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NHL Season Thread 2019-20

Doohickie

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The Sabres are returning to earth too.... I think. The Eichel line has gone silent; in past years that would mean doom. This year they have better secondary scoring and (so far) better goaltending, so they're still putting up Ws. I think teams aren't surprised to come up against Ralph Krueger's pressure game anymore and are making adjustments. Tonight will be an interesting test- the second half of a home-and-home with San Jose. The last game was a back and forth affair on the Left Coast that never saw a lead greater than one. There will be no surprise in this one; both teams are now familiar with each other.
 

kjel

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Devils are off until Friday when they play Arizona. Not sure why they had 6 days off between games this early in the season.

I saw that Florida signed Brian Boyle. I am happy he gets to play at least one more year although I think this may be his last.
 

Doohickie

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I haz teh happies.

Sabres come back from an 0-2 deficit to beat the Sharks in OT on the back of Jack Eichel's 4 point night, including the OT winner. First team to 5-0 at home, and 17 points overall.

They will slack off at some point, but I'm enjoying this while it lasts.
 

michaelskis

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The Wings have eliminated any doubt that even with Yzerman building the team, it will still be a rebuilding year. There are parts of their game that look much better whereas there are other parts, like winning, that they are still searching for. It will be interesting to see if they can even make the playoffs this year.

In regards to the Sabers, they looked like a rock star team at the beginning of last year too....



and then the wheels fell off, the team crashed, and burst into a ball of flames. They did finish better than the Wings thanks to their early season successes.
 

Doohickie

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In regards to the Sabers, they looked like a rock star team at the beginning of last year too....



and then the wheels fell off, the team crashed, and burst into a ball of flames. They did finish better than the Wings thanks to their early season successes.
Trust me, Sabres fans are well aware of this. During their 10 game winning streak last year, metrics for only 2 of the 10 games showed that they actually should have won. This year their metrics actually back up their winning, and even when they don't, the metrics don't show consistent problems; they are more matchup-type issues. The difference in coaches from Housley to Krueger is night and day.

The roster has been tweaked and so far, all the acquisitions seem to be just what was needed. Marcus Johansson is, in fact, proving to be a serviceable 2C that can feed Jeff Skinner and score himself. The third forward on that line, Vladimir Sobotka, was one of the worst forwards in the league last year, but serves as a defensive complement that allows Mojo and Skinner to create... and he's starting to pitch in offensively.

With Johansson as solid 2C, Casey Mittelstadt can be given sheltered minutes with veteran wingers Connor Sheary and Jimmy Vesey (another summer acquisition) and is starting to hit his stride. He was called on to be the second scoring center last season as a rookie with the departure of Ryan O'Reilly and simply wasn't ready. He's doing better so far this year; his heads up play in OT yesterday stopped a San Jose rush and started the play that led to the Eichel winner. He's playing with a lot more confidence.

The fourth line (which often logs the 2nd or 3rd most minutes among forward lines) is built of veterans of The Tank: Johan Larsson, Zemgus Girgensons and Kyle Okposo. These three, along with Dmen Rasmus Ristolainen and Jake McCabe, are the players that suffered through the darkest years in franchise history. The Larsson line has become a high-pressure checking line that plays a heavy game. They've gotten good at cycling and controlling the puck in the offensive zone. They don't score much but they've pitched in a few key goals including the winner in the first SJ game.

Krueger took several highly skilled players, some developing players, and leftovers and given them all roles where they can contribute to team success so far. Can Krueger sustain this new winning culture? Stay tuned, I guess.
 

kjel

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Devils play Arizona tomorrow night.

The Rangers keep losing :)
 

kjel

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That is my hope. The Sabres play them tonight.
I tuned into the game for a bit. It was 4-2. Looks like the Rags added another two to make it 6-2. Devils play Arizona tonight.
 

Doohickie

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The Rangers handed the Sabres a bit of their own medicine. High pressure, no gaps, and the Sabres made a few horrible gaffs on defense that led to 3 first period goals. After that it was trying to play catch up. The Sabres lost a forward and a defenseman to injuries so the lines were jumbled in the 3rd period. I think Krueger took a losing effort and used it as a lab to try some new line combinations.

