I might like Mike Smith a lot more if he cut this nonsense out
James Quick lost just three of his 21 picks after the 1st round and is out to a eight point lead on the field in our FHS Playoff Pool. He looks to be in good shape with his namesake Quick in net, along with Smith & Lundqvist. Kenny Dzwonkowski & Don Waldner are just off the pace a little
No change at the top of the leaderboard in our FHS Staff Invitational Playoff League as i12swim continues to hold a sizeable lead and the rest of us might just be battling for 2nd
Mike Smith shut out the Preds last night and while he has been very good in the playoffs (.946 sv%) he hasn't been lights-out... the key has been that he's only imploded once (four goals in G2 vs Chicago) and has kept his team in most games by allowing two goals or less in seven of ten playoff games.
We're seeing a surprising surge in the postseason from the Coyotes Mikkel Boedker as he has 3+4=7 in his last eight games after a very disappointing regular season which had me thinking he was on his way to bust-city.
Nice to see the playoff comeback from Travis Zajac as there were a lot of questions if he could find his old form after missing most of the season but he has really come on with 5+4=9 over his last nine games.
Disappointing news here as Evgeny Kuznetsov has decided to sign on for another two seasons in Russia. This hurts as I'm sure most of us were expecting to see him jump right into the Caps lineup next season... but such is life with Russian prospects these days. [more from Puck Daddy]
The World Championship kicked off on Friday, I'll try to post a list of a few players to keep an eye on in the next few days but for now check out the tournament previews over a Puck Worlds. [Contenders, Pretenders, Longshots]
Roman Cervenka is not at the WCs due to an injury but we'll be seeing a lot of him in the NHL next year as he signed a one-year deal with Calgary. He has put up some nice numbers in the KHL over the past two years leading the league in goals last year (31+30=61 in 51 games) and tops in the league in points during this year's playoffs (11+10=21 in 21 games). I think a lot of us have been keeping an eye on him over the past few year and his production in the KHL is encouraging but I'd keep your expectations reasonable as Euro-vets like this are rarely able to live up to the hype.
The awesomely named Daniel Bang has signed with Nashville out of the SEL... unfortunately, actually maybe fortunately, he is more of a big banger than a scorer.
Ottawa re-signed Peter Regin to a one-year deal, not that I was ever that high on him but his career has kinda come off the rails the past two years due to injuries. He only appeared in 10 games this season due to shoulder injuries and he'll have to fight with guys like Turris, Greening, Silfverberg & Zibanejad for ice-time next year.
Elusive Islanders prospect Kirill Petrov has reportedly signed a two-year extension to remain in the KHL... so don't expect to see him on the Island for a while, if ever. [More from Lighthouse Hockey]
After grinding it out for four years in the AHL, CBJs prospect Maksim Mayorov has signed to play for Kazan in the KHL next year... his career in North American wasn't taking off, so good move.
Some goalie movement as Ducks prospect Iiro Tarkki and Atte Engren of the Predators, who both looked promising in the AHL this year, are headed back to Europe next year. Tarkki posted a .925 sv% in 49 games with Syracuse but he's signed up for the next two years in the KHL whereas Engren was buried in a deep group of goalies in the Nashville system (.911 in 23 AHL games this year) and so he's decided to return to Finland.
Leafs 2011 1st rounder Tyler Biggs is officially too-cool-for-school as he is leaving Miami after one season and will likely suit up for the Marlies in the AHL next year. Brian Burke loves this guy cause he's tough, I don't care for him cause he's not going to produce fantasy-worthy numbers.
On the flipside, Habs prospect Danny Kristo is returning to North Dakota for another season and he may have his eyes on "Pulling a Wheeler" (or a soon-to-be "Pulling a Justin Schultz") and going UFA next summer. I think there is some nice potential here for those of you that are patient.
Marc Bergevin pulled a bit of an upset by landing the Habs GM position over lots of guys that had more experience and closer ties to the organization. How bad of an interview must Pierre McGuire be to not get this job? He is good friends with the Habs owner and Bergevin's own colleague, Scotty Bowman, recommended Pierre for the job... and he still didn't get it! If he's half as annoying in a job interview as he is on TV then I totally understand.