Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Last Night's Notable Preseason Players (Sep 19)

Martin Gerber stopped 52 shots in a 4-0 shutout of the Flyers on Monday night. I don't think that the shutout will help his position behind Ray Emery in line for the number one job, but hopefully for the Senators, he provides this sort of support when he gets the call in the regular season. He should be a good back-up for any team. Prospect, Nick Foligno, had a goal and two assists in the game for Ottawa. Foligno has got an opportunity to make the team and 3 points is a great argument.

Well, it is only the preseason, but Paul Kariya is proving his $6 million paycheque with points galore already. On Monday versus the Dallas Stars, he had 4 assists, but the Blues still lost 6-5. Kariya still had himself a good night and with the proper amount of defense, his offense will make a big difference in St. Louis. Martin Rucinsky and Brad Boyes each had 2 points as well.

Johan Franzen, Pavel Datsyuk and Tomas Holmstrom lit up the Minnesota Wild on Monday night for 3 points each. Franzen had 2 goals and an assist, Datsyuk had a goal and 2 assists and Holmstrom had 3 assists. The big point production looks like it's going to continue through the new season. The Red Wings look like they'll be a good place to pick players.

Marty Reasoner was the big name on Sunday night, Shawn Horcoff was the 3 point player for the Oilers on Monday night. Horcoff had a goal and 2 assists for the Oilers in the 3-2 win over the Maple Leafs. Slava Trukhno had a pair of points as well for the Oilers. They will probably have another game or two before making substantial cuts to the team, but it will be interesting to see who stays and who goes in Edmonton.

The Kings were victorious over the Sharks on Monday night, 6-5 in a shootout. Kyle Calder continued to impress with a goal and two assists, as did Brian Willsie. Los Angeles is going to provide quite a bit of talent for pool teams this season and Calder should be rising in your rankings bit by bit, because he is putting on quite the show. Jonathan Bernier and Dan Cloutier shared the duty in the win, Bernier stopping 18 of 20 shots and Cloutier stopping 15 of 18. Anze Kopitar was also in the mix, having a pair of assists in the win.

The Sharks had their fair share of scoring in the loss. Torrey Mitchell, Devin Setoguchi and Brennan Evans all had three assists in the loss for San Jose. All three players are in the midst of a great battle for arguably two or three spots in the line-up. The Sharks are supposed to be one of the favourites for the Cup this year and a lot of their youth, like the three listed above, will be instrumental in achieving that goal. I have heard the indications are more towards Setoguchi making the squad, but that's just a rumour. Stay tuned though.

Jeff Hoggan scored a couple of goals for the Bruins against the Islanders in St. John's, Newfoundland. Hoggan played 46 games for the Bruins last season and isn't quite on the radar to make the team for a full season quite yet, although 2 goals tonight is surely to help. Tim Thomas got the win for the Bruins, which gives him a leg up for the back-up job in Beantown.

Jonathan Toews had his first two points in the preseason and the Blackhawks had their first taste of victory with the youth in the system. Toews has pretty much got himself a spot lined up on the team and should be considered as a good pick up. Rene Bourque also had a goal and an assist, while Tuomo Ruutu and Jason Williams had two assists each. In net was Patrick Lalime and he stopped 23 of 26 shots for the win.

The Blue Jackets had a few players with two points against Chicago. Rick Nash scored a goal and added an assist, while prospects Derick Brassard and Trevor Hendrikx each had a pair of assists. It's great to see Nash healthy, he'll be a sneaky pick if he falls down a few rounds. Brassard should be in line for a promotion to the big league with a strong camp. There could be a few openings in camp for a young scorer like Brassard, so if he makes it on, he could be impressive in a pool situation.

Both Evgeni Malkin and Jeff Taffe had a goal and an assist for the Penguins in their 5-2 win over the Canadiens. Malkin took the spotlight in Montreal as his counterpart, Sidney Crosby did the night before. Malkin's goal was a shorthanded marker, which makes him a little bit more impressive. He also saw quite a bit of time with Petr Sykora.

It was a big night for offense for the Dallas Stars, but it was all a team effort. Only Jussi Jokinen and Stephane Robidas had 2 points each, when the team was all about seeing some of the prospects on the ice. It wasn't close to a full team, but Marty Turco and Mike Smith each played in net.

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