Ramblings: Atkinson, Marchand, Nilsson, Maroon and more
TWO DAYS! The Midseason Guide will be released later Friday afternoon, in time for your weekend midseason drafts or just for you to look things over and evaluate the second-half outlook. Besides the second-half projections, this beauty will also have players on the trade block (and what it means), prospects ready to make the jump for a dozen games down the stretch, the lowdown on undrafted or unsigned free agents (both in college and in Europe) and much more. Last year’s Midseason Guide, for example, had Troy Stecher, Drake Caggiula, Nick Lappin, Brandon Tanev, Alexander Radulov and Anton Rodin, to give you a small sample. Imagine getting a heads up on players like that in January instead of finding out about them in April or even July? Pre-order it here
SERVER UPDATE! It never fails. Any time I try to give you guys a bit of a heads up on developer stuff, the delays hit. This is why I can never seem to give you any more than two hours of warning via Twitter. Some more fixes were needed on Monday and then on Tuesday my developer was pulled away on an emergency. I remember when, a few days before the NHL season started, I had lost everyone’s access to downloading my fantasy guide. This developer stepped in and within 18 hours had it all fixed. That was an emergency and he really saved me. So I can understand and imagine one of his other clients going through something similar, so I have to respect him for being there for them.
The last thing I wanted to was to change servers the day of a Guide release…
UPDATE: after discussing with my developer, we will hold the server move until Sunday or Monday overnight. I'd rather not mess with anything during the release of the Guide, so Thurs/Fri/Sat are definitely out for doing something like this.
Elliotte Friedman’s 30 thoughts. What I especially like is his introduction, which describes how coaches are people too and that threats to fire or to “never hire” are way over the top. Readers know that I generally don’t call for a coach’s job unless he’s been around for several years and things are no longer working – and he’s proven himself enough to get a job elsewhere. Currently, Jack Capuano is on that list. And I’m also inclined to stick Jon Cooper there too. Cooper, especially, would have no problem landing another NHL coaching gig quickly – and he’d be a good one. Needs a new environment.
Confused by that last point? Let me explain. New Jersey needs a representative. So Taylor Hall gets in because he has 25 points in 32 games. He’s having the second-worst season of his career. But… Severson has 20 points and for a defenseman that’s excellent. Can he be named an “All-Star” if he’s minus-25 though? Maybe if he was minus-5, yes. But minus-25? No way. And nobody else on the team would even remotely be considered. Had Severson been minus-5 and made the All-Star team, then that takes a D spot, which would likely be Seth Jones’. The open forward spot would go to Atkinson easily.
With another goal last night, Atkinson has 40 points in 40 games. He also had one that I think crossed the line, but because it wasn’t conclusive the call on the ice stood. But I’m biased.
As I said on Twitter last night, I really like how Derek Ryan picked his production back up once the Hurricanes claimed Ty Rattie. The competition really helped give him an added boost. He has five points in his last four games. I’m glad I rode that mini-slump out with him on my bench. I have him active again.
Also on Twitter – I noted how Anton Forsberg has been unbeatable at the AHL level, but has really struggled in the NHL. And Joonas Korpisalo has been subpar in the AHL, but last year’s NHL appearances were great. Forsberg was again shaky last night. He’ll get it figured out, I just hope the Jackets give him a chance. I wonder if an expansion team would take him over Korpisalo.
Hockey politics be damned, the Sabres need to keep rolling Anders Nilsson out there. He’s now 7-3-4 with a 2.37 GAA and 0.930 SV%. Those numbers are fantastic, with most of them happening while coming in cold. Ride him for a few games and see what happens. He’s still only 26 years old. Last night he stopped 39 of 40 shots.
For the third time this season, Shayne Gostisbehere fired seven shots on goal. He came up empty, but it’s what Ghost owners need to see. The best way out of a slump is to shoot the puck.
The Bruins held the Blues to 17 shots! It was Tuukka Rask’s second 17-shot game this season and he’s also had a game in which he faced 18 shots.
Patrick Maroon is not only wielding a hot stick, but last night he was set up at least eight or nine times by Connor McDavid. I mean – true, legit setups. Puck in front of the net, on the doorstep…and then either a save or a miss. If he can release just a microsecond faster, he looks oh so close to being a legit producer in this league. He was held pointless, but heading into that game he had nine points in nine games. He’s on pace for 44 points, but call it a hunch – I think he can get 55. Coach McLellan seems hell-bent on keeping him on that McDavid line.
I missed this Monday, but Patrick Kane has now shot past Artemi Panarin in the scoring race thanks to eight points in his last four games. Panarin has just three points in that span and is now two points behind Kane who has slid into second in league scoring.
Ryan Hartman continues his hot streak. Hopefully you took my advice Monday because he picked up another two points last night. His hot streak has also carried over to his linemates – Richard Panik really needed this. And Tanner Kero has two points in two games.
Sometimes I write something and look good right away. I love that (I’m sure you can imagine). Last night Mikkel Boedker scored and I tweeted this:
Four points in six games for Boedker. Waking up?— Dobber (@DobberHockey) January 11, 2017
Then he scored two more goals!
Marc-Edouard Vlasic returned to the lineup and picked up his first two-point game of the season. He’s still getting a lot of PP time and he also had seven BLKS.
Cutting these short – want to dive back into the Midseason Guide!
I’ll leave you with this. Beautiful goal. Shorthanded. And the fact that there was just 1.5 seconds left makes it even cooler:
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- Capped: The 2017 RFA Defenseman Class