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NHL Round Up January 16th to January 24th

We’re back, get hyped

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1) Denna Laing Tribute

In case you missed the Feitelberg blog on this last night, the Bruins did a great job with a tribute to Denna Laing

Denna Laing’s attitude has been truly inspirational. Great job by the Bruins and the league to show their support for Denna Laing. This part really hit home for me…

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That really is true about hockey. Like most people, I played other sports, but there’s nothing quite like the hockey community. Something about the cold, the amount of time it takes to get dressed, and the long bus rides makes hockey a little different. A little tight. Barstool is still running its drive for Denna. I got my shirt. You can still get yours. Available in mens and womens. Click on the shirt to shop.

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2) Podcast

Recorded a podcast this week with Mike Kelly of LeafsTV. Great guest. A real pro. We talked about the hockey media industry, the Maple Leafs rebuild, Ovechkin, and if this is finally the Caps year. It’s on iTunes and Soundcloud. We have some NHL guys committed to coming on in the next few weeks so make sure you subscribe and all that.

 

3) Goals Of The Week

Johnny Hockey and Sidney Crosby with ridiculous sharp angle goals last night

After a slow start, Crosby and crew are starting to put it together a bit. This is probably what they envisioned when they traded for Kessel

Vinny Lecavalier has three goals in three games for the Kings. Which for Hawks fans, is somewhat troubling. I didn’t understand that trade when it happened, but I forgot that anyone who gets traded from Philly to LA becomes a star again. Nice one-time snipe here, but lets hope he gets this out of his system before the Western Conference Finals.

Kane got his 30th of the year on a nice little breakaway vs Nashville

Shayne Gostisbehere with a nice little INT and finish at the other end. Kid is special. Already has the Flyers rookie record for goals despite only playing in 26 games.

4) Save of the week

Jonathan Quick shuts down Klingberg on a breakaway.

Corey Crawford somehow kept this Tampa chance out.

Just one of those years for Crawford. So locked in that he’s stopping pucks he doesn’t even see. 6th sense in the crease.

 

5) Hit Of The Week

From the rough and tumble Tier 2 Swedish League

Emelin on Stastny…murda

 

6) Fight Of The Week

Matt Hendricks had this coming after his dirty hit on Ekblad. That’s the type of hockey fight that I love. A little frontier justice waiting for Hendricks when he gets back from suspension

The hockey gods didn’t think that was enough punishment for Hendricks though. Karma got involved

RIGHT IN THE DICK!

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Suspension, a pummeling, and then a shot to the balls. Matt Hendricks is officially square for his hit on Ekblad.

7) Expansion News

There is no news. The NHL Board of Governors met again this week and expansion was discussed, no announcement has been made. Bill Foley, the potential owner in Las Vegas, says he expects an announcement/decision in March or April. The League still hasn’t given a timeline. I was told that Vegas is a done deal and Quebec is not happening. NHL will go to 31 teams and wait for Seattle to get their arena situation figured out. The NHLPA already had meetings with their players. Not sure what the hold up is exactly from a league standpoint, but that’s where things are right now.

8) John Scott and the All-Star Game/Trade Fiasco

I don’t carrrrrreeeeee. He’s going to the All-star Game even though he’s not in the NHL. I really don’t get why this is such a huge story. Was the league shitty for trying to force him out of the game…yes. Did he deserve to be there…no. Does any of this matter at all…no. I do like his attitude about being sent down to St John of the AHL. “I’m making a lot of money playing hockey, why would I stop playing just because someone sent me to St. John’s? And besides, St. John’s is a nice city. What are you going to do? Cry like a baby or work through it?”

What a contrast to…

9) Jonathan Drouin

Yo, fuck this kid. I don’t understand how a 20 year-old kid with 6 goals in 89 career NHL games has the balls to demand a trade and then the audacity to not show up to an AHL game. Obviously Tampa Bay wasn’t a fit for whatever reason, but it’s not like Tampa doesn’t give young guys a chance to play their way into the lineup. They’re filled with young, small, forwards. Which makes me think the problem is Drouin. The kid has a ton of talent, but he isn’t helping himself with this move. A lot of Hawks fans have been asking what I would give up to get Drouin….umm, nothing. Why would the Hawks make a move for him? They have plenty of guys just like him with Kane, Teravainen, and Panarin. Where does Drouin fit into the Hawks lineup? He doesn’t. So he would be sent to Rockford, and as he’s shown…he won’t show up. If you’re a young or rebuilding team it isn’t bad a idea. It’s not every day that you get a chance to pick up a top 5 talent for peanuts. Toronto, New Jersey, Carolina, Philly, all seem like reasonable destinations for him. Montreal has been mentioned, but that feels like a disaster waiting to happen.

10) Montreal and Head Coach Michel Therrien 

GM Marc Bergevin came out yesterday and said that Therrien’s job is safe, but the Habs are in a tailspin right now. They’ve lost 5 straight. They were in first place like 6 weeks ago and now…5th place in the Atlantic and three points back of Boston and New Jersey for a Wild Card spot. Bergevin also said that there is no time line for the return of Carey Price. It’s getting to the point where Montreal might need to decide if they just want to pack it in this year, get healthy, and focus on 2017. Maybe see what you can get for Emelin or Dale Weise at the deadline. For the record…I would love the Hawks to kick the tires on Dale Weise. UFA next summer, a cheap contract right now at just over $1M, and has some sand to his game. Come on Bergevin baby, how about a favor for the organization that gave you your start. Dale Weise for Haggerty and a mid-round pick. Who says no?

11) The Canadian Dollar, Oil Prices, and The Salary Cap

Last week in the roundup I made a comment about how Oil is fucking the NHL. It was more or less a guess. I don’t know anything about the economy or anything like that….or do I? Nasdaq.com did an article about it. Interest rates, supply and demand, all that shit. If you’re interested, here’s a link. Point is, I’m smarter than I thought and I didn’t think that was possible.

12) Power Rankings and who is back from the dead

Everyone hated that I declare teams dead. When I say they are dead, it means that I don’t think they can win the Stanley Cup. So, St Louis is still dead, but…Tampa Bay is back. Finally healthy and winners of 7 in a row.

#1–Washington Capitals: Still the best record in the league with no signs of slowing down. There isn’t another dominant team in the Eastern Conference, so there finally appears to be a plausible path for the Caps to make the Stanley Cup Final. I would be a little worried that they still don’t have a true Norris type defenseman or a real Selke type guy. In recent years, every team that has won the Cup has had a shutdown defenseman and a top defensive center. Keith, Doughty, Chara, and Toews, Kopitar, Bergeron. Maybe the Caps can break that formula, but it wouldn’t shock me if they fell short again in the Spring.

#2–Chicago Blackhawks: Tampa Bay snapped their 12 game winning streak, but the Hawks are flying high right now. Kane is having the best year of his career and should win both the Hart and the Art Ross. The Hawks also have a little cap flexibility to add some depth in the bottom 6 and maybe another Dman too.

#3–LA Kings: They’re back. Kopitar is signed, Sutter’s extension is in the works. Seems like we are destined for another Hawks-Kings Western Conference Finals

#4–Tampa Bay Lightning: Still a lot of drama swirling around the Lightning with the Stamkos and Drouin situations, but it doesn’t seem to bothering the team. They are finally healthy and have won 7 straight. The Lightning are the one team that would truly worry me if I were a Caps fan. If Lightning are able to add something at the deadline for Drouin or another deal then they will be a tough out.

#5–Dallas Stars: They’ve lost more games in January than they lost in November and December combined, but Dallas is only 3 points back of the Hawks in the Central with 2 games in hand. Every team goes through skids, and Dallas is hitting theirs now. Still a dangerous team.