Nightcap: November 10

NHL Scores

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AHL Scores

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What You Might Have Missed:

  • Sergei Bobrovsky (Blue Jackets) is “getting closer” to a return but will not play tomorrow vs. the Capitals.
  • Jamie McBain, no longer on Manchester PTO and unsigned, practiced with the Kings this morning.
  • Maintenance day for Alex Goligoski (Stars). He has been playing through an injury, should play tomorrow.
  • Stars’ Cody Eakin (upper body) skated prior to practice. Could play tomorrow. If not then, he should be ready for Thursday.
  • Blackhawks’ Hossa and Richards had a maintenance day today.
  • David Perron (Oilers) absent from today’s practice for a maintenance day.
  • Guy Boucher has been named head coach of Team Canada for the Spengler Cup.
  • Red Wings’ Petr Mrazek re-assigned to the AHL club and  Tommy McCollum recalled
  • Rangers’ Jesper Fast has been recalled from the AHL; Ryan Malone & Conor Allen have been reassigned
  • Jaromir Jagr (Devils) scored his 708th career NHL goal — tying him with Mike Gartner for sixth all-time.
  • Jeff Skinner (Canes) scored his 100th career NHL goal tonight. He is the 4th youngest player in Canes franchise history to do so.
  • Predators’ Colin Wilson and Viktor Stalberg did not participate in Monday’s practice. Recalled on Saturday, Stalberg was injured in the final game of his conditioning stint in Milwaukee and is expected to be out 4-6 weeks with a lower-body injury. Wilson is listed as day-to-day with a lower-body injury.

Graphs & Things via hockeystats.ca

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30 in 30: Day 30!!!: Nashville Predators & Vancouver Canucks

First, I have to apologize for slacking the last two teams. I’ve had the head cold from hell – or maybe from Winnipeg, that appears to be hell. Plus, really, my top two teams are pretty interchangeable. I would be here all day if I had to choose just one favorite between the two. Or hell, choose between just the Preds: Colin Wilson or Roman Josi or Carter Hutton or Marek Mazanec or Seth Jones or Filip Forsberg or Rich Clune ororor, so many choices. Or just the Canucks: Eddie Lack or Jordan Schroeder or Kevin Bieksa or Chris Tanev or Mason Raymond or Ryan Kesler or… you get the picture, I’m sure.

Starting with Nashville, the guy that seduced me over to the Preds last year should probably take the first position. While not my absolute favorite hockey player ever (please see Mason Raymond), he’s definitely up high on he list (I will never do a list because too many options. But so

Nashville Predators: Colin Wilson

CWilson. Let me objectify you on a daily basis. [Source: the-destroia]

That stare. [Source: courtneydagger50]

TONGUE. [Source: the-destroia]

MOAR TONGUE. [Source: rocktheredblueandgold]

Vancouver Canucks: Jordan Schroeder

He is a brat and I adore him dearly for it. [Source: jordanschroeders]

He’s also kind of okay at hockey. [Source: jordanschroeders]

I am not totally distracted by this. [Source: jordanschroeders]

But back to that whole being a brat thing… Also the internet is forever and you cannot delete things before I screencap them, child. Good try though. [Source: my twitter]

Nashville Predators: Carter Hutton

Carter Hutton Amazing Save Dot Gif is a thing. He pulls out these highlight reel saves about every other game, but in between those saves are these crazy MISSES that he should have made, but I love him any ways. [Source: buzzfeedsports]

He fits really, really well in Nashville. When Pekka comes back, it’s going to be an amazing duo to watch. [Source: uptheboards]

Also, he’s friend with Eddie Lack which makes him a good guy in my book! [Source: nhlhcky]

Vancouver Canucks: Kevin Bieksa

He looks like he gives really good celebratory hugs. [Source: jordanschroeders]

HE CAN WIN FACEOFFS LIKE WHOA. [Source: textsfromlastperiod]

I don’t even know, I just needed to include this picture. [Source: sedintwins]

Sometimes he eats tape? He was hungry during the game. IDK here either. [Source: s-piznarski]

