January 20 2013 11:36AM
Not a bad weekend for Joffrey Lupul. A win on opening day, and a $26-million payday.
Toronto was rumoured to be in discussions with Lupul last night, and today they inked him to a five-year extension. Lupul was slated to be an unrestricted free agent this summer.
Joffrey Lupul has some offensive talent and bounced around the league with stints in Anaheim, Edmonton, and Philadelphia before clicking on Toronto's top line with Phil Kessel. Since then, he's boosted his assist totals, and has produced like a dynamic offensive player worth of extension.
But the contract is problematic, especially locking up a player with a track record like Lupul's. Here's why:
January 06 2013 09:41AM
After 16 hours of bargaining and mediation Saturday and early into Sunday morning, the National Hockey League and its Players Association came through with a tentative labour agreement that will see the remainder of the 2012-2013 season played out under a pro-rated salary cap.
A groggy Gary Bettman, who was speaking about as quickly as either Sedin accelerates (they're slow, get it?), clarified that the deal must be ratified on both sides, and that there was no information available yet on schedule or number of games to be played.
January 05 2013 02:21PM
There has been some work done on goaltender age recently, and the basic question surrounding the analysis has been "can we predict how Roberto Luongo will perform in his late 30s?" If we can, and if the indication is positive, it would imply a team may be wise to fork over a key asset or two for one of the best, consistent goalies of the era.
Luongo plays a very important role in goaltender analysis. He's the first elite goaltender to rise to prominence after the NHL began publishing even strength save percentage numbers in 1997-98. Luongo has played 12 NHL seasons, all of them coming after the switch. The only other goalie to play more games than Luongo since 1998 is Martin Brodeur, but some of his numbers are buried behind the impenetrable wall of simple save percentage as he established himself in New Jersey.
December 13 2012 02:55PM
Part of what I think contributes to the success of offensive starts like Jonathan Toews and the Sedin twins is the fact that they've had very dependable third lines behind them in recent years. I recently went to Behind the Net, parsed through ice time data for offensive zone start rate and quality of competition to see if there was a league-wide trend towards adopting a system where the third liners were given a higher level of importance.
Turns out, yes, actually, even over the last three years, it's very noticeable. In the 2009-2010 season, third and fourth liners were pretty interchangeable, playing against middling competition, usually in offensive zone situations. What's happened since then is that replacement-level players and fourth liners have seen less ice time, while first liners and third liners have picked up the bulk of the difference.
November 30 2012 07:11PM
Avangard and Barys go to overtime, but as you can tell by the above image, the real story out here is Karri Rämö's awesome mask.
Here are the rest of the highlights: