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Tag:Vancouver Canucks
Posted on: November 27, 2011 4:57 pm
Edited on: November 27, 2011 8:30 pm
 

Weekend Wrap: Sanford, Jackets starting to roll

By Brian Stubits

Amid Columbus' awful, awful opening to the season, the only bit of defense the team and its fans had was something along the lines of waiting for everybody to be healthy. The team was built in the offseason around the additions of James Wisniewski and Jeff Carter and for the first month and a half of the season; they had not played in the same game. Now they are both playing and the Blue Jackets are now winning.

But it was another injured player returning that has been even bigger. And this one wasn't really on anybody's excuse radar.

Turns out the return of goaltender Curtis Sanford has been huge. Or at least it would appear that way. It was no mystery that Steve Mason in goal was as big an issue as anything else in Columbus' struggles, but I am not sure anybody believed there was a possible solution within the organization.

It wasn't long ago that in this blog we were discussing the possibilities of the Blue Jackets getting a major shakeup in the front office and coaching staff. Some were just saying give it more time, all they needed was to trade for a good goalie. The only problem was the Jackets are right up against the cap and have no flexibility.

This feels as good as a trade right now.

In the five games prior to Sunday's 2-1 loss to the Blues, all Sanford starts, the Blue Jackets picked up at least one point. His record is now 3-0-2 after Columbus' 5-1 beating of the Buffalo Sabres on Black Friday. He entered Sunday with a goals against average of 1.27 and a save percentage of .950. Not bad. Not bad at all.

The recent run has done what not long ago seemed laughable: the Jackets had climbed out of the NHL cellar. With the Devils' squeaker over the Devils on Saturday, the Jackets returned to the basement, but they are hot on the heels of the Isles, Ducks and Flames to move (or down) the draft lottery list.

But the big acquisitions have been doing their part, too. Carter, back after breaking his foot, is finally looking comfortable with his new team. With two beautiful assists against the Sabres, Carter brought his total to five points (3-2=5) in the last five games. Wisniewski has also recorded five points in that span as he also contributed two assists to the win on Friday.

However none of that would matter much if they weren't getting better goaltending. Now, with Sanford getting the bulk of the work, they are. It's not too late to crawl their way back into the picture, but a lot of that will ride on Sanford continuing to play at a level this high.

If he keeps those ice blue pads, maybe he will.

Hangover Part II

Much was made about the champion Bruins' hangover to start the season. They came out slower than any team not named the Blue Jackets. Of course, that's long-ago history as the Bruins have won 11 of the past 12 games, earning a point in all of them.

But not as much has been said about the Canucks' meager beginning. After all, this was the best team in the regular season last year and was within 60 minutes of winning the Stanley Cup. Like the Bruins, the Canucks returned the core of their team and were expected to be powerful once again. Yet they were merely average.

That might be changing. With a road trip that included a 5-0 domination of the Coyotes in a "packed" (with blue) Jobing.com Arena on Friday and a gritty 3-2 win over the Sharks in San Jose on Saturday, the Canucks have won four in a row.

With the eight points in four games, they are now two points behind the Minnesota Wild, two points from reclaiming their seemingly rightful position atop the Northwest Division (they have lived in the Northwest penthouse for a few seasons).

In goal for each of those four games? That would be Cory Schneider, not Roberto Luongo. Schneider -- who had back-to-back shutouts in the four-game run -- was already seen by many to be the best backup in the game, rumored constantly in trade talks around the league over the last season-plus. Now the only goalie that Canucks fans want to throw around in those conversations is Luongo, the Vezina finalist from just last season.

There was already a goalie controversy in Vancouver even before Schneider began playing so well. The controversy? The fact that Luongo was the starter. That was enough to cause a civil war among the fans in British Columbia. This just makes it more heated.

It's show time

We got a taste of the Winter Classic on Saturday with the Flyers and Rangers waging battle in New York, a 2-0 Blueshirts win. Brandon Prust fought not once, but twice, much to the pleasure of John Tortorella.

It was also the first time this season that the league's highest-scoring offense, the Flyers, were grounded. It should come as no surprise that it was Henrik Lundqvist who was first to do it. They don't call him King Henrik for nothing.

