Thursday, January 28, 2010

Two Nights of Sheet Scratches

On Tuesday, the Flames decided to recall Box 9 forward, Mikael Backlund, from their AHL affiliate in Abbotsford and he was able to dress for the Flames on Wednesday night against the Stars in Dallas. With the Flames falling down in the standings, Craig Conroy, a Box 4 forward, out with a suspected knee injury, this was the perfect time and place for Backlund to step in. As for Conroy's status, the extent of his injury wasn't fully disclosed, so it will be another day or two before we find out whether or not he'll be able to return soon.

Also on Tuesday, Box 29 defenseman, Alexandre Picard, was a healthy scratch again for the Senators. Picard has joined a few defensemen on that team that can't seem to get a solid footing in the Senators line-up this year. Picard is turning out to be a very poor fantasy player this year, which is disappointing, since he could have broken out this year.

On Wednesday, the Ducks rotated Box 14 defenseman, Nick Boynton, out of the line-up again. Boynton was on a pretty good stretch of games played for Anaheim, but the highlight of his last three games played is a major penalty and only one shot on goal, while getting 13 minutes of ice-time. It's safe to say that Boynton hasn't quite panned out in Anaheim this year.

A little bit of shock therapy was handed out to the Sabres blueline on Wednesday night, as the coaching staff decided to make both Toni Lydman and Steve Montador into healthy scratches against the New Jersey Devils. The Sabres did turnaround and win the game, 2-1, so it will be interesting to see if there is a real message being sent and they sit again to keep a winning formula on the ice.

The Red Wings are on the verge of getting to be 100% healthy, which means that the coaching staff is having to make some decisions as to who stays and who goes from their line-up. Ville Leino has been a healthy scratch for back-to-back games now, which doesn't bode well for the Finn, while with the return of Niklas Kronwall to the line-up, Brett Lebda has now found his way out of the line-up for the time being. The roster shifting will likely continue with the forthcoming return of Tomas Holmstrom, so stay tuned.

A real lack in production has caught up to Box 22 forward, Stephane Veilleux, who was made into a healthy scratch by the Lightning on Wednesday night. Veilleux only has 2 goals and 3 assists in 49 games with the Lightning this season, having only 1 assist in his last 5 games. Of course, that is to say, he isn't really a top-6 forward, so he really doesn't come with a lot of scoring expectation, but the Lightning were such a question mark at the start of the season, Veilleux just slid right into the Sheet pool.

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