November 28, 2011

Dobber Sports

2011-11-28

 

Carolina has fired Paul Maurice and hired Kirk Muller. I will post a column breaking this down later today as well.

 

I will have a fantasy breakdown of the Bruce Boudreau firing later this morning. A reader suggested that I do breakdowns for coaching changes, not just trades. And I think that's a great idea.

 

Edmonton Oilers among the league's top 20 scorers last week: Ryan Smyth, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Jordan Eberle. The last time that was the case was during the 1986-87 season when Wayne Gretzky was leading the league, Jari Kurri was second and Mark Messier was tied with Mario Lemieux for third. (Rich Chere)

 

Steve Mason was back in the lineup – the backup goalie. Keep him on the bench until the Jackets get a real good run going, then try him. Set him up to succeed, for the sake of his career.

 

New LA Kings lines: Kopitar with Brown and Hunter, Richards with Stoll and Gagne, Loktionov with Williams and Clifford.

 

Jaroslav Halak will get the next start, per STLtoday.com. This is further to my little ramble below.

 

The new line combos for Calgary really paid off, given the five goals that team scored. Jarome Iginla got on the board playing with Glencross and Jokinen. Don't forget, last year Iginla had just 10 points in his first 17 games. This year he has 11 in 22 so far. Last year he posted 76 points in his last 65 games.

 

TJ Brodie now has three points in his last five games. Ice time is still a concern (14 minutes Sunday), but he's producing enough to make it difficult to be sent back down. Not a bad waiver pickup if you need a depth blueliner.

 

So far Blake Comeau is pointless in two games for the Flames and his ice time slipped from 15:08 to 12:25. Small sample size, but not very promising.

 

Niklas Backstrom got the hook after allowing three goals on just eight shots. This is coming off a shutout, but it is also coming 10 days after his last start.

 

Meanwhile Josh Harding stopped 25 of 27. The longer he plays like a Top 10 NHL goalie, the more difficult it becomes for the Wild to keep putting Backstrom out there. But it's the same situation as in St. Louis – the backup is playing lights-out hockey, but the starter is the starter in both name and contract. Politics will often ensure that the favored player continues to get his chances to turn things around.

 

Same will go with Richard Bachman if he plays 'lights out' for Dallas while Kari Lehtonen is on the IR (but for that to happen Andrew Raycroft will have to play his way out of the replacement role).

 

Elliott, by the way, got another win. He's 10-1-0. This is Brian freakin' Elliott, though. He of inconsistent play in Ottawa and terrible play in Colorado. Has he really found a magic potion? I still say no, but as long as the W's continue he will cannibalize Halak starts.

 

Kris Russell is now up to four points in eight games and is plus-5 for St.Louis. He doesn't shoot – just seven shots in eight games since joining the Blues. But he has five goals on his 27 shots this year. His PP time beat Shattenkirk's last night, which I found interesting.

 

Derick Brassard has been scratched six times in the last eight games. Considering the team is on a 4-2-2 run in