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The Best Poll Dancers in the East (and other links)

Your collection of fine links for the afternoon.

So soff that he'll win the Norris.
So soff that he'll win the Norris.
Justin K. Aller

Sometime last weekend, TSN polled 25 NHL head coaches, 13 in the West and 12 in the East, and asked them to pick one winner and one runner-up in six NHL award categories: the Hart, Vezina, Norris, Calder, Selke and Adams. There were two stipulations placed on the participants: coaches could only pick players in their own conference and they could not select anyone from their own team. Bob McKenzie published the results of the survey yesterday and, to my surprise, the Habs have won over the coaches in the East. Price, Subban, Gallagher, and Therrien were "awarded" the Eastern Vezina, Norris, Calder, and Jack Adams respectively, with P.K. declared the "clear winner" in the conference's Norris "race." In light of the team's recent struggles, hopefully this poll will serve as a reminder that it's truly been a phenomenal season. Even the most optimistic among us viewed the Habs as a "bubble team," while many were very pessimistic about the team's prospects. If you're down on the team, think about where we could be right now, especially considering that our success has hinged on guys like Brendan Gallagher, Rene Bourque, Michael Ryder and Andrei Markov performing above expectations and getting lucky, too. Back-to-back blowouts don't seem so bad now, do they? In summary, cheer up Charlie, enjoy these links, and get psyched for the Pens-Habs game tonight at 7:00 ET!

Habs News and Analysis

Know Your Enemy: Pittsburgh Penguins Edition

General News and Analysis

  • In a cynical cash grab an attempt to bring the "stadium experience" to more fans, the NHL is preparing to unveil a series of outdoor games, to complement the Winter Classic, for the 2013-2014 season. Highlights include a Ducks-Kings game at Dodger Stadium, a Devils-Rangers at Yankee Stadium, and a Penguins-Blackhawks game at Soldier Field.
  • CBCSports.ca's Doug Harrison has a brief history of ex-Edmonton GM Steve Tambellini's work. I think Tambo deserved more time, and a retooled professional scouting department, before he was relieved of his duties.
  • Vice's Thomas Drance feels that when it comes to skill level, Nazem Kadri is closer to Zack Kassian than he is to Doug Gilmour or Wayne Gretzky. Personally, I feel that Drance's piece is rooted in anti-Muslim bias and thus should not be taken seriously, but what can you do?
  • Using six years of data, Michael Parkatti of Boys on the Bus examines the randomness, or lack thereof, of team PDO. As Parkatti describes it, PDO is the sum of even strength shooting and EV save percentage that "describe[s] the encapsulated luck of a team." He notes various interesting things including the Habs' status as a "top five PDO team" over the last six seasons and the fact that the PDO of one season has some predictive power over the PDO of the following season.
  • Thomas Drance over at Canuck's Army looks at Christian Ehrhoff's staggering WOWYs (with or without you statistics) and makes the case for his Norris nomination alongside P.K. Subban and Kris Letang. Buffalo's Corsi For percentage drops by 10% when Ehrhoff is off the ice and every defenseman on the Sabres posts worse possession numbers when they're away from the German rearguard.

Archive Material and EOTP News

  • The fine programmers over at SB Nation HQ have updated the commenting system on their stable of blogs. Posters will now be able to edit comments up to 90 seconds after posting. For the clumsy keyboarders, hotheads, and nincompoops among us, of which I am all three, this is a welcome addition. Also, our code-writing overlords have added the ability to collapse threads without titles and collapse a top level comment with all of its replies. Expect the changes to be added later in the week.