December 10 2016 11:04AM
Players from the Vancouver Canucks and New Jersey Devils surprised no one on Tuesday night when they responded to a hit by the Devils’ Taylor Hall on an unsuspecting Philip Larsen.
The hit looks like a clean one—if we’re talking about the NHL rule book. Judgement beyond that depends on how you feel about a player ploughing into an oblivious, deer-like opponent in the area of the ice I like to refer to as Raffi Torres’ playpen.
December 10 2016 08:00AM
Dougie Hamilton scored his fourth goal of the season in dramatic fashion. The recipient of a fantastic pass from Johnny Gaudreau, he was able to then split two Coyotes en route to the net before deking out the goalie and scoring in overtime for the Flames.
All in all, it was an extremely cool goal: the Flames' 73rd of the season. Unfortunately, as it would so be right now, the Flames aren't a particularly high-scoring team; their 2.43 goals per game is only 20th in the NHL.
This is a team that, point blank, has to start scoring more. Gaudreau's return should help things, but Hamilton is probably going to be a massive part of any offensive resurgence, too.
December 09 2016 10:00AM
The game that we all love very much is very much a results based business. The window of opportunity for teams, players, coaches, and management is so finite now that maximizing your window by any means should be key. The problem - among other things - is the salary cap situation for this Calgary Flames team and maximizing results from players before they become a sunk cost.
A portion of that salary cap problem comes from pre-existing contracts that are hurting the team, one of which is Lance Bouma's contract. Between consistency, health, and on-ice results it's proving to be quite the disastrous use of money.
Let's not mince words here: if there was an opportunity to move on, it would be best to act on it.
December 09 2016 09:56AM
Photo Credit: Bruce Fedyck/USA TODAY SPORTS
I think we can all agree that today's National Hockey League is one essentially run by its young talent. The game is getting faster and more systems reliant, meaning that those with the quickest skilled reflexes to break through holes are the ones that are reaping the rewards.
But in a season of youth, only one name matters.
December 09 2016 09:00AM
With a three-point performance last night in Philadelphia, Leon Draisaitl upped his season total to 25 points, good for 15th in the league and second in the Pacific Division behind only teammate Connor McDavid.
This is an excellent sign for the Oilers, obviously, because Draisaitl is producing like the player the organization hoped he would become when they drafted him with the third overall pick back in 2014. But with Draisaitl’s entry-level contract coming to an end this summer, the team is quickly going to have to determine whether or not he’s done enough to warrant a long-term contract.