||09-25-2005 11:55 PM
Legwand was an absolute beast tonight - easily the best predator on the ice. Erat was really complimenting him well, and with Kariya added to the mix.......this is going to be our top line hands down. I was really impressed with the way they moved the puck...Erat has gotten a lot better guys.....and Legwand.....he was HITTING people....and he did it frequently, not to mention really working his butt off for the faceoffs and defensively. He should have had another penalty shot tonight ...... but the refs blew the call. His goal was well, a beauty, and clutch. Trotz threw the Kariya - Legwand - Erat line out with 90 seconds in the first, after we had just given up a goal......and they produced. Hopefully that is a sign of things to come.