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NFT: NHL season notes after two weeks - some trade talk too

pjcas18 : 10/17/2017 1:40 pm
surprises (positive: team):

LVG: though I don't think it will last
LAK: solid Quick, star Kopitar again, Doughty - could last
COL: not sold yet, but they are playing well right now
NJD: loved their off-season, but 14.7% shooting % not sustainable, will revisit

Surprises (postive : player)

Auston Matthews is a legit beast, two way player. I thought as a rookie he obviously excelled offensively, but watching a few Leafs games so far, I'm amazed, I don't think he's better than McDavid - just doesn't have the speed, but man with his size he could be Mario to McDavid's Gretzky.

Ovie and Backstrom: starts off at a blistering pace. once again breathing false hope into the Caps faithful

Zibanejad: shows offensive chops I didn't think he had, not sure if it's just a mirage fast start or not

Gostisbehere: took a lot of crap for a sophomore slump, comes back with a vengeance and is anchoring one of the best young D groups in the league.

Jesper Bratt and Will Butcher: it's early and Bratt probably falls off, but both expected to be back seat to Hischier, and both outshining him (on the scoresheet at least). Butcher of course is much older.

Victor Mete: 19 year old Habs defenseman looks like he'll stick, playing top pair minutes with Weber and so far playing flawlessly. Breathing life into the "small defenseman" theory - McAvoy, Butcher, etc.


Negative suprises: team:
MTL: though their 3.7% shooting % is a "positive" since that would be historically low, literally I believe a record by a mile, their results are bad and tied to middle pair D and Price.

NYR: I think they turn it around, it's early, and from games I've watched the effort is there and they too have a low shooting % - while I'm not a huge fan of analytics like Corsi being predictive of anything, I do believe shooting % will normalize eventually.

DAL: I loved their off-season. Can't say I have watched them much, but I expect they turn it around soon too.

EDM: the trendy pick to make the WCF, off to slow start.

Not going to give my opinion on too many disappointing players, but there's quite a few of them.

One trade topic: Canadiens and Islanders trade talk burning like wildfire in Montreal. Not Tavares I heard Leddy and Barzal, so who knows. Galchenyuk and Juulsen going the other way.

What do you think so far?

Oh, and I have seen some incredible games so far, but holy shit the slashing calls and face-off police need to end (as I mentioned in the Rangers thread)




good breakdown pj  
Stu11 : 10/17/2017 2:42 pm : link
yea obviously as a Devs fan I'm real encouraged so far but it's definitely a long season. Butcher definitely reminds me of Brian Rafalski in that he may not have the size of the top tier defenders, but knows how to use his stick and leverage for positioning.
Interesting how everybody wrote off the Kings, and meanwhile Quick was hurt most of last year. When he was healthy he was as good as ever. They are still really talented.
As I said on the eve of the season the young talent is overflowing in the league right now. Kucherov in Tampa is a future Hart candidate. the true shock of the league so far though has to be Colorado, especially when you realize they have played 4 of 6 on the road. Varlamov has been a beast, and Duchene has played great(his sweepstakes could really heat up).
The Atlantic is shaping up as a better division this year as Tampa is loaded, Toronto should be for real and you know Montreal will make some noise.
Yeah Atlantic is much better than last year  
pjcas18 : 10/17/2017 3:34 pm : link
and Kucherov is great.

The youth in the NHL right now is as good as I time I can remember.
Ivan Provorov is the anchor of the Flyers D  
Bobby Humphrey's Earpad : 10/17/2017 4:19 pm : link
and is knocking on the door of the elite level defensemen already. Gostisbere isn't in the top pairing anymore except for the power play, but seems to be getting back to rookie form.
The slashing calls  
Gman11 : 10/17/2017 6:02 pm : link
are just ridiculous. The penalties that they're calling serve no useful purpose. Those little taps on the stick or the gloves do not produce injuries and do not give the defensive player a big advantage, so penalizing for those little taps is pretty stupid.
How bout those Vegas Golden Knights!  
gtt350 : 10/17/2017 7:33 pm : link
4-1.
Happy fo you on Mete  
Jay in Toronto : 10/17/2017 9:17 pm : link
Did you see it coming?
Devils win again!  
Jay on the Island : 10/18/2017 9:22 am : link
They come from behind to beat the Lightning in OT 5-4.
The other surprise team Vegas also won 5-4 in OT. Malcolm Subban started and got his second win. His numbers look solid so far. It was a great gamble for them to take on the talented goalie. Hopefully for Vegas he is ready to turn his potential into production.
RE: Happy fo you on Mete  
pjcas18 : 10/18/2017 9:25 am : link
In comment 13654438 Jay in Toronto said:
Quote:
Did you see it coming?


