Craig Hartsburg got the axe yesterday from the Senators only 48 games into his first year with the club. Apparently scoring the fewest goals in the league doesn't get it done in Ottawa. If I was Hartsy, I think I'd ask my boss, Mumbles Murray, how well he did at the end of last season with pretty much the same roster. Cory Clouston, who's been underwhelming everyone in Binghamton with his pedestrian coaching record, will take over behind the bench... no word if Eugene Melnyk has plans to blow himself up yet.
2 assists last night gives Carlo Colaiacovo 9 points in his last 11 games and he's proven to be quite durable when not wearing a Maple Leafs uniform. Carlos is not a bad short-term pick-up as he's seeing huge ice time (8:32 PP time last night) on an underrated PP (6th best in the league) and that's led to most of his points (13 of 16). (I know that's a lot of bracketing but there's a lot of (good) nuggets in there)
Chris Mason's January is going just fine, thanks. He's 3-3-1 in 7 appearances with fantabulous averages: 1.58 gaa & .946 sv%. Is he the guy in St. Louis? It appears so for now as Legace has been parts hurt and parts blowing for most the year. Mase had a similar run with Nashville a few years ago but has never been known as Mr. Consistency.
Ville Leino has a point in each of his two NHL games so far and despite lining up with Datsyuk and Hossa last night we just can't see his call-up lasting too long as he saw less than 10 minutes of ice-time and is destined to head back to Grand Rapids shortly.
Craig Rivet had, what we like to call, the Bob Probert Hat-Trick with a goal and two fights last night... and while admiring his goonery we also noticed that he's got 5 points in his last 5 games. We can't recommend that you pick him up but we will be rooting for him to continue this little hot streak.
A little Steve Montador update for you as the dman continues to be a decent #4 dman who can bring you some heat in the PIM department... he's got 8 points in his last 12 games to go along with 25 PIMs.
Brendan Morrison was a healthy scratch last night, apparently one assist in his last 8 games isn't good enough for Randy Carlyle... geez, who knew? Brutal year for BMo, good thing he only signed a one year deal cause he needs to get out of Anaheim asap.
A goal last night means Ruslan Salei has 6 points in his last 6 games. Only if you're really desperate would we recommend going after Rusty as he's not bringing his usual nastiness to the ice... he's usually a lock for 100+ PIMs but is only on pace for 65 this year.
Philadelphia finally sent rookie dman Luca Sbisa back to junior after a 39 game audition and numerous healthy scratchings recently. He's one to watch for the future but 18 year old dmen rarely thrive in the NHL.
Denis Gauthier has been suspended for five games for his elbow-to-head hit on Josh Georges. No big loss from a fantasy standpoint (he has only two points) but it gives us a reason to link to the hit. Gordie Howe would be proud.
Marek Svatos picked up three points last night. He now has nine points in ten games. Even though Svatos has been out-performing Wojtek Wolski we would still recommend you pick up Wolski over Svatos. Sounds like Coach Granato wants to reunite the Wolski-Ryan Smyth-Milan Hejduk line. Also, Wolski has been racking up the PP time lately (leads the team with almost five minutes over the last five games). Wolski is a good buy low candidate right now as he's been struggling a bit lately with only four points in his last nine games.
Jonas Hiller played again for the Ducks and picked up another win. He stopped 19 of 21. He's a great start for the short term and potentially the long term (Giggy permitting).
Injury Updates (see our Injury Updates page for a consolidated list of injuries):
Sergei Gonchar practiced without the 'no contact' jersey for the first time on Monday. Still no definite timetable for his return but the rumour is that he's about 3 weeks away. We'll keep an eye on him for you.
Mike Smith is out with a UBI, no word on the extent of the injury but it sounds like it's a back injury... more info to come. Imagine Tampa without Smith for the rest of the year. That's not a pretty mental image, is it?
Chris Clark has had a pretty forgettable season with a rash of injuries and now he's scheduled for wrist surgery this week that will knock him out for the rest of the year, so you might want to look for someone to replace that one goal he's racked up for you so far.
Manny Legace returned from the injured list last night but he probably wishes he hadn't as he was beaten (like the red-head that he is) for 3 goals on 8 shots and was asked to leave the game early.
What's distracting us today? Took a little stroll over to NHL.com. If you're a regular reader you'll know we like to poke fun at what qualifies as entertainment over there. Here are a couple of videos that are entertaining just for the fact that somebody actually thought it was worthwhile to record it and put it up on the net.
The Detroit Red Wings playing soccer. Derek Meech talking about 'two-touch' soccer...that's how we spell entertainment.
Ryan Suter, Shea Weber and Jordin Tootoo watch a Belmont University basketball game. Not only did they watch the game but they provided the half time 'entertainment'
The Flames do their version of the Winter Classic. We guess when the only stars that show up are Dustin Boyd, Adam Pardy and Brandon Prust it really just isn't the same. (We kid, but this was pretty cool of these guys)
Joffrey Lupul playing the guitar. Nothing like showcasing somebody who describes themselves as "not that good". Surely there has to be somebody in the NHL who has a real talent out there that NHL.com could highlight..