Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Kings' Penalty Kill Needs To Continue To Succeed

The Kings, who have won two straight, will enter MTS Centre later tonight fresh off of a 2-0 shutout victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. The win moved the Kings to 3-0-1 under new coach Darryl Sutter.

Goaltender, Jonathan Quick, turned away all 38 shots faced for his league leading fifth shutout. The victory marked the 15th time in 16 games that the Kings have scored two or fewer goals.

While only scoring two goals a game may seem like a recipe for disaster the Kings have managed to go 7-7-2 over that period. 

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 24

Last Night's Scores:
Panthers 0, Bruins 8
Capitals 3, Devils 4 (SO)
Maple Leafs 5, Islanders 3
Flyers 2, Rangers 4
Senators 1, Carolina 2 (OT)
Penguins 4, Jets 1
Predators 3, Stars 6
Lightning 1, Avalanche 2 (OT)
Blues 3, Coyotes 2
Flames 3, Canucks 1
Kings 1, Sharks 2 (SO)

Quick Stats:
Brad Marchand, BOS (3 goals, 2 assists)
Jonathan Quick, LOS (34 saves, 35 shots against)
Jason Chimera, WSH (2 goals, 2 assists)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 23

Last Night's Scores:
Sabres 2, Maple Leafs 3
Islanders 2, Rangers 4
Panthers 3, Senators 4 (OT)
Blue Jackets 5, Predators 6
Canadiens 0, Jets 4
Red Wings 2, Flames 3
Wilds 1, Oilers 4
Ducks 2, Kings 3 (SO)

Quick Stats:
Jeff Carter, CBJ (3 goals)
Jordan Eberle, EDM (2 goals)
Blake Wheeler, WPG (2 goals, 1 assist)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 22

Last Night's Scores:
Coyotes 4, Hurricanes 3
Canadiens 1, Blackhawks 5
Flyers 4,  Stars 1
Blues 2, Avalanche 3
Red Wings 2, Canucks 4
Lightning 2, Sharks 7

Quick Stats:
Claude Giroux, PHI (1 goal, 3 assist)
Jean-Sebastien Giguere, COL (37 saves, 39 shots against)
Logan Couture, SJS (2 goals)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 21

Last Night's Scores:
Rangers 4, Devils 1
Predators 1, Captials 4
Blackhawks 2, Penguins 3
Sabres 1, Senators 4
Coyotes 2, Panthers 1
Islanders 3, Jets 2 (SO)
Wild 1, Flames 2

Quick Stats:
Evgeni Malkin, PIT (0 goals, 3 assists)
Marian Gaborik, NYR (2 goals, 1 assist)
Nicklas Backstrom, WSH (1 goal, 2 assists)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 20

Last Night's Scores:
Canadiens 2, Bruins 3
Kings 3, Maple Leafs 2 (SO)
Ducks 3, Stars 5
Flyers 2, Avalanche 3 (SO)
Red Wings 3, Oilers 2
Wild 0, Canucks 4

Quick Stats:
Marian Hossa, CHI (1 goal,1 assist)
Roberto Luongo, VAN (33 saves, shutout)
Henrik Sedin, VAN (1 goal, 2 assists)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 19

Last Night's Scores:
Hurricanes 2, Panthers 3 (OT)
Flames 2, Blackhawks 4
Blue Jackets 4, Blues 6

Quick Stats:
Marian Hossa, CHI (1 goal, 1 assist)
T.J. Oshie, STL (1 goal, 1 assist)
Kevin Shattenkirk, STL (1 goal, 1 assist)

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 18

Last Night's Scores:
Bruins 6, Flyers 0
Canucks 5, Maple Leafs 3
Devils 5, Canadiens 3
Sabres 3, Penguins 8
Ducks 3, Jets 5
Kings 2, Red Wings 8
Lightning 3, Blue Jackets 2
Blues 1, Predators 2 (SO)
Islanders 2, Wild 1 (SO)
Rangers 3, Coyotes 2
Capitals 1, Avalanche 2
Oilers 2, Sharks 3

Quick Stats:
Evgeni Malkin , PIT (3 goals, 2 assists)
Tim Thomas, BOS (31 saves, shutout)
Cory Emmerton, DET (2 goals, 1 assist)

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 17

Last Night's Scores:
Maple Leafs 4, Sabres 5
Penguins 4, Senators 6
Flames 2, Panthers 3 (SO)
Stars 3, Devils 6
Ducks 1, Blackhawks 4

Quick Stats:
Thomas Vanek, BUF (2 goals, 2 assists)
Jason Speeza, OTT (2 goals, 2 assists)
Zach Parise, NJD (1 goal, 3 assists)

Friday, December 16, 2011

Video: USHL Player Dives For A Shorthanded Goal

In the second period of the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders game against the Green Bay Gamblers, RoughRiders' Landan Smith scored his fourth goal of the season, a shorthanded goal, in unlikely fashion.

Down 2-1 at the time and killing a penalty, Smith pressured the Gamblers' defense who tried to regroup but shot the puck into Smith. As the puck bounced into the Gamblers' zone, Gamblers goalie, Ryan McKay, left his crease to play the puck. Smith then dived and swatted the puck up and over McKay before barreling into McKay and the end boards.

The RoughRiders went on to lose the game 5-6 in overtime.

Hockey Hangover : December 16

Last Night's Scores:
Stars 3, Islanders 2
Canucks 3, Hurricanes 4
Kings 2, Blue Jackets 1
Flyers 4, Canadiens 3
Flames 4, Lightning 5 (OT)
Rangers 1, Blues 4
Red Wings 3, Predators 4
Capitals 1, Jets 0
Oilers 2, Coyotes 4
Avalanche 4, Sharks 5

Quick Stats:
Michal Neuvrith, WSH (26 saves, shutout)
Shea Weber, NSH (2 goals)
Matt Carle (0 goals, 3 assists)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Do The Bruins Have The NHL's Best Goalie Tandem?

When looking across the NHL, there are goalies that any team would love to have between the pipes and anchoring their team. However, while some teams have one stud in net, they fall short when their back up takes to the ice. That is not the case in Boston.

The Boston Bruins, sit atop the Northeast Division and Eastern Conference, and look poised to make another run at the Stanley Cup, thanks in part to the dominating performances turned out by Bruins goaltenders, Tim Thomas and Tuuka Rask.

Through 30 games, Thomas and Rask have backstopped the Bruins to a league best 2.00 goals against per game average, and have turned out overwhelming individual performances as well.

Hockey Hangover; December 15

Last Night's Scores:
Bruins 5, Senators 2
Blackhawks 4, Wild 3 (SO)
Coyotes 1, Ducks 4

Quick Stats:
Tim Thomas, BOS (47 saves, 49 shots against)
Kiklas Hagman, ANA (2 goals)
Jonathan Toews, CHI (1 goal, 1 assist)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 14

Last Night's Scores:
Kings 0,  Bruins 3
Senators 3, Sabres 2 (OT)
Hurricanes 1, Maple Leafs 2 (OT)
Stars 1, Rangers 0
Red Wings 4, Penguins 1
Flyers 5, Capitals 1
Canucks 1, Blue Jackets 2 (SO)
Islanders 3, Canadiens 5
Devils 3, Panthers 2 (SO)
Flames 1, Predators 2
Wild 1, Jets 2
Sharks 3, Avalanche 4 (SO)

Quick Stats:
Tukka Rask, BOS (40 saves, shutout)
Richard Bachman, DAL (34 saves, shutout)
Brad Marchand, BOS (2 goals)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 13

Last Night's Scores;
Devils 5, Lightning 4

Quick Stats:
Steven Stamkos, TBL (2 goals, 1 assist)
Zach Parise, NJD (1 goal, 2 assists)
Adam Henrique, NJD (1 goal, 2 assists)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Kings Begin Post Murray Era Against The Bruins

When the opening puck drop for the Los Angeles Kings to play the Boston Bruins takes place, it will have been just over 24 hours since Kings' GM Dean Lombardi announced the firing of former head coach Terry Murray.

