were acquired which would have given him ample time to realize what everyone else here was saying: Iginla, a HOF RW needed to play RW. He wound up playing LW on the Malkin line instead.

There are players who can move from LW to RW easily, though I'm sure they have a preference. Dupuis is one of those players who can. The fact that Iginla was largely ineffective and invisible most of the time against a good team says he can't. The lines should have been:

Dupuis - Crosby - Iginla
Kunitz - Malkin - Neal (which has been fantastic in the past)

Another major issue is Letang. He is one of the most skilled D in the league. He also makes terrible decisions, especially on the PP (not to mention clearing the puck through the middle of the ice on the PK, which lead directly to a goal). The PP, while getting some chances, would've been much better if Martin was playing instead of Letang.

Iginla also should have been a fixture on the PP, which he wasn't. He finished 9th, 6th, 6th, and 8th in PP time in the four games.

I would have had Martin/Malkin/Crosby, with mostly Iginla, and Neal/Kunitz swapping out of each other. Having said that, Martin was hurt for at least game 4.

The skuttle here is Letang is seeking a contract worth $7 Million. The consensus also seems to be that if you can't have him as your PP QB, you can't pay him that kind of money. With several D prospects in the system, a new contract due to Malkin, several UFA's and RFA's, and a looming goaltender issue, Letang might be expendible.

One last thing: a supposed insider has suggested that it is possible that the Pens might be willing to part with Neal or Kunitz. So we'll see.

Ray Shero press conference at 11:00 this morning.
June 12, 2013
Votes: +0

rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
Iginal My biggest issue with the Iginla acquisition is if you're Shero at the deadline, how do you look at your roster and at the Flames roster and decide you need to chase Iggy instead of Bouwmeester? Bouw is the guy they should have gone after.
June 12, 2013
Votes: +1

Pengwin7 said:

Pengwin7
Nice I've speculated Mike Smith to PHI (or MIN) as well.
Very possible.
Steve Mason & Mike Smith are both big Canadian boys.
Flyer fans will probably look back on Philly's last very good goalie as a big Canadian boy.

Bryz back to PHX is a very real possibility, I think.

re: CHI lines & changes.
CHI may be loading up their top line only for the first two home games in Chicago.
They get last change, so good luck to BOS in matching a loaded top-line.
Strategerie.
June 12, 2013
Votes: +0
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