But over the weekend, we also got our first taste of the HBO 24/7 series that's set to debut on Dec. 14. No, I'm not talking about the game, but HBO's 12-minute preview of the must-see show for hockey (and non-hockey) fans.

Warning: If you don't already have HBO in your cable/dish subscription plan, the following teaser might make you change your mind (video courtesy of nyrangersblog.com).

There wasn't even an appearance from Jaromir Jagr or Sean Avery in this tease, so clearly they must be saving the best for the show, a refreshing change from movie trailers that show you the only good parts of the movie.

Glory Toews

Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews isn't going anywhere anytime soon. If they have their way in Chicago, he'll retire in the black and red.

But if he were to change work addresses, he just might move to Southern California.

The Blackhawks took their turn at the SoCal double dip with a game Friday in Anaheim and Saturday in Los Angeles. What did Toews do? Oh just help the 'Hawks take both games with three goals and three assists. One of those goals came 1960s style with Toews parked in the crease without a helmet and scrambling to hammer home the loose puck.

I have no doubt that when this season is all said and done, Toews will have his say in the Hart Trophy conversation.

Real quickly on the Ducks, this is just too atrocious to leave out (from Eric Stephens of the Orange County Register: The Ducks have now lost six in a row, 12 of 13 and 15 of their last 17. No other word for that than horrendous.

Florida flurry

It's not even December yet and the intrastate rivals in Florida have already met five times. For the second time in the first two months, the Lightning and Panthers had a back-to-back set beginning in Sunrise and finishing in Tampa.

This time, it was the Bolts getting the better of the Cats. One massive reason was the play of Steven Stamkos. He had three goals, including the game-winner in overtime on Friday night, and an assist. He was the best player on the ice on Saturday, no questions asked.

It continues to amaze me how little attention Stammer seems to be generating. After all, he proved last year he's one of the top three scorers in the league. He has quietly amassed 14 goals and 10 assists this season. Yet there seems to be hardly a peep about him.

A few more four-point weekends for the Lightning and I'm sure he'll start getting his due.

Capital punishment

At this point I'm starting to think this will be a regular section in the Weekend Wrap. At least as long as the Capitals continue to play the way they have been.

With their 5-1 beating in Buffalo -- where the Sabres' Zack Kassian scored his first career NHL goal -- the Caps moved to 3-6-1 in their last 10 games. In the past eight, it's been particularly awful.

Check out this stat from Stephen Whyno at the Washington Post. The Caps have now been outscored 34-17 in their past eight games. Minus-17 in the past eight? That's worthy of one big OUCH.

The upcoming week for the Caps has dates with the Blues and Penguins. So things might not get better quite yet.

Quote of the weekend

After the Penguins destroyed the Senators 6-3 and Sidney Crosby continued his stellar return with three assists, Sens forward Nick Foligno attacked Crosby for taking a headshot at him late in the game. He wasn't too happy with Sid, saying he was disappointed and more or less called Crosby a hypocrite.

While Crosby was quiet about the criticism, his coach Dan Bylsma wasn't. Here's what he had to say in response.

"We're talking about a player that bumped into our goalie three times. With the score 5-1 and intentionally going into our goalie, he can expect more than Sidney Crosby coming at him and talking to him during the game. That's how we feel about those situations. He was in our net falling over our goalie, and I don't think there was any question about the intent."

Photo: US Presswire

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: November 25, 2011 7:28 pm
Edited on: November 28, 2011 9:59 pm
 

Sharks join Recchi with opinion on Canucks

By Brian Stubits

Not long ago, Mark Recchi, a member of the Bruins team that beat the Vancouver Canucks to win the Stanley Cup last season, called the Canucks the most arrogant team he ever played in his 22-season career. Kevin Bieksa took exception to the comments, but a lot of fans agreed.

And so did some of the players.

The San Jose Sharks also ran into the Canucks in the playoffs last season and with each having extended runs at the top of the Western Conference, they have a pretty strong familiarity with each other. So it's no surprise that they would share Recchi's sentiments, maybe only surprising that they would actually admit to it.

Douglas Murray and Ryan Clowe were asked about Recchi's words the day before the Sharks and Canucks meet (on Saturday). Neither was going to disagree with Recchi. From Kevin Kurz of CSN Bay Area:

“Recchi was obviously a very well-respected player in this league for many years, and still is very respected,” Murray said. “For him saying something like that probably means something.