Hockey Hangover: December 12

Last Night's Scores:
Sharks 2, Blackhawks 3
Panthers 1, Rangers 6

Quick Stats:
Derek Stepan, NYR (2 goals, 1 assist)
Marian Gaborik, NYR (1 goal, 1 assist)
Artem Anisimov, NYR (1 goal, 1 assist)

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 11

Last Night's Scores:
Canadiens 2, Devils 1
Rangers 4,  Sabres 1
Canucks 4, Senators 1
Penguins 6, Islanders 3
Lightning 2, Flyers 5
Jets 1,  Red Wings 7
Bruins 5, Blue Jackets 3
Sharks 0,  Blues 1
Ducks 2,  Predators 3
Wild 4,  Coyotes 1
Oilers 0,  Flames 3
Stars 2, Kings 1

Quick Stats:
Ryan Kesler, Van (2 goals, 1 assist)
Kyle Brodziak, Min (2 goals)
The New York Rangers, reached 2,500 franchise wins

Hockey Hangover: December 10

Last Night's Results:
Maple Leafs 2, Capitals 4
Panthers 1, Sabres 2
Hurricanes 2, Jets 4
Avalanche 1, Oilers 4

Quick Stats:
Dennis Wideman, Wsh (3 goals, 1 assist)
Evander Kane, Wpg (1 goal, 1 assist)
Sam Gagner, Edm (2 goals, 1 assist)

Friday, December 9, 2011

Hockey Hangover: December 9

Last Night's Results:
Panthers 2, Boston 0
Senators 4, Devils 5 (SO)
Blackhawks 3, Islanders 2 (OT)
Lightning 3, Rangers 2
Penguins 2, Flyers 3
Predators 4, Blue Jackets 3 (OT)
Canucks 4, Canadiens 3 (SO)
Coyotes2 , Red Wings 5
Ducks 2, Blues 4
Avalanche 2, Flames 3
Wild 4, Kings 2
Stars 2, Sharks 5

Quick Stats:
Jose Theodore, Fla (40 saves, Shutout)
Patrick Sharp, Chi (2 goals, 1 assist)
Zach Parise, NJ (1 goal, 1 assist)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Video: Rangers' Anisimov Scores, Snipes Lightning In Celly

In the second period of the New York Rangers' 3-2 shootout lose to the Tampa Bay Lightning, Artem Anisimov scored his fifth goal of the year to put the Rangers up 2-1 at that time. What happened after the goal is what made the play unique. Anisimov finished off a backdoor pass, and then he celebrated (check it out below).

Video: Foligno Scores One-Handed Beauty

Nick Foligno has inserted his name on the ballot for goal of the year. Foligno picked up a pass in the neutral zone and beat a Washington Capitals defense man along the boards and then dangled through the slot. After powering through the slot Foligno cut below the goal line and reached back with one hand to tuck the puck past Capitals goaltender, Tomas Vokoun.

The Senators went on to lose to the Capitals 5-3.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Bobby Ryan Scores Late Goal, Gives Ducks 3-2 Win

The Anaheim Ducks went into Honda Center having lost two straight games where they held a 2-0 lead. The Ducks did not let that streak reach three games.

The Ducks came out and controlled much of the tempo during the first two periods of play and jumped out to a lead halfway through the first period. Bobby Ryan recorded his first of the game just under eight minutes into the game after Kings goaltender, Jonathan Quick, miss played the puck from behind the net. Teemu Selanne picked up the puck and Ryan buried Selanne's blocked shot.

About ten minutes later, reigning Hart Trophy winner, Corey Perry, finished off a back door pass from Ryan Getzlaf, which gave the Ducks a two goal lead going into the second period.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Video: Phanuef Drops The Hammer On Sauer

The NHL has recently been plagued with debate about illegal hits to the head, so it is always refreshing to see a clean hit delivered every now and then. Who better to deliver that hit than Toronto Maple Leafs captain, Dion Phanuef? Phanuef is one of the leagues hardest hitters and has proven so every season. Phaneuf's latest victim was Mike Sauer of the New York Rangers.

