Mike Finewax

The Week Ahead

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Trade Deadline

Friday, February 25, 2011


The trade deadline is on Monday and if there is one thing to guarantee, it is that there will be lots of movement. Should goaltenders change hands in the next few days, some of the information before will be dated.

Monday is also the one year anniversary of the Gold Medal game between Canada and the United States when Sidney Crosby scored the Golden goal for Canada. I was wondering if it is known as the Silver goal below the 49th Parallel.

A couple of teams, Ottawa and Toronto seem to have traded away players and are looking towards next season but the Maple Leafs keep winning and are now only four points out of a playoff spot.

Johan Franzen has gone 11 straight games without a goal since scoring five on February 2. He was frustrated on Thursday as he was minus-two but took 12 minutes in penalties.

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Here is The Week Ahead.

WEEK OF FEBRUARY 28-MARCH 6


4 Games - Buffalo, Calgary, Chicago, Detroit, Florida, Minnesota, New York Islanders, New York Rangers, Vancouver

3 Games - Anaheim, Atlanta, Boston, Carolina, Columbus, Dallas, Edmonton, Los Angeles, Montreal, Nashville, New Jersey, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, San Jose, Tampa Bay, Toronto, Washington

2 Games - Colorado

Buffalo and Detroit play all four games on the road this week.

Columbus, Dallas, Montreal, Nashville and Pittsburgh play three games on the road.

Anaheim, Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York Islanders, New York Rangers and San Jose play three home games this week.

INJURIES
Mikko Koivu is out of action for three weeks with a broken finger.
Click here to check out all the injured players in the NHL.

ANAHEIM

Games this week
vs. Detroit, vs. Dallas, vs. Vancouver

Notes
The Ducks are a rested team on Sunday when they take on the Canucks as Vancouver plays in Los Angeles the night before. Anaheim is worried about their goaltending as Jonas Hiller is on the injured reserve list with vertigo. Curtis McElhinney was not the answer in goal and he was dealt to Anaheim for Dan Ellis. Ray Emery was recalled from the minors. Saku Koivu is out of the lineup with a groin injury. Corey Perry already has 31 goals this season and is fifth in the NHL in points with 67.

ATLANTA

Games this week
vs. Montreal, vs. Ottawa, vs. Florida

Notes
The Thrashers have been struggling of late as goaltender Ondrej Pavelec has lost seven of his last eight games. Do not expect Zach Bogosian to be traded at the deadline despite all the rumors to the contrary. He was drafted third overall two seasons ago and it is much too early to give up on him. Andrew Ladd is having a good season for the Thrashers with 22 goals and 45 points. His point total is tied for first in Atlanta, along with defensemen Tobias Enstrom and Dustin Byfuglien.


BOSTON

Games this week
@ Ottawa, vs. Tampa Bay, vs. Pittsburgh

Notes
The Bruins are a rested team twice this week as they take on Tampa Bay on Thursday after the Lightning play in New Jersey the previous night, and also play the Penguins on Saturday after Pittsburgh are also in New Jersey the previous night. Marc Savard is still experiencing symptoms from his latest concussion and there is a chance that his career could be over. The acquisitions of centers Chris Kelly and Rich Peverley have made Tyler Seguin the fourth line center. The trade for Tomas Kaberle has made the Bruins a top contender from the East for the Stanley Cup.

BUFFALO

Games this week
@ New York Rangers, @ Carolina, @ Philadelphia, @ Minnesota

Notes
The Sabres play all four on the road this week including three games in four nights. The Sabres play three games in four nights so do not be surprised if Jhonas Enroth gets recalled once again to play in place of Ryan Miller as Buffalo does not seem to trust Patrick Lalime in the net. The Sabres are tired on Sunday when they play in Minnesota after traveling from Philadelphia on Saturday. Captain Craig Rivet passed through waivers and was sent to the minors. Our guess is that he will be replaced as captain.

CALGARY

Games this week
@ St. Louis, @ Chicago, vs. Columbus, vs. Nashville

Notes
The Flames play four times this week including three games in four nights so expect to see Henrik Karlsson once in goal in place of Miikka Kiprusoff. The Flames will be tired on Wednesday when they are in Chicago after playing in St. Louis on Tuesday but they get a break on Friday when they are rested and at home, as they take on the Blue Jackets who play in Edmonton on Thursday. Niklas Hagman went through waivers and remained a Calgary Flame while Ales Kotalik was put on re-entry waivers on Wednesday.

CAROLINA

Games this week
vs. Florida, vs. Buffalo, @ Chicago

Notes
The Hurricanes play three times in four nights so we could finally see Justin Peters replace Cam Ward in a game. Peters last played in a full game on January 9. The Hurricanes will be a tired crew on Friday when they are in Chicago after playing at home against the Sabres on Thursday. Sergei Samsonov and Jay Harrison lead the Hurricanes with a plus-three, while Tim Gleason leads in penalty minutes with 69.

CHICAGO

Games this week
@ Minnesota, vs. Calgary, vs. Carolina, @ Toronto

Notes
The Blackhawks play four times this week including three games in four nights so expect to see Corey Crawford and Marty Turco split the net. The Blackhawks are either tired or playing a tired team in all four games this week. They are tired on Monday when they face Minnesota, and on Saturday when they face Toronto after playing the previous day, but benefit against Calgary on Wednesday and Carolina on Friday as both play the previous night. The top line of Patrick Sharp, Jonathan Toews, and Patrick Kane has been on fire lately as the trio has combined to score six goals and 15 points in the Blackhawks last three games.

COLORADO

Games this week
@ San Jose, vs. Edmonton

Notes
The Avalanche only play twice this week so we recommend benching all your Colorado players, if you can. The Avs made a controversial trade this past week when they dealt Kevin Shattenkirk, Chris Stewart and a second round pick to St. Louis and acquired Erik Johnson, Jay McClement and a first round selection in return. Matt Duchene missed only two games with his injured hand and has now returned. In another move, the Avs dealt goalie Craig Anderson, who is eligible to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1, to Ottawa for struggling netminder Brian Elliott.

COLUMBUS

Games this week
@ Vancouver, @ Edmonton, @ Calgary

Notes
The Blue Jackets play all three games in four nights and in Western Canada, so look for Mathieu Garon to play once in place of Steve Mason. The Blue Jackets play in Edmonton on Thursday and then meet a rested Calgary squad Friday. Rick Nash is 15th in NHL scoring despite playing less per game than any other player who is higher in the scoring race. Derick Brassard is skating but still unable to hold a stick with his injured hand so his return is still unknown. Matt Calvert has three goals and four points in his last four games.

DALLAS

Games this week
@ Phoenix, @ Anaheim, @ San Jose

Notes
The Stars are on the road for all three this week. They will play a rested San Jose team on Saturday after meeting the Ducks the night before. The Stars continue to be in a terrible slump and have fallen out of a playoff spot after leading the Pacific division for most of the season. They are starting to get healthy again as Jamie Benn returned on Tuesday and Adam Burish and Krys Barch did the same on Thursday. The Stars made a bold move in trading for Alex Goligoski and finally got the quarterback they were missing for the power play. It cost them a lot in James Neal but Matt Niskanen was floundering in Dallas and needed a change of scenery. Perhaps he will get it in Pittsburgh.

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Michael Finewax is entering his 10th season as the Senior Hockey Writer and Editor for Rotoworld. You can follow him on Twitter @mfinewaxhockey.
Email :Mike Finewax



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