Waive to Cheechoo... small boost for Cullen, big boost for Barker... Bergfors making Thrasher fans forget... Orr with some major truculence... Gaborik's return a brief one... the Cheechoo train, next stop: Binghamton
The Senators were busy yesterday placing Jonathan Cheechoo on waivers as his career death-spiral has continued this year in Ottawa... doubt anyone picks him but the Sens appear to be done with him so we're guessing they'll bury him in the minors. Then in between giving himself a new contract, Bryan Murray found some time to pull off a trade, picking up Matt Cullen from the Canes for Alex Picard and a pick. This trade should give Cullen a boost but he's already been playing above his head lately with 3+7=10 in his last 10, so it would be hard to expect much more.
Cam Barker was dealt from the Hawks to the Wild yesterday for Kim Johnsson & Nick Leddy. Definitely a downgrade in team for Barker but he should see a major upgrade in opportunity as this guy has a lot of offensive talent but wasn't given many chances to display it this year in Chicago. He had a breakout season last year with 40 points in only 68 games, so the ability is obviously there and we think this move really increases his value... give him a long look.
On the night when Ilya Kovalchuk scored his first goal for the Devils, one of the dudes he was traded for, Niclas Bergfors, is making Thrashers fans totally forget about Kovy (not really). But Bergfors does have goals in three straight and 3+1=4 with 15 shots in four games with Atlanta.
Nik Antropov is one guy that definitely doesn't seem to be missing Kovy, as he's 2+4=6 in his last three games.
Erik Johnson went through a horrific mid-season slump where he only managed four measly assists in 26 games but he's finally starting to shake it off as he has points in three straight and a very healthy 24 shots in his last five games.
Two points last night for Olli Jokinen and he has some new life on Broadway with 2+3=5, 8 PIMs and 23 shots in his first five games.
Mike Leighton won his third in a row by stopping 23 of 25 last night and he hasn't given up more than two goals in any of his last five consecutive starts.
Colton Orr had a productive night for those of you in goon pools... fight, instigator and misconduct in the first for 17 PIMs... fight in the second for five more... and a misconduct in the third for another 10... finishing with a whopping 32 PIMs on the night... now that's truculence.
Injury Updates (see our Injury Updates page for a consolidated list of injuries):
Marian Gaborik returned last night after missing one game with a laceration on his knee but he only made it through about four minutes before leaving the game in the first period... doubt he plays Sunday and not sure what this means for his Olympic status.
Mike Del Zotto suffered a laceration to his abdomen as he fell on Geno Malkin's skate as Malkin was laying on the ice... bizarro. Not sure how serious it is but we expect he'll sit out Sunday's game.
Keith Tkachuk missed last night's game with a UBI, the extent is TBD.
Chris Campoli suffered a LBI on Thursday night and the word is that he could be out for a month.
Anton Stralman missed the CBJs game on Thursday with a LBI but he returned last night.
Also returning to action from the injured list last night was: Zach Parise.
What's distracting us today? With Jon Cheechoo being our lead story today, what better time to revisit one of our favourite (& most disturbing) videos...