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A busy (and exciting) Thursday night in the NHL. Roy, Gaborik, Bishop, and Jagr were all difference makers in their respective debuts with new teams.

 

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Picked a good Canucks game to go to – Pavel Bure was in the house, and got a rousing standing ovation from the crowd. He’s the reason I fell in love with hockey. What a great moment.

 

 

For the Oilers, their kids line was really good at creating offense. The rest of the team… not so much. Sam Gagner has been great in 2013, but he was awful last night.

 

 

Derek Roy looked really good for Vancouver – he was dynamic with Chris Higgins. They created at least five or six high quality scoring chances. Roy is going to fit in quite nicely down the stretch run.

 

 

Cory Schneider was rock solid in goal – he wasn’t tested early but made some  nice saves down the stretch.

 

 

Roy also played on the PK and second PP unit.

 

 

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Jaromir Jagr scored his first goal as  a Bruin, and Tuukka Rask did the rest – 40 save shutout.

 

 

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Evander Kane looks a little angry here, no? 17 PIM must help a few pools out there:

 

 

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Flyers/Leafs game was a lot of fun to watch. Spotty goaltending, hits, offense, this game had all of the ingredients for great TV.

 

 

Joffrey Lupul left after getting smashed by a few Flyers, but apparently he isn’t concussed. Hopefully not – he has battled some serious injuries recently, and has been playing great hockey since coming back.

 

 

Here is more on Lupul from the post game pressers.

 

 

James van Riemsdyk scored his first goal in 11 games for Toronto. He had a great game, and was taking the puck to the net more than he has in recent games (and not a surprise it led to a goal).

 

 

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Ben Bishop sure made quite the Tampa debut – 45 save shutout. What a performance. Bishop is going to play a lot down the stretch as the Lightning already know what they have with Garon and Desjardins.

 

 

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Another two points for PK Subban, who is playing his way towards a Norris Trophy.

 

 

Michael Ryder added two goals and an assist – he adds a dynamic to the Montreal offense (quick strike offense) that they may have been missing before the trade. Ryder isn’t overly big or fast, but he knows where to go on the ice, and he always has his stick ready to fire the puck on goal.

 

 

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Dubinsky and Gaborik looked great together for the Rangers, erm, the Blue Jackets, last night. Gaborik scored the game winner.

 

Bobrovsky stopped all but one of the 39 shots he faced. His sensational season continues.

 

 

It will be interesting to see how the Jackets spread their offense out – they suddenly have a pretty potent attack with the Gaborik trade and Dubinsky returning from injury.

 

 

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Phoenix goaltender Chad Johnson was great last night – 32 saves on 34 shots. Did anyone make the smart move and scoop him off the wire? Phoenix goalies are money in the bank.

 

 

Keith Yandle had two helprs last night, but he saw less ice time than Stone, Ekman-Larsson, Morris, and Klesla.

 

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Some beauty goals in this shootout last night:

 

 


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One of my favourite prospects in hockey, Nick Bjugstad, is making his NHL debut this Saturday for the Panthers. Florida's prospect pool is incredible, and Bjugstad has top line upside. It will be interesting to see how the team deploys him in the future, as Drew Shore and Jonathan Huberdeau are also centers (although Huberdeau has been on the wing in 2013).


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I admire Dave Nonis's stones for sticking with Reimer and Scrivens. Luongo would have been an instant upgrade for that team, but he didn't want to take on the term of that contract (and many are speculating how serious he really was in the Luongo trade from the beginning).



I think the draft presents a better chance for the Canucks to move Luongo, and as crazy as it sounds I still wouldn't count out the Flyers (buying out Bryzgalov). What a nightmare in goal for them once again. And before I get criticized, I realize Bryzgalov has had some great/good stretches of play this season. But it just isn't working out for him in Philly. And if Steve Mason is the answer, I'll eat some crow (seem to be doing that a bit lately).



Here's a post-deadline roundup of the Luongo reactions, from the various sides and sources.


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This title sums up the Oilers - it's Taylor Hall's bus and we are just along for the ride. Wow has he been good this season, especially over the past month or so. 50 goals on the horizon within the next few years? If the Oilers can get a few more d-men who can move the puck, it could be within the realm of possibility.


And Hall's season is even more impressive with some historical context behind it:


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Reid Boucher is off to quite the start with the Devils AHL club - the diminutive forward has four points in two games. Tons of offensive upside (top line), but he's a risk to get there. Small, and still a bit raw. However, encouraging early returns in the pro game, which is a great sign.


John Merrill has five assists in his first three pro games with Albany - again, he is a prospect with a lot of upside. Great skating two-way defenseman who plays with an edge. He will be in New Jersey very, very soon.


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There are some KHL rumblings around Michal Neuvirth, which has to excite Braden Holtby owners. Neuvirth hasn't been very good this year (a contract year, too).


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Some harsh words from On Frozen Blog (Caps blog) - on the Erat/Forsberg swap - a "desperate move by a desperate GM."

I can see the reasoning behind the deal - the time to win in Washington is the next two or three years, and Erat helps more over that time than Forsberg does (and he has a reasonable cap hit/contract for a top six winger). However, Forsberg is a highly-touted prospect, and this is the kind of move that could come back to bite Washington in the behind in the (not too distant) future.


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Down Goes Brown with eight reasons why the trade deadline is getting worse.

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According to Jason Botchford (Canucks reporter), Ryane Clowe wants/wanted an eight-year, $34 million contract extension. Wow. I wonder what the Rangers will give him? That cap hit is OK for a top six winger (which Clowe has been in the past), but giving that kind of term to a non-superstar is rarely a move that works out for the team involved.


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Bure, Bure, Bure!



Write comment
Comments (10)add comment

DuklaNation said:

DuklaNation
... 4-1 lead, almost 4 minutes to go, and you're giving a glove face wash to Kane? He looked pissed.

Yandle 23 pts (8 goals), OEL 19 pts. Who is better offensively? I've said it before, Yandle on another team would be the highest scoring dman in the NHL.
April 05, 2013
Votes: +0

angus said:

angus
... Thanks - wasn't aware of that re: Huberdeau.

Bender - the reason so many skilled players play center is that at lower levels, it allows them to have a bigger impact on the game (and they are typically better players than their peers). As they progress to the NHL, that advantage is gone or minimized.

Duchene is an example of a center who was tried on wing, but is ultimately much, much better at cen ter.
April 05, 2013
Votes: +0

Bender said:

baconnol
Dakkster Has a very good point, too many times people think that a fast skilled forward needs to be at center. How about playing players at their native positions to give them every opportunity to succeed? I think that Stevie Y has mentioned this in the past that he will not try and change a player's position, I think its a smart move.
April 05, 2013
Votes: +0

SeaDawg said:

SeaDawg
@matshomassen You are totally correct. Duchene is a player I covet and have been trying to acquire for a few years now, but his current owner knows Duchene's value as much as I do. That said, I am going to make a strong push to acquire him this summer (I'm prepared to offer Eric Staal+). This particular league is a salary cap league, so Duchene's relatively low salary makes him a very valuable player.
April 05, 2013
Votes: +1

matsthomassen said:

ultrawhiteness
Bure / Huberdeau preach it Dakkster!

re: Bure, i was a kid growing up in Calgary and Bure was easily my favourite player. the youtube video called "the lost shifts" is so so good.

SeaDawg, you gotta get Duchene on your team. for me he's the guy that makes those same kind of highlight reel plays on a nightly basis... he's the guy who gets me to nhl.com/scores every day or watching sports center.
April 05, 2013
Votes: +1

SeaDawg said:

SeaDawg
Bure Bure is one of my all time favorite players also. He was a mainstay (along with Palffy)on one of my keeper teams. It really is special when you have a player on your team who is so entertaining and productive (Taylor Hall is the player I have now on my team that comes closest to bringing me the satisfaction that Bure used to provide).
April 05, 2013
Votes: +0

JW said:

maya has the knife
Bure Same thing happened to me, Jeff. Happened to catch one of the Canucks' 93/94 playoff games and Bure got me hooked on hockey forever. One of the most exciting players to ever lace up the skates.
April 05, 2013
Votes: +0

Dakkster said:

Dakkster
... Huberdeau played mainly wing in junior as well. He is not a center, regardless of how much hockey writers try to pin him as that just because he's listed as that on some random site. He is a winger and Tallon has said that he wants Huberdeau to play LW. Enough already. The "Huberdeau is a center" has been going on for years at this point and it's really tiresome because it's just incorrect.
April 05, 2013
Votes: +2

Anze said:

Anze
VAN worst ? What did they do to you ? smilies/wink.gif

I like Emelin, but boy he better stops fighting. He protects the metal plates in his face, but he will end up with more plates in the back of the head if he continues like that. On this play he looked for it me think.
April 05, 2013
Votes: +0

Goalin Crazy UK said:

Goalin Crazy UK
Bure, Bure... What a class entertainer he was! Too bad it was for such a classless organization?

Worst sports organization in history!
April 05, 2013
Votes: -5
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