Thursday Morning NHL Papers (Western Conference): The art of taking a face-off, surprises from the Kings and suggestion of overmanagement in Vancouver
The IllegalCurve.com Radio Show should be available to listen to/download early this afternoon. Last night’s guests included Anthony San Filippo (Delaware County Daily Times) and Johnny Misley (Hockey Canada).
- “What a play by Buff — that was maybe the highlight of the year,” said Blackhakws coach Joel Qunneveille of Dustin Byfuglien’s overtime winner last night against New York. Will Byfuglien make Team USA? Tomas Kopecky says he got the message from coach Q after being a healthy scratch.
- Ken Hitchcock had to be a lot happier with his team’s 3-0 win last night. Make no mistake, Steve Mason is Ken Hitchcock’s goaltender. Here are the Jackets’ projected lines for tonight’s contest.
- Not only were the Red Wings shut out by their former netminder Ty Conklin, but the team also lost Danny Cleary to injury. Kris Draper has been better this season than he was last season. You may not know this, but Brad Stuart has been the Wings’ best defenseman this season.
- Bryan Mullen has a good article in this morning’s Tennessean about what goes into taking a face-off.
- If anyone knows why the Blues are great on the road and terrible at home, call John Davidson. There is a reason behind the latest Blues line combinations.
- Maybe the Flames pretended they were on the road last night, as they defeated the Thrashers 3-1 at the Saddledome to improve their average home record. If you didn’t catch the game last night, Curtis Glencross handled Colby Armstrong pretty easily in a fight. One thing is for sure, Miikka Kiprusoff is going to make it hard on Team Finland.
- In good news, Craig Anderson is expected to return to Avalanche practice today. Not having Anderson in the lineup wasn’t the problem last night, goals were the issue, writes Adrian Dater.
- Pat Quinn really likes Ryan Stone’s game, as the rugged forward helped the Oilers win their fourth consecutive game last night. Vincent Lecavalier isn’t having a good season, but he obviously wants to be on Team Canada.
- Niklas Backstrom recorded his first shutout of the season, but the Wild players in front of him only allowed 23 shots on net in a big team victory, explains Michael Russo. The Wild has yet another concussion victim on its roster–Andrew Ebbett.
- The Canucks have to get ready to face some firepower that the Atlanta Thrashers carry. Iain MacIntyre thinks the Canucks may be overmanaging.
- You may not not know Dan Sexton, so here’s the perfect article to get to know him.
- Maybe blowing a three-goal lead in Anaheim was a good thing for Dallas? Joe Nieuwendyk is under budget and Mike Heika wonders what he will do?
- What was more surprising? That Teddy Purcell scored? That Dustin Brown scored? That the L.A. Times sent a writer to follow the team on the road? Or that the Kings went into San Jose and won?
- Ed Jovanovski has been suspended by the NHL for two games. Hey, the Coyotes are good enough that people in Phoenix should take an interest.
- Sharks coach Todd McLellan says that his team’s penalty kill let them down against Los Angeles.
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