- Ryan Lambert at Puck Daddy29 mins ago
[Author's note: Every sports website on earth dedicated to covering just one league publishes a weekly power ranking, and we here at Puck Daddy have finally decided to do the same. However, the problem with power rankings in general is that they are usually three things: Bad, wrong, and boring. You typically know just as well as the authors which teams won what games against who and what it all means, so our moving the Red Wings up four spots or whatever really doesn't tell you anything you didn't know. Who's hot, who's not, who cares? For this reason, we're doing a power ranking of things that are usually not teams. You'll see what I mean.]
7. “It's a dry heat.”
The Phoenix Coyotes have apparently informed the National Hockey League that they are prepared to host a Winter Classic and I found that very inspiring.
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy8 hrs ago
No. 1 Star: Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
Ovechkin finished just about halfway to an Ovechtrick versus the Tampa Bay Lightning, scoring a whopping four goals in the Capitals 6-5 shootout win. Nicklas Backstrom was in on all 5 Capitals' goals, scoring one himself and adding 4 assists. We already shared Ovi's fourth, so here's the hat trick goal:
No. 2 Star: Martin Jones, Los Angeles Kings
The Kings haven't allowed a first-period goal since November 2nd, but they didn't allow a second or third-period goal either in their 6-0 rout of the Montreal Canadiens. Jones made 31 saves for the shutout, his second in a row.
No. 3 Star: Brandon Dubinsky, Columbus Blue Jackets
Dubinsky had a four-point night in the Jackets' 5-4 win over the New Jersey Devils, but after Ovechkin's four-goal game, one goal and 3 assists is like yawn .
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy9 hrs ago
Alex Ovechkin moved to 26 goals on the season in the Washington Capitals' 6-5 shootout win over the Tampa Bay Lightning, which is impressive, since it puts him 5 goals ahead of the next-closest guy, St. Louis's Alex Steen.
But it's even more impressive when you consider that Ovechkin began the day just one goal up on Steen. Ovechkin scored four times Tuesday night, becoming the second player this season to do so after Tomas Hertl.
And, like Hertl, the fourth tally is probably something we'll be talking about for awhile:
A clutch goal in the game's dying seconds, followed by a classic, charged Ovechkin celebration. (The only thing more charged than an Ovechkin celebration is the opponent he hits in the corner. Heyo!)
With just 32 seconds remaining in regulation and the Capitals down by one, Ovechkin stepped into a one-timer, and after it found its way into the goal to tie the game, The Great Eight leapt in the air, then dove to the ice like Ryan Kesler, except happier, before popping back to his feet to be mobbed by his teammates.
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy10 hrs ago
Jarome Iginla was in a familiar place on Tuesday night: Calgary's Scotiabank Saddledome, the building he called home in the city he called home for almost two decades. But, for the first time ever, he was there as a member of the visiting team, wearing the spoked "B" instead of the Flaming "C". The fans saw right through it, however; under the black and yellow sweater beat the heart of a forever Flame, and prior to puck drop, the adoring crowd welcomed Iginla home: Wow. For a laugh, watch this version of the clip above, uploaded to Youtube by a guy that couldn't get more than 30 seconds into it before dropping a breathy, overwhelmed eff bomb at the emotional scene. It's tough to blame him. This is some moving stuff. The eager fans chanting "Iggy! Iggy!" the moment the lights go out; the shots of Iginla's proud parents in the crowd; Iginla taking the ceremonial face-off for the Bruins opposite Mark Giordano, who replaced him as captain. But the moment that really drives this all home is the standing ovation that follows that that tribute video. Just a fantastic moment in Calgary. Iginla may have left a little awkwardly, but the homecoming was perfect.
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy11 hrs ago
The Florida Panthers struggle to fill their building, and it's not difficult to understand why. The team isn't very good. One assumes a better team would make for a better fan experience.
And here's another thing that would make for a better fan experience: less opaque glass.
Rough. Not even the plexiglass shows up for Panthers games.
For much of the third period, this thing stood between the fans in the BB&T Center's lower bowl and their view of visiting netminder Jimmy Howard. I'm with the FSN announcer -- I've never seen this before.
