The New Jersey Devils are the only winless team left in the NHL after Craig Anderson stopped 40 shots and the Ottawa Senators knocked off the Devils 5-2. Jason Spezza, Bobby Ryan and Erik Karlsson each scored in the win. Spezza and Karlsson each recorded two assists as well. Steve Bernier and Travis Zajac potted the only goals for the Devils (0-4-3). Martin Brodeur stopped 18-of-22 shots in the loss.
The Devils look just plain awful in the first 10% of the season. Brodeur is 0-2-2 early on with a goals against average above three. Damien Brunner leads the team with three goals but New Jersey doesn’t much other offensive production unless it Patrick Elias, Michael Ryder or Jaromir Jagr as each has two goals on the year. Until they can start filling the net more, it’s time to bench the Devils. Consider trading them away if they are on your rosters because right now their value is pretty much name-only.
Vancouver blanked Buffalo 3-0 with Roberto Luongo posting the shutout win. Chris Higgins, Ryan Stanton and Brad Richardson provided the offense. Mike Santorelli had a pair of assists to boost his total to six points in eight games on the season. Ryan Miller turned away 31-of-34 shots and sits at 1-4 despite some stellar stats.
Miller has been the subject of trade rumors that have him possibly landing in Edmonton, according to the Yahoo! blog Puck Daddy. Miller and/or Thomas Vanek might be heading to Alberta for Nail Yakupov. It would require Miller to waive his no-trade clause to do so but you never know. The point is Edmonton could use a stable goaltender but I don’t think the deal gets done, yet.
The other thing this tells me is that Buffalo is already thinking rebuild. It’s time to look into stashing Jhonas Enroth away since he’d be in line for the starts if Miller gets sent packing. Cody Hodgson and Christian Ehrhoff see a good amount of time on the power play while Marcus Foligno might fill Vanek’s spot on the man advantage if he goes. Don’t rush to make moves until a deal goes down but be ready to pounce on Enroth and Foligno should it happen. Check if Hodgson and Ehrhoff are also on your league’s waiver wire.
Speaking of the Oilers, they dropped a 3-2 decision to the Islanders. Taylor Hall’s two-goal night wasn’t enough to keep Edmonton from falling to 1-6-1 this season. Mark Arcobello assisted on both goals and has eight points in eight games. They might all be assists but he should be picked up in most leagues. Kyle Okposo and John Tavares each had a goal and an assist in the win while Evgeni Nabokov made 27-of-29 saves in the win.
If Miller lands in Edmonton, what do the Oilers do with Devan Dubnyk? He stopped 37-of-40 shots in the loss tonight. There might not be much of a market for goaltenders with 0-4-1 records and a goals against average around five. Jason LaBarbera would also be nervous about his job security as a backup goaltender. Stay tuned to this because this one of those trades that will have a ripple effect, if done, and we’re going to see something unusual as a result. Just a gut feeling on that.
Carolina used three third-period goals to erase a 2-0 deficit and beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2. Ryan Murphy and Eric Staal scored to tie the game up and Ron Hainsey potted the winner with 6:56 left in regulation. Joffrey Lupul picked up his sixth of the season in the loss. James van Riemsdyk was scratched again with a back issue and he’s day-to-day. Cam Ward posted his first win of the season to improve to 1-2-3. Ward owners need to patient with him. He got off to a slow start last season too and it led to mediocre results before getting hurt in March. Hopefully he can use this win to springboard to better things.
Pittsburgh dumped Philadelphia 4-1 with Sidney Crosby scoring his sixth goal of the season and picking up an assist. Evgeni Malkin netted his third goal of the year and Chris Kunitz added a pair of helpers. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 24-of-25 shots to improve to 6-0-0 this season.
Philly’s Wayne Simmonds scored the lone goal of the game to get his first of the season. Claude Giroux had an assist but is still without a goal. Despite a coaching change things haven’t gotten better in Philadelphia and I don’t know if or when they ever will. They have six days before their next game and they will be crucial in determining how the Flyers will turn out this season. They are at a franchise-worst 1-7-0 start with 11 goals. Send the Flyers, all of them, to the pine for a while. Even after they come back.
Montreal outslugged Columbus 5-3 to improve to 5-2 this season. Tomas Plekanec scored twice in a 51-second span to break the tie and win the game for the Canadiens. Andrei Markov had a goal and an assist in the win while PK Subban added two assists. Boone Jenner’s two-goal game for Columbus wasn’t enough in this one.
Tampa Bay knocked off Minnesota 3-1. Steven Stamkos scored his fifth goal of the year in the win. Tampa was a surprising 1-of-7 on the power play in this game. I would have expected more out of a PP unit that had Stamkos-Martin St. Louis-Teddy Purcell-Sami Salo-Ryan Malone to do more damage. Malone had the lowest amount of ice time on the power play at 4:57 while the other guys were at least 6:20.
Boston over Florida 3-2. Tim Thomas gave up a late goal in the third period to Reilly Smith that proved to be the difference. He stopped 37-of-40 on the night while Tuukka Rask turned away 27-of-29 in the win.
St. Louis edged Chicago 3-2 in a shootout as the Blues are 2-0 against the Hawks this season. David Backes and Alexander Steen each scored their fifth goals of the season. Jay Bouwmeester assisted on both of them and Jaroslav Halak (27-29) improved to 5-1 this season in goal. Don’t look now but St. Louis is running with the big boys early on and could have the staying power to be there all season. Look for some Blues on the waiver wire.
Los Angeles knocked off Nashville 2-1 in a shootout. Pekka Rinne looks much better as he and Johnathan Quick had a good goaltender’s going in this one. Quick stopped 34-of-35 while Rinne turned away 29-of-30. Now if only Nashville could find some offense…
Dallas 4, San Jose 3. The Sharks dropped their first game of the season and it was a shootout loss to Dallas. Patrick Marleau scored his sixth of the season in the loss. Ray Whitney picked up a pair of assist in the win for Dallas. Niemi is 6-0-1 like the Sharks with a 1.70 GAA and a .930 save percentage. Dan Ellis picked up the win for Dallas.
Detroit 4 Colorado 2 Johan Franzen and Pavel Datsyuk each scored twice and Daniel Alfredsson had three assists as Detroit dealt Colorado its first loss of the season.This is what the Wings are capable of when they come together as a team and the stars perform. Jonas Gustavsson picked up his third win of the week, replacing Jimmy Howard (hand), and would be a good pick up for depth if you need it between the pipes. Erik Johnson and Gabriel Landeskog each scored power play goals for Colorado in the loss.
Friday’s Games (all times ET)
St. Louis at Winnipeg 8pm Phoenix at Anaheim 10pm