Tonight it's the Red Wings, the Atlantic Division version of the Rangers (on a 6 game losing streak).
 

AG74683

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'Canes lost in OT against the Jackets. Things do not look that positive anymore. Pretty quick fall from grace. They play the Blackhawks tomorrow. Better start turning things around soon.
 

zman

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Avalanche and Golden Knights have a 3pm PDT puck drop today... weird time for a non-holiday. Maybe it is a Vegas thing? Regardless, I will be wrapping up a 2pm meeting promptly and listening to the first couple periods while finishing out Friday.
 

Doohickie

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You might like this "recap" (Notes: must turn on sound, but caution: a couple of F-bombs herein)
 

Doohickie

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So the Sabres goalies now have shutouts in 25% of their games. Linus Ullmark stopped 41 in a 2-0 win over the Red Wings.

That power play tho!

The other Sabres goal was scored by Jake McCabe in the 2nd period after taking about 10 stitches above his left eye in the first.

No losing streak for the Sabres, at least not yet.
 
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AG74683

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An OTL against the Jackets which was annoying. We just can't seem to solve them. 4-0 shutout vs. the 'Hawks though. Not too bad considering they have a pretty stellar goal tending group there.
 

kjel

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You might like this "recap" (Notes: must turn on sound, but caution: a couple of F-bombs herein)
That's fantastic. I love the "face wash" action. Probably one of the rudest things players do to each other in a fight.

Devils were dropped by Arizona on Friday night 5-3. The first two periods were a back and forth in scoring ending 3-3. Arizona managed to go up one in the 3rd to make it 4-3 and then had an empty net goal which cemented their win. The Devils didn't play awfully, but the goaltending by Blackwood was pretty week. I expect Schneider will get the start on Wednesday.

Anybody else's team have weird scheduling so far this season? Devils have had a 3 day, 4 day, and 5 day break between games this month. I don't think it's doing them any favors.
 

Doohickie

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Anybody else's team have weird scheduling so far this season?
Sabres have some odd back-to-backs with long breaks driven (mostly) by their games in Sweden:

Oct 28: Yotes @ Sabres
(3 off days)
Nov 1: Sabres @ Caps
Nov 2: Isles @ Sabres
(5 off days)
Nov 8: Bolts @ Sabres (in Sweden)
Nov 9: Sabres @ Bolts (in Sweden)
(4 off days)
Nov 14: Canes @ Sabres

Then it goes back to a more normal schedule for the next week, then they play 5 games in 7 days the last week of November.
 

AG74683

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Anybody else's team have weird scheduling so far this season? Devils have had a 3 day, 4 day, and 5 day break between games this month. I don't think it's doing them any favors.
Our schedule for October is generally crap because the NC State Fair uses the same grounds as the PNC Arena (and Carter Finley Stadium for NC State football). That's how we ended up playing a ton of games early and jumping out to the number 1 spot so fast. They've basically been on the road since the fair started. We almost always get an extended west coast trip within the first 2 weeks of the season.
 

Doohickie

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Sabres blew a 2-goal lead on Jack Eichel's birthday last night (yes he scored one of the goals) and lost in the shootout. They hit the post 4 times in overtime. Sometimes the bounces don't go your way. Still, with the loser point, they're the first team to 20 points.
 

michaelskis

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While I hope for a Wings win tonight, I really hope they win on Friday since I have tickets to the game.

However, I am not optimistic for either of those...
 

michaelskis

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Watching the Wings tonight and I am despite the lead, it is so frustrating. What is It with dump and run in hockey today? In the late 90’s teams would get into position and control the puck as they crossed into the offense zone. But today they get to the blue line, wack it in, and race to gain control.
 

AG74683

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'Canes beat the Flames 2-1 last night. Andrei Svechnikov scored what is probably going to go down as one of the top 10 goals of all time last night. First ever lacross style goal (or "Michigan" goal as it is called apparently) ever scored in the NHL. You can see it HERE among several other sites. Absolutely absurd. I saw it happen in real time and struggled to figure out how it went in until they slowed down the replays.
 

AG74683

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'Canes have won 8 of their 12 games played AG
Best October in franchise history. Mrazek is tied for 1st in shutouts at 2. I'm still on the fence whether we have the offensive production to make a push for the Cup this year. Our G/D is only at +9 which I think is too low. That said, the offense still really hasn't started performing as they should, so there's still hope. Aho and Nino have been mostly invisible.
 

kjel

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Devils are at the bottom of the basement. They host Tampa Bay tonight. They lost against the Rags last night 4-1 in a 3rd period meltdown so I think they are looking for a win tonight. Devils haven't played since Friday.
 

AG74683

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Devils are at the bottom of the basement. They host Tampa Bay tonight. They lost against the Rags last night 4-1 in a 3rd period meltdown so I think they are looking for a win tonight. Devils haven't played since Friday.
I just don't get it. With their roster, they should be competing for a conference title.
 

kjel

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I just don't get it. With their roster, they should be competing for a conference title.
Right? Individually it's a talented line up but for whatever reason they're not clicking together. Game with Tampa has been pretty good so far, 4-3 at the end of the 2nd. Let's see if they can hang on.
 

kjel

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Devils topped the 'Canes on Saturday. It was a good game.
 

AG74683

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Devils topped the 'Canes on Saturday. It was a good game.
I wasn't able to watch that one, but I'm kinda happy we lost. Hopefully that's what it takes to get the Devils moving. I'm a huge Subban fan, and Wayne Simmonds isn't far behind. They get so much crap but carry through all of it. PK is hilarious to boot. His Instagram is awesome.
 

Planit

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Well the 'Canes did win Friday...only to lose Saturday night.


The Predators released their Winter Classic jersey, which is based on the old EHL minor league team that was there. Kinda cool.
 

kjel

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I wasn't able to watch that one, but I'm kinda happy we lost. Hopefully that's what it takes to get the Devils moving. I'm a huge Subban fan, and Wayne Simmonds isn't far behind. They get so much crap but carry through all of it. PK is hilarious to boot. His Instagram is awesome.
PK is definitely a lot of fun. He scored his 100th goal against the 'Canes and won the team's jacket which is bestowed on the player that contributed the most or marked a special achievement.

pic.twitter.com/5znLHdI9DH
 

AG74683

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Dropped another in Philly last night, 4-1. Was not impressed with just about anything the Hurricanes did last night. Trash all around.
 

Doohickie

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Sabres haven't played all week. They're in Sweden prepping for a back-to-back with the Lightning. After that that have another four days off. Meanwhile all the other teams are zooming by us in the standings.
 

michaelskis

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I am surprised we have not talked about Andrei Svechnikov scoring a "Michigan" goal.


What are your thoughts... will this be the goal of the year?
 

AG74683

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I am surprised we have not talked about Andrei Svechnikov scoring a "Michigan" goal.


What are your thoughts... will this be the goal of the year?
I did. It will be at least a top 10 goal for sure.

'Canes beat the Flames 2-1 last night. Andrei Svechnikov scored what is probably going to go down as one of the top 10 goals of all time last night. First ever lacross style goal (or "Michigan" goal as it is called apparently) ever scored in the NHL. You can see it HERE among several other sites. Absolutely absurd. I saw it happen in real time and struggled to figure out how it went in until they slowed down the replays.
That said, the 'Canes have looked pretty rough over the last few games. Lost again last night to the Rangers 4-2. Goal-tending has been shaky, defense hasn't been great, and offense just isn't producing save for a few players. Rod will need to mix up these lines. There's no reason why Foegel should be playing on the top line.
 

Doohickie

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On the Sabres forum where I post, it was discussed at length, including whether players could do that maneuver on a shootout. They technically can, but they'd probably violate another rule such as touching the puck with the stick above the shoulders, moving the puck backwards (it has to be continually advanced on a shootout) or some such.

The Sabres have a very early game today: 2 PM ET, playing Tampa in Sweden. I was planning to watch it on replay but then noticed it's on NBCSN and I'm not sure I can see replays on that. :-\ So do I watch on the sly with my phone at work, or what?
 
