Michael Finewax

Hockey Daily Dose

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An Avalanche of a Deal

Monday, November 6, 2017


The big news of the day came early in the evening on the East Coast when it was announced that Matt Duchene had been dealt from the Colorado Avalanche.

 

That Duchene was traded was no surprise. It was a bit of a surprise that it happened during an Avalanche game and Duchene had to be taken off the bench, but otherwise it was a matter of time until he was gone.

 

That Kyle Turris was dealt to Nashville was a shock. He quickly inked a six-year/$36 million extension so he is not going anywhere next season and it gives the Predators two very good centers in Turris and Ryan Johansen.

 

What the Avs got was a nice collection of prospects and draft picks. The prize right now is defenseman Samuel Girard, a 19-year-old with plenty of offensive upside who actually made the Predators out of training camp and was still with the team at the time of the trade. The Avs will have to decide whether or not to keep him or send him back to junior but they likely don’t have to make a decision for a couple of weeks as he has only played five games and will not burn a year of his entry level deal unless he plays in 10 games. He has had 74 and 75 point seasons with Shawinigan of the QMJHL over the last two seasons.

 

Shane Bowers was taken 28th overall in the 2017 Draft and he has a lot of upside. He currently is at Boston University where he has four goals and six points in 10 games as a freshman. The Avs don’t have to rush him.

 

Vladislav Kamenev was taken in the second round of the 2014 Draft and has eight points in nine games this season with Milwaukee of the AHL. He is another prospect and plays the game with some sandpaper as he has 25 penalty minutes already after 59 minutes in 70 games last season.

 

In addition the Avalanche get Ottawa’s first pick in 2018 although it is top-ten protected, as well as the Sens third pick in 2019. They get the Predators second round pick this season. As well they get some extra depth in net with Andrew Hammond. All he is is depth but every team needs it.

 

All-in-all it could be a win-win for all teams. The Predators are going for it again this season and Turris is a talented top-two center. The Senators get a talented Duchene who has been maligned for the last couple of years and it will be interesting to see what he can do.

 

As for the Avs, it is all about the future. If Girard is the defenseman they hope he is, everything else is gravy. Bowers and Kamenev are prospects (as is Girard) and if either or both pan out, it looks even better for the Avs. The future picks remain to be seen.

 

It’s way too early to pick a winner of this trade. I’ll let you know in about seven years.

 

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DETROIT 4 EDMONTON 0

 

Petr Mrazek turned aside all 36 shots as the Red Wings shutout the Edmonton Oilers 4-0.

It was Mrazek’s first shutout of the season and his stats this year look good as he is 4-2-2 with a 2.55 GAA and a .924 save percentage.  He was horrible last season as he lost the gig as the Red Wings top goalie going 18-21-9 with a 3.04 GAA and a .901 save percentage. The Red Wings would love it if he re-establishes himself as their top goalie as Jimmy Howard is 33 while Mrazek is 25.

 

Martin Frk broke out of his slump with a goal and an assist. He had only one assist in his previous 10 games and was demoted to a bottom-six role. Anthony Mantha also had a goal and an assist for the winners.

 

Frans Nielsen and Gustav Nyquist gave the Red Wings a 2-0 lead after one period and they never looked back. Nyquist suffered a lower body injury in the first and did not return. He is day-to-day.

 

Cam Talbot made 31 saves and you know it is going to be a long night if Zack Kassian is your leader in shots on net as he had five.

 

Dylan Larkin had 10 shots on goal for Detroit but he was held off the scoresheet.

 

Connor McDavid played only 15:55, his lowest total of the season.

 

NEW YORK ISLANDERS 6 COLORADO 4

 

The Avalanche had plenty to deal with as Duchene was dealt during the game and the New York Islanders took advantage with a 6-4 win.

 

Jordan Eberle and Nick Leddy each had two goals but the star of the game was Mathew Barzal who had five helpers. Not a bad night for the rookie.

 

Defensemen Scott Mayfield and Johnny Boychuk also scored for the Islanders who had four goals from their rearguards.

 

Thomas Greiss made 31 saves and it would have been a lot nicer performance had Alexander Kerfoot not scored twice for Colorado in the last 30 seconds of the game.

 

Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog also scored for Colorado.

 

Jonathan Bernier did not light the world on fire on Sunday as he gave up all six goals on 28 shots.

 

Josh Bailey had a couple of assists and now is on an NHL leading nine game points streak.

 

Blake Comeau suffered an upper body injury midway through the first period and did not return. That left the Avs with only 10 forwards with Duchene being traded.

 

MONTREAL 2 CHICAGO 0

 

Maybe Charlie Lindgren is the Montreal goalie to lead them to the promised land. He was sensational in stopping all 38 Chicago shots to win his first start of the season.

 

Lindgren has played in four NHL games over the past three seasons and has yet to taste defeat as his GAA is a mind-boggling 1.24 with a .960 save percentage. Can you say: Carey Who?

 

The 23-year-old was undrafted and has been mediocre in the minors but has been great in the NHL. Don’t expect it to last.

 

Joe Morrow picked up his first two points of the season with a goal and an assist while Jonathan Drouin got the game winner with his third of the season.

 

Corey Crawford made 33 saves in the Chicago cage but it was not enough as he allowed both goals in the third period.

 

Cody Franson had six shots on goal as well as four blocked shots.

 

CALGARY 5 NEW JERSEY 4 (Shootout)

 

Matthew Tkachuk scored the shootout winner to give the Flames a 5-4 win over New Jersey.

 

Sean Monahan scored in the first round of the shootout but Drew Stafford tied it up on the Devils third attempt, making room for Tkachuk’s heroics.

 

Mike Smith got the win despite giving up four goals on 30 shots. Keith Kinkaid took the shootout loss as he made 30 saves.

 

Monahan, Michael Frolik and Micheal Ferland each had a goal and an assist for Calgary while Michael Stone scored his first of the season.

 

Taylor Hall, Ben Lovejoy, Brian Gibbons with his team-leading seventh of the season and Andy Greene with his first, replied for New Jersey who head home after a Western Canada swing.

 

First overall pick in 2017, Nico Hischier, had two assists in the contest and now has two goals and 10 points in 13 games. He has shown he belongs in the NHL.



Michael Finewax is entering his 13th season as the Senior Hockey Writer and Editor for Rotoworld. You can follow him on Twitter @mfinewaxhockey.
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