No. I thought Juulsen had a shot to stick, but he broke his foot in training camp. Any time Mete was mentioned I thought too small, won't stick, but these smaller puck moving D are starting to become a trend.

He hasn't flinched yet. Sort of makes Juulsen expendable in the minds of some people (not mine). MTL is not known for their patience, so while the team sits at 1 - 4 - 1 right now if they don't right the ship quickly there will be changes.
Yea the Knights are a great story  
Stu11 : 10/18/2017 9:38 am : link
James Neal has been re-born there. Watched the Devs-Lightning on DVR after I calmed down from the Yanks game. One of the more exciting styles of play I've seen in a Devs game in years. Damn that Tampa team can fly. Kucherov-Nemesnikov-Stamkos are a juggernaut. Devs landed their punches too. No goals for Nico but he was absolutely robbed 2 or 3 times.
I just don't believe LVG  
pjcas18 : 10/18/2017 9:53 am : link
is winning because the team is good.

It's maybe adrenaline, or energy from the new crowd or travel to LVG for opposing teams, or something other than them being a quality team.

I do believe eventually they'll start losing and it will snowball.

I don't hope it happens, they're a good story, I just think it will happen.

RE: Yea the Knights are a great story  
Jay on the Island : 10/18/2017 10:38 am : link
In comment 13654643 Stu11 said:
Quote:
James Neal has been re-born there. Watched the Devs-Lightning on DVR after I calmed down from the Yanks game. One of the more exciting styles of play I've seen in a Devs game in years. Damn that Tampa team can fly. Kucherov-Nemesnikov-Stamkos are a juggernaut. Devs landed their punches too. No goals for Nico but he was absolutely robbed 2 or 3 times.

This isn't because I am a fan of the Devils but you can just tell from watching Hischier that he is going to be a stud. He won't be a McDavid or Matthews but there is nothing wrong with that. I would be perfectly happy if he is a similar caliber player to Toews, Taveras, Kopitar etc.

PJ, There is no way that Vegas is going to keep this up. They will still end up as one of the worst teams in the league this season but I too am rooting for them. Neal is off to a torrid start which he can't maintain. Either way it was a great pick by Vegas because they should be able to get a very good return for him at the deadline.
PJ  
Jay on the Island : 10/18/2017 10:44 am : link
I read glowing reports about Mete during camp and the preseason. Pairing him with Weber takes a lot of pressure off of him but he isn't just succeeding because of him. Mete is talented and he has been given the opportunity to show it.

Whats the deal with Zach Fucale? Is he still a legit prospect or has he fallen off?
FI-RE VI-GNEAULT  
Greg from LI : 10/18/2017 10:47 am : link
*clap clap clapclapclap*
RE: PJ  
pjcas18 : 10/18/2017 10:54 am : link
In comment 13654777 Jay on the Island said:
Quote:
I read glowing reports about Mete during camp and the preseason. Pairing him with Weber takes a lot of pressure off of him but he isn't just succeeding because of him. Mete is talented and he has been given the opportunity to show it.

Whats the deal with Zach Fucale? Is he still a legit prospect or has he fallen off?


Lindgren has passed Fucale IMO and if the Canadiens realized El Cubano would have cleared waivers (like Pickard did) then I believe Lindgren would be backing up Price (who has been very mediocre to be polite) and Montoya would be in the AHL. Fucale is one of those pedigree goalies that just hasn't been consistent.

He's still only 22 years old and wouldn't be the first late bloomer goalie, but being demoted to the ECHL at 21 (last year) for a goalie of his stature is not a good sign.

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