Now, in the arena crew's defence, that actually is a pane of glass, not plywood or cardboard. It's not as though they ran out of glass in Sunrise. The issue is that, after a wrist shot broke the first piece, the crew couldn't get the protective cover off the second piece. So what the Hell, they just left it on, because Florida's gonna Florida.
Embarrassing, especially for a team that has trouble filling its building. Turning the best seat in the house into the worst seat in the house by replacing the window with a door doesn't really seem like a good fan outreach strategy.
This fan was upset:
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy15 hrs ago
Here is the Puck Daddy Viewing Guide: Spotlighting five things to watch for during tonight's slate of games. Make sure to stop back here for the nightly Three Stars when the games are finished.
Create-a-Caption : "Matt Carkner #7 of the New York Islanders reacts against the Anaheim Ducks on December 9, 2013 at Honda Center in Anaheim, California."
• • •
Preview: Ottawa Senators at Buffalo Sabres, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Los Angeles Kings at Montreal Canadiens, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Tampa Bay Lightning at Montreal Canadiens, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: New Jersey Devils at Columbus Blue Jackets, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Nashville Predators at New York Rangers, 7:30 p.m. ET
- Dmitry Chesnokov at Puck Daddy16 hrs ago
Pavel Datsyuk is scheduled to return to the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday night against the Florida Panthers, having missed the last seven games with a concussion. Being that he was a nearly point per game player before that injury, it's a welcomed return.
In the meantime, Datsyuk sat down with Pavel Lysenkov of SovSporta few weeks ago for a wide-ranging Q&A. As usual, it's Datsyuk being as insightful and funny as we've come to expect.
Here's a translated version of that Russian interview:
Q. New Jersey Devils’ defenseman Anton Volchenkov told me one ‘Hockey in the NHL is like a war – you never know if you come back from a game in one piece.’
DATSYUK: “It is a rough comparison. But games here are like battles. Injuries happen every day. So Anton is somewhat right.”
Who were you thankful for during Thanksgiving?
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy16 hrs ago
There’s no ranking. No list. No line. No formal order of National Hockey League expansion destinations.
That’s according to NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman on Tuesday, speaking after the Board of Governors meeting in Pebble Beach.
Has there been expansion discussion? He won’t say. Will the NHL listen to pitches from potential expansion cities?
“We listen when somebody wants us to listen. That's all [I’m saying],” said Bettman.
Seattle, Quebec City and Toronto are at the forefront of the NHL expansion chatter, which wasn’t exactly tempered when the League realigned into conferences of 16 and 14 teams. Because we’re not math majors, but to balance those conferences …
What Bettman would confirm is that expansion won’t happen for the 2014-15 season – despite reports to the contrary – and that the League has talked with potential expansion cities.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy18 hrs ago
The Winter Classic Alumni Game at Comerica Park was going to feature a number of Detroit Red Wings greats. But it felt incomplete without one of the greatest: Steve Yzerman, the team’s captain from 1986-2006.
Yzerman original said he wouldn’t play in the game, telling the Detroit News on Feb. 9, 2012:
"At this time I don't plan on participating in the alumni game but hope to watch the Classic on TV."
One year later, he had been non-committal about appearing in the Dec. 31 game, telling DetroitRedWings.com in November:
“I haven’t given it really much thought,” said, Steve Yzerman, the general manager of both the Tampa Bay Lightning and Team Canada. “I’ve been pretty busy with our team and watching a lot of hockey games for the Olympics so I haven’t really looked that far ahead.”
… It’s been more than seven years since the former captain last skated in any kind of organized game.
“I’ve had skates on like three times to do something minor,” Yzerman said. “I’ve just kind of moved on a little bit. I don’t have time to skate and don’t really have a real desire to.”
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy18 hrs ago
Here are your Puck Headlines: a glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.
• How Pavel Datsyuk spent his concussion vacation. [Pavel Datsyuk]
• Shawn Thornton's in-person hearing goes Friday, unless he grows impatient and pulls Shanahan out of a meeting by his collar before then. [NHL]
• James Neal finally fesses up on going knee to nose with Brad Marchand. “It’s not the smartest decision I ever made, looking back on it. I’m glad he’s OK, but going forward, I need to learn from it." [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]