Nashville Predators: Roman Josi

Roman Josi: Real Male Model. [Source: queenofthesmalltownrumor]

Shorts and flip flops and a backwards hat, but I’m still paying attention. [Source: ladernierefille]

His eyeeeeeeeees. I could look into them forever. [Source: nhlhotties]

Go Preds! [Source: orpikjam44]

Last, but certainly not least

Vancouver Canucks: Eddie Lack

Your argument is invalid. [Source: glovehand]

I love his smiiiiiile. Omg. [Source: flawlessswedes]

Eddie Lack victory dance is adorable. [Source: bieksler]

His eyes are lovely. And his hair. And just yes. [Source: gauncer]

And so concludes our journey. I hope you’ve had just as much fun a I have. You can find me on Twitter @ashonice or here, as always.

Images from tumblr and credited accordingly.

Quick Opinion: 2-1, Nashville over Vancouver

Wherein I apparently defend Carter Hutton and the Nashville Predators in general.

Hutton is not a bad goaltender. His stats may say otherwise, but he’s pretty dang good under the right circumstances. And even under the not-right circumstance he’s been known to make some amazing saves (please see Carter Hutton Amazing Save Dot Gif from the Philly game. And it’s brother Carter Hutton Amazing Save2 Dot Gif from the Dallas game.)

Hutton’s won his last 4 starts. He had 2 games on, 1 game where Dubnyk played and then 2 more games. Previous to these 5 games, Hutton’s last start was back on January 5, a 2-1 loss to the Hurricanes. He’s not just some random backup, he’s a legit NHL goaltender who has experienced some growing pains that were to be expected given the situation he was in.

The Nashville Predators are not a bad team. Are they Cup contenders? Probably not. They’re not necessarily an excellent team. However, they’re pretty good at pulling off wins when you least expect it. (See: wins over the Sharks and Kings in November, December, & January and the 7-2 trouncing they gave the Blackhawks in November.)

So, the Canucks should feel no shame in not scoring a million goals on this team (like they have in the past). The Canucks were out played and out hustled, especially in the third period. They looked a mess, and I now more than ever believe that there’s more than one person playing hurt (Richardson, I’m looking at you.)

Kesler never really got going – I’m not sure if it’s because of linemates or something else. I made the statement on twitter that the Canucks looked discombobulated and it seems to fit as much as ever. It was a good start for the Canucks and a not-great start for the Predators but as they game went on, the Preds got tighter while the Canucks loosened up and started making mistakes.

Stanton came back with a bang and continued to impress me. Never, ever leave us again, please. He definitely settles Bieksa down and I know at one point it felt like there was a ‘ah, you’re back, Imma go play forward now’ moment from Bieksa. Bieksa and Stanton mesh very well together.

But, as always, I was most impressed with Tanev. I don’t know if anyone realized it, but the Tanev-Hamhuis pairing quietly shutdown the offensive force of Weber-Josi, who are known for jumping into play and scoring goals. So there’s that. Or maybe it was just Tanev blocking everything that looked like it had might have a chance to go through (boys, please don’t step in front of Weber or Josi slapshots. You may die.)

As I expected, Del Zotto didn’t end up with Ellis, but with Jones. I… didn’t hate it? There were a couple good plays, especially in the third period, where I went “This could work.” Small sample size, I need to see more before I make a full judgement. I still wouldn’t mind seeing a Weber-Jones, Josi-Del Zotto configuration.

All in all, I expected the Canucks to come out with two points from this and they didn’t. However, it wan’t the goonery of the last few games, we seem to have settled back down. If we can just regain our jump and hustle, get a few more people back from IR (come on JSchroeds. Do good with the Comets!), I’ll be much more satisfied.

Edited: Quick Opinion: Preds & Canucks: In Vancouver: Pre-Game

If you know me at all, you know I’m dreading this game after the calamity that’s been the last few. The Canucks new found “thug” (thank you, Richard Sherman, for that) status makes me wince.

