Holy balls what a week in the NHL. Lots of movement in the standings on a daily basis and the regression bug continued to nestle happily in Minnesota, infuriating their fan base and delighting everyone else because Wild fans make themselves absurdly easy to hate. It's not me, it's you. I promise.
Outside of the Weeping Willows in the Kind of North (get it? They look like Christmas trees and are constantly crying!), the rest of the division remained productive and helped themselves in the ways they needed to. Calgary continued their push for another 9th place finish as they've dug themselves out of the early season hole and straight into contention for being eliminated on the second-to-last day of the season. Have to admire the consistency, at least.
Edmonton continued to sink back down to expectations, bringing into question the validity of the great off-season debate: DOES ANYONE HAVE A DEFENSE WORSE THAN COLORADO? The answer is, of course, yes. Edmonton does. It's starting to show through because they suck and are losing a lot (quality sentence, AJ). I absolutely love their online communities, though. High quality chaps, they are.
Vancouver won't stop winning. PLEASE STOP WINNING.
See you next year <3
Team capsules after the jump.
All standings related info taken from NHL.com...
Last Week: 2-1-0 3-1 W @ VAN, 2-1 W @ CBJ, 1-3 L @ NYI
Conference Standing: 11th Place
- Goals For: 2.4 (25th)
- Goals Against: 2.6 (12th)
- Power Play %: 17.2 (17th)
- Penalty Kill %: 83.6 (12th)
This Week: Supar bizzy week for the Flames as they play the second night of a back-to-back at Ottawa tonight and then take a night off to celebrate a largely mediocre calendar year for the Flames before hitting up party central Sunday night at Nashville. Calgary somehow has to pick themselves up off the party floor as they head to Washington Wednesday. Good luck!
News: A look back at the first year of Jay Feaster's tenure as GM.
Blake Comeau looks back at his time in New York. Also includes the hilarious assertion that the 5 points in 17 games counts as "flourishing".
With the WJC in full swing, several Flames take the time to reflect on how baalllllliiinnnn it was when they went and dreamed of being in the NHL before their dreams were crushed and they ended up in Calgary instead.
Why am I linking to a preview of a relatively unimportant (no rivalry, no playoff implications, still in December) game? The first line will make long-time MHHers lol pretty hard.
Leland Irving: Problem, NHL?
Transactions: None listed and I am not sifting through press releases to update the section just in case something did go down >_<
Last Week: 3-1-0 2-1 W vs. TB, 4-2 W @ MIN, 1-4 L vs. WPG, 3-2 W vs. PHX
Conference Standings: 10th place
- Goals For: 2.5 (24th)
- Goals Against: 2.9 (21st)
- Power Play %: 18.9 (12th)
- Penalty Kill %: 81.1 (19th)
This Week: It was all fun and games winning at home and such but now we have to figure out this whole road gig again because the Avs hit the r-r-r-road (Jack) for essentially all of January, beginning on the last day of December (BLEW YO MIND, DIDN'T I?) in Anaheim. They take their traveling road show allllllll the way down the street to Los Angeles on Monday. Arduous, to say the least.
Last Week: 0-2-0 3-5 L @ VAN, 3-4 L @ MIN
Conference Standings: 13th place
- Goals For: 2.7 (12th)
- Goals Against: 2.7 (14th)
- Power Play %: 20.7 (3rd)
- Penalty Kill %: 84.6 (9th)
This Week: Edmonton had the pleasure of spending Christmas chillin with the fams (at least, they didn't play and their game the next day was only in Vancouver so they could've been chillin with the fams if they wanted to) so the NHL schedule makers are exacting their revenge by giving them a hectic New Year's slate. It could be worse, though, as the Oilers spend New Year's Eve in New York, where they play an 11:00 AM game against the Islanders. With just a day off and more travel, Edmonton hits up Chicago Tuesday before swinging back into the New York to play Buffalo Wednesday. Why the NHL schedule makers did this...I do not understand. Why not just have them play the Sabres when they were already in New York? Dick move, NHL. Anyway, the Oilers finish their busy week Thursday night in St. Louis where the resurgent Chris Stewart looks to continue his white-hot play of late. This paragraph is enormous.
News: Kevin Lowe is like, WJC, fyeah.
Ryan Murray is like, WJC, fyeah.
Anytime I link to Copper N Blue, just go read it. It doesn't matter what it's about. Seriously just go read it.
SERIOUSLY JUST GO READ IT.