The Maple Leafs went on to beat the Rangers by a score of 4-2.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Crosby Looks To Continue Solid Start Against Slumping Ovechkin and Capitals

Sidney Crosby will face the Washington Capitals for the first time since last year's Winter Classic on New Years Day, where he was on the wrong end of a hit to the end that ultimately caused him to be sidelined until late last month.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Video: Martin Brodeur Makes Acrobatic Save

Martin Brodeur proved he can still make unbelievable saves in a game against the New York Islanders earlier today. Brodeur made a save on Michael Grabner's breakaway, and second swat. But the highlight reel save came when Kyle Okposo tried to bury the rebound and Brodeur made a cart wheel save with his glove. The Islanders went on to win the game by a score of 3-2.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

What Each NHL Team Should Be Thankful For

Most teams have eclipsed the 20 games played mark and have the first quarter of the season in their rear view mirror. Some teams have had a better first 20 than others, but every team has something they should be thankful.

So, in the spirit of Thanksgiving here is a team-by-team look at what each team should be thankful for at this point of the season.

Is Revenge On The Sabres' Mind?

The Boston Bruins (12-7-0) will come into the First Niagara Center looking to do one thing, extend their current win streak to a league best ten. The Buffalo Sabres (12-8-0) will try to halt that streak and even the team's season series with the Bruins at one game apiece.

However, a much more intriguing storyline from the teams' first meeting may surface and cause the game to get a little chippy.

Will the Sabres seek revenge for goaltender, Ryan Miller, who was leveled by Milan Lucic of the Bruins in the team's last meeting?

Monday, November 7, 2011

Kings Look To Halt Skid, Face Sharks

The Los Angeles Kings (6-4-3) will try to halt a four game winless streak when they travel north to face off against their division rival, San Jose Sharks (7-4-1).

This will be the first meeting between the two clubs since last season's Stanley Cup Playoffs, where the Sharks eliminated the Kings in game of six of the first round.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Luke Adam Is Quietly Making A Case For The Calder Trohpy

When it comes to rookies, the league has caught Ryan Nugent-Hopkins fever. He won the honors of October's top rookie via and is the main focus of the hockey world, but beneath the shadow of the next great Edmonton Oiler is Luke Adam of the Buffalo Sabres.

While the rest of the league is watching the young gun in Edmonton, Adam has quietly made a push to be considered the league's top rookie.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Bruins Look To Halt Skid, Senators Try To Extend Streak

The Boston Bruins (3-7-0) will try to right their ship in their slow start to their Stanley Cup defense, while the Ottawa Senators (7-5-0) look to extend one of the franchises' longest winning streaks in the last two years when the two teams meet in Boston.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Can Quick Get A Fourth Straight Bagel?

Over Jonathan Quick's last three starts, he has stopped all 83 shots he has faced and has set a Kings franchise record with three consecutive goose eggs (please excuse some of the hockey jargon, I am a fan of Quick and the Kings and I don't want to go jinxing them by saying that dreaded word before the game).

In Quick's last appearance, he turned away all 28 shots thrown his way in a 1-0 win over the Dallas Stars. Quick got a game off when the Kings faced the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday, but will be in net tonight when the Kings and Stars face off for the second time in five days.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Is It Time To Panic In Vancouver?

Earlier, the Canucks found themselves skating off their home ice after losing to the St. Louis Blues 3-0, the third time the Canucks have been shutout this season. The '11-'12 season, although young, has presented quite a problem for the defending Western Conference champs.

The Vancouver Canucks have played 10 games and currently sit in 10th place in the Western Conference, with a 4-5-1 record. The face of the franchise, Roberto Luongo, has a 2-3-1 record, 3.45 goals against average, and save percentage of .868 in six starts. The team has a goals for, goals against differential of minus-5, compared to the plus-77 they finished last season with.

Fans in Vancouver have booed Luongo out of his crease five times in the six games he has started.There are rumblings about trading Luongo, things that dont usually happen until a playoff let down, and the Canucks look far from the Presidents Trophy team they were last season.

 But the Canucks' faithful should not panic quite yet.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Columbus Looks For First Win Of The Season, Against Undefeated Detroit

The Columbus Blue Jackets are the NHL's only remaining team without a win in the 2011-2012 season. The Detroit Red Wings will look to keep a zero in the Blue Jackets' win column tonight, when the Jackets travel to Detroit.

