Kris Letang’s injury – day to day – is officially lower body. And his leg bent a little funny when he was run into the boards by Zubrus (I think it was because of the stupid touch-icing race – pretty sure, in fact now that I remember it). But I’m still a tad concerned that it’s his head. Again, this will be a concern for the next year or two, anytime he gets hit in the head. He is definitely a Band-Aid Boy though – certified, now updated.

 

Speaking of Band-Aid Boys, how about that Taylor Hall? After shoulder surgery, he is looking at nearly six months of rehab. It may cut into his training camp time, but shouldn’t. It will be close. But I remember in January advising a friend to trade him for the win. He insisted on hanging onto him because he’s a future superstar. I just told him “two injuries in less than two seasons – I’m worried he’s a Band-Aid Boy”.  I talked him into it – and today he’s walking away with the title and Hall has had two more injuries.

 

It’s like the Leafs have been trying to get into the draft lottery over the last two months. Well played. Well played. At this point, they’re in the lottery and with a few more losses they can easily get the second overall pick. That’s really the only way they can get a superstar – a Top 2 pick. And this team won’t be good without a) a superstar and b) a stud goalie. Neither grow on trees. But seriously, they’re a contender if they had Henrik Lundqvist and Zach Parise. Two players to get from Bottom 3 to Top 3. But that ain’t happening. However,  getting a Grigorenko and making a bold offer for a bright young goalie like a Cory Schneider and you’ll finally take that step forward.

 

There was speculation that the Leafs could make a play for Zach Parise this summer, as well they should. As I said, superstars don’t grow on trees so if you can get one, you should. Brad Richards is not a superstar. Zach Parise is. So you pretend to make a play for Richards, without really “trying”, so the whiners are satisfied. And then you make a serious play for a real superstar a year later.

 

They say James Reimer had an upper body injury. Jonas Gustavsson gave up three goals pretty quickly and wouldn’t you know it – Jussi Rynnas gets in and stops all 10 shots. The Leafs – Zero “A” or “B” goalies, but five “B-“ or “C+” goalies in their system. Weird, and tough scenario to be in.

 

Jussi Jokinen has eight points in his last six games.

 

Caps fans have to be pissed off. Are you kidding me? That was Game 7 of a playoff series right there. Up against Buffalo, at home, and they blow it badly. So McPhee, how is that “let’s stop the run-and-gun offense and tighten up and focus on our defense” thing working out for you? I keep shaking my head at this. They face one hot goalie and decide to revamp the entire system. Stupid. And I’m hearing Dale Hunter may step down this summer if they miss the playoffs. Apparently he’s quite happy in London with the Knights.

 

I started watching the Caps game, turned to the Penguins when the Caps were letting the Sabres walk all over them. Then I switched to the other big game of the night – Nashville vs. St. Louis. At this point, these are my two favorites in the West to go deep. The game made for a great preview – St. Louis dominated, but the Preds are still meshing.

 

Another shutout for Brian Elliott – the 15th for the Blues this season.

 

Viktor Stalberg had seven shots on net last night and has 15 shots in his last three games. Great season, and the key for me is that he’s stayed healthy, which gives him the time he needs to develop and reach his potential.

 

Stamkos two goals…Malkin two assists. Time has run out to close this gap in the scoring race and barring an injury, it’s obviously Malkin’s.

 

Two names on the scoring summaries that I haven’t seen in awhile thanks to injuries – Alex Steen and Rich Peverley.

 

Benoit Pouliot has 12 points in his last 10 games and plus-10 in that span, plus-19 on the year.

 

The Flyers signed prospect Nick Cousins to an ELC. He is ranked 185 on my Prospect Rankings, still several years away. He led the Soo Greyhounds in scoring with 88 points in 65 games (sixth in the OHL).

 

Ilya Bryzgalov has a chip fracture in his right foot. Apparently he’ll only miss a few games, if that.

 

My column for Puck Daddy yesterday.

 

Adam Larsson was a healthy scratch last night. Peter Harrold and Matt Taormina got into the game. Harrold actually played 19 minutes.

 

The Red Wings will welcome back Johan Franzen tonight. Does this mean Gustav Nyquist gets sent down? We’ll know soon. I hope not, I’m enjoying how well he’s performing.

 

Alex Pietrangelo for the Norris Trophy? Sorry guys, it’s Erik Karlsson’s. Adding two other “candidates” is just a formality – may as well draw those names from a hat.

 

The Wild signed prospect Jason Zucker to an ELC. He sits 139th on my prospects list, but with several young potential stars on the way he probably won’t make the team next year or the year after. However, he’s with the club now and may see a couple of games down the stretch to show what he’s got and get a leg up. He’ll need a leg up, with Granlund on the way and both Coyle and Larsson looking strong.

 

Reilly Smith has solved his visa issues and is available to dress for Dallas tonight. Something to keep an eye on.

 

Logan Couture has seven points in his last 13 games since his good buddy Jamie McGinn was traded.

 

Brendan Morrison has been scratched 18 times by the Blackhawks. Found that interesting.

 

Nathan Horton is out for the season (of course) and he may be shut down for the playoffs. He’s still not back on the ice.

 

For more tidbits on last night’s games, take a look at today’s Studs and Duds

 

Tough finding clips these last couple of days… here’s Gudbranson vs. White:

 

 

Pominville putting the nail in Washington's coffin?

