This week in hockey, goalies get hot, some teams are not, and a coach was fired for the first time in a team’s short history. A-Rod asks for his case to be heard, in this week’s Week in Review
Anaheim [Mighty] Ducks (3-0-0) – Jonas Hiller has now won 14 straight starts. The record, for you curious few, is 17 by Gilles Gilbert of the Boston Bruins in 1975-76. Also, the Ducks are approaching the record for points in consecutive home games to start the year.
Boston Bruins (1-2-0) – This week was the California swing for the B’s, taking just the game against the Sharks, a 1-0 affair. They became the only team this season to keep the Sharks from scoring at the Tank.
Buffalo Sabres (1-0-1) – Mikhail Grigerenko is refusing to go back to his junior team, after being demoted by the Sabres. Buffalo isn’t getting that year back on his entry-level contract, thus making this another thing that went wrong for the Sabres.
Calgary Flames (1-3-0) – They scored 5 goals this week. 4 of them came in one game, against the Avalanche. Guess which game they won.
Carolina Hurricanes (1-1-0) – Skinner-mania is back, to stay. Since December, he’s been more than a point-per-game player. He’s also one of two Canes near point-per-game status. They need secondary scoring bad.
Chicago Blackhawks (1-1-1) – Chalk this up as a pedestrian week for the reigning champs, who are now looking over their shoulder at the Blues, who are right behind them.
Colorado Avalanche (2-1-1) – They seemed to have played to the level of their competition this week, losing to Calgary and the Islanders, but beating the heating-up Senators and Wild. Seems to make sense.
Columbus Blue Jackets (3-0-0) – Don’t count the Jackets out of anything. 7th place in the Metro, but 5 points out of 2nd. That’s gonna get interesting in March.
Dallas Stars (0-4-0) – They laid a goose egg in their New York swing, and just when they thought they had seen enough of those 3, they lose to the Islanders again. So much for that surge…
Detroit Red Wings (1-2-0) – Tomas Tatar scored a goal the day after his father’s passing Saturday night in Los Angeles. I send some love out to him and his family.
Edmonton Oilers (1-2-0) – It’s not for a lack of offense that they aren’t winning. It’s goaltending woes. Right Bryz?
Florida Panthers (1-1-1) – Man, that game in New Jersey had a breakneck pace to it. Very exciting to watch firewagon hockey like that. Now imagine if they had actually spent more to be competitive…
Los Angeles Kings (1-1-1) – All of the sudden, the Kings’ offense isn’t tearing it up anymore. Quick gets back, and now you rely on the poor guy to win every game? Man they are spoiled in Lala-land.
Minnesota Wild (3-1-0) – 3 wins this week takes good advantage of Dallas hating New York teams. Too bad their only loss was to a team they are chasing, in Colorado.
Montreal Canadiens (2-1-0) – The losing team in each Habs game this week scored exactly 1 goal. Can’t win if you don’t score, I suppose.
Nashville Predators (1-2-1) – Busy week for the Preds, and it included hopping over the Jets, leaving them in the Central cellar. No wonder Claude Noel is out of a job.
New Jersey Devils (2-0-2) – The Ryder-Henrique-Clowe line is heating up, just as the Zajac-Jagr-Zubrus line is cooling down. Also, Schneider is stepping up as Brodeur is winding it down. Why can’t everything work at the same time for these guys?
New York Islanders (4-0-0) – Hold the phone. The Islanders are 7 points back from a playoff spot. Talk about playing inspired.
New York Rangers (3-0-0) – This concludes the first week in forever that none of the 3 New York teams recorded 0 regulation losses. No one thought this would happen ever this year.
Ottawa Senators (1-0-1) – They were ahead of the Leafs entering action on Sunday night. Man this race is getting packed with everyone.
Philadelphia Flyers (2-2-0) – Just when you thought they were the team to beat, they put up 2 duds against Tampa and the Rangers. This proves that they too are just as ready for a playoff spot as any team in this wide open race.
Phoenix Coyotes (1-2-0) – So the Avs’ play to the level of competition, the ‘Yotes don’t. They beat up on the Flames and lost to the Wild and Ducks. I guess they are that team that people play as expected against.
Pittsburgh Penguins (2-0-1) – This just in: The Penguins have (pretty much) clinched the Metropolitan division.
San Jose Sharks (1-2-0) – The only team with fewer home regulation losses, happens to be the only team ahead of the Sharks in the Pacific. Coincidence?
St. Louis Blues (2-1-0) – They finally lost a game, 2-1 in Vancouver. They can score with Chicago and be as stingy as Boston. They are a scary team.
Tampa Bay Lightning (2-1-0) – 5 goals on just 17 shots against Flyers goalie Steve Mason. That says something about the Bolts’ offense or the Flyers’ chronic goaltending issues.
Toronto Maple Leafs (1-3-0) – Coach Randy Carlyle was given a vote of confidence by GM Dave Nonis. The countdown begins.
Vancouver Canucks (1-0-1) – A win against the Blues is a big thing these days, because they are hard to come by. Now they can try and catch the Kings again.
Washington Capitals (2-0-1) – They reclaimed their spot in 2nd in the Metro, but that could change at any given moment, given the team we have in it.
Winnipeg Jets (0-2-0) – Paul Maurice is the new head coach in the ‘Peg after Claude Noel had his term as first Jets coach terminated. It may help, but the Jets are likely still a few moves away from looking any better.
Goal of the Week: Fast-forward to the 1:32 mark of this video to see a beauty by [Mighty] Ducks’ Ryan Getzlaf:
In the box this week: Bruins’ Dougie Hamilton was actually exiting the box Thursday night in Los Angeles, when he played the puck from inside the penalty box. Take a look:
The ref said, “If you want to play from inside the box, then you can sit there another 2 minutes.” The Kings scored on the ensuing power play.
That is all for this week. Tune in next week for some more hockey. Till then, puck-heads!