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Northwest Check - "First Place Was Fun While It Lasted" Edition

Reality can kind of suck sometimes.

Luckily, we're only about 12% of the way through the regular season so reality is still kind of an unknown at this point. Is Edmonton really THIS good? I know I was the crazy yokel who picked Minnesota to finish below them in the standings but this is getting out of hand, no?

Elsewhere in the division the Flames took the necessary steps to avoid falling in a significant early season hole by taking care of their business. Feel free to stop doing that, Calgary. It's more fun when you're at the bottom and I can mindlessly pound on my calculator like it means something and mock you endlessly. JUST STOP BEATING US, OKAY?

Minnesota and Vancouver...meh? I don't really know what either team is up to yet because now that we're not in first place I'm back to only looking at the teams in front of us.

You know, since watching the standings in October is always a worthwhile experience.

Northwest Standings

Edmonton 11 7 2 2 16
Colorado 11 7 4 0 14
Minnesota 10 4 3 3 11
Vancouver 11 5 5 1 11
Calgary 9 4 4 1 9

(updated 10.31.2011 at 2:23 AM MDT)

Team capsules after the jump.

All standings related info taken from

Calgary Flames (9 GP 4-4-1 9 Pts)

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

Conference Standing: 14th Place

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 2.4 (18th)
  • Goals Against: 2.6 (15th)
  • Power Play %: 16.1 (16th)
  • Penalty Kill %: 84.4 (16th)

This Week: The Flames finish up a 6 game homestand (3-1-1 through 5) Tuesday versus Vancouver before heading out on the road again for a wicked back-to-back Thursday at Detroit and Friday at Buffalo. Calgary will finish just 1-2 on the road in the season's first month.

News: Rookie Roman Horak is enjoying a strong start to the season.

The Flames dismantling of the Avalanche last week might have unlocked a key to their season.

The Flames were really happy to beat us last week...

Stay calm and Flame On!

Sven Bartschi has a chance to be their highest scoring first round pick since...Dan Quinn? ;)

Transactions: I will totally put some here if I knew any were happening but their website is awful and it's more entertaining for me to see how long it takes for them to get their act together than see which random minor league transactions were made this week.

Injuries: This hasn't been updated since October 8th hahaha. Who runs this website? The only for sure long-term injury listed is:

  • Mikael Backlund is on IR and is out for up to 6 weeks with a finger injury.

Colorado Avalanche (11 GP 7-4-0 14 Pts)

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

Conference Standings: 5th place

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 2.6 (14th)
  • Goals Against: 2.7 (20th)
  • Power Play %: 30.0 (1st)
  • Penalty Kill %:  84.8 (15th)

This Week: The Avs start their home-heavy November schedule Wednesday vs. Phoenix before hitting the all-too familiar road path by heading deep into the heart of Texas (clapclapclap) Friday at Dallas and then heading back home for a Sunday tilt against calculator-friendly Calgary.


Edmonton Oilers (11 GP 7-2-2 16 Pts)

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

Conference Standings: 1st place

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 2.0 (26th)
  • Goals Against: 1.4 (1st)
  • Power Play %: 18.2 (12th)
  • Penalty Kill %: 90.5 (4th)

This Week: The Oilers begin a road-heavy second month of the season as surprising conference leaders by traveling to Thursday at Los Angeles and then head to another too hot for hockey environment in Phoenix on Saturday.

News: Apparently there are female Oilers and they do things with soup. Baaalllliiiinnn.

I dunno what any of this means but it sounds really important to the city of Edmonton. Hope they get it?

A big reason for the Oilers early season success? The stellar penalty kill.

Clear Victory Standings, which always seem to show the Oilers really well ;)

Transactions: Edmonton recalled D Jeff Petry and D Alex Plante


  • Ales Hemsky is out 10-14 days with a shoulder injury.
  • Ryan Whitney is out 3-4 weeks with a knee injury.
  • Darcy Hordichuk is week-to-week with a knee injury.

Minnesota Wild (10 GP 4-3-3 11 Pts)

Last Week: 1-1-0  2-3 L vs ANA, 1-0 W vs. DET

Conference Standing: 9th place

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 1.9 (29th)
  • Goals Against: 2.2 (5th)
  • Power Play %: 12.5 (25th)
  • Penalty Kill %: 77.1 (23rd)

This Week: The Wild finish up a home-and-home series with Detroit by heading to the barren wasteland itself on Tuesday. They then return home Thursday versus Vancouver and Saturday versus St. Louis. Boring writing for a boring team ^_^

News: I seriously love this stock market watch. Will someone please steal it from them?

Iono what this is but it's got moving parts and is totally rad.

Josh Harding said STFU Detroit. I'm happy with our goalies but I would've loved to see Harding in Denver.

Transactions: Only transaction of the week was recalling D Nate Prosser from Houston of the AHL.

Injuries: Lazy copy/paste mode ENGAGE.

  • Cody Almond was placed on injured reserve following the preseason finale. He is not currently with the team.
  • Mike Lundin remains on injured reserve and has not skated with the team. He has been shooting pucks.
  • Greg Zanon was placed on injured reserve on Friday and will not be available on Saturday against Detroit.
  • Guillaume Latendresse missed one game with a groin injury but returned to the lineup on Thursday and will play again on Saturday.
  • Clayton Stoner was hit in the hand with a shot on Thursday and left the game in the second period. He is out for Saturday's game against Detroit.

Vancouver Canucks (11 GP 5-5-1 11 Pts)

Last Week: 1-2-0   2-3 L @ EDM, 0-3 L vs. STL, 7-4 W vs. WSH

Conference Standing: 10th place

Overall Rankings:

  • Goals For: 2.8 (11th)
  • Goals Against: 2.9 (23rd)
  • Power Play %: 21.2 (10th)
  • Penalty Kill %: 85.1 (14th)

This Week: It's amusing to see the other teams in the Northwest having to hit the road for their own extended trips as Vancouver sets off on a 6-game road swing, starting Tuesday at Calgary and continuing on the always popular SoCal B2B with Los Angeles Thursday and Anaheim Friday. Their busybee week finishes up at Chicago where two teams who don't like each other battle for ice supremacy. Fuuun.

News: Ever wondered what the heart of a Canuck was? Click here :D

Alexandre Grenier: The Late Bloomer?

David Booth means business.


Transactions: None.


  • Mason Raymond is out indefinitely with a back injury
  • Aaron Rome is out indefinitely with a finger injury
  • Steve Pinizotto is out indefinitely with a shoulder injury