Northwest Check - "Around the Bend They Come" Edition

April Fool's Day, AKA the worst day ever to be gullible and have an internet connection, thankfully came and went with me only getting caught buying into something once (I hate you, IGN) and managing to not partake in any potential MHH shenanigans (no promises next season).

Sadly, the Avs season ain't foolin' around as they continue to find ways to play approximately 8 minutes of a game (2 arbitrary ones in the first and the last 6 when they're down by 2 more or more) and still break my heart approximately 3 times a week. If we could only translate the success we have in the final minutes of games into half a game, we might remember a winning streak (remember, according to Lou Brown it has to be 3 games).

I don't have a whole lot left as the season plays the string out and I try to scramble around for NW Check ideas in the off-season. If y'all have any, feel free to chime in and I'll see if I like it enough to throw some effort into it.

Standings...go!


Northwest Standings

GP W L OTL PT
Vancouver 79 52 18 9 113
Calgary 80 40 29 11 91
Minnesota 79 37 34 8 82
Colorado 78 29 41 8 66
Edmonton 78 24 43 11 59

(updated 4.4.2011 at 10:31 PM MDT)


 

Team capsules after the jump...

All standings related info taken from NHL.com...

Calgary Flames (80 GP 40-29-11 91 Pts)

Last Week: 2-1-0 2-4 L vs. ANA, 3-2 W @ STL, 2-1 W @ COL

Conference Standing: 9th Place, 1 points behind 8th place Anaheim.

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 2.9 (7th)
  • Goals Against: 2.8 (19th)
  • Power Play %: 18.5 (9th)
  • Penalty Kill %: 81.2 (19th)

This Week: Calgary's true last gasp playoff push comes this week as they finish off their schedule with homes games Wednesday vs. EDM and Saturday vs. VAN. Still a very long shot to make the playoffs at this point, I wish them the best of luck because fuck Anaheim and Dallas.

News: The Flames continue to make their final push towards a first round beatdown by Vancouver.

Jarome Iginla hit 1,000 points in his NHL career this past week and was thus rewarded with the NHL's Second Star of the Week. Congrats on a fantastic career accomplishment, Jarome. Maybe someday you'll learn to take your fucking visor off when you decide to drop the gloves. Until then, you keep scoring, buddy.

Daymond Langkow was the Flames nominee for Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, annually awared to the player who best exemplifies perserverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to hockey.

More mad Iginla love. Dude has won a ton of hardware in his career...

Transactions: G Joni Ortio signed to entry-level contract. I wonder if he'll play for Lake Erie with Pickard next season -__-

Injuries: Holy hell they updated this bad boy.Daymond Langkow is still out indefinitely with a "head" injury, F Raitis Ivanans is day to day with a head injury (no shock there, really), F Adam Pardy (when did he become a forward???) is listed as out indefinitely with an "upper body" injury, F Brendan Morrison is day to day with a knee injury. F David Moss hurt himself falling down in warm ups. So embarrassing. F FredrikModin is listed as day-to-day with a lower body injury and F Niklas Hagman is listed as day-to-day with a head injury.

 

Colorado Avalanche (78 GP 29-41-8 66 Pts)

Last Week: 1-2-0   2-3 L vs. NSH, 4-3 W @ PHX, 1-2 L vs. CGY

Conference Standings: 14th place

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 2.7 (16th)
  • Goals Against: 3.5 (30th)
  • Power Play %: 18.4 (10th)
  • Penalty Kill %:  76.4 (30th)

This Week: Thank the merciful hockey gods the nightmare ends this week. The Avs take to the road to continue their spoiler duty Tuesday night @ STL and Thursday night @DAL. The Fighting Snowstorm then returns home for its final two "fuck yous" to the fan base by inevitably getting crushed Friday vs. DAL and Sunday vs. EDM as we make our final desperation push for the first overall pick.

 

Edmonton Oilers (78 GP 24-43-11 59 Pts)

Last Week: 1-2-0  0-2 L vs. LA, 2-4 L @ MIN, 4-1 W @VAN

Conference Standings: 15th place

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 2.4 (27th)
  • Goals Against: 3.2 (29th)
  • Power Play %: 13.8 (29th)
  • Penalty Kill %: 77.5 (29th)

This Week: The Oilers look to catch the slumping Avalanche in the standings for 4th place in the NW division bragging rights, beginning Tuesday vs. VAN before hitting up a big-time game Wednesday night @ CGY. The Oilers will take their resurgent AHL roster back home for their final home game of the year Friday vs. MIN. The real Rumble In The Bronze (lol Starcraft jokes) is Sunday as a potential, albeit extremely unlikely, fight for last place in the NHL takes place @ COL. I'm stoked I'll be there, likely drunk and obnoxious, to see history made.

News: Simulate the draft lottery!

Vote for your Oilers MVP! I don't see any Bhulin Wall there, oddly enough.

HawHawHaw April Fool's, Oilers fans. Read the article, then the comments. You're welcome for a Happy Tuesday!

