Monday, October 15, 2007

Around the boards: Oct. 15

Since there's little to no Sens news, I'm going to try something new; a Northeast Division wrap-up, since I don't feel like doing the whole league! Sorry if you find them boring. Well, I'm not really sorry, but you know what I mean.

Ottawa Senators
  • The Sens are gone on a team-building trip to the Muskokas or something. Must be nice. Apparently there will be some scrimmages while they're there, and some rounds of golf.
  • Dean McAmmond participated in his first full team practice since the Steve Downie incident, which is awesome. The sooner Deaner's back, the better.
  • According to Bruce Garrioch, the Sens are going to sign Randy Robitaille as soon as he is released from the Russian team he signed with. I wonder if they are as pissed at him as we were at Alexei Kaigorodov last year. Probably.
  • Scott Niedermayer is coming to Otttawa. Don't ask me why or how, but if it happens, you heard it here first.
  • Ray Emery's wrist is back in fine shape, apparently, so he's ready to dress come next game. I'd say Marty Gerber will start against Montreal on Thursday, but Emery might make his first start of the season against Florida on Saturday.
Toronto Maple Leafs
  • If the trend oof inconsistency (OTL-L-W-L-W-L so far in the season) continues, the 2-3-1 Leafs will at least get a point against Buffalo tonight. While stranger things have happened, don't count on it.
  • Andrew Raycroft is starting against the Sabres. If you ask me, goaltending was the least of Toronto's problems last year, and they just made it worse with the Vesa Toskala addition.
  • After injuring his knee in a practice, Alexei Ponikarovsky is close to returning, but won't be rushed. He won't play against Buffalo.
  • Now that Matt Stajan has scored a few goals, idiot Nick Kypreos wants to trade him for--get this--grit. This is why the Leafs are in the position they are in now; trading away young guys to get old men like Gary Roberts. And it's also why Ben still doesn't watch Sportsnet.
  • Mats Sundin is on pace to get a career-high 137 points. I guess bringing in Jason Blake was a good thing. Plus he's playing incredibly well.
Montreal Canadiens
  • Guillaume Latendresse, whom I thought was embraced as the francophone saviour of les Habitants, looks like he's worked his way out of the lineup (according to TSN). I respect Guy Carbonneau, but why would he bench fan-favourite Latendresse? This team is in a priveleged position of appealing to all francophone players not named Danny Briere if they market the team right. Maybe if he got more than 10 minutes of ice time a game and some powerplay time he'd be getting points, Carby.
  • Speaking of Carbonneau and players who are being embraced as saviours by Habs fans, why isn't he giving Carey 'the next Patrick Roy or Ken Dryden' Price another start? Cristobal Huet is going to play Tuesday aginst Florida, but wouldn't the lowly Panthers present a pretty good game for Price to play in? I guess Carbs is saving him to play the Sens, including the three leading scorers in the NHL. That'll be great for his confidence.
Buffalo Sabres
  • I don't know why I hate the Sabres so much, but I do. Probably as much as I hate the Leafs.
  • Jocelyn Thubault is starting against the Leafs. That's a slap in the face if I've ever seen one. I hope Jason Blake gets a hat trick of hat tricks. Nothing against Thibault, but I see Buffalo as a bigger threat to Ottawa's Northeast Division title, plus Blake's a pretty respectable character.
  • After losing the first two games the Sabres have won the following two by a combined score of 13-3. But they were against Washington and Atlanta, so do they really count? No. So maybe tonight's contest against Toronto will be close.
Boston Bruins
  • Apparently the Bs are looking at, and possibly close to, signing Danny Markov. Word on the street was that Ottawa was looking at him in the off-season, but there's little to no reason to sign him considering the depth Ottawa has on D.
  • Tim Thomas, the goaltender with the ugliest helmet in the league, has outplayed newcomer Manny Fernandez, and has so far retained the starting-goaltender moniker.
  • Milan Lucic is playing well for the Bruins, and is reporting he's been promoted to the third line. I wish he was on Ottawa. His play in the Super Series against Russia was pretty stellar; he's the kind of left-winger I would like to play with Christoph Schubert. Or Daniel Alfredsson. I don't care.
And that's that. It took a lot longer than I thought it would. In other news, I love that the NHL made all team websites the same. No matter what the Detroit Red Wings say, it makes summarizing team news easier, so I don't care.
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