Friday, March 29, 2019
Morning Player Notes (Mar 29)
The Florida Panthers did some shuffling on their blueline on Thursday night against the Senators, giving NCAA signing Brady Keeper his NHL debut and coming out of the lineup to make room for him was pool defenseman Mike Matheson. Matheson has 25 points in 71 games this season, which is 71st among all defensemen in scoring, but with the Panthers out of the playoff picture, it doesn't hurt him or the team to get a night off.
Another man game lost for John P.'s team last night, as his team is starting to fill up the news page more and more these days. His team is in a grouping with Brian and Steve, 16-17-18, all separated by 5 points at the moment. It's not a meaningful race, but it's kind of a race.
It sounds like Sven Baertschi doesn't quite have the conditioning levels that he would normally have in-season at the moment, as he came back from a concussion last weekend, but was deemed unfit to go, more just being tired than anything else. He should be drawing back in on the weekend, one would likely assume, so he's considered day-to-day as a healthy scratch right now.
Troy's team can ill-afford to be without Baertschi this week, as his team is suffering through a scoring drought, only registering 3 points so far, through Thursday night. In the last five weeks, Troy's team has dropped from 9th to 15th and the missed man games are adding up.
Washington Capitals forward T.J. Oshie was down for the count with an illness on Thursday, unable to go in the morning skate and was nowhere to be seen at game time against the Hurricanes. He's considered to be day-to-day and with the Capitals long-since clinched into the playoffs, a day worth of rest is probably good for him, even if it is to recover from the flu bug.
Tony would have much rather seen him in the lineup, sick and all, I'm sure. His team is currently tied for the Mover & Shaker lead with 27 points this week, 16 points out of 3rd place and the Capitals may have been able to beat the Hurricanes by more than 3-2, if he was in the lineup. Maybe.
A news byte from first thing this morning, Nashville Predators backup goalie Juuse Saros will not be on the bench tonight, when the Preds take on the Penguins in Pittsburgh tonight. He's considered to be day-to-day and possibly could be ready for the second half of back-to-back nights, tomorrow at home to Columbus. If not, Troy Grosenick is the backup and the Predators will have to decide whether or not they want to run Pekka Rinne on back-to-backs.
Eric's team is in the mix for a top 10 spot this season, ranking 11th after Thursday night, 3 points out of 10th. I don't think I would consider the Penguins game to be a missed start for Saros, but if he can't go tomorrow night, that would be one that he missed, as the team's confidence in him is quite high.