The two teams are off to two very different starts to their respective seasons. Detroit (4-0-0) is off to its best start since '97-'98 while Columbus (0-5-1) is stuck in the middle of the worst start in franchise history.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Doughty's Injury Could Be Voynov's Golden Ticket

Last Saturday, Los Angeles Kings defense man, Drew Doughty, was punished by an open ice by Zac Rinaldo of the Phildelphia Flyers. Doughty returned for a shift after the hit, but was later ruled out for the remaining two periods of the game.

A day later, Doughty was placed on the injured reserve list, were he will remain until at least this Saturday, due to an upper body injury.

Enter Slava Voynov.

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Winnipeg Jets Are Playing Like The Atlanta Thrashers

 Dustin Byfuglien #33 Of The Winnipeg Jets Disputes

The Winnipeg Jets were welcomed back to the Manitoba capital just over a week ago, when they opened their season at home against the Montreal Canadiens. The Jets went on to lose that contest by a score of 5-1.

Since that game, the Jets went 0-2 on a road trip, where they were outscored 8-4, against the Chicago Blackhawks and Phoenix Coyotes.

Now the Jets will return home where they hope to get into the win column for the first time this season, when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Jets/Thrashers franchise has won just one game in their last 13 meetings against the Penguins, over the last three years.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Rick DiPietro Is Probably Made Of Glass

Just several days after taking a Brian Rolston shot off of the mask, New York Islanders goalie, Rick DiPietro has been diagnosed with a concussion and is out indefinitely according to the Islanders Twitter feed.

This being the latest injury in the oft-injured DiPietro's career. A career which is highlighted by a contact signed in 2006 that locked DiPietro up for 15 years with a $4.5 million annual cap hit. However, injuries have recently kept DiPietro from being the Islanders' go to goalie.

Last season, after DiPietro suffered facial fractures (pictured above) courtesy of a one punch knockout by Brent Johnson, of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Scott Lewis at the Score was generous enough to put together this snapshot of DiPietro's history of injuries.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Buffalo Sabres Stampede Past Premiere Games

The Buffalo Sabres finished up their European tour, where they outscored their opponents by a score of 8-3,  with a 4-2 victory over the Los Angeles Kings earlier today. This win concluded a trip where the Sabres easily beat their opponent in both of their contests.

The first contest of the season, against the Anaheim Ducks, was also won by the Sabres by a score of 4-2.

When the Sabres return to Buffalo they will come home with a 2-0 record, a power play unit that seems to have clicked quite well, and the feeling that they just beat two teams that are supposed to be some of the tougher teams in the league.

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Kings' and Rangers' New Richards Make An Immediate Impact

During the off season, the Los Angeles Kings and New York Rangers were involved in two of the biggest summer acquisitions. The Rangers were able to sign last season's number one free agent, Brad Richards, while the Kings were involved in summer's biggest trade bringing Mike Richards away form Philadelphia to Los Angeles.

Both players were brought into their respective locker rooms in order to help their new team take a step towards the NHL's biggest prize, the Stanley Cup.

In the first game of both the Kings', Rangers', and their respective Richards' seasons they found themselves in Stockholm, Sweden as a part of the Compuware NHL Premiere games. Both Richards did not wait to make their presence felt.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

11 Predictions About The 2011-2012 Season

Hockey fans around the world are pulling their favorite team's jerseys out of their closets, restocking the fridge in their team memorabilia filled man caves, and gearing up for the 95th NHL season, which is set to get under way in just a few hours.

At the start of every season there are favorites to win the Cup and various individual  awards, teams that seem destined to fail, and players that are certain to leave their mark in the record books. Before players, once again lace up their skates in order to try and get a chance to lift hockey's holy grail, here is 11 predictions about the 2011 season.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Jagr's 1600th Point Highlights Next Year's Possible Player Milestones

The 2011-2012 NHL season is just a few days away, and over the course of the next season several players will likely hit major milestones in their NHL careers.

In the crease, Buffalo's goaltender, Ryan Miller, who is currently at 399 game played will have reached 400 games played when he starts for the Sabres in a few days.

