Monday was an awfully bruising day when it came to injury announcements.
These things can vary with future updates, but it sounds like Ryan Miller and David Krejci could be out for more than a month each (I’ve seen four-to-six week estimates for both). Henrik Zetterberg missed last night’s game thanks to Jamie Benn’s nefarious actions. Ray Emery joins Steve Mason as yet another injured Philadelphia Flyers goalie.
With the March 2 trade deadline looming that much larger - don’t hold your breathe on James Wisniewski staying in Columbus, even if a deal wasn’t yet “imminent” or “impending” or some other im-word that implies a swap being near - I might just have to throw this blurb in the early portions of every Dose (rather than it’s usual spot in the end of each column):
I’d recommend keeping abreast of matters through some combination of Yahoo, Pro Hockey Talk and Rotoworld, but that’s just what keeps my lights on. (They really are great resources, no joke.)
Whatever way you do it, this is a good time to snap out of that winter month funk that understandably sweeps over many 82-game seasons and pay extra attention going forward. Here’s hoping for some exciting trades, especially if it makes likely playoff teams more exciting to watch.
Editor's Note: Rotoworld's partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $30,000 Fantasy Hockey league for Tuesday's NHL games. It's just $2 to join and first prize is $3,000. Starts Tuesday at 7pm ET. Here's the FanDuel link.
DUCKS 4, RED WINGS 3 (SO)
-- Solid scoring showing for Ducks defensemen not that far removed from the bad news about Sami Vatanen's extended stay on the shelf.
Francois Beauchemin scored his seventh goal of the season, his third game in a row with a tally. His career-high is eight, which he's done twice. Hampus Lindholm and Clayton Stoner posted an assist each.
Lindholm also generated seven SOG and nearly matched Beauchemin's ice time with 28:46 to Beauchemin's 28:58 ...
-- John Gibson now boasts a shiny three-game winning streak, with Monday's effort being his best in that run: 35 out of 38 saves made (OK, actually 26 out of 27 stops on Feb. 21 was probably technically better, but he was busier in this one against a superior opponent).
-- Niklas Kronwall had the best effort of any defenseman on the night, generating two assists and two PIM in hearty ice time of his own (28:45). He's one of those guys who doesn't seem like a particularly exciting pick - maybe most peripherals have something to do with that - yet he keeps putting up solid numbers.
-- Man, Pavel Datsyuk is on fire. He scored two goals last night, giving him quite the three-game streak: four goals, three assists.
Interestingly, Datsyuk matched his output points-wise from 2012-13: 49 points in 47 games (though he's more goal-heavy this season, with 21 vs. 15). He now has 12 points in his last nine games. Impressive all around.
DEVILS 3, COYOTES 0
-- Just began a really weird Japanese video game in which high school students get trapped in a “school of despair.” Pretty sure this matchup in Newark is a solid example of a “hockey game of despair.”
-- That said, at least the Devils are rewarding some people who might be paying attention. I mentioned last week that they're in line for a strong run thanks to a six-game homestand and nine of 10 games at home from Feb. 17-March 8, and so far so good. They've now won four games in a row (after losing four in a row and winning three consecutive games ... streaky Devils).
If you ask me, they're still way too far enough out of the playoff race to do much beyond making the Flyers feel silly for thinking that they're closer than they actually are.
-- When we discuss tanking, there should be some reverse term for games in hand. "The Coyotes have an extra game to mess up and get standings points on the Oilers for second-worst in the NHL." Seriously though, nice anti-hustle, Coyotes.
-- Actually, to be fair, they fired 38 SOG on Cory Schneider, with plenty of players hitting four SOG (Oliver Ekman-Larsson topped all 'Yotes with five). Simply enough, they may just lack any and all firepower, especially beyond OEL and Keith Yandle.
-- It's weird trumpeting five goals as an accomplishment, but every Scott Gomez tally - at least in 2015 - is a defiant achievement.
-- Mike Cammalleri now has 22 goals … and eight assists. Hey, at least he’s focused on his strengths?
-- Why wait and risk an injury to Jaromir Jagr when you can trade him now? Although I guess Lou Lamoriello could delude himself into not trading Jagr altogether at this point, I wouldn’t put it past him ...