Around the league: Rookie sensations, unsigned RFAs, injuries galoreOctober 20, 2016, by
We’re a short week into the 2016-17 NHL season already and have seen some high scoring hockey in our hometown at the Garden. With the excitement of new faces like Jimmy Vesey, Pavel Buchnevich, Mika Zibanejad, etc., it’s been easy to forget that other hockey teams exist around the league.
Don’t be sad, dear reader. Our job here at BSB is to keep you clued in on not only all things New York Rangers, but all things hockey. It’s been an entertaining week in hockey-land, so let’s break it down systematically.
Goals, Goals, Goals
Where the heck are the goalies, y’all? It’s been a tough first week, with an average of over 3 goals per team, per game. A very short sample size, of course, but the last time a league averaged 3 goals per team, per game, was the post-lockout season in 2005-06.
Some notable performances have been made by the usual suspects, guys like Vladimir Tarasenko, who has four goals in four games. The most media-frenzied was the debut of highly anticipated Maple Leafs rookie Auston Matthews, who had four in his first game. Some writers hemmed and hawed over “can he keep this pace,” and the answer is “of course not,” but it certainly was spectacular to watch a rookie enter the league in that fashion.
We have a lot of exposure to goals with the Rangers, so let’s continue on.
Cut to the first period of the Los Angeles Kings game on opening night. It ended with highly regarded (around some parts) goaltender Jonathan Quick exiting with an injury… and it doesn’t look like he’ll come back. This stinks if you’re a fantasy owner, or, well, a Kings fan.
Unfortunately, we have already seen a few injuries that have major implications in the beginning of many teams seasons. Young Buffalo center Jack Eichel had to watch the first game of the season from the press box with an immobilizing scooter to help him get around. We’re talking about injuries in practice — practice! — abruptly ending his hopes for early autumn hockey.
Jonathan Huberdeau, Shane Prince, and even Carey Price all have already seen time on the IR a mere 3-4 games in. Price with the flu should return much sooner than Huberdeau, who had surgery on an achilles tendon and will be out until January.
As a (Yahoo!, though this in no way is an endorsement [unless you wanna pay me, Yahoo! 😉 ]) fantasy owner, the only thing more infuriating than seeing the dreaded O is seeing NA beside a players name. NA identifies a player that may have been sent down, or, in October, a player who hasn’t signed a deal yet.
Enter two players we frequently discuss here at the Blog: Hampus Lindholm and Jacob Trouba. The two situations are different, however, as a fantasy owner, I want them both to be resolved and each to sign. Or be traded to the Rangers. I’ll go pick either of them up and drive them cross country.
It was expected that the Trouba situation would be a little tricky. He demanded a trade from Winnipeg during the offseason, however, as a RFA, the general manager can take as much time as he would like. And oh, he is. You’d be hard pressed to find a person who doesn’t think the Jets miss the talent of Trouba, however the request for an identical player makes it literally impossible to trade. We’ll see how the drama wears on.
Share in the comments what your favorite part of the season has been so far, aside from the Rangers hot scoring start."Around the league: Rookie sensations, unsigned RFAs, injuries galore",