Although Kris Letang was assessed a two minute minor penalty for boarding, there was a sliver of hope that Letang would face some kind of supplementary discipline from the League. If no member of the Senators roster was going to stand up and fill Letang's face in with some lefts and rights, the least the League could do was give him a mild suspension.
Nope. Nada. Not happening. No fine. No suspension.
The only positive thing that came from it was a sweet Bryan Murray soundbyte.
“I watch the game, and how calls are, and I think that if that would have been ... I’m not going to use a name, but a different player, it might well have been a major, the (offending) guy would have been out of the game for sure, and the league would suspend him.
Obviously, in this case, I don’t think they looked at it as serious at the time. I don’t know why that would be the case.”
It's okay Bryan. Just as you huffed and hawed after last season's playoff defeat to the Pittsburgh Penguins, you still speak for all of us when you say, "we all want Jason Spezza to be Sidney Crosby". Shit, for just one game, I wished Spezza was Gregory Campbell.
Pascal Leclaire to Miss The Next Three Games
A number of weeks ago, one reader sent in an email after Cory Clouston said that Pascal's recovery process from injury had become stagnant.
Pascal Leclaire is stagnant? This is coach-speak for the fact that Leclaire is injury prone and, apparently, on leaving the arena he became disoriented and fell into the mighty Carp River, swallowed some water and is now suffering from E. coli. He's apparently feeling so poorly, he lacks the energy to say the only phrase that he appears to have mastered in the English language: "It's frustrating".
So now that Leclaire is expected to miss the next three games, Mike Brodeur will stick with the big club until Pascal finds himself fit enough to play. Hah!
As boner inducing as Robin Lehner's 3-0 shutout of Russia was, most of my WJHC attention has been devoted to the play of Jared Cowen. With the way that Cowen struggled at times and was benched for Canada's game against the Swiss during last year's tournament, his play thus far should be used as a barometer for how he is developing as a player. The contrast between last year and now is stark. It's night and day. Thus far, Cowen has had two strong games against the Russian and Czech squads and the possibility exists that Calvin De Haan's injury may force Cowen to eat up some more valuable minutes. I'm looking forward to seeing whether Cowen can flourish with an increased workload and more responsibility.
Speaking of reinforcing one's psyche, in Elliotte Friedman's latest blog for the CBC, he was told by someone familiar with Sergei Gonchar that the Senators defenceman needs two things: structure and stroking. The Senators have the first, but not so much the second. Gonchar needs to be reminded that he's important, that he'll play against the best players and that he can be counted on against them.
Svatos Claimed on Waivers
Not too long ago, rumours surfaced shortly after The Tinman voiced displeasure with being relegated to the fourth line that the St. Louis Blues called to inquire on Kovalev's availability. Those rumours subsided earlier this week when the Blues inked Marek Svatos to a two-way contract. But thanks to an old NHL rule that requires that this player pass through waivers before he could play for the Blues, the Nashville Predators have claimed Svatos. The dream of seeing Kovalev moved out of town isn't dead. Come on Blues, pony up!
Down On the Farm
For those who want some information on some of the prospects down in Binghamton and how their seasons have progressed, you can check out this article over at Hockey's Future.
It's not too often that you can compliment Islanders General Manager Garth Snow for a job well done but after parlaying James Wisniewski to Montreal for a second and fifth round draft pick, he certainly maximized on Wis' value. Wisniewski was originally acquired last summer from the Ducks for a conditional third rounder in 2011.