Also several goaltenders may reach their 100 win mark, Ottawa's Craig Anderson, and Montreal's Carey Price both have sit two wins away at 98. Los Angeles' Jonathan Quick is four wins away from 100, while San Jose's Antero Niittymaki and Nashville's Pekka Rinner can reach 100 if they win five games.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

In A Tough Western Conference, The Edmonton Oilers Wont Be Able To KeepUp

In recent years the highlight of many Edmonton Oilers' fan's season has been the NHL Entry draft, due to the fact the Oilers have had a pick within the first 10 selections in the last three drafts. However, the reason the Oilers have had such high draft picks is due to the fact the organization has not had the most successful seasons in recent memory.

The Oilers finished the last two seasons in last place in both the Western Conference and NHL with a point total of 62.

On the other hand, given the Oilers' recent misfortune they have been able to bring in players like, Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Magnus Paajarvi, and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, that will all have bright careers in the NHL and eventually put Edmonton back in the contender column.

However, that time will not be next season.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Why Corey Perry Will Not Repeat As The Hart Trophy Winner

Last season, Corey Perry of the Anaheim Ducks walked away from the NHL Awards Show with the Hart Trophy, which is given annually to the leagues most valuable player. Perry finished the season with 50 goals,  and 48 assists, totalling 98 points.

Perry finished out the season number one in scoring, Tampa Bay's Steven Stamkos finished in second five goals behind Perry. However, Perry ended the season third in points behind Daniel Sedin's 104 and Martin St. Louis' 99.

The last player to win the Hart Trophy in back-to-back seasons was Alex Ovechkin in '07-'08 and '08-'09, when he posted 112 and 110 points respectively.

 At the end of the 2011-2012 season, Perry will not be the NHL's newest repeat winner, and here is why.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Pacioretty Takes Contact, Ready For Return

In recent days Max Pacioretty has said that he has healed 100 percent and is ready to make his return to the NHL. After taking part in the Montreal Canadiens training camp he has taken some hits, like the one below, and feels that he is ready to take his recovery to the next step and play in a preseason game.

In an interview with Arpon Basu of Pacioretty said, "It's good to finnally get some physicallity going, to take a couple of hits and give some as well. My neck's feeling great and I'm ready to go." After taking that hip check from Canadiens prospect, Alexei Yemelin, I believe him.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Callahan Goes From Possible Arbitration To Team Captain

Just a month and a half ago, Ryan Callahan and the New York Rangers were in a bit of a stand off. Both sides found themselves disagreeing on the terms of Callahan's new contract. However, the day before the Rangers and Callahan were set to go to arbitration, they came to terms on a three year deal worth nearly $13 million.

Fast forward to today, when Callahan was named the Captain of the Rangers. His alternate captains being Brad Richards and Marc Staal.

Callahan, a New York native, was drafted by the Rangers in the fourth round (127th overall) of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft. Since coming into the league during the '06-'07 season, Callahan has scored 76 goals, tallied 144 points, and played in 284 games, all with the Rangers.

In an interview with Dan Rosen of, shortly after being named captain, Callahan said, "I started from draft picks doing the prospects camps and Traverse City, and looking back on all that now being named captain, it's a little bit of a surreal feeling."

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Tim Connolly Looks To Rebound In Toronto

During the off-season, Toronto Maple Leafs' General Manager, Brian Burke, signed two offensively talented players. One of those players being Tim Connolly, who signed a two year $9.5 million contract in July. 

However, along with Connolly comes a career plagued with injury filled seasons. Over the last five seasons, where Connolly played with the Buffalo Sabres, he was limited to just 239 games out of a possible 410  regular season games.

During the '06-'07 season Connolly missed 80 games due to concussion problems, and has missed games since because of reoccurring hip, groin, and back injuries.

Moving forward into Toronto, Connolly would like to improve on his last two seasons where he acquired 65 points in 73 games two seasons ago, and 42 points in 68 games last season.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Another Tragedy In The Hockey World

Over recent months, the hockey community has been hit hard with the deaths of Derek Boogard, Wade Belak, and Rick Rypien. With the most recent being Belak's death, just over a week ago.