Not even kidding. Just read it.
Transactions: Recalled D Alex Plante (see below =/ ) and Colten Teubert
- Cam Barker is out 3 months with an ankle injury.
- Ales Hemsky is day-to-day with the flu.
- Ryan Whitney is day-to-day with an ankle injury.
- Alex Plante is out indefinitely with a concussion.
Last Week: 1-1-1 (Terran OP) 2-4 L vs. COL (suck itttttt), 1-2 OTL @ NSH, 4-3 W vs. EDM
Conference Standing: 2nd place
- Goals For: 2.3 (28th)
- Goals Against: 2.2 (4th)
- Power Play %: 15.3 (20th)
- Penalty Kill %: 85.0 (8th)
This Week: Just two games for the Wild this week. Hopefully nobody hits their guys hard and they learn to skate better because their presence on the internet crying about absolutely everything is getting on my nerves. Raffi Torres takes his clown act to Minnesota on New Year's Eve for what is sure to be delicious fun. Maybe he'll elbow someone there and actually connect so Wild fans will stop being so butthurt about Erik Johnson missing his check. Minnesota also travels to Vancouver Wednesday where noted clean-hitter Maxim Lapierre awaits to drive a poor helpless, toe-picking Wild player face first into the glass. In that situation, everybody wins! Except the rabbits. They never seem to win.
News: In case you missed this from yesterday's thread where several of us enjoyed mocking it, here's Hockey Wilderness donning the tin foil cap and baawwwwing about the lack of suspensions. I tend to like the guys over there more than most but when you include Erik Johnson whiffing on a hit and cry about it being more about the result than the action, I think you've been watching Minority Report too much and you deserve to be mocked because Tom Cruise.
The tin foil silliness continues with an article titled "If Wild player were decapitated, would NHL notice?". You know what? I'm still mad about Lapierre not getting shit for running Wilson but I am so glad we don't have this going on. This is embarrassing.
Wild-Oiler memories, baby.
Transactions: Reassigned forwards Jed Ortmeyer, Jeff Taffe, and Jon DiSalvatore to Houston. Recalled D Nate Prosser from Houston.
Injuries: Lazy copy/paste mode ENGAGE.
- Guillaume Latendresse is out indefinitely after experiencing concussion symptoms.
- Devin Setoguchi suffered a lower body injury on December 6 and was placed on injured reserve two days later. He has resumed skating on his own.
- Casey Wellman suffered a wrist injury and was placed on the IR December 18. He has been skating.
- Clayton Stoner suffered a lower body injury on December 22 and placed on the IR December 27.
- Jared Spurgeon suffered a lower body injury Monday against Colorado. He missed his first game of the season on Wednesday night.
Last Week: 3-1-0 1-3 L vs. CGY, 5-3 W vs. EDM, 3-2 W @ SJ, 5-2 W @ ANA
Conference Standing: 2nd place
- Goals For: 3.3 (3rd)
- Goals Against: 2.4 (7th)
- Power Play %: 24.8 (1st)
- Penalty Kill %: 85.9 (6th)
This Week: The Canucks have finally caught and surpassed Minnesota for the division lead and will look to begin putting legit distance between themselves and the four underlings they mockingly refer to as division "rivals". This journey to continue making me look smart and c6 look like a scrub who makes bold predictions on the internet without any true genius begins anew in 2012 after their New Year's Eve contest in game three of the California swing every team hates doing at Los Angeles. Their actual 2012 road to more playoff shame and hot making out while a riot happens around them pictures starts back at home against San Jose on Monday and continues as they will take the free points given to them Wednesday when Minnesota is scheduled to visit but the entire team will actually be decapitated and the NHL won't notice. Haha whoops!
News: HOT PEOPLE LIKE THE CANUCKS. Hot people are apparently stupid.
Since everyone was DYING TO KNOW Dave Lozo's All-2011 Team, he mercifully put an end to our tireless waiting and released it. Close one, Dave! Almost ran out of time there, buddy.
I really don't look forward to the dayy when Greg de Vries shows up at the Pepsi Center (or whatever the home venue is) in 20 years and starts signing autographs like he was a big deal.
Luongo: SUPER CAPTAIN?
Andrew Ebbett is balllllinnnnn.
At least one team knows regression exists and can accept this. People take shots at BRey in the comments. I lol'd.
Transactions: I am really tired of writing about poor Mark Mancari being recalled every week. JUST KEEP HIM FFS.