Saturday, September 30, 2017

Last Night's Preseason Performers (Sep 30, Draft Day Edition)

Today is the day! We get to pick our teams today! Hooray!  First things first though, let's have a quick peek at what happened last night and see if there is any names we should consider as sneaky picks.

The Canadiens finally pulled out a preseason win on Friday night, topping the Panthers, 3-1.  The preseason panic can finally take a back seat to the regular season panic, which might not be too far away, when it's all said and done.

Charlie Lindgren, one of the depth goalies for the Habs, was the big winner on the night, making 22 saves for the victory.  I don't think this enough to unseat Al Montoya as backup, but it's a good shout, regardless.  Paul Byron had a couple of goals in the win, Andrew Shaw went one and one and Philip Danault had a couple of assists as well.  We might see a couple of these guys drafted today, if not all three.

The Islanders and Sabres were tuning up in Buffalo on Friday night and it was the team from Brooklyn that was the better of the two on the night, winning 3-1.  The expected number one for the Islanders, Jaroslav Halak, made 20 saves for the victory on the night.  Halak will be a big piece of any success the Islanders have this season.  Rookie forward Matthew Barzal finally emerged as a viable player for the pool, notching a trio of assists in the win, while Anders Lee had a goal and an assist as well.  The Islanders are generally a quietly popular team in the pool and this year could be one of their best seasons.

It was an Original Six match-up at the new pizza oven in Detroit, where the Maple Leafs and Red Wings went toe-to-toe in some preseason action.  The Leafs, pretty well suiting up a full roster, was the better team, scoring early in the 3rd to go-ahead and they never really looked back, adding an empty-netter and winning, 4-2.

Frederik Andersen got the call for the Leafs, making 21 saves for the win, while William Nylander, Zach Hyman and Jake Gardiner all had 2 points each.  The concern for the Leafs is how the kids will respond in their second year and already, signs are positive.

It wasn't a great game on the score sheet, but the Capitals and Hurricanes are ready to compete for the playoffs already and it was Carolina that got the best of the President's Trophy winners from the the last couple of years.  The new number one in Raleigh, Scott Darling, was the only notable player, as he made 18 saves in a 3-1 win.  Darling was acquired from the Blackhawks in their annual fire sale and the Hurricanes may come away like bandits with him, especially if they give him a ton of minutes.

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