Sunday, October 14, 2018
Morning Player Notes (Oct 14)
Anaheim Ducks rookie Troy Terry took a seat in the press box on Saturday night for their game against the Dallas Stars, just as a healthy scratch, by the sound of things. The Ducks forward has yet to register a point in his first four games, but he has been tapped for a couple of shootout attempts, to which he had scored on one of them. The Ducks are turning it right around, playing on Sunday night in St. Louis, so we'll see if Terry draws back in right away or not.
It was a missed skater game for Jesse's team, which has been mediocre in Week Two, with only 22 points in the week, dropping down to 13th from 12th at the end of Week One. His team is still right in the thick of it, only 7 points out of 3rd place, so it shouldn't take much to get back in there.
Another healthy scratch to speak of in Boston, as Ryan Donato was re-entered into the lineup, but coming out was a standout from last season, forward Danton Heinen. The Bruins top line players have been flying of late, but they are trying to spark their secondary scoring somewhat with these scratches, just in case the top line has an off night. The Bruins might cycle some of these guys around for a while, until they find some consistency, whenever that might turn out for them.
Much like Jesse's team, Derek B.'s team has also been somewhat average, also with 22 points in the week, but it has been better than his Week One, so he has made some gains in the standings, instead of some losses, moving up from 22nd to 18th in the week. I don't think Heinen will be out for long, just a night off and he can get back to it.
One more healthy scratch to speak of, this time with the traveling Oilers, as defenseman Matt Benning was sat for the game in New York, as he hasn't been able to find the scoresheet in their first couple of games either. The Oilers added some veteran depth to their side in the off-season and through training camp, so the pressure is on some of these young guys to produce or else lose their place on the roster. Produce and you'll play, it's as easy as that.
This didn't help Clayton's cause much on Saturday, as his team couldn't follow up a strong week in the scoring department, posting only a few points on Saturday and lost all the ground he made up on the leaders in the week. I would expect Benning back in the lineup soon, but the Oilers certainly have their eye out for him and his production.
Ugly injury alert... we're waiting to hear what the extent of the injury is for Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Justin Schultz, as he went down awkwardly on his left ankle and it looked gross. Every indication is that this could be a long-term issue for the injury prone defender and it could be another long stint on the shelf for him. Schultz has gotten off to a good start, before the injury, so the Penguins could ill-afford to be without him for the long-term, but they may not have much of a choice.
Scott's team certainly doesn't need this injury, as it is currently vying for the Basement Dweller this week and if you throw a major injury on to a top defender, his 8th round pick this year, then the losses will certainly start to stack up. His team currently sits 19th and is now holding its breath.
The Vancouver Canucks are off to a much better start than most would have thought they would and it is all on the shoulders of rookie sensation Elias Pettersson, who has 8 points in their first five games. There is some concern for a serious head injury, as he was driven to the ice by Mike Matheson of the Panthers on Saturday night, having to leave the game early, looking fairly woozy. The Canucks did not offer an early update on the young Swede, but he did make the trip to their next stop on the road trip, which is Pittsburgh, and he'll likely have to clear concussion protocol before dressing next.
More bad news for Clayton, but he did collect another goal from the talented rookie before he left the game, if that is any consolation. Clayton's team does have a good lead in the rookie pool, but it's the big money that is the concern, where his team is now 9 points out of 1st place and he'll need Pettersson to get there.
There were plenty of players returning to their respective lineups on Saturday as well, which we'll take a quick note of here. Mark Jankowski of the Flames, Kevin Shattenkirk of the Rangers, Olli Maatta of the Penguins and Andreas Johnsson of the Maple Leafs all returned from the press box on Saturday night, Johnsson picking up a point in his return, making an impact for Wilton's team right away. Valeri Nichushkin of the Stars returned from injury and played against the Ducks, while Matt Murray was cleared through concussion protocol and only returned to the bench in a backup role for the Penguins. That will clear up some names on the weekly reset on Monday morning.