Thursday, March 01, 2018
Afternoon Player Notes in the Draft (Mar 1)
Well, as the trade deadline passed, the Penguins were moving more pieces from within the organization, rather than picking up pieces. With the return to the health of Patric Hornqvist over the weekend, that meant that the Penguins didn't require the services of Dominik Simon going forward, so he was returned to the minors on Monday. If the Penguins need his services again, it will likely to fill another injury role that pops up and there have been many for this team this season.
Kristy & Don noticed the rookie was getting some top line time with Sidney Crosby during the draft, so they snapped him a few weeks ago, but in the nine games since being activated, he only had 2 assists. That's where his numbers will stop, for now.
On Tuesday, the Boston Bruins announced that they are going to reevaluate forward Patrice Bergeron in a couple of weeks, as he is dealing with a fractured bone in his boot, which he suffered on the weekend. There's no guarantee that Bergeron will be able to return after that 2-week period, but he'll certainly be closer. The Bruins are in the thick of the playoff mix and now's the time to get their number one centre healed up and ready for playoff time. No matter how long he'll be out through this part of the regular season.
Brenda & Seward are off to a good start without Bergeron this week, posting 15 points through Wednesday night's action, only a point off the pace for the Mover & Shaker this week. They open play on Thursday only 4 points back of 5th, but 44 points back of the money.
I don't think there is any more wondering why the Pittsburgh Penguins didn't trade Marc-Andre Fleury away at last year's trade deadline, but I'm sure they wish they still had him this year, as Matt Murray can't seem to catch a break this year. Murray is now under concussion protocol yet again this week and that now leaves the net to Casey DeSmith and Tristan Jarry, as they are going to be leaned upon to keep a relatively comfortable playoff position for the time being.
Stacey M.'s team has been in the mix for a top 10 finish for the better part of the season, but her team is now staring the Basement Dweller nod in the face, heading into Thursday night's action. No Murray means no number one goalie, which will hurt and only having 4 points so far this week, means that her team really needs to pick up the pace to save itself from the shameful weekly finish.
The St. Louis Blues management and coaching staff are really scratching their heads, wondering what they can do any differently to ensure that their team gets back on the rails and back in a playoff spot. The coaching staff took a drastic step on Wednesday night, scratching Patrik Berglund from the game against the Detroit Red Wings. The move may have sparked the team, as they were able to pull out a 2-1 win on the night, but it probably isn't the ideal move going forward.
We're not sure if Dale C. is going to lose out on another skater game, when the Blues play next, Saturday afternoon in Dallas. Dale's team is another in the mix for a top 10 spot, sitting 11th today, currently 6 points out. Berglund has 12 points in 37 games since the start of Week Ten, which hasn't quite been good enough, but also some lost production, if he continues to sit.
One of the best players in the league/pool, Tampa Bay's Nikita Kucherov, is dealing with an upper-body injury after getting hurt against the Maple Leafs on Monday night. Kucherov was held out of Wednesday night's game against the Sabres and is currently thought to be doubtful for tonight's game in Dallas. Kucherov's injury is considered minor and he has been skating, doing some drills, but holding him out could be more precautionary, more than anything else. He's day-to-day right now and the team will likely provide more of an update later on. If the injury is more serious, then we'll make a note of that here on the blog.
I'm not sure there's much left for Neil's team left to play for, even if he has a healthy Kucherov in his lineup. His 18th placed team is suffering without the Hart Trophy candidate and even if he was to return right away, there's not a lot to be cheering for.
Vancouver Canucks forward Loui Eriksson has now missed a couple of games this week, Monday and Wednesday nights, and on Thursday afternoon, the team's coaching staff have confirmed that the veteran will be shut down for the remainder of the regular season, as he deals with a broken rib. With only 5+ weeks left in the regular season and a push to have more youth for evaluation in the lineup, the team is not going to push the veteran to health or a return, so there will be less complications going forward. Eriksson finishes the year with 10 goals and 23 points in 50 games.
Tony's chances of finishing in the top 10 aren't hampered too badly by this injury news, but his 8th place team is far from safe, 20 points up on 11th and still 5+ weeks to play. His luck with injuries this season hasn't been great and it isn't improving with this news.