 

 

 


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Comments (11)add comment

Death_from_above said:

Death_from_above
Leafs I LOVE this site. I buy the downloads and read the different articles and really like the daily ramblings.
But it is disappointing that,like other sites, the silly speculation on the Toronto Maple Leafs and what players they are going to get is irritating, to say the least.

So the Leafs will finish 2nd last overall, make a serious play for Cory Schneider (with no assets to offer. My apologies to Joe Colborne)and sign Parise.

I don't believe for a second, despite the delirious thoughts from the fans, tsn, etc. that Parise will sign with a 29th place team,no matter what money they often. Parise is not a stupid man and with no playoffs in site and no hope he won't play there.

March 28, 2012
Votes: +2

Robert Esquire said:

bullwinkle
Caps vs. Sabres Dobber: "I started watching the Caps game, turned to the Penguins when the Caps were letting the Sabres walk all over them."

What? Are you suggesting that if the Caps actually tried, they would have easily won the game? Don't the Sabres get any credit for their play? For their determination? For shutting down OV?

Take a look at their record over the past ten games or so if you haven't as yet. The Sabres earned that victory - and I watched the whole game.
March 28, 2012
Votes: +0

Jason S said:

minksauce
Stunaman I would consider Brad Richards an allstar, not a superstar.

a) Now that Richards is gone, Dallas are geared for the playoffs this season. Not that it was Richards’ fault that they didn’t make playoffs, but he wasn’t able to get them there, and now without him they are.
b) In NY, Callahan is having a career year, and his maturity has progressed even more so this season. I think he is a major factor for NYs success.
March 28, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Lenethen said:

DarthVain
Norris Lock Well if you are going to put out Chara in contention with Karlsson, then I am going to throw out Lidstrom.

Statistically he has the best chance if you are thinking that way. He has comparible points and +/- to Chara considering he played 10 games less.

He has also won the damn thing 7 times more than Chara... Just sayin'
March 28, 2012
Votes: +0

Kevin Coghlan said:

BCFelony
Leaves Fans All this talk about "Leafs should get Nash", "Leafs should get Parise", "Leafs should get Schneider". They have 6.5 million in cap space for next year. This isn't including the 1.7 to call up Kadri. No money for Nash or Parise. Schneider is an RFA and isn't going anywhere.

In other news, they can resign Jeff Finger if they want.
March 28, 2012
Votes: +1

Maximus said:

Mr Zizzla
Not that the Pens need more press but... @Dobber, how did you miss this stat last night?! I can't rememeber if i have ever seen it before, although i know Malkin and Ovechkin have hit 10 in the past...

James Neal 2G -1 1PPG 12SOG

12 SHOTS ON GOAL! He had 17 attempted shots and ONLY 12 made it through...insane!
March 28, 2012
Votes: +0

Stunaman said:

Stunaman
... I would disagree that Richards is not a superstar. To me he's clearly one of the most underrated superstars. I live in NY and have watched the Rangers the last few years when they had both Lundy and Gaborik and they weren't even close to the top of the standings. They add Richards this year and all of the sudden they're at the top of the East. Coincidence? Highly unlikely. Richards made the Stars a better team and when he was in Tampa, helped them win the Cup (04) and also won the Conn Smythe. The guy's a winner.
March 28, 2012
Votes: +0

Jeff Sabatine said:

marsid6687
Caps "Caps fans have to be pissed off. Are you kidding me? That was Game 7 of a playoff series right there. Up against Buffalo, at home, and they blow it badly."

Shouldn't the Caps fans be used to that already?
March 28, 2012 | url
Votes: +0

paul said:

donpaulo
... I have noticed a distinct harshness for my NYR from the Canadian press, especially the THN.

Yet here we are in the final stages of the season and NY is fighting for the top overall spot in the league, their defense is mostly homegrown and young. The forwards drafted by NY have played an important role in this seasons success too in Callahan, Stepan, Anisimov and the very much overlooked Carl Hagelin who is 6th in rookie scoring

Their much maligned offense ?

Richards is 2nd in the league this month and Gaborik is 4th

With all the Norris talk how about some love for Daniel Girardi ? The guy is a top defender playing for a top team. Yet the Canadian press is all about Karlsson or Chara. How about a Canadian boy eh ?

And Tortorella for coach of year talk ? crickets mostly
March 28, 2012
Votes: -1

CommittedToTheIndian said:

CommittedToTheIndian
Blues I know it's anathema to poolies, who want goals, goals and more goals, and that St. Louis was considered a team on the verge, but give Hitch a lifetime contract. Amazing what they've done since he took over. If he starts to wear on players, he can be a consultant until it's time to go back behind the bench.
March 28, 2012
Votes: +1

Jeff Lucarelli said:

jeffl97
Karlsson and the Norris Trophy I don't see how Erik Karlsson is a lock for the Norris. Right now he has 76 points in 76 games. in 2008-2009 Mike Green had a 31 goal season and put up 73 points in 68 games, but still fell short to Zdeno Chara (who is putting up better numbers this year than in 2008-2009). In 2009-2010 Mike Green had 76 points in 75 games (sounds familiar?) but still lost to Duncan Keith. The Norris Trophy is awarded to the league's top "defense player who demonstrates throughout the season the greatest all-round ability in the position". My guess is Chara wins it this year, and the Norris is no more of a lock for Karlsson than it was for Green. Best offensive defenseman? Karlsson no doubt? Norris? Not sure.
March 28, 2012
Votes: +0
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