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Daily Dosage - Nov. 23, 2008

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Daily Diarrhea

Tim Thomas put up another great performance against Montreal on Saturday ... 33 saves, the W and the first star.  This guy continues to exceed expectations... he's the league leader in both GAA and SV% right now.  Betcha didn't see that coming before the season.

A couple of so-called backups may not be backups much longer:

  • FHS favourite Ondrej Pavelec was named the second star after stopping 29 of 30 Columbus shots.  Will Kari Lehtonen have a job when he comes back? 

  • Joey MacDonald continues to shine on the island.  This time the Sabres were sent packing...35 saves and the first star for J-Mac.  If Dipietro is worth 15 years what is Joey worth?  

  • 6-foot-4 giant goalie Steve Mason picked up the first shutout of his career.  Yeah it was against the Thrashers and he only had to make 15 saves but this kid is the real deal.   In other Mason news, Chris Mason stopped 31 of 32 shots.

Brad Boyes hadn't scored in nine games but he broke out of his slump with two goals against the Wild last night and is now 10+7=17 in 18 games. 

Weren't the Leafs supposed to stink this year?  Matt Stajan (5+12=17), Mikhail Grabovski (9+5=14), Alexei Ponikarovsky (6+9=15) and Niklas Hagman (6+7=13) are all performing way above expectations after 19 games.  They're all getting time on the PP and Hagman's 76 shots might be of value to some of you.  Who needs Brian Burke?  They should give Ron Wilson the keys to the city.

Jeff Carter scored his 14th goal and tacked on an assist last night.  He's now second in the league in goals but has only four assists (14+4=18).  Don't expect him to keep up the Cy Young performance but the fourth year player looks like he's taken a big step forward.

Brendan Morrison was a healthy scratch last night for Anaheim... we're surprised by his downfall this year, he's been one of the more consistent producers over his career with 7 straight years in the 51-71 point range (pro-rating last year's injury shortened season) but he apparently hasn't gelled with his new teammates.  Watch how he responds to the scratch and if he doesn't come out and play like his hair's on fire then drop him, if you haven't already.

Columbus coach Ken Hitchcock says that he's considering scratching rookie Jakub Voracek but will drop him down to the 4th line and reduce his minutes instead... wonderful, he's already struggling with only 1 point in his last 7 and this isn't going to help his breakout chances. 

Injury Updates (see our Injury Updates page which gives you a consolidated list of injuries):

The big news from Saturday is, of course, Roberto Luongo's groin injury.  The team is going to get an MRI on Sunday so hopefully we'll know more soon.  Luongo owners (or anybody with a free roster spot) might want to grab Cory Schneider off the waiver wire just in case.  He's 10-1 with a league leading 1.37 GAA in the AHL so far this season. Will Alain Vigeault start the team's top goalie prospect or journeyman Curtis Sanford if Luongo is out?  We don't know either but would lean towards Schneider.

Frans Nielsen is out 2-3 months with multiple leg injuries.  He's only 2+7=9 this year so it's no big loss.  Josh Bailey will move into the second line center role. [more]

Mike Smith is nursing a LBI and he's listed as day-to-day so look for Olaf Kolzig today.

Wojtek Wolski had a goal and an assist last night but then was forced to leave the game after taking a Sean "O'Donnell Rules" O'Donnell elbow to the head... he should be able to shake it off but he's day-to-day for now. 

Although a lot of rumourmongers would like to believe that Dustin Byfuglien is being scratched cause he was traded 5 minutes ago, he's actually got an undisclosed injury and has now missed the last 2 games... he's day-to-day with the injury and minute-to-minute with being dealt.

Derek Morris is out day-to-day with an upper body injury. 

Marek Svatos played last night so didn't miss any games with the abdominal injury.

Sergei Fedorov returned to action last night...but only played 5 minutes.  Looks like his ankle is not ready for full time duty yet.

Also returning from injury last night was: Todd White and Matt Lombardi.

Distraction of the Day

What's distracting us today?....Patrick Roy and Wendel Clark got their jersey's retired.  Well, Clark only got his jersey 'honoured' but still it's a nice thought. Well deserved recognition for both... Roy led Montreal to 2 Cups and won numerous awards while Clark led the league in man games lost to back injuries and won a lot of fights.  In memory of these two greats we thought we'd do what we do best and give them a little tip o' the fantasy hat by remembering their greatest fantasy seasons:

Wendel Clark
In 1992-93 Wendy put up his best far - 64 games, 46 goals, 76 points and 115 PIM. But he wasn't the fan's favourite because of the goals:

Patrick Roy
We could have picked pretty much any of the years he spent in Colorado but we went with 1996-97 - 62 games, 38 wins, 2.32 GAA, and a .923 SV%

Nice to see Montreal finally acknowledge Roy.  He's definitely one of the best in history...well most of the time anyway: