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NHL overreactions for Week One

Coaches? Goalies? Contenders?

NHL: Edmonton Oilers at Vancouver Canucks Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports

Some of you might be told young to remember when Christian Bale was announced to play Batman/Bruce Wayne in the upcoming Christopher Nolan adaption of Batman. It was 2003 with filming beginning the following year. Fans were pissed. They hated that the guy who directed Memento and cast the thin guy from American Psycho and Equilibrium was going to lead the reboot of one of the most beloved comic book heroes of all time.

In 2006, it was announced that Heath Ledge was going to play the biggest comic villain of all time in the Batman universe, the Joker. Again, it was received with questions and backlash. Robin Williams was the front-runner in the rumor mill to get the role but ultimately lost out to the Brokeback Mountain actor. Did it matter in the end? No. Ledge would win an Oscar and the Dark Knight would go on to be recognized as the best Batman film and comic book film of all time.

Overreactions are always fun to go back and look at. Receipts are what I think the kids are calling it now. When some now ‘tweets’ – or is it called ‘X’ed’? and it's just the worst take or opinion or overreaction possible, people remember. Oh, the masses remember. So, in that spirit, here are some of my early NHL overreactions! Along with some that I believe will be coming in the coming weeks:

Last season, only Bruce Boudreau of the Vancouver Canucks was let go of his coaching duties during the season. The previous season, Travis Green of the Canunks and Alain Vigneault from the Philadelphia Flyers. This year, with stakes running really high in Toronto and Edmonton, their record and play have not been up to the Cup Contenders they fancy themselves. Overreaction to this will be both Kyle Keefe and Jay Woodcroft will be let go by December! Both organizations will hope for that new coach bump that teams have seen with a new coach coming in mid-season to propel them into the playoffs.

Do you know which cup contender is playing well? The two last cup champions in the Vegas Golden Knights and the Colorado Avalanche. Sitting comfortably at the top of the West and the league, both look to be on a collision course to the Western Conference Final. Overreaction, the team that wins that series will go on to win the Cup! The West is those two teams and the other 14. If you’re in the West, be bad. Don’t think yourself anything and just be bad, because Vegas or Colorado will rip your heart out.

Auston Matthews signed a four-year, $13.25M per year deal to stay in Toronto. Devon Toews signed a seven-year, $7.25M per year deal to remain an Avalanche. Both are top targets of the 2024 offseason UFAs. While there was plenty of speculation on whether they would resign or not, another big name, though an RFA, Elias Pettersson of the Vancouver Canucks remains without an extension. While Vancouver is looking to make the jump to a contender from pretender, Pettersson is a massive piece they need to decide on. My overreaction is that he will NOT sign and will be moved at the TDL much like his previous teammate. He will let them know he’s out and they will move the second-best player from the 2017 draft. Management looks lost, the team is stuck, they’re not good enough to compete with the best and they need to rebuild. Start by moving the biggest piece you have and go.

Could this be the year where we see a trio of brothers win the Hart, Calder, and Norris? Jack Hughes looks like a legit Hart candidate; Quinn Hughes has the points and is playing very well defensively. Luke Hughes has looked the part and has put his name with Connor Bedard and Logan Cooley. My overreaction is all three brothers will win their respective trophies and set history as the best trio of brothers to ever start their careers. New Jersey is a legit contender with young, fast, skilled talent and with more coming. Getting a Norris-type player to be added to that group is just unfair. Also losing the 2019 draft AGAIN to New Jersey is unfair.

There were summer headlines wondering as to where Connor Hellebuyck would end up. He resigned with Winnipeg for seven years at $8.25M. You know there are teams that should have pulled the trigger on him. Even if it was for the year. You need to win now. Not next year, now. New Jersey cannot keep outscoring their problems, Toronto doesn’t have the guy right now. Los Angeles has a glaring need for an otherwise stacked team. Edmonton has been talking the talk about cup or bust, getting to Edmonton early for captain skates blah, blah blah, and don’t have a goalie. I believe the phrase is, “You can have all the skill in the world, but if you don’t have a goalie, it does not matter.” – Staff and Graph podcast, Rachel Dorie. The overreaction is Edmonton does the deed! They go out, overpay, like over-over pay, and get their guy in … Thatcher Demko. Toronto, LA, and Jersey miss and ultimately have a failed season. But Edmonton gets a guy, but it will cost them everything they have. Vancouver caves and starts the rebuild.

Some overreactions that I believe are coming:

Summertime big names. Elias Pettersson has already been mentioned, but William Nylander, Steven Stamkos, Sam Reinhart, and Jonathan Marchessault are all due some bags of cash coming their way, but how many of them are going to get that with their new teams?

With Colorado, Vegas, Boston, Dallas, and New York Islanders all undefeated (at the time of this piece), only the Sharks have no wins, which I think most saw coming. But Edmonton, Buffalo, Winnipeg, Washington, Seattle, St. Louis, and Montreal all only have one win. You expect Edmonton, Buffalo, and Seattle to climb the ranks a bit. But are we looking at the end of the run for Washington? What about the other team with former faces of the league in Pittsburgh?

Rumors are fun, trade deadline rumors are more fun, especially in October. Names I’m really curious about are Sean Couturier, Elias Lindholm, Tyler Myers, Tomas Hertl, Dylan Demelo, Filip Hronek, and Brett Pesce … just, keep an eye on them.