“It’s not the whole team. It’s certain individuals that give them that reputation. I’m not going to call out names. It’s obvious for anyone that watches the game.”

Well for those who maybe don't watch the Canucks all that closely, you're left to yourself to figure it out, right? Well that's where Clowe comes in.

“They’ve got certain guys, and they have [Maxim] Lapierre there who is known for that," said Clowe. "He’s known to run his mouth and play that sort of game. He doesn’t really like backing that up. You have [Ryan] Kesler and [Alex] Burrows who used to do that a little bit more. Apparently the last year, and last couple of years, they’ve tried to not talk as much and just play.”

Yea, can't say those names are a shock. Remember it was just a week ago that the tandem of Lapierre and Burrows was being accused of some dirty shenanigans against the Senators.

The Canucks are an interesting creature to me. They have clearly become one of the most hated teams in the NHL. Canada, which always seems to embrace its own to win the Cup for the country, almost shunned Vancouver in last year's postseason. Their biggest Stars, the Sedin twins, are pretty much everything you could ask for in model players and faces of your franchise.

It's all the more interesting that the Canucks haven't won a Stanley Cup. Usually such hatred is reserved for the teams that win championships, not runner-ups. Did anybody really hate the Buffalo Bills in the early 1990s (other than their traditional rivals)?

All I know is that the Canucks keep piling up a list of must-see games with every opponent comment.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: November 21, 2011 3:37 pm
Edited on: November 21, 2011 3:38 pm
 

Did Burrows pull door open on Winchester check?

By Brian Stubits

Let's take you back to Sunday night for the late game in Vancouver. The Canucks were playing host to the Ottawa Senators and the question on Monday was if they were being decent hosts or not.

Mid-way through the first period, Jesse Winchester of the Sens was playing the puck with his back to the Canucks bench. Seconds later he was put through the gate and at the feet of the Vancouver bench.

Take a look at the play (shameless plug: Subscribe to Eye On Hockey's YouTube channel).

You don't see this all that often. Normally the backup goaltender is dilligently handling the opening and closing of the gate. So what has people talking today (and after the game) is whether or not this was intentional. You'll notice the man on the other side of the gate is Alex Burrows, and let's just say he nor Lapierre have the most pristine reputations in hockey.

Winchester, who avoided serious injury on the play but did come away with a sore back, had this to say after the game. From the Ottawa Sun

“It’s not a safe play,” Winchester said. “I was under the impression my butt was against the wall, the next thing I know I’m through the bench. I couldn’t see behind me, I’m not paying attention to what’s on the bench.”

When Sportsnet reporter Ian Mendes asked Winchester if he thought Burrows opened the door intentionally, his response was curt: "Go ask him."

Burrows' take? He's innocent, he tells ya (and the Province).

"It was a line change and at the last minute he got hit pretty good there and the door wasn't closed completely," said Canucks winger Alex Burrows. "He's a Montreal guy and one of my friends so it's a good thing he didn't get hurt on the play."

Now that you've heard from both sides and seen the evidence, what's your take? Is Burrows guilty of a dirty play by opening the door or was this just an accident?

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: November 20, 2011 1:24 pm
 

Kevin Bieksa responds to Mark Recchi: Take a nap

By Brian Stubits

Mark Recchi shared his feelings on last season's Vancouver Canucks last week. Let's just say, he wasn't very fond of them, calling them the most arrogant team he faced in his career. That career, mind you, stretched 22 seasons, so he's been around the block.

Of course that caught the attention of the Canucks. With their superstars being rather humble and quiet (the Sedin twins) the role of "team spokesman" seems to often go to defenseman Kevin Bieksa. He was a bit confused/insulted and thus combative when it came time for a response.

Here is what he told Jason Botchford of the Province.

"Isn't he retired? What's he doing? Tell him to go play a round of golf or take a nap. Why is he chirping us?"

Then, Bieksa started to pick apart Recchi's assertion.

"You can call us a lot of things, I don't think arrogant would be one of them," Bieksa said. "This is not even close to the most arrogant team I've even played on.

"The twins are so humble and you may not like playing against guys like (Maxim) Lapierre, and (Alex) Burrows but they're not arrogant. I just don't get it. Mark Recchi can go take a nap."

Take a nap. You have to admit, that's a pretty good response.

There was certainly no shortage of animosity between the two Stanley Cup finalists last season. From the biting incident to tire pumping and Nathan Horton's concussion, things were never very cordial, so perhaps that's where Recchi got the impression.

Canucks coach Alain Vigneault was a bit more cordial (and most would agree, mature) in his response to Recchi's comments.

"I've known Mark, I've coached Mark, he's a quality person," Vigneault said. "But you can also win with class. You don't need to rub it in. It was a seven-game series. This team, in my mind, is about integrity. We play the right way. They won.

"It is not a very classy thing."

That was the series that keeps on giving. Not only was it an excellent series, but the lasting effects keep on coming. Too bad Recchi won't be on the ice for the rematch Jan. 7 in Boston.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

Posted on: November 17, 2011 7:38 pm
Edited on: November 17, 2011 7:45 pm
 

Mark Recchi not a huge fan of '10-11 Canucks

recchi2By: Adam Gretz

Mark Recchi spent 22 years in the NHL and most likely played against more than one team that he wasn't particularly fond of. Such is life in the NHL, especially when it comes to lengthy playoff runs and a Stanley Cup chase. So when he says a certain team was "the most arrogant" team he's played against, and "the most hated team" he's ever played against, it's an interesting statement.

Those are the words he used to describe his feelings regarding the 2010-11 Vancouver Canucks, the team Recchi and the Boston Bruins defeated in seven games to end their lengthy Stanley Cup drought and give Recchi the third championship ring of his career.

On Thursday, Recchi took some time out of his retirement to make an appearance on Boston Sports radio, chatting with "Gresh & Zo" on Boston's 98.5 the Sports Hub and talked about what it was like to play against the 2010-11 Canucks. Basically, he didn't really care for them.

“In 22 years they are the most arrogant team I played against and the most hated team I’ve ever played against," said Recchi. “I couldn’t believe their antics -- their falling and diving. It was very frustrating. But at the same time, as the series wore on, we knew we were getting to them and we knew our physical play and our skating, I think it caught them off guard a little bit.”

Last year's Finals was an extremely physical series between two teams that seemingly disliked each other more and more as the series progressed. His comments probably a sting a bit for the folks in Vancouver, seeing as how Recchi was born in Kamloops, British Columbia.

In 25 playoff games Recchi recorded 14 points, good enough for sixth-best on the Bruins.

You can check out the full audio of his appearance by clicking here.

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.

Posted on: November 12, 2011 4:09 pm
Edited on: November 12, 2011 4:11 pm
 

No additional punishment for Aaron Rome



By: Adam Gretz

Canucks defenseman Aaron Rome was ejected during the second period of his team's 4-3 loss in Anaheim on Friday night. After a brief period of wondering whether or not he would face any additional punishment from the NHL for his hit on Ducks forward Devante Smith-Pelly, Jim Jamieson of the Vancouver Province reports on Saturday that Rome will not face any additional punishment from the NHL.

Jamieson writes that after reviewing the play Shanahan determined that the punishment handed out during the game was enough. That punishment, of course, was a five-minute major for elbowing and a game misconduct, all of which helped lead to a pair of Anaheim power play goals.

Even though the hit was certainly debatable from a discipline point of view, the fact Rome escaped any additional punishment is somewhat interesting given his banishment during the Stanley Cup Finals for a hit on Boston's Nathan Horton. Whether it's fair or not, Shanahan seems to have put a strong emphasis on a player's history when deciding whether or not to suspend players, as well as the length of the suspension when one is handed out.

Click Here For More NHL Discipline News

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Posted on: November 12, 2011 1:21 am
Edited on: November 12, 2011 12:10 pm
 

Aaron Rome ejected for elbowing

By: Adam Gretz

The Anaheim Ducks nearly allowed a four-goal lead to slip away in the third period on Friday night but were able to hold on for a 4-3 win over the Vancouver Canucks. They were able to jump out to a 4-0 lead after two periods thanks in large part to a five-minute power play in the second period that resulted in a pair of goals, which was part of a six-minute stretch that saw them score three times.

