Friday, September 24, 2010

Last Night's Preseason Notable Players (Sep 23)

The Panthers continued a good start to the preseason with a 3-2 victory over the Boston Bruins on Thursday night. They were led by David Booth, who scored a pair of goals in the win, showing that he still has his hands after being into this season by Mike Richards last year.  With all the changes that have happened in Florida, the Panthers will need Booth to be a real offensive threat for the team for wins to happen a little more often.  Also having a good game for the Panthers was Michael Frolik, who had a pair of assists on the evening.  Frolik will need to step up in the absence of Nathan Horton this year.

The New York Rangers hosed the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night and they had to settle this game in with an overtime period, where Marian Gaborik scored his second goal of the night, giving the Rangers a 4-3 victory. Having a little bigger night than Gaborik was Alexander Frolov, playing in his Rangers preseason debut, having a goal and 2 assists to his name by the end of the night. There may definitely be some traction to the 'needing of new scenery' argument for Frolov, which may mean an increase in his projections.

In the loss, the Devils had some production from the line they are paying the most money to. Zach Parise had a goal and 2 assists, Ilya Kovalchuk had a goal and an assist and Tomas Zajac had a goal and an assist in the 4-3 overtime loss. Is anyone getting a little more excited about these Devils, because I think we're going to see a lot of goals from this line. Sure, they still lost, but there were goals to collect from.

The Carolina Hurricanes played their second preseason game of the Fall on Thursday night and it went a little better than their opener on Tuesday night. It was the preseason debut for some of their top guns, including Eric Staal, who finished the game with a pair of assists in the 3-1 win over the Nashville Predators. Joining Staal in the multiple-point plateau was newcomer Bobby Sanguinetti, who was acquired from the Rangers this Summer, he also picked up a pair of assists in the win. With a couple spots open on the blueline, I would say Sanguinetti has a good shot at picking one of them up this year. Hurricanes back-up goalie Justin Peters was in for all 60 minutes of play, making 27 stops for the win.

In their second game of the preseason, the Edmonton Oilers got to show off some more of their young talent in a pro game situation on Thursday night and both players passed with flying colours. Magnus Paajarvi shone the brightest with a hat-trick and an assist for a 4-point, while Alex Plante had a pair of assists in the 5-2 win over Tampa Bay. Kurtis Foster also found the score sheet twice with a couple of assists in the game... and oh yeah, that Taylor Hall kid had a goal too.  With an exhibition like last night's game, the higher expectations of the Oilers don't look as bad as they did before the preseason started.

The Coyotes and Kings also partook in a split-squad set of games on Thursday night, with the Coyotes taking both games. In Phoenix, the Coyotes were led by Shane Doan, who had a goal and an assist, while Oliver Ekman-Larsson had a pair of assists in the 2-1 overtime win.  Those are two names that Coyotes fans definitely want to see on the scoresheet all season long, I'm sure.  Ilya Bryzgalov made 38 saves for the win in the first game, taking all 63 minutes of action.  In Los Angeles, it was Al Montoya in the net for the entire game, making 19 saves in the 3-1 win.  Montoya is likely on the outside looking in on the back-up job, but a result like this should only help his chances of finally making it.  Garrett Stafford was the only player to hit multiple-points, with 2 assists to his name last night.

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