However, the Preds traded one of their more feisty pieces away yesterday when they sent Klein to New York for Del Zotto. Daily Faceoff has Del Zotto skating with Ellis as the third pairing, but I think it’s more likely we’ll see Weber-Jones, Josi-Del Zotto, Ekholm-Ellis. Or Weber-Josi, Del Zotto-Jones. We’ll see. Any way you cut it, Nashville’s defense is a force to be reckoned with.

Compare and Contrast:

Back in December, the Canucks beat the Predators 3-1 at Bridgestone arena. However, the Predators were without Weber and the Canucks were full steam ahead. Now, it’s just the opposite. The Canucks are without Henrik Sedin still (I believe – have we had an update on that? Edit: Confirmed by @VanCanucks, Henrik is out still) and the Predators are full steam ahead, winning three of their last four games.

Keep Your Eyes On (Nashville)

Roman Josi. 6 pts in his last 4 games, including a goal in each of the last 2. Plus, he’s just fun to watch. I’m curious to see if there’s new defense pairings and if they’re are, what they do to his game.

Colin Wilson. He only has 7 goals on the season, but he’s quietly picked up 16 assists.

Keep Your Eyes On (Canucks)

Ryan Kesler. He always seems to do well against the Predators… I credit this:

He doesn’t want to see that happening. (credit: @booknerdguru)

Edit: Ryan Stanton is back. Keep your eye on him.

My Prediction:

Canucks win, Ryan Kesler picks up at least 1 goal, and Sestito and Clune fight. Edit: Stanton does amazing things that make me love him even more. Book it.

Quick Opinion: TRADE: Klein & MDZ

You’ve all been here long enough to realize Nashville holds the seconds place in my heart, right behind Vancouver, right? And that on some occasions they surpass my love for the Canucks and make me flail like a flailing thing.

Today was a flail day. Kevin Klein for Michael Del Zotto. After my initial gut reaction of “Noooooooooooo!!! KLEIN!” I started actually really liking this trade. Klein is a good fit in Nashville, but he’ll work well under AV and the Rangers. New York, take good care of him, okay? He’s kind of awesome.

He’s a calm presence on the ice that isn’t afraid to step up when things are getting out of hand and say “Enough.” He’s going to fit in well with AV… He actually reminds me a little of Kevin Bieksa, but that might just be me.

Michael Del Zotto on the Preds. That’s… something. I’m excited. Weber, Josi, Jones, Del Zotto as a top four. Klein fit well, but this fits better at least on paper. Whether they mesh on the ice… (Weber/Josi, DZ/Jones? Or Weber/Jones, DZ/Josi *pauses* MDZ-Josi. Please. Thanks.)

And with Ekholm/Ellis rounding out the bottom? And there’s Bartley…

So basically. The Preds are in good shape on defense (um, always.) The Rangers are getting a good player. I need to see it in action and not just on paper, but I think all around it’s a win.

Canucks Roll Through Bridgestone

Welp. That escalated quickly.

Preds Fan Bestie:
So I think we should bet on this game
Canucks Fan Me:
Ohhh? Yes.
I’m not disclosing the details of the bet, because frankly, those are none of your business. However I will say that after the second Kesler goal, there was a “Damn it, Kes”. And let me remind you, bestie is a distant cousin of the man in question. So yay Canucks!
There’s a lot of controversy over a particular call. The Sporting News has a pretty good .gif of it. Goalie interference/roughing were the calls against Hornqvist. I would agree one of those was not deserved, however it’s probably not the one you think. If you push another player into the goalie, technically that’s goalie interference, yes? Here. Let’s refer to the official rules:
Rule 69 – Interference on the Goalkeeper 
If a defending player has been pushed, shoved, or fouled by an attacking player so as to cause the defending player to come into contact with his own goalkeeper, such contact shall be deemed contact initiated by the attacking player for purposes of this rule, and if necessary a penalty assessed to the attacking player and if a goal is scored it would be disallowed.
So um. That seems pretty clear to me. Did Lu sell it that he was interfered with? Absolutely. However, Hamhuis was pushed into Lu and if Hornqvist had scored on that play… You see where I’m going with this. We would be feeling entirely differently if a goal had been allowed where it shouldn’t have been. (Though the Preds fans would probably still continue to throw tizzies. Seriously, I’m about to throw things at some people.) The roughing penalties… There was a bit of a scrum directly after. Was the second penalty to Hornqvist deserved? Probably not. Was the penalty to Hamhuis deserved? Absolutely. So that’s my two cents on it.
And that’s enough of that. Let’s talk about the actual game. Down Burrows, I was a little worried about the juggling of lines for the Canucks. No need, as Kesler went into beast mode (ahem, called it). They played the game basically how I thought they were capable of. But I actually want to focus on the Preds.
Their scoring woes continue. Amazing chances, with no finish. The Wilson goal from Hornqvist and Josi… we need to see more of that. Lots more of that, my fantasy team stats thank you in advance boys. Also, goals from other people. That would be good. Borque. Score, honey.
Baby Mazanec continues to impress me. A Rinne/Mazanec duo over the next couple of years, please and thank you. (Also, please Rinne, get better soon!!)
The Preds have some time left to pull it together. I have to remember they were down both Weber and Klein tonight, which hurt. It would have been an entirely different game, obviously. I’m off to go collect my winnings from the bestie. You want more of a recap, go check out CanucksArmy.