Jibbles, how valuable is a first round pick?

Newly retired broadcaster Rod Phillips waxes nostalgic.

Transactions: Signed RW Mark Arcobello, G Olivier Roy, and LW Hunter Tremblay to entry-level contracts. 

Injuries:

  • Ryan Whitney is on IR and is out indefinitely with an ankle injury.
  • Taylor Hall is on IR and is out indefinitely with an ankle injury.
  • Taylor Chorney is on IR and is week-to-week with a knee injury.
  • Ales Hemsky is out for the season with a shoulder injury.
  • Sam Gagner is out for the season with a hand injury.
  • Shawn Horcoff is out 7-10 days with an ankle injury.
  • Colin Fraser is day-to-day with an undisclosed something or other.


Minnesota Wild (79 GP 37-34-8 82 Pts)

Last Week: 2-2-0 3-2 W @ STL, 4-2 W vs. EDM, 1-3 L vs. TB, 2-4 L @ DET

Conference Standing: 11th place

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 2.5 (26th)
  • Goals Against: 2.8 (15th)
  • Power Play %: 18.3 (12th)
  • Penalty Kill %: 83.2 (12th)

This Week: MHH's second favorite team to hate finishes up their schedule Thursday @VAN, Friday @EDM, and their final "Thank You for being a great fanbase" home game of the season is Sunday vs. DAL

News: Pierre Marc-Bouchard received the Wild nomination for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, exemplifying all the stuff I listed above.

Wanna get to know Wild D and critic defier Jared Spurgeon? Here's your chance =D

This is definitely worth a read. I'm sure a lot of you think BReynolds and I are buddies or something but I assure you, we aren't. I just happen to like what he has to say a lot.

Transactions: The Wild continue to try and assassinate any hopes of the Aeros winning their division by recalling D Justin Falk (love him), D Maxim Noreau, F Carson McMillan, and F Colton Gillies (Faaaaantastic skater). Then they reassigned McMillan back to Houston. Thanks, I guess.

Injuries:

  • Martin Havlat will miss today's game against the Red Wings with an upper-body injury.
  • John Madden left yesterday's game with a lower-body injury and did not make the trip to Detroit.
  • Marek Zidlicky will not play this weekend with a lower-body injury.
  • Nick Schultz will miss the rest of the season with post-concussion symptoms.
  • Cam Barker aggravated an upper-body injury March 8 and has missed the last 11 games. He continues to skate with the team as he gets closer to returning but will not play in Detroit.
  • Marco Scandella broke his finger after a shot hit his glove on March 19 against Columbus. He will not play against Tampa Bay.
  • Guillaume Latendresse left the March 11 game in Dallas with a lower-body injury. He is not currently skating and it is uncertain when, or if, he will return this season.
  • Josh Harding is practicing but is not ready to return from a knee injury he suffered in the preseason.
  • James Sheppard continues to practice with the team but will not play against the Red Wings.

Yeah, so what if the injury report is a few days old. IT STILL WORKS, OKAY?

 

 Vancouver Canucks (79 GP 52-18-9 113 Pts)

Last Week: 3-0-0   3-1 W @ NSH, 3-1 W vs. LA, 1-4 L vs. EDM (wtf?)

Conference Standing: 1st, 10 points ahead of second place San Jose.

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 3.2 (2nd)
  • Goals Against: 2.2 (1st)
  • Power Play %: 24.5 (1st)
  • Penalty Kill %: 86.1 (2nd)

This Week: The Canucks Regular Season Pain Train they've rolled out on the league this year comes to a screeching halt as their final three games are nothing more than a victory lap for the Presidents Trophy winners. So much so that I'm not even going to list them and you will have read this all for nothing. Just kidding. Vancouver hits the road Tuesday @ EDM before returning home Thursday vs. MIN and then heading to Calgary to surely crush whatever dreams the Flames have of making the playoffs Saturday @ CGY.

News: Feel good week for the Canucks rolls on as Dan Hamhuis and his bff reunited in Nashville.

This is why Mason Raymond rocks this season.

Derek Jory has an article about my role in bars. That's what it's about, right?

Transactions: If you actually read this every week, it'll come as no surprise the Canucks have made a transaction involving Victor Oreskovich, this time returning him to Manitoba after a "six game emergency recall". 

Injuries:

  • Alex Edler is out indefinitely after having back surgery.
  • Lee Sweatt is week-to-week with a foot injury
  • Andrew Alberts just had successful wrist surgery and is out for a long time because that really hurts.
  • Manny Malhotra will miss the remainder of the season with after sustaining an eye injury against Colorado.
  • Dan Hamhuis is day-to-day with a concussion.
  • Mikael Samuelsson is day-to-day with an undisclosed injury.

Admit it. You clicked the Derek Jory link. And to the guy who just prank called my work talking about his Johnson, go die. Society needs more clever prank callers, not you. 1700 words achievement unlocked!

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