Ramblings: Bishop’s Career Over, Beauvillier Healthy Scratched, B. Tkachuk Hat Trick (Dec 12)

Ian Gooding

2021-12-12

According to Stars GM Jim Nill, Ben Bishop won't be able to play any longer. The veteran goalie was attempting to come back from knee surgery and hadn't played since August 2020. Bishop recently completed an AHL conditioning assignment, but he gave up eight goals, likely figuring that the knee wouldn't allow him to compete at the highest level any longer. You'd have to assume that Bishop's contract (signed through 2022-23) ages out on LTIR, where the Stars placed him on Saturday. It's an unfortunate end to the career of a onetime standout goalie.

In its current state, the Stars goalie situation isn't affected a whole lot because Bishop hasn't played this season. Braden Holtby should continue to receive the bulk of the starts (as he did on Saturday, a 2-1 loss to San Jose), while Jake Oettinger remains with the big club. Anton Khudobin hasn't played in nearly a month, so I wonder if a team that encounters a goalie injury reaches out to Dallas. Given the tight cap situations of many teams, I don't imagine Khudobin's $3.33 million salary (signed through 2022-23) will be easy to move.    

Dynamic but underperforming winger Anthony Beauvillier was made a healthy scratch on Saturday. I had high hopes for Beauvillier, who I've enjoyed watching during the Islanders' back-to-back runs to the Eastern Conference Final. However, that success hasn't translated to the regular season, where Beauvillier is now without a point over his last 13 games. The Isles' issues this season have affected Beauvillier, as I've mentioned for various other players from struggling teams. Only the Coyotes and Canadiens have a lower goal-per-game output than the Islanders (2.17 GF/GP).

That being said, Beauvillier might be a buy-low candidate or a player to keep an eye on as a waiver-wire pickup later in the season. Last season he stumbled out of the gate (6 PTS in 19 GP) before finishing the season as a point-per-game player (7 G and 13 PTS in 14 GP). The Islanders have shown to be a better team than this in recent seasons, and a 13-game road trip to start the season put them behind the 8-ball. A higher-than-normal proportion of home games should benefit their scorers in the second half.

Without Beauvillier in the lineup, the Isles won their first game in eight tries in their new arena, a 4-2 win over New Jersey. If Barry Trotz believes in the theory of keeping a winning lineup intact, then it's possible Beauvillier could miss additional games. But he's far too talented to stay out of the lineup long-term.

In Saturday's only day game, Brady Tkachuk recorded his first career hat trick. Included were two power-play goals, which happened to