so i watched the Habs (ptui) host the Flyers last night. i told my wife that one of my favourite teams was on tv last night, she asked "who's that?" and i answered that my two favourite teams are Toronto and anybody playing Montreal. of course my wife is a hockey hater so i had to endure picture in picture except when the "real" show we were watching was on commercial. it's a good thing i love her so much. anyway, there were a few observations last night that i want to note from that game so pardon the ramblings.
Montreal fans boo'd everytime that Daniel Briere touched the puck. i have several problems here. first of all don't the Habs (ptui) have enough guys of the ilk of Briere that they don't have to worry about adding another to their roster? as far as i'm concerned Saku Koivu and Christopher Higgins are very much like Briere in terms of overall play and if they were to have added Briere to their lineup he'd need a big gun that could complement his game. it just seems like there are several guys very much like Briere already in their lineup that he'd just give them more of what they already have. and if the sticking point was whether or not Briere would be guaranteed 1st line duty and you really want to add him then promise him 1st line duty. it's not like he isn't a 1st line guy or whatever, i'm just not sure that Briere/Koivu/Kovalev or whatever lineup they would throw together gets you what you really need in today's NHL.
i don't understand the cultural stuff about having so many Quebecois in Montreal. if i were English Canadian and i were playing in Montreal i'd CERTAINLY take French lessons. it could only help your profile in a hockey mad city like Montreal.
Kovalev's PP goal STILL hasn't been seen by Martin Biron. that was a freaking laser! man! it brought me out of my seat, and it's not like it was a slapshot or something it was a quick flick of the wrist and boom, it was buried. why can't Kovalev play like that 24/7 though. just saying.
the Habs (ptui) scored on a SHORTHANDED 3 on 1. shorthanded. the puck carrying D on the PP falls over the opposing blueline and yet nobody gets back to at least back check on the weak side? it's like they were playing pickup. i honestly think that Montreal is an excellent source of special teams stats, i particularly like Higgins and Koivu there. oh and Mark Streit as a PP option is so incredibly underrated that people just don't get it. i wouldn't be surprised to see goals in the low teens from Streit this season. in fact i have an over/under bet with a buddy at 10.5 for goals for Streit this year, and i'm going to win it.
i read on dobberhockey that Carey Price has been told to show for accomodations in Montreal. kid's not going anywhere this season. i wonder with the goaltending mess that is Tampa or Phoenix or even LA sometimes whether Huet just wishes for a sunny end to his career. now Huet is playing great so there's no hurry to move him but what if Tampa offered up the right player(s)? would they part with Vinny Prospal for Huet? i'm just spitballing, i've heard no rumours saying that Prospal is on the block.
Andrei Markov has 4 goals already and 10 pts as the anchor of the best PP in the league right now. the door has closed on getting Markov for your fantasy team, unless you wanted to overpay.
in other games Dan Ellis shutout Vancouver last night and there was a chorus of boos for the Canucks late in the game. i still say that Chris Mason will bounce back and get the job, he carried the Preds for a good chunk of last year and was the main reason why they could move Vokoun in the offseason.
Rick DiPietro shutout the Lightning last night and the Isles offense surprised me by continuing to keep pace with it's own hot start. i love DiP as a G2 fantasy option.
Henrik Lundqvist shutout the sleepy Caps offense last night. i did notice that Viktor Kozlov played 22 mins for the Caps and had 8 SOG's, 2 more than AO. if only Kozlov were eligible on the wing but he isn't so he's probably only a C4 option at best for fantasy purposes.
Ray Emery took a shutout into the 3rd period only to get smoked by Ilya Kovalchuk for a hattie in the 3rd period alone. he still came out with a win but as a guy who started Emery only to see that brutal showing that period i've got to say that i waited a long time for you to come back Ray and you have to show me a LOT more than that. i still say that Emery will be the starter and this 1A and 1B crap can't just go where they belong, Minnesota.
Mathieu Schneider is back and he'll pick up a lot of slack that Scott Niedermayer has traditionally carried for the Ducks. expect that Francois Beauchemin's stats go down a lot along with his TOI.
i just noticed that someone dropped Ryan Miller in my 10 team league, except he dropped him 3 days ago and he already cleared waivers. someone else claimed him and he would've been a great add for my team. apparently, it has to be said, you don't drop Ryan Miller. ever. never ever ever.
i hear this Crosby guy is pretty good. got 2 goals last night. he's got 7 now after a brutal start to his season. if he keeps that pace he'll finish with 147 goals on the season. it could happen too (ok you do sense the tinge of sarcasm right?).
there's rumour of the Leafs talking trade with the Avs. i hear that Tomas Kaberle and John Michael Liles are being mentioned. well, unless Paul Stastny is also being mentioned then i say that my Leafs shouldn't move Kaberle. and the Avs won't be moving Stastny anytime this decade.
Pete Becker over at ESPN fantasy sports points out that Brad Boyes has 9 goals on only 25 SOG's. he cautions against expecting too much from him, and i agree although i had Boyes pegged for a fairly big season this year. Pete's a very cool guy by the way. i've had beers with him so i know.
Phil Kessel saw his ice time go up a bit with Patrice Bergeron on the shelf. his stats'll go up too. there's a reason he was such a high draft pick (went 5th overall after plenty of talk of him going 1 or 2).