Sometimes, folks, you fall victim to the sumptuous siren call of the snooze button. Happens to the best and the worst of them. And, you know, the averagest.
So, out here in Fredericton, NB (HOME OF JAKE ALLEN), the snow is finally beginning to fall. I thought we’d make it until December, but no dice. My wife and I prepared in a big way with a grocery run, although we didn’t quite get stormchips.
(Aside: Google Docs made that one word. Odd right? OK, it’s your show, G-Docs.)
Anyway, here’s hoping near-future Doses are only delayed by your humbled author’s sleep patterns and not anything else. I mean, ideally, there’d be no delay at all but …
/gnarly snoring sound effect
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CANADIENS 4, ISLANDERS 2
-- Apparently Montreal has the Isles' number.
(Aside 2: Can we now call the Islanders "Brooklyn" and thus make references less awkward? I dunno, I guess we could have done that with Long Island the whole time, too.)
The Habs have won their last six games against the Brookies, all in regulation, and this represents their last game against the Islanders unless they meet in the playoffs. I'm not sure why, exactly, Montreal has had such an edge in a broader sense.
-- Special teams was the big difference-maker in this one, however, as Montreal went 3-for-5 on the power play while the Islanders were blanked 0-for-5. Montreal also got a SHG from Tomas Fleischmann, so pretty disastrous man advantage/kill work by the Islanders in this one. They actually won the even-strength battle 2-0.
(To be fair, one of the PPG was an ENG by Max Pacioretty.)
After scoring a goal on seven SOG during Nov. 20's loss to Montreal, he generated an assist, +2 rating, 10 PIM on a misconduct and three SOG.
He only had three points in his previous 19 games.
-- This is now two straight wins for Carey Price since he made his return. Solid sign for those concerned about rust.
-- Speaking of concerns, Brendan Gallagher left the game and did not return because of a hand injury. Keep an eye on injury updates around the league in this handy spot.
DEVILS 3, CANUCKS 2
-- New Jersey continues to enjoy remarkable production from the select group of Mike Cammalleri (one goal, two assists), Kyle Palmieri (one assist), Lee Stempniak (assist), Travis Zajac (assist) and Adam Henrique (goal). That doesn't really strike me as a recipe for long-term success, but I'm not sure many people were even anticipating a strong month or two from this team.
-- Cory Schneider was probably the big difference-maker in this one, stopping 36 out of 38 shots as he improves his record to unexpectedly strong mark of 10-5-1. He deserves these wins, but it's surprising that he's really getting any goal support.
-- The Canucks should get at least a polite golf clap for putting up a solid effort, as they won a rousing game against the Blackhawks on Saturday. That doesn't mean they won't kick themselves, as they could have lived off their power play (which only went 1-for-7).
-- Jacob Markstrom isn't setting the world on fire, but he's not exactly getting much of a shot either, as this was just his third start (1-1-1).
HURRICANES 4, KINGS 3
-- As Michael Finewax notes in his essential PP Reports, Justin Faulk is an absolute demon on the power play, and it really shined on Sunday. He scored two goals on the PP in this one, giving him a whopping eight PPG, representing all of his goals (while he has 15 points in 20 games overall). That kind of power play production makes his -12 rating easier to explain and digest.
I get the impression that sort of issue may work itself out if Carolina ever climbs the ladder in the East, as they seem to be stuck in bubble mode at best. To be fair, they've had some pretty bad puck luck, so they're an interesting team to continue to gauge as the season goes along.
-- Anze Kopitar scored two of the Kings' three goals, pushing him to seven goals and three assists for just 10 points in 20 games so far this season. He's getting plenty of bounces, too, as he's registered just 33 SOG in those 20 contests.
Kopitar seemed to be a little offended by contract year talk, and he's backing up his words about not being affected by it by ... not exactly lighting up the scoreboard. I'm sure he's been his usual beastly self possession-wise, but he remains in that club of guys who are often a little disappointing in fantasy.
-- Rough night for Jonathan Quick, who was pulled from the game after allowing four goals on 21 shots through the first two periods. He's down to 9-7-0 on the season.
SHARKS 5, BLUE JACKETS 3
-- OK, I know it was an all-East run, but it's still pretty impressive that the Sharks just managed a perfect six-game road trip. They get a nice break, as they won't play again until they host the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday.
This run leaves them on top of the Pacific, which is a reminder that the Pac is a very winnable division.
-- Boone Jenner is pulling off one of those "Cy Young" years with 11 goals and five assists (or 11-5 to emulate pitching records). His shooting percentage is a bit high at 19 percent, so expect a bit of cooling, but this is promising stuff considering the fact that he's merely 22 years old.
Sadly, as successful as he's been, I really just think of this hat when I hear his name.
-- Brent Burns is a unique animal, and I mean that possibly literally, as his beard at least opens up the possibility that he's actually just Sasquatch playing hockey.
He scored a goal in this one, giving him three tallies in his past two games (and 19 SOG in his last three). His 94 SOG rank second in the NHL, and what do you really do to stop a guy like this?
Spoiler: opposing teams should just bribe him to pass up shots with the promise of pizza.
-- Scott Hartnell nabbed an assist, but maybe most "importantly," he generated 12 of his 31 PIM in this game. He's quietly been quite effective: nine goals, seven assists for 16 points in 22 games. His shooting luck is a little high, though, as he's connected on 18.4 percent of his shots.