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AG74683

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On the Sabres forum where I post, it was discussed at length, including whether players could do that maneuver on a shootout. (They technically can, but they'd probably violate another rule such as touching the puck with the stick above the shoulders, moving the puck backwards (it has to be continually advanced on a shootout) or some such.
I don't think you could do it in the way that Svech did though, coming from behind the net. Once the puck crosses the goal line it's considered dead. I would assume for the purposes of the penalty shot/shootout, the "goal line" would be the entire red line from side to side (icing line basically). You'd have to do it from the front of the goal AND keep the stick below your shoulders AND keep it below the crossbar of the goal. I think any NHL goalie would be able to easily stop the lacrosse goal from the front.
 

Doohickie

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I don't think you could do it in the way that Svech did though, coming from behind the net. Once the puck crosses the goal line it's considered dead.
Right, because you always have to advance the puck. So once you cross the goal line you can't bring it back. Also, most of the time when a player does that they depend on centrifugal force to help keep the puck on the stick, so they whirl around. That would also violate the continually advancing the puck rule.
 

AG74683

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Right, because you always have to advance the puck. So once you cross the goal line you can't bring it back. Also, most of the time when a player does that they depend on centrifugal force to help keep the puck on the stick, so they whirl around. That would also violate the continually advancing the puck rule.
Yeah the 360 spin-o-rama is specifically disallowed. Kind of stupid, I'd like to see them really open the shootout up to some crazy stuff. It'd be a lot more interesting.
 

Doohickie

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I disagree. I actually think they should do shootouts starting from the center faceoff dot, and a defenseman gets to chase from the blue line. Now that would be a lot more interesting. (The Sabres do that during their training camp scrimmages.)
 

michaelskis

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I wonder how many Carolina Hurricane Fans are thrilled that Don Cherry got canned? I agree with his intent but not the words that he used.
 

WSU MUP Student

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I wonder how many Carolina Hurricane Fans are thrilled that Don Cherry got canned? I agree with his intent but not the words that he used.
Cross post from the Random Thoughts:

I didn't find his comments that harsh. I know quite a few men his age who are all about that poppy around November 11th (my dad included), and although I only occasionally wear one (a certain consultant in our office, who is also roughly that age) brings some in for the vets in the office some years) I don't begrudge anybody who doesn't wear one but I also don't care if some old thinks I should be wearing wearing one.

To me, it sounds like CBC Sportsnet was looking for a reason to fire Cherry and this was probably just the incident that arrived at just the right time, no matter how minor, to make it happen. I still occasionally watch Hockey Night in Canada but haven't watched Don Cherry's segments in a long time. He had become the type of blowhard loudmouth that is everything I despise in radio and TV sports commentary.
I will miss his suits though.
 

Doohickie

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"To me, it sounds like CBC Sportsnet was looking for a reason to fire Cherry"

I see it more as a "last straw" moment. He should have been sacked years ago.
 

michaelskis

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Personally, I thought that the guy was brilliant when it came to understanding the historical context of the 'character' of hockey. However he was brash and abrasive and was in many ways the NHL version of a shock jock. He seemed to thrive on the controversy and I think he kept trying to see how hard he could push the line. Frankly, I believe that he wanted to go down in a ball of flames instead of retire.

As it relates to his wardrobe... he is a hypocrite. He once commented about how coaches should not be permitted to wear team gear at games and should be in a suit and tie. Sure he was in a suit and tie, but it was frequently the most audacious thing one could imagine. Half the time I was waiting for him to paint his face like a clown to complete the look.
 

AG74683

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I wonder how many Carolina Hurricane Fans are thrilled that Don Cherry got canned? I agree with his intent but not the words that he used.
Meh, I couldn't care less about the guy. He's a Canadian icon, not an American one. I wouldn't even venture to say he's a hockey icon because your average fan in the US has no clue who the guy even is.
 

Doohickie

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As I recall, he crapped all over the post-game cellies the Canes were doing? To me the fact that he attacked them made them cooler.
 

AG74683

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As I recall, he crapped all over the post-game cellies the Canes were doing? To me the fact that he attacked them made them cooler.
Yeah he did, but that's because he is an old stick in the mud who's all about hockey "culture" and sticking to history. Hilariously, that's exactly what got him fired. I didn't really think much of it. Don doesn't understand hockey in places where the winter temperature doesn't allow for outdoor rinks.
 

AG74683

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Boy was that 'Canes Sabres game entertaining last night!! Dougie Ham for the win!!
 
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