Power Rankings Week Through 01/09/2010

01/10/2010

NHL Power Rankings presented by The Hockey Guys. These rankings will be released every Sunday directly following the show and summarize the thinking of Anthony Curatolo, Brandon Augienello and Dustin Leed.

IL: Minnesota Wild v Chicago Blackhawks
Legend: Rank – Team – Record – (Last Week) Position Change

1. Chicago Blackhawks 31-10-4 (2) +1 When you are the best you simply are the best.
2. San Jose Sharks 28-10-7 (1) -1 A few losses have shifted gears in the power rankings for the Sharks.
3. New Jersey Devils 31-10-1 (3) N/C Although the lights went out in New Jersey, the Devils haven’t lost a step in their standings.
4. Buffalo Sabres 28-11-5 (6) +2 Good teams prove that winning comes more often then not.
5. Washington Capitals 27-11-6 (9) +4 Captain Ovechking leads the charge and Washington climbs back into the top five.
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The One Who Never Won It All

01/10/2010
 Coyotes v Sabres

Arguably the best Finnish player never to win a Cup, Teppo Numminen will receive recognition for his remarkable career when the Phoenix Coyotes induct him into the “Ring of Honor” on January 30, 2010. Numminen, drafted in 1986, played fifteen seasons for the Winnipeg Jets/Phoenix Coyotes franchise, and continued to play an additional five years for Dallas and Buffalo.

At the time of his retirement on August 4, 2009, the stay-at-home defenseman was the last player from the 1986 draft still playing in the NHL. He was a three-time all-star, a two-time silver medalist at the Olympics (along with one bronze medal), and as of January 2010, he holds the record for most NHL games (1372 games) played without winning a Cup. The longevity of his career was largely due to his vision, his positioning, and his passing.

He never won the Norris Trophy —for the league’s best defenseman — though, Jeremy Roenick once said Numminen should be up for the award every year, but the media and market of Phoenix was not conducive to winning an award. Numminen was a great captain for the Coyotes, but not many outside of Winnipeg and Phoenix gave him the recognition he deserved. His contributions to the Coyotes were outstanding; the Coyotes have not made the playoffs since trading Numminen to the Dallas Stars in July of 2003. He was never a flashy or physical player, but he gave hope to defenseman that positioning can makeup for size and strength.

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Daily Fantasy 3 Stars 01/08/2010

01/09/2010
Buffalo Sabres v Toronto Maple Leafs

In this section, I break down the top three fantasy hockey performers every night and cite why I chose them in particular. In addition, I will track the amount of times the players have received this honor and tally them at the end of the season. For the sake of clarity, I will be using Yahoo! standard categories (Forwards – G,A,+/-, PP, PIM, SOG; Goalies – W, GAA, SV%, SHO) and thus exclude player’s salaries.

Not a big night in hockey with only 5 games and 10 teams in action.  Actually it was more like 4 games and 8 teams when considering the postponed game between the Devils and Tampa Bay.  Here are our standout fantasy stars for January 8, 2010:

THIRD STAR:  Raffi Torres, Columbus Blue Jackets (0-0-1) – Torres scored a goal and assisted on another leading his team to a much needed 3-2 victory over the Flames.  The 28-year-old seems poised to come near his career high of 27 goals, set with the Oilers in 2005-2006.  In under 15 minutes of ice time, he managed a plus three to go along with two shots on goal making him our third star of the game.

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Injury Updates 01/09/2010

01/09/2010
Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic - Team Practices

Here are your NHL injury updates for tonight, January 9, 2010:

Tonight’s Injuries

New York Rangers

  • Vinny Prospal skating, not expected to play today. [Steve Zipay]

Boston Bruins

  • Marc Savard out 3-4 weeks. [The Boston Globe]
  • Andrew Ference, Byron Bitz, Mark Stuart and Patrice Bergeron still out.

Florida Panthers

  • David Booth, Kenndal McArdle and Dmitry Kulikov out.

Ottawa Senators

  • Jason Spezza and Daniel Alfredsson still out.
  • Milan Michalek out with an undisclosed injury.

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Goalie Starters 01/09/2010

01/09/2010
New York Rangers v Ottawa Senators

Here are your expected starting goalies for tonight, January 9, 2010:

UPDATED @ 11:41 AM

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Injury Updates 01/08/2010

01/08/2010
Dallas Stars v New Jersey Devils

Here are your NHL injury updates for tonight, January 8, 2010:

Tonight’s Injuries

Colorado Avalanche

  • Brett Clark, David Jones and Ruslan Salei expected to miss tonight’s game.
  • JM Liles out, due to illness. [Denver Post]

Carolina Hurricanes

  • Sergei Samsonov, Scott Walker, Erik Cole, Chad LaRose and Joe Corvo still out.

Tampa Bay Lightning

  • Matt Walker back in, he replaces Andrej Meszaros. [Lightning Twitter]
  • Jeff Halpern and Todd Fedoruk remain out.

New Jersey Devils

  • David Clarkson, Dainius Zubrus and Paul Martin remain out.

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Goalie Starters 01/08/2010

01/08/2010
Dallas Stars v New Jersey Devils

Here are your expected starting goalies for tonight, January 8, 2010:

UPDATED @ 1:43 PM

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Keeper Watch: First Rounders in Action

01/06/2010
Stanley Cup Champions, Pittsburgh Penguins Take to the Ice For Training Camp

‘Keeper Watch’ will come out every Wednesday or Thursday, noting the changes in value for top prospects who are most likely available in your league. We will also focus on young players once considered top prospects. Similarly to our ‘Endorsed Pickups’ I will try not to focus too much on one position, which will leave some noteworthy players off the list.

This edition of Keeper Watch much like last week’s edition will take an extended look at some top prospects and their assent through the minors.  Most of those mentioned are either first round picks or highly regarded within their organizations.

C: Jiri Tlusty, Carolina Hurricanes – In his three games in Carolina before a recent demotion, the 21-year-old center scored a goal and an assist.  The talented Czech and former 13th overall pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2006 shows tons of promise, adding to what could be an impressive young core.  With injuries to Eric Cole and Chad LaRose there should be some minutes available while the Canes rebuild.  I expect Tlusty to get a longer look this time around.

Prognosis: Lots of potential should he get good minutes.  Monitor his position on the team, he should get an opportunity once some veterans are moved.

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Injury Updates 01/06/2010

01/06/2010
Philadelphia Flyers v Florida Panthers

Here are your NHL injury updates for tonight, January 6, 2010:

Tonight’s Injuries

Tampa Bay Lightning

  • Jeff Halpern, Matt Walker and Todd Fedoruk still out.

Buffalo Sabres

  • Patrick Kaleta still day-to-day.  Held out tonight. [Sabres Edge]

Dallas Stars

  • No injuries.

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Goalie Starters 01/06/2010

01/06/2010
Minnesota Wild v Pittsburgh Penguins

Here are your expected starting goalies for tonight, January 6, 2010:

  • A couple of teams coming off back-to-back nights.  Marty Turco and Niklas Backstrom should be in nets considering their backups played last night.  I told think the situation is as cut and dry in Calgary or Toronto, so I will keep you posted on those decisions.  In addition, the Rangers, Blues and Flyers play the first of back-to-back games, so it will be interesting to see who they choose to start on which nights. (H/T to Joe English for the Turco decision)
  • Michael Leighton confirmed by The Official Twitter Page of the Philadelphia Flyers.

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