Unfortunately before the world of hockey could regain its composure, it was hit with another tragedy. Earlier today, a plane carrying the Kontinental Hockey League's Yaroslavl Lokomotiv crashed and claimed the lives of at least 43 passengers.

Lokomotiv confirmed that the entire starting roster, some youth players, and support staff were aboard the plane.

In an interview with, Vladamir Malkov said, "We have no team anymore. All our starting players, and all the service people, they all burned in the crash."

Among those on the plane were former NHLers, Pavol Demitra, Ruslan Salei, Karel Rachunek, Karlis Skrastins, Josef Vasicek, Alexander Vasyunov, and former coach Brad Mccrimmon.

Russian aviation officials have reported that two passengers survived the crash but are in critical condition.

My deepest condolences go out to the family, friends, and those who were affected by today's losses.

Rather than end the post on a grim note, here are some of the highlights of those lost. Celebrate what they have done with their time on this Earth, and be jealous of the pick up game that is going on in heaven right now.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Winnipeg Jets' Jerseys Are... Disappointing

Since the the Atlanta Thrashers were sold to True North Sports & Entertainment, many questions have surrounded the newly revived Winnipeg franchise.

What will the name the team?

What will the Jets' new logos be?

What jerseys will the new logos be placed on?

Over time, answers to those questions presented themselves. The franchise chose to keep the Jets as the name of the franchise, and to design new logos that paid tribute to True North and the Canadian Air Force.

But both the Jets fan base, and hockey world, would have to wait to see what the new Winnipeg Jets jerseys would look like. The wait came an end today, as team captain, Andrew Ladd, Nik Antropov, Mark Stuart, and Eric Fehr modeled the team's new uniforms.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Can Mike Smith Fill The Hole In Phoenix's Net?

It has become some what routine to read stories about the Phoenix Coyotes putting together a strong season under the leadership of team captain, Shane Doan, and coach, Dave Tippett, despite off ice drama and ownership problems.

However, going into next season the Coyotes will be without Ilya Bryzgalov, the record holder for wins in a Coyotes sweater, and the back bone of the franchise for much of the last four seasons.

Bryzgalov had been the bread and butter for the Coyotes, he racked up 130 wins, surpassed 25 wins each of his four seasons with the club, and hit 42 wins two seasons ago.

Rightfully so, after Bryzgalov exited stage left, the Coyotes were left with a sizable hole between the pipes and no one was sure how, or who would step in to fill the void.

Enter Mike Smith.

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Flames Will Soon Have To Look Towards A Youth Movement

When the Calgary Flames are brought up in a conversation, people automatically see the faces of Jarome Iginla, Mikka Kiprusoff, and Rene Bourque. These players have been the center pieces for this franchise since as early as 1995. Making them a bit older than the rest of the league.

Along with those previously mentioned, the rest of the Flames roster are on the older side as well. Olli Jokinen, 32, and Brendan Morrison, 36,  are two of the ten players in the Flames line-up that are 30 years old or older. Which contributes to the Flames having an average of 30 years old, making them the third oldest team in the league behind only the Pittsburgh Penguins and Detroit Red Wings.

Although the Flames have a cast that have been around the league for quite some time, they have continued to be in the playoff race in recent history. They finished in 10th place the previous two seasons, after late season pushes fell short, and finished in 5th place in the West three seasons ago.

But, one thing lingers on the minds of Flames faithful, how much longer can the Flames be among the NHL's best with a roster chalk full of seasoned vets.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Steve Mason's Play Will Decide The Blue Jacket's Fate

Lets take a trip back in time. It is April 8th, 2009, and the Columbus Blue Jackets have, for the first time in franchise history, locked up a trip to the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Now ump to the end of the the regular season, Blue Jackets' goalie, Steve Mason, has won 33 games, 10 in shutout fashion, while posting a save percentage of .916 and holding a goals against average of 2.29. A performance that proved good enough to win Mason the Calder Trophy as the leagues top rookie.

Jumping back to the present, we know that the Blue Jackets would go on to get swept by the Detroit Red Wings in the first round of the playoffs, cutting the Jackets' playoff high short. But at that time, things seemed to be looking up for a young franchise that constantly gets buried in the tough central division.