Canucks vs Preds. In Nashville (A Preview)

Oh boy. This game. This game will make or break either team – or maybe that’s just me, as I stupidly agreed to work at 5pm tomorrow. And that’s PT, i.e. the same time as the game is suppose to start. Whoops?

The Preds will be missing Weber and Klein, so I’m going to be watching for the duo of Josi-Jones. They’re also still down Rinne though the adorable tandem of Mazanec-Hutton has been… okay. Maz has had a couple of shutouts, brilliant child that he is. Most notably the win against the Detroit Red Wings.

Canucks are still down Jordan Schroeder, but are otherwise still in tact from the game on Sunday against Carolina. (Has anyone heard anything on a potential return? Granted I’m 99% he’ll be headed to Utica, but still.)

This is the first time the Canucks and Preds will have faced each other since the 5-2 win by the Canucks back on April 15. Huh, that date sure sounds familiar. I wonder why… (uh, FYI, that was my first NHL game.) Hopefully, y’know, the Canucks will be able to collect a win without me in the stands. I really should have delayed my Nashville trip a month, but alas.

These are drastically different teams from last season though. Or at least the Canucks are. Gone: Keith Ballard, Steven Pinizzotto, Derek Roy, Mason Raymond (my tears), Andrew Ebbett,  andMaxim Lapierre. The Preds are no longer filling in most of their forward holes like they were in April, which saw Mike Fisher, Brandon Yip, Patric Hornqvist, Colin Wilson, Paul Gaustad, and Gabriel Borque sitting out. The game was also what sealed the deal on keeping the Preds out of the playoffs last season, so there may be some bad blood from that. The Canucks haven’t lost to the Preds since the OT playoff lost in April 2011, in case you were wondering.

I think this is either going to be an extremely low scoring game, or a game of “A goal for YOU and a goal for YOU and a goal for YOU.” Both the Preds and Canucks seem to be in the same trend of all or nothing when it comes to finding the net lately. If Colin Wilson finally heats up and starts scoring the way I know he knows how, the Canucks may be  in trouble. (But I wouldn’t hold my breath on that.)

If Ryan Kesler continues in beast mode (which … unless he’s injured, I’d just about lay money on), I would expect magic out of him tomorrow. Also, if you’re watching the game, keep an eye out for a #17 Kesler in the Preds gold in the stands. My bestie is an epic troll and a distant cousin of the Canucks Kes. And a Predators fan, obviously. (Love you, B!)

Keep your eye on David Legwand, who has quietly picked up 15 assists on the season. He’s definitely one of the major playmakers on the team. Canucks… hell, just choose a player. Alex Burrows goal watch maybe? (It’ll come, I’m sure.)

So that’s what I got for you. I think it’s going to be a fun game that I’m going to try to see part of on my tiny netbook while at work. FML. My two fave teams and I say I’ll work on my day off, sigh.