Greg Wyshynski

  • Will Patrick Kane return sooner than expected?

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 13 hrs ago

    Make sure you feign shock and awe when Patrick Kane inevitably makes his return to the ice earlier than anticipated during the Chicago Blackhawks’ playoff run.

    We all know that’s how it’s going down, right? Kane had surgery on Feb. 25, one day after the then-leading goal scorer in the NHL broke his collarbone. The recovery prognosis was 12 weeks, which means the Blackhawks would have him back for a potential conference final series against the LA Kings a Western Conference foe.

    Coach Joel Quenneville said on Friday that the timetable for Kane remains the same, but that he “always hoped” his recovery could be expedited. 

    From ESPN Chicago, as Patrick Kane begins skating again:

    “I think it’s still the same timetable, but how well he’s skating and how well he’s doing, I think he feels real good about where he’s at,” Quenneville said.

    “It’s just a matter of when he gets that green light is probably going to be the hurdle. But we like his approach, and he’s doing a lot of things out there that he wants to do or is able to do. That’s a good sign.”

    MORE FROM YAHOO HOCKEY:

  • NHL Playoff Death Watch: East races intensify; Flames knocked outside bubble

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 22 hrs ago

    Since we're down to the final moments of postseason life for teams in contention, Puck Daddy solemnly begins a daily countdown to annihilation.

    Strap in … we’ve got a lot to unpack after Thursday night.

    Here’s what happened during a full slate of awesome games involving playoff teams:

    * The Los Angeles Kings are now the No. 3 seed in the Pacific, defeating the Islanders and leap-frogging the idle Flames. They’re also now just two points in back of Vancouver for second in the division after the Canucks lost at home.

    * The Flames are now in ninth place, trailing the Kings by a point and the Jets by three points for the last wild card. Oh, yeah: They finish the season with the Kings and Jets.

    * The New York Rangers became the first team to clinch a playoff spot with their win over the Ottawa Senators, moving to 101 points and the conference lead.

    * The Senators saw the Hamburglar get flamed broiled in that loss, and are now tied in points with the Boston Bruins (85) after their overtime loss to the Ducks. The Bruins have 33 ROW to Ottawa’s 32, but the Sens have a game in-hand.

    Here’s the Eastern Conference picture:

    Meanwhile, in the West …

  • Ten things we want at Sabres vs. Coyotes NHL Draft Tank-a-palooza

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    The Buffalo Sabres and the Arizona Coyotes meet in Buffalo on Thursday night, in what is somehow simultaneously the most important and least important game of the season. 

    The Sabres are last in the NHL at 47 points in 73 games; the Coyotes have 52 points in 74 games and are second-to-last. The one who finishes in the basement is assured of getting super prospects Connor McDavid or Jack Eichel. The other one … not so much.

    These crazy kids meet again on Monday in Glendale, too. So in honor of this unprecedented mini-series between the two draft lottery darlings, we present The 10 Things We Want To See At The Sabres vs. Coyotes Tank-a-palooza, because everything sounds fun when you add “palooza” to it. Shameless written in the style of a Buzzfeed listicle! 

    And here … we … go.

    10. Instead of the national anthem, have the singer belt out Tom Petty’s “Even The Losers Get Lucky Sometimes.”

    9. Play a prerecorded message from Connor McDavid explaining how honored he is that both teams would sacrifice so much to have him join their team, and how both franchises are unique snowflakes and how they’re both beautiful in their own way.

    7. Two words: Tank Zamboni.

    Or …

  • Marek Vs. Wyshynski Podcast: Jamie Baker on Sharks' future; Going Postal

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    LISTEN HERE! [And if that doesn't work, try here.]

    It's a Thursday edition of Marek vs. Wyshynski beginning at 2:00 p.m. ET/11:00 a.m. PT, and we're talking about the following and more:

    Special Guest Star: Jamie Baker on the Sharks!

    • Wysh goes to the MAURY Show.

    • Huge night in the East.

    • The Boll suspension. 

    • Marek on OHL.

    Question of the Day: GOING POSTAL! Ask us anything! Email puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or hit us on Twitter with the hashtag #MvsW to @wyshynski or @jeffmarekClick here for the Sportsnet live stream or click the play button above!

    ***

    BUY THE MvsW T-SHIRTS! SUPPORT HOCKEY FIGHTS CANCER!

  • NHL Playoff Death Watch: Crazy night ahead in Eastern Conference

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    Since we're down to the final moments of postseason life for teams in contention, Puck Daddy solemnly begins a daily countdown to annihilation.

    The top 10 teams in the Eastern Conference are all in action on Thursday night, as are two teams right on the Western Conference bubble.

    We mention this fully knowing that the attention of the hockey world will be on the two worst teams in the NHL facing off in a competition to see which one is worster.

    But while you watch the Coyotes and the Sabres play a game of hot potato, here’s the rest of the awesome on Thursday night:

    Montreal at Winnipeg: The only 100-point team in the NHL battles a Jets team that’s holding onto the last wild card in the West.

    Nashville at Tampa Bay: Two teams battling for the top seed in their divisions and the NHL overall. The Preds could move into first in the West with a win and some help; ditto the Lightning in the East.

    San Jose at Detroit: Eh, not the most important game, considering the plight of the Sharks, but the Wings need to find their footing before the playoffs.

    Pittsburgh at Carolina: The Penguins are trying to catch the Islanders and keep ahead of the Capitals.

