Apparently, some sort of alien, demon, or other shape-shifter familiar with the 4-1 defense and adept at controlling puck possession has kidnapped Travis Moen and assumed his role on Montreal's fourth line. This being, we'll call him Moen for simplicity's sake, currently ranks third (!) in the NHL (!!!) in zone start adjusted Corsi% amongst forwards (with at least 30 minutes of 5 on 5 ice time). I probably don't have to remind Canadiens fans that these numbers differ significantly from last season's. In 2012-2013, Moen ranked last among Montreal's 14 main forwards in the same possession category. Of course, the 2013-2014 numbers come with all the caveats associated with small sample size analysis, but it's still encouraging to see Moen post such lofty statistics early in the season. For a guy who was, and probably still is, regarded as expensive and redundant, he's sure silenced his critics for immediate future.
Montreal Canadiens News and Analysis
Today is a good news, bad news day on the Habs' roster front. The bad news is that Max Pacioretty is expected to be out for three weeks with a left hamstring strain. On the good side of the ledger, Alexei Emelin (knee) looks to be slightly ahead of the preseason rehabilitation timetable that had him out until "December at the earliest." Michel Therrien said Emelin was recovering well and could return towards the end of next month.
Filed in the category of interesting but likely inconsequential, there were a shit-load of scouts at the Bell Centre for yesterday's win against the Blue Jackets. Representatives from Hockey Canada and the Russian Hockey federation as well as Philadelphia, Vancouver, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Florida, St. Louis, Colorado, Long Island, and Tampa were all in the building.
Citing Carey Price's ability to play under a microscope, TSN's Pierre Lebrun claims that Team Canada executives are secretly rooting for Price to play himself into the starting job for Sochi. The quote given by Lebrun on TSN was: "Team Canada will never admit this [publicly], but Price is the guy they want in Sochi."
It was Francois Bouillon's 38th Birthday yesterday, so EOTP would like to extend belated birthday wishes to the Cube.
Georges Laraque has stepped down as deputy leader, and byelection candidate, of the federal Green Party to deal with his legal troubles. In spite of the charges, Green leader Elizabeth May supports Laraque and is confident that he will be exonerated.
General News and Analysis
Copper & Blue's Scott Reynolds introduces the first heat of his Best Players Ever tournament. Vote for the player you think should be eliminated from contention. At time of writing, it looks like original Flying Frenchman Newsy Lalonde is poised to be the first eliminated.
The Sharks have been downright scary to start the season, leading the league in 5 on 5 Fenwick percentage and 5 on 5 Fenwick Close. As you can imagine, San Jose's scoring chance numbers are emotionally overwhelming: they're sporting a 5 on 5 Chances For percentage of 68.5%.
Taylor Hall scored two goals in eight seconds on Thursday night against the Islanders, breaking Wayne Gretzky's record for the fastest two goals in Oilers history. It ultimately did not help the Oil as they lost their third game in a row. Our perpetually rebuilding brothers and sisters in Edmonton sit last in the West in both points and goal differential, although they rank 17th in Fenwick Close. To quote Copper & Blue commenter conflator: "The path to happiness is through lowered expectations."
"The Best in Town" Philadelphia Daily News has come up with a new nickname for Sid "The Squid" Crosby. I found this on a Penguins site and with the nickname and cover being so terrible, I wouldn't be surprised if this was actually some sort of bizarre parody.
Some wise guy or gal listed Henrik Lundqvist as the owner of the Washington Capitals on the latter's Wikipedia page.
The Florida Panthers seem willing to fill seats and please fans any way they can. For yesterday's game against Boston, the Panthers advertised that they would air game five of the American League Championship Series "on TV's throughout the arena."
More from Eyes On The Prize:
- Max Pacioretty injury update: out for 3 weeks
- Canadiens vs. Blue Jackets - Top Six Minutes - You're off the force, Bobrovsky
- Ears on the Prize - Episode 6 - Archive
- École d'été (des indiens) sur les statistiques fines: Obsession possession !
- How many dirty hits does it take to make a dirty player?