However, in the two seasons since breaking that barrier and making the post season, the Jackets have failed to qualify for the playoffs finishing both regular seasons well outside of the playoff bubble. Whether or not the city of Columbus, Ohio will see any post season action next season will depend on one thing, the play of Mason.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Ryan Miller Should Have A Lighter Work Load Next Season

In recent years, Buffalo Sabres' goaltender, Ryan Miller, has inserted himself into a group that boasts names like Roberto Luongo, Tim Thomas, and Ilya Bryzgalov, that group being the NHL's elite goaltenders. This superior play has been the factor that has held the Sabres together in many occasions over the past few seasons.

However, last season, Miller's Vezina worthy numbers from two seasons ago, dropped substantially. After finishing off the season with a 2.59 goals against average, and a save percentage of .916, Miller looked human. A factor that played a major role in the drop in Miller's performance may have been his supporting cast.

The Sabres' allowed an average of 31 shots per game, ranked 16th in blocked shots, and 19th in take-a-ways. Resulting in Miller often being relied upon on to back stop and save the Sabres'.

That should all change come time for puck drop in early October. Due to the Sabres' big spending during this year's free agency, they locked up defensive players that should provide a jump start to the Sabres' defense.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Bryzgalov Will Have To Perform To Be Accepted In Philadelphia

During the off season, the Philadelphia Flyers landed arguably, the best goaltender on the market, when they signed Ilya Bryzgalov to a deal that will keep him in Philly for the next nine years.

Bryzgalov is coming from the Phoenix Coyotes, a team that has seen recent success but has continued to be in jeopardy of relocation due to their ownership problems. Along with the drastic change in temperature and scenery that comes along with a move from Arizona to Pennsylvania, Bryzgalov will see a change in the fan following in his new home.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

With Jonas Hiller's Return The Ducks Return To The Cup Contender Category

The Anaheim Ducks organization and their fan base received perhaps the best news of their off season two days ago. No it was not Teemu Selanne announcing he would return for another season in the O.C., rather it was Jonas Hiller declaring himself healthy and ready to go for next season.

A serious case of vertigo sidelined Hiller for the final two months of the 2010-2011 regular season and forced the Ducks goaltender to watch his team, which went into the playoffs as the number four seed, lose in the second round of the playoffs, from the press box.

Over the duration of Hiller's vertigo ridden last few months, doctors could not diagnose why he was stricken with the case of vertigo. However, in recent weeks Hiller has been able to train both on and off the ice, in his home country of Switzerland, with out any symptoms.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Seguin Has Earned Ice Time In Boston

After being drafted by the Boston Bruins, second overall in 2010 NHL Entry Draft, Bruins' forward Tyler Seguin did not get the amount of ice time he and most around the the league would have expected. In the 74 games he played during his rookie season, he averaged just 12:12 of ice time. Taylor Hall, the number one pick of that very same draft averaged almost 6 minutes more per game than Seguin.

Seguin's statistical output may have been an arguing point for some more ice time. In his 74 games played, he scored 11 goals and totaled 22 points. This regular season performance did not persuade Bruins' coach, Claude Julien, to give Seguin the nod for ice time in the playoffs, resulting in Seguin not playing in the first two rounds of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Can Lidstrom Continue To Be An Elite Defender In The NHL?

Nicklas LIdstrom, the 41 year old Swede, has been the picture of  the ideal defense man. Since coming into the league in 1991 he has played in 1,494 games, scored 253 goals and recorded 1,108 points. He has never missed the playoffs and has lifted the Stanley Cup four times.

However, at the conclusion of the Red Wings' 2010-2011 season one major question floated over the organization. Did they just witness the last time, Lidstrom would be wearing a Red Wings jersey? To the relief of the Wings' faithful, Lidstrom announced that he would in fact return for his 20th season in the NHL, when he signed a one year contract worth $6.2 million.

However, with that question answered another question rushed to the fore front. Does Lidstrom have enough left in the tank to return to the NHL and continue to be one of the leagues top defense man?  A look at the kind of season Lidstrom had last year should put that question to rest.