February 4, 2009

Dobber Sports



Mark Streit left last night's contest with an upper body injury. More will be known today, but he did not return.


An opportunity to join the DobberHockey team is outlined in the announcements section of the forum.


Viktor Kozlov tweaked his groin last night and left the game in the first.


Lubomir Visnovsky left last night's game holding his arm and did not return. Speculation is that he separated his shoulder. 


Sam Gagner returned to action last night and led all EDM forwards in ice time.
The Preds recalled Patric Hornqvist from Milwaukee, but he only played eight minutes for the team. He ranks 46th on my prospects list.


Besides Caputi (below), the other big name to make his NHL debut last night was Artem Anisimov of the Rangers. His debut wasn't as nice, as he was pointless in just 9:27 of ice. He will make an impact next season.


The Rangers scratched the slumping Nigel Dawes to make room for Anisimov.


Tampa Bay signed free agent goaltender Mike McKenna to a contract. Mike Smith is injured (the team will not comment) and speculation is that he may have injured himself during a tantrum involving slamming a water bottle, breaking his stick and knocking over a cart. He did not travel with the team to Long Island. Karri Ramo got the start and stopped 13 of 16 shots before McKenna got into his first NHL action and stopped all 11 shots that he faced. McKenna had been playing well in Norfolk and had solid numbers for Portland last year – certainly worthy of a contract and I wonder why he didn't get one sooner. Speculation is that TB will pick up Sabourin, Sanford or Gerber to solve their little goalie dilemma.


Luca Caputi scored on his very first shift in his very first NHL game, the first Pen to do that since you-know-who. When he was told that during an intermission interview, I could tell that he was absolutely floored. It was nice to see such emotion. He was rewarded with 15 minutes of ice time and played the third period with Malkin and Sykora. He looked good there, but finished the game a minus-2.


Sergei Gonchar competed in contact drills for the first time yesterday. My guess is three more weeks, but he will not set a timetable.


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Cory Clouston's line combos in his coaching debut for OTT: Spezza with Heatley and Alfredsson (not the most drastic of changes); Fisher with Regin and Foligno (I like the idea of using Regin's immense talent to bring out the sleeping offensive giant in Fisher [sarcasm]); Kelly with Vermette and Neil (same ol' same ol'); McAmmond with Ruutu and Winchester.


I guess I can't make light of Clouston's combos without my own suggestion: Spezza with Heatley and Vermette (and I mean stick to it religiously for five games, not switch after one period); Fisher with Alfredsson and Winchester (ditto); Kelly with Foligno and Ruutu will provide grit, hustle and third-line scoring; Occasionally sub Neil in on that second line so he gets