November 22 2016 10:00AM
The first quarter of the 2016-17 season for the Calgary Flames has been tough to swallow. They're well below .500, they can't get out of their way on special teams, and highly paid star players are playing underwhelming hockey.
I take calls and read texts after every Flames game and follow along as best I can on social media, and I can tell you there's been plenty of handwringing over Calgary's decision to fire Bob Hartley in May. Did the Flames make the right call? For me there's a very definitive answer.
November 22 2016 09:00AM
Photo Credit: Anne-Marie Sorvin - USA TODAY Sports
It's easy to take Brendan Gaunce for granted. He's not the most imposing player physically and doesn't often impress himself upon the scoresheet either. But make no mistake about it, he's making his mark.
In a year where development has become something of a taboo talking point around Pat Quinn Way, Gaunce finds himself a staple in the Canucks bottom-six at 22-years-old. He's had different linemates, played in different roles and at different positions too.
The one constant? He's helped the Canucks' suppress opposition offence in each scenario. He's among the team's best players in that regard, and the coach is taking notice.
November 21 2016 03:32PM
It's time for your weekly dose of the NHL Numbers power rankings, a weekly look on the previous week in the NHL. I'll look at the five best and worst NHL teams thus far in the season, as well as the three best and worst players in the last week.
All use of Corsi For and Expected Goals For are Score and Venue Adjusted, and at even strength. All stats come from Corsica Hockey, and NHL.com (don't worry, it's only the standings).
Watch The Game Podcast
November 21 2016 12:48PM
Sam invited Jeff Veillette of Leafs Nation to come onto the show and co-host. They then welcome on radio host Greg Brady (5:15) to talk about the NHL. Who is good, who is bad, what exactly is happening with the Leafs and Wings. Get ready for some good debate.
November 21 2016 12:00PM
A word-for-word transcript of my conversation with NHLN's Managing Editor on Saturday night:
Me: but um, hey, can i write about dylan strome?
Cam: Sure, what are you thinking?
Me: something like "a case for the 29th place Arizona Coyotes to keep Dylan Strome in the lineup for more than one game every week and a half" sort of deal + whether it'd be beneficial for him to be back in Erie after world juniors!
Cam: Yeah sure!
There goes that.
As of Sunday afternoon, the Erie Otters are a heck of a lot stronger -- and they're already the best team in the OHL with a record of 16-5-2, and Strome's return will undoubtedly make them Memorial Cup favorites. This also clears up Canada's World Juniors roster picture and lends them some stability, as they're now certain to ice Strome and Seattle Thunderbirds center Mat Barzal down the middle.
But is this the best move for Strome and the Coyotes?