2018 Quest for the Cup

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#61
The Sabres start their bye week after tonight's game at Vancouver. I hope they can do it on a winning streak after beating Calgary on Thursday, a game in which the Sabres had precisely two shots in the third period and one in OT, all of which found the back of the net.

It will be interesting to see if the Sabres make any moves. They are on the outside looking in, but right there. If they have a hot streak after the break they should at least be back in a wildcards spot. They might make a trade but I don't anticipate a blockbuster; more likely they'll do more of a depth deal. I think the plan is to continue to develop the talent in Rochester and as that matures then the team will improve. We'll see.
 
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#62
The Wings need to learn that there is 3 periods... not 1.


Personally, my only hope is the Illich family gets angry with the losses and at the end of the season they call Stevie Y and ask him if the wants the GM job.
 

AG74683

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#63
Nino put up more goals in one period against the Oilers than Victor Rask did the entire season. I'd say the trade worked out already.

7-4 over the Oilers, not bad, although we gave up a ton of goals in the preceding games (6 goals against the Rangers, 4 against the Sens IIRC).
 
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#66
The break is over.

The Sabres had their bye week prior to the All-Star Break, so going into last night's game it was 11 nights with no Sabres hockey. They beat Columbus 5-4 so they got off on the right foot. Tonight is the night I've been waiting for all season: The Sabres' trip to Dallas to take on the Starts, and I'm going to the game tonight.

Go Sabres!
 

AG74683

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#67
'Canes shutout the Penguins in Pittsburgh last night, 4-0 win. Buffalo also won so the playoff standings don't really change too much, both 3 points out of a playoff spot. Goal differential has been reduced to -3 which is fantastic considering we started this year near -20.
 

kjel

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#68
Devils crapped out 1-5 against the Kings. I watched the first two periods which was tied up at 1-1 and then the Kings went on a run during the 3rd. Some big names missing from the lineup due to injuries which isn't helping: Hall is still on the IR list, so is Vatanen who suffered a concussion from a nasty hit from Brassard.

Ovechkin has now surpassed Fedorov as the Russian born player with the most points.
 
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#69
So Coach Housley ran the forwards' names through the salad shooter and the result actually worked pretty good. Top right wing Sam Reinhart was moved down to the third line, leading goal scorer Jeff Skinner on the second line, giving Jack Eichel new linemates on the top line. The result was one of Reinhart's better games this year: all three members of his line scored, he had a goal, an assist and the shootout winner. (One of his linemates, Evan Rodrigues, scored on the power play on a feed from Eichel, but he also made a nifty play on the goal that that Reinhart assisted on.)
 

kjel

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#70
Devils traded Brian Boyle to the Preds for a second round pick. This one hurts. He's an awesome guy and been a great addition to the team on and off ice over the past two seasons.
 
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#71
'Canes shutout the Penguins in Pittsburgh last night, 4-0 win. Buffalo also won so the playoff standings don't really change too much, both 3 points out of a playoff spot. Goal differential has been reduced to -3 which is fantastic considering we started this year near -20.
Big game for the Canes in Buffalo tonight. Which one is a contender? Which is a pretender?
 

AG74683

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#73
Big game for the Canes in Buffalo tonight. Which one is a contender? Which is a pretender?
IMO this game likely decides what team is on the playoff track. 'Canes realistically need to beat Buffalo tonight in regulation as well as the next time they meet in Raleigh. OT win or loss does nothing really, because Buffalo holds the tiebreaker.

I think the team that likely spoils everything is Philly though. They've won their last 8 in a row.
 

AG74683

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#74
IMO this game likely decides what team is on the playoff track. 'Canes realistically need to beat Buffalo tonight in regulation as well as the next time they meet in Raleigh. OT win or loss does nothing really, because Buffalo holds the tiebreaker.

I think the team that likely spoils everything is Philly though. They've won their last 8 in a row.
Well crap, it's a win but it was OT unfortunately. Doesn't change the tiebreaker at all I don't think. Either way it was a fantastic game!! Sam Reinheart blasted the goal tending for the Sabres publicly after the game which was pretty lame. I think the goalies for both teams did what they could, there were so many defensive breakdowns for both teams. I love Jeff Skinner and I'm really happy he's got his fire back, but he was responsible for at least 4 goals last night, 2 he scored, 2 he let the 'Canes score when he didn't mark his man. McKegg had two shots to get his goal in and he was basically unmarked right at the net. No one even saw him.

All told, it looked like a playoff game to me. Philly lost so their streak is over. Blue Jackets won 4-2 in the desert though so the gap for the 'Canes remains 3 points, 4 for the Sabres.
 
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#75
Yeah, he caught a bunch of flack for that. I'm not sure I disagree with him, other than it goes against the unwritten code not to call out teammates to the media. Ullmark has the best save percentage of any goalie prospect drafted by the Sabres and after playing his first 50 games with them: .914. But that game was a klunker for him with an .800 save percentage. Of course there have been games where the Sabres offense has failed to show up too, so there's plenty of blame to go around. It's a shame when a your goalie is named a start of the game but you still lost because he had no goal support.

Still, I think the Sabres are on the right track. They have a lot of young players in key spots, including Ullmark at goal, Mittelstadt at 2C, Tage Thompson at wherever they decided to fit him in (I'm very high on Tage but he is still learning). There are three or four "placeholder" veterans on the team, and just as many youngsters getting OJT at the NHL level. When some more talent makes it up from Rochester and they can jettison some of the dinosaurs.... and everyone gets a chance to gel, I think they'll be quite good. When they had the 10-game winning streak we thought it was this season, but they're probably still a year or two out from being in the playoff mix.
 

AG74683

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#76
Bleh the win streak ended against the Devils. The team looked a little lackadaisical and slow. That''s gonna put us behind a little. Still 1 point out of Pittsburgh's spot, but every loss makes it less about controlling our own destiny and more about relying on other teams.

Scott Darling took a personal leave of absence from the team (well the Checkers). Not sure what will happen with that. Waddell let him take a week off to "collect his thoughts". He still has 2 years left on his contract.
 

Bubba

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#77
Scott Darling took a personal leave of absence from the team (well the Checkers). Not sure what will happen with that. Waddell let him take a week off to "collect his thoughts". He still has 2 years left on his contract.
Waddell...as in Don Waddell? Why on earth did anyone hire him after the clusterf*ck of a franchise he put together for the Thrashers?
 

AG74683

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#78
Waddell...as in Don Waddell? Why on earth did anyone hire him after the clusterf*ck of a franchise he put together for the Thrashers?
Same guy. I was completely floored when they announced that he would be taking over as GM and team president, but TBH he hasn't been THAT bad so far. The trades they've made have been mostly reasonable (with the exception of the garbage Jeff Skinner trade). The guys brought in from Calgary have all worked out for both teams and the Nino/Rask trade was basically grand theft.
 
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#79
'Canes are looking more like a playoff team every day. They now sit in the final WC spot for the Eastern Conference.

Don Cherry criticized the Storm Surge celebrations referring to the team as "a bunch of jerks". The 'Canes social media has eaten it up. There's shirts now, memes, all sorts of stuff. And the last Storm Surge was fantastic. They had music queued up and the whole team did the limbo under a hockey stick.

EDIT* Well damn looks like the 'Canes slipped back out of the WC spot. Pens won and moved back in.
 
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