    Annnnd exhale…

    Meanwhile, in the West …

  • Senators coach: Don’t throw burgers on ice, donate to food banks

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 2 days ago

    The first thing you see when you log onto the Ottawa Senators’ official site is an image of Andrew Hammond’s “Hamburglar” mask, celebrating the goaltending sensation that’s led the team to a playoff spot. Last week, the Senators gave away 10,000 Hamburglar masks at a game.

    It’s understandable fans would want to play their role in this sensation, and they started tossing hamburgers on the ice after goals and at the end of the contest in celebration. It was an organic, wonderful instant tradition for a fan base with too few of them; a sense of identity for a team that could use one. 

    So, naturally, everyone involved in the burger tossing is now made to feel like a heartless scrooge, shamelessly tossing $2 McDonald’s singles on the ice rather than donating them to a local food bank.

    It was a sentiment shared by hockey’s shrillest moralist and by Sportnet’s Nick Kypreos on the radio, where Ottawa Senators coach Dave Cameron heard the call to arms. On Wednesday, at the end of media availability, he echoed the sentiment and called for fans to make donations rather than throw burgers on the ice:

    We kid.

  • Buffalo bar offers Connor McDavid, Jack Eichel drinks with cruel twist

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 2 days ago

    It’s been a surreal Buffalo Sabres season for the Amherst Pizza & Ale House, as it would be for any sports bar hosting local fans that are actively hoping their team will fail.

    “Lots of awkward cheering,” said John Bona III, owner of the suburban Buffalo restaurant. “The lottery thing is pretty big here in the Buffalo area. We play the games of other teams near the bottom, too.”

    The Sabres are currently last in the NHL, guaranteeing them at least the second overall pick in the 2015 Draft and giving them the best odds to get the first. The prizes at the end: Once-in-a-lifetime prospect Connor McDavid and instant franchise savior Jack Eichel. The Sabres aren’t sure which one they’ll end up with if they finish at the bottom ... which gave Bona a devious idea for a new drink promotion.

    A customer asked if the Ale House was going to create a Connor McDavid drink special for St. Patrick’s Day. Bona liked the idea, and commissioned his “mad scientists behind the bar” to come up with a green beverage.

    Genius … but not the first time Bona’s bar has gotten major publicity for a sports-related promotion.

    As for which drink he prefers?

  • Jared Boll gets NHL hearing for head shot on Patrick Maroon (Video)

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 2 days ago

    GIF: Another angle of Boll hit on Maroon pic.twitter.com/dLcOhwNKfS

    Forward Jared Boll of the Columbus Blue Jackets is going to have a conversation with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety on Thursday after he made contact with the head of Anaheim Ducks forward Patrick Maroon in their game Tuesday night.

    Maroon was hit by Boll at 4:02 of the second period in the Blue Jackets' 5-3 win. No penalty was assessed on the play and Maroon remained in the game.

    A reminder on Rule 48:

    48.1 Illegal Check to the Head – A hit resulting in contact with an opponent’s head where the head was the main point of contact and such contact to the head was avoidable is not permitted.  

    In determining whether contact with an opponent's head was avoidable, the circumstances of the hit including the following shall be considered:

    - Whether the player attempted to hit squarely through the opponent’s body and the head was not "picked" as a result of poor timing, poor angle of approach, or unnecessary extension of the body upward or outward.

    Here’s an alternate view of the hit:

    Huh … quite the switcheroo: First time we’ve seen a Boll smoke a Stoner.

     

  • NHL Playoff Death Watch: We’re a little worried about Winnipeg

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 2 days ago

    Since we're down to the final moments of postseason life for teams in contention, Puck Daddy solemnly begins a daily countdown to annihilation.

    We’re a little worried about the Jets, you guys.

    The Winnipeg Jets (88 points) currently hold the final Wild Card in the West, having lost to the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday night. But with the Los Angeles Kings’ (86 points) win over the Rangers and the fact they have a game in-hand, the Kings (67.7) now have a better chance of making the playoffs than do the Jets (63.9).

    That said, the Jets still have a better chance of finishing in the last wild card (49) than do the Kings (19). What the what? Well, the Kings have designs on the No. 3 seed in the Pacific, as do the Calgary Flames (86 points), who also have a game in-hand over the Jets.

    The bottom line: The Jets have a math problem. They lead both the Flames and Kings, but don’t control their own destiny because their ROW (31) won’t top that of the Flames (36) and Kings (34).

    So we’re a little worried about the Jets, you guys…

    Here’s the Eastern Conference picture:

    Quiet night in the East as the Flyers host the Blackhawks.

    Meanwhile, in the West …

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  • Have the LA Kings turned the corner after back-to-back wins?

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy 3 days ago

    NEW YORK – Jonathan Quick made 53 saves on 56 shots. The Los Angeles Kings collected four out of four possible points from the New Jersey Devils on Monday and the New York Rangers on Tuesday, giving them 86 on the season. 

    Are the Stanley Cup champs finally turning the corner at the right time?

    “No. It’s two points,” said Quick, winning back-to-back starts with a 4-2 win over the Rangers.

    “Just like yesterday was. It’s not more 'turn the corner' than yesterday was or any of the other wins.”

    Yet watching the Kings dominate the Rangers, arguably the best team in the East at the moment, one gets the sense that this veteran team is finding another gear at a critical time. The Kings have 10 games left. The teams they’re chasing for a Western Conference playoff berth keep winning. It’s time to crank up that machine that’s produced two championships under coach Darryl Sutter.

    “We don’t want to be in this kind of position, but we do play good hockey when our backs are against the wall,” said center Anze Kopitar, who had two assists in the win.

    “It’s going to be tight. Everything is pointing towards that.”

    The Rangers started off well.