Some SHOP notes:
No longer for sale is an Ultimate Fantasy Pack. Instead, I have a “Mini Pack” that has the Midseason Guide and Playoff List for $12.99. This package, plus the Keeper League Package, adds up to $29.49, which is actually cheaper than the Ultimate Pack was. I think it’s easier and more flexible for you that way. I also have package pricing for each of the Dobber Sports sites, essentially offering you the Midseason Guide, the Interactive Playoff Draft List, plus a membership at Frozen Pool or Goalie Post for an additional $1.00 (Wha? Yep, you heard me), or the Midseason Guide with Hockey Pool Geek membership for $14.99
Brendan Smith ‘may’ play tonight, but only if Brad Stuart can’t go. If he can go, then Smith goes back to the AHL.
Niclas Bergfors has cleared waivers.
Brenden Morrow is out with a UBI. All I can dig up is that it is day to day.
Alex Semin’s exile lasted one game. He’s back next game and Joel Ward will be scratched.
An update on Travis Zajac – he is targetting two weeks from now to return to practice. From there, I’m sure it’s about 10 days to game action. So let’s rough it at December 20 against the Rangers, or the 16th against the Stars (the latter is the first of back to backs, so I’m more inclined to say the 20th).
Elliotte Friedman’s 30 Thoughts gives DobberHockey a mention here. Give his 30th thought a gander…
Craig Smith has just one point in his last five games and his ice time slipped below 14 minutes last night. I think this is just a slump, given that he was an even player when most of the team were minuses. Just hope that the ice time doesn't slip further.
Just when you think Dwayne Roloson shows signs of turning things around, bam he allows 10 goals in two games and gets the hook in the second one.
Joe Colborne has points in three of his four games. Excellent start to his NHL career, although I don't believe he will be a top sixer next year. The season after that – yes. But not next year. Also – he's playing well enough to remain with the big club, but he'll still be sent down as the injured file back in.
Tim Connolly has six points in his last three games. Surprisingly, he has just four shots in those games (two goals). This is while 'not' being on the first line.
Clarke MacArthur scored 41 seconds into his return to the lineup. He's had a tough season so far – that was his first point since November 3 and his third point this month. He had been pointless and minus-9 in five games prior to Tuesday.
Showing signs of life – Cody Franson is still not getting the ice time, but he has three points in his last three games and will remain in the lineup while Mike Komisarek is out. That's all he needed – a way to stay in the lineup. He has four points in eight games, so as far as points-per-game goes he is on track.
How do Phil Kessel and Joffrey Lupul lead the league in scoring a quarter of the way through the season? Remarkable. I wouldn't bet on Lupul staying healthy all year, but ride it for a couple more weeks and then kick some tires and see what you can get for him. As for Kessel, I think you have an 85-point player on your hands. Think about it – if he gets 55 points in his last 60 games, he'll end up with 85. In the last 29 games of last campaign, he had 30 points, so his hot run didn't just begin in October.
The line on Jake Gardiner after I dropped him Sunday to make room for Ian White in a trade – two assists, plus-4, 8 PIM. D'oh!
Marty St. Louis was a minus-4 last night. He has just two points in his last six games.
Give Kris Russell three poi