The biggest news from Friday was that Carey Price would indeed return to action for the Habs on Saturday for a home game against Buffalo. If there was ever a game that would help ease him back into action, it’s a home game against a bad team playing the second of a back-to-back on the road. Let’s see how it goes.
Charlie Lindgren was sent down which means Antti Niemi is the backup in town. Kudos to Lindgren on a job very well done. He started eight games and managed a .924 save percentage in those games. The team only won three of them but he’s helped keep their meager playoff hopes alive. If he didn’t perform as well as he did, this team could be fighting with the Sabres for the basement of the East.
I’m interested to see how Price performs. He had a miserable start to the year and this injury was apparently not related to his knee injury last year. The thing is, the team needs him to be the goalie he was two years ago, and they need it now. They can’t wait two weeks for his game to come around.
The Kings welcomed back Marian Gaborik to the lineup on Friday night. He started the game on the fourth line, but did get an assist on Anze Kopitar’s goal.
There’s no fantasy relevance here yet but I’m keeping an eye on how he looks and how the coach uses him over the next four or five games. Going into Friday’s game against the Coyotes, they had scored 20 goals in their previous 10 games. In the higher-scoring NHL this year, two goals a game is not going to cut it.
At 35 years old, Gaborik is not the player he was even five years ago when he was still with the Rangers. However, over his first three seasons in Los Angeles, he managed 0.73 goals per 60 minutes at five-on-five. For reference, on his own team, Jeff Carter was at 0.75, and league-wide, he was in the same neighbourhood as guys like Wayne Simmonds (0.75), Jakob Silfverberg (0.74), Tomas Hertl (0.73), and Andrew Ladd (0.72). If he can be that player again for the Kings, it’ll be a much-needed shot in the arm offensively. I suspect he&rsquo