Sunday, April 05, 2015

Player Notes in the Draft & Playoffs (Apr 5)

Karri Ramo's Saturday night didn't last long, as his start against the Oilers lasted less than a minute, before suffering a groin injury and making way to his counterpart, Jonas Hiller.  The reports after the game were saying that Ramo was going to get an MRI on his injured groin on Sunday and that there would be an update provided after the fact.  There doesn't appear to be much promise in Ramo returning before the end of the week, which likely means his regular season has come to a conclusion.

Despite the Flames winning 3-0, since Ramo did play in that game, Hiller does not get credit for the complete shutout, rather it is a split shutout and statistically not worth the extra 2 points, even though Leo has both goalies.

A lower-body injury kept Oilers forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins out of the lineup for the Battle of Alberta, a game they didn't necessarily want to win, with the draft lottery odds at stake, but one that they probably would have wanted for pride.  There were little details given about the injury, but the coaching staff did mention that the young pivot was 50-50 to play last night and were likely more cautious than anything else about his health for the long-term.

Mike possibly would have preferred having the Nuge active, since that may have given the Oilers a better shot at getting a goal last night and possibly helping his team out in the third segment race.  Mike will start Sunday, 15 points back of Benson and his team has five projected games to play on Sunday.

The Minnesota Wild were without forward Mikko Koivu for their game against the Red Wings, as the 32-year old Finn suffered a scratched cornea in an off-ice incident. The injury doesn't appear to be long-term, but probably pretty scary for those involved. Koivu is considered to be day-to-day, but is expected to be ready to play on Monday night, at home to the Jets.

Dale B.'s team has really been up and down of late, but they are having an okay week in Week Twenty-Six, but not really making up much ground anywhere.  They sit in 7th, 20 points out of the money and 4th in the third segment race, 24 points back for the little trophy.  It is highly improbable that they find a way to either prize in the last week of the regular season.

The Tampa Bay Lightning did not dress forward Alex Killorn on Saturday night against the Panthers, as the 25-year old forward was dealing with an injury of an undisclosed nature. He is currently on the list as out day-to-day, but since the Lightning only have two games left in the regular season, it is well within reason, that they may rest him for a playoff run.

The Bolts only have two more games left on the schedule, so it isn't like Killorn was going to be a major factor for Dale C.'s comeback bid for the money, but the 29-point deficit was likely not going to be overcome either in one week's worth of action.

One of Nashville's trade deadline acquisitions was held out of the lineup on Saturday night with a bit of a flu bug, as forward Mike Santorelli did not dress for the game against the Dallas Stars.  He is on the list now as out day-to-day and should be back for the final push in the last week of the season.

Santorelli did have a brief appearance in the draft pool this season, but was dropped in Week Eighteen, when Dale B. opted for one of the Ottawa rookies.  However, Santorelli does make an appearance on the Playoff Pool sheet, lining up in the last forward box, Box 7, where he ranks 5th in scoring in the regular season.  If you like Nashville for the second round of the playoffs, he may be a reasonable option for you.

In Sunday's action, the early morning game will see the Penguins and Flyers go at it one more time and Pittsburgh will welcome Evgeni Malkin back into their lineup.  Malkin has missed the last couple of games with an undisclosed injury, which has compounded a pretty bland season for him, where he only ranks 25th overall in pool scoring, not even ranked in the 1st round of this year's draft.  He will be a welcome addition, as his team has been struggling down the stretch and could use some confidence, heading towards the playoffs.

This is another note for Leo and his team, which currently sits in 18th place, 7 points back of 17th and only 1 point up on 19th.  There isn't a lot to battle for, in terms of races, for Leo's team, but I'm sure he's just glad that his best player is back.

Five games left to go in the week and the races are tightening up in some spots.

For 3rd place, Wes' lead has dwindled down to 8 points over Clayton and 10 points over Scott, 13 points to Benson and we only have seven days, including today, left to go in the regular season.

Wes may have Carey Price going against the Panthers on Sunday, although it is an afternoon game against a team that has little to no hope of making the playoffs now.  Clayton's goalie teams are playing on Sunday, but neither are expected to have his goalie going, as both have struggled of late.  Scott will have Petr Mrazek going against the Capitals on Sunday, both teams playing on back-to-back days.  Neither of Benson's goalie teams are on the schedule for Sunday, so he'll have to rely heavily on his skaters to keep him in the race.

Wyllie continues to lead the Olli race and now has a 8-point gap to make up on Allan, but he won't have a goalie start, where Allan will.  Steve Mason is queued up to go for the Flyers, in the early game against Pittsburgh.  Ryan, 9 points up, also won't have a goalie going, as his team continues to struggle in the crease with a pool-low, 9 wins.

Benson and Scott headline the third segment race, as Benson sits 15 points away, while Mike, 17 points back, will have Jake Allen in net for the Blues against the Blackhawks tonight, trying to help his cause in the last segment race of the year.

An updated list of injuries can be found here.

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