The reason for the five-minute power play was because Canucks defenseman Aaron Rome was ejected for elbowing Ducks forward Devante Smith-Pelly.



Along with the five-minute major he also received a 10-minute game misconduct.

Even though the call was for elbowing, it appeared that Rome didn't raise his elbow, and it's certainly debatable as to whether or not there was enough contact with the head (or if it was targeted) to make it worthy of any additional punishment. Though, given Rome's history (he was suspended for four games during last year's Stanley Cup Finals for a blindside hit to the head on Boston's Nathan Horton), which seems to play a pretty big role whenever the NHL has handed out supplemental discipline this season, it should be interesting to see if Brendan Shanahan has anything to say about this play.

The win snapped what had been a six-game losing streak for the Ducks, and is just their second win over the past 11 games.

Click Here For More NHL Discipline News

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Posted on: November 11, 2011 2:51 pm
Edited on: November 11, 2011 5:36 pm
 

Weekend Preview: Ducks searching for wakeup call

By Brian Stubits

Weekend schedule: Friday | Saturday | Sunday

You know it's bad when we're still early in November and the Anaheim Ducks call a closed-doors meeting. It stinks almost as much as the Avalanche calling Thursday's tilt against the Islanders a "must-win game." They did, barely (4-3 in OT).

But desperate times call for desperate measures. And right now, things are getting close to desperate in Orange County. The Ducks are the coldest team in hockey having lost six in a row. In a world without the overtime loser point, Anaheim is 5-10. That is not good.

"You have to eliminate any confusion, any doubt before you can take the next step forward," Carlyle said about the meeting.

"A lot of times coaches are talking and nobody says a word and you go to the ice and say, 'Well, I don't think that's work[ing]," Teemu Selanne offered. "It's important that the players can give their input also about the situation. It was really good. It was really honest conversations. I think it was a huge step forward."

They better get things figured out quickly. With Dallas playing as well as it is and San Jose in the division, the Ducks could dig themselves a hole too tough to get out of. They have the fewest goals scored and the most goals surrendered in the Pacific Division. In 15 games they have 29 goals, that's less than two goals per game.

How can a team with Corey Perry, Bobby Ryan, Ryan Getzlaf and Selanne be struggling to score this much? Well presumably that's what the closed-door meeting was for.

I can't help but think it's the lack of power of the mustache. Since the month of Movember came around and the Ducks all began growing out their best 'staches, the team hasn't won a game. This is making me rethink my entire stance on the world. Here I was holding the mustache in such high esteem.

Or maybe it could be more rationally explained by figuring out where Lubomir Visnovsky has gone? The defenseman who had 18 goals and 50 assists last season has just four points (1-3=4) in 15 games and is a minus-9. Him finding his game would go a long way in helping the Ducks remove the ugly from their game.

So who do they get to try their presumably new tactics against first? How about the Vancouver Canucks on Friday night? Just the team for a struggling squad to face (the still-not-invented sarcasm font was on there).

But that's not all for the weekend. On Sunday the Ducks welcome the last team they beat, the Minnesota Wild. Of course since that win, these two teams have flipped their fortunes. The Ducks have become the coldest team this side of Columbus while Minnesota has been red hot.

SoCal struggles, Part II: This was supposed to be the season the Los Angeles Kings stepped forward, made a run for the franchise's first Stanley Cup championship. It obviously still could be, the season is only a short way in. But right now they could use a swift kick in the rear to get in gear.

Los Angeles has followed a 5-1-1 start with a 2-5-2 stretch, including a five-game losing streak that has people wondering if the boot isn't being polished up before delivering the kick. After all, the Kings have not scored more than three goals in 13 of their 16 games. For a team that acquired an offensive talent like Mike Richards to go with a solid group already, that's not going to cut it.

"The offense, certainly myself at the top of the list, should be scoring more, getting to the net," Justin Williams said following Thursday's loss.

So do you put the blame for the struggling stretch on coach Terry Murray? After all, head coaches are always the first scapegoat. I find it hard to blame Murray. He's trying all that he can, mixing and matching the lines to try and create a spark. But as they always say, you can't really fire the players. I mean you can, but it's a lot more difficult.

One of the issues right now is the play of Jonathan Quick. Remember that shutout streak back in October? That's a thing of the past. In his last six starts, Quick has zero wins. He is giving up nearly three goals per game in that stretch.

About the only thing going well right now for L.A. is the play of Drew Doughty. His game has been on point recently with five points in the last three games.

Like their SoCal neighbors in the O.C., the chance to get on the right track will come against the Wild, Saturday night at Staples Center. Oh, Minnesota enters the game having won five of the last six.

What the ....? You know who's not struggling? The first-place Florida Panthers. Yes, you read that right, first-place Panthers.

Dale Tallon threw together a team that everybody anticipated would struggle to jell, but it came together like jell-o. The Panthers have tallied a point in six consecutive games, including back-to-back wins on the road in Toronto and Winnipeg.

If they want to make it seven straight, they will have to get through the Flyers, who are in Sunrise on Sunday.

This is where I'd like to spread a little love on Kris Versteeg, the forward who is on his fourth team in a two-year span -- the one before the Panthers being the Flyers. He has apparently found the right fit and is scoring at a pace of better than a point per game, leading the Cats with 17 points in 15 games. Brian Campbell hasn't been too shabby either with 15 points in 15 games.

The surprises are all around on one of the NHL's biggest surprises this season. Jason Garrison is a sniper from the blue line? Who knew? But he's tied with Nicklas Lidstrom in the NHL lead for goals among defensemen with six. Jose Theodore can still be effective as a No. 1 goalie? Just talk to the folks in the Washington press box to see how hard that is to believe.

There's no telling how long this will last. First place in a division with the Capitals is asking a lot. But with a start like this, they can at least dream of ending that 10-year playoff drought in Florida.

Texas two-step: Want to know if the Dallas Stars are really as good as their 11-3-0 record indicates? Other than the fact that you are what your record says you are, as Bill Parcells would say, the Stars are in the midst of about as tough a three-game road stretch you can conjure up in the NHL.

They already went through the Capitals, handing them their first loss in D.C. this season. Now they have back-to-back games starting Friday in Pittsburgh. The game was viewed as a potential return date for Sidney Crosby, but that's not happening now. However it is still the top two teams in each conference and James Neal vs. the team that traded him.

If that's not enough, Dallas will take the trip to Detroit where the Red Wings await on Saturday.

I'm not sure how many more tests the Stars have to pass before this start and this team is believed to be for real by the masses. It might be already. I know I'm a believer. But just to be safe, a few more points in this weekend double-dip couldn't hurt.

The Bruins got their groove back: It only took a month, but now the Boston Bruins are showing the form the hockey world expected. After all, ask Boston fans and they will tell you last season was just a whole heaping of bonus -- this was the season when they were expected to be legitimate Cup contenders.

The team that in the early going couldn't score now can't stop scoring. Especially in bunches. Five times in the month of November the Bruins scored two goals within 49 seconds of one another. Five times!

Without a doubt, the most impressive player has been Tyler Seguin. The sophomore is showing why there was such a debate between himself and Taylor Hall before the 2010 draft. He is so quick and always seem to get his stick on the puck near the net.

The above items considered, it should come then as no surprise that the Bruins have won four games in a row and are streaking into their game against Northeast Division foe Buffalo.

The question there is which Sabres goalie will be entrusted with slowing down this now potent Bruins attack? That’s the question every day now in Buffalo where at the moment -- and I stress at the moment -- the goaltending job is a 50/50 proposition between Ryan Miller and Jhonas Enroth. If Miller gets the call, it could be a tough situation to find a slump-busting performance.

Defense rules

The Tampa Bay defense, specifically the 1-3-1 trap that coach Guy Boucher loves to use, is the topic of the week in the NHL. The crux of the issue: people want to see more scoring, less stalling.

If that describes you, maybe you should find something else to do on Saturday night when the Lightning and St. Louis Blues meet. Offense might not be too plentiful.

With Ken Hitchcock now on the St. Louis bench and his preference to play a defensive-minded game, it could be a pretty slow and plodding game. Nothing as bad as the scene on Wednesday night, but still not offense friendly. In the two games under Hitchcock, the Blues have given up two goals.

Of course after all this you can now expect for the teams to hit the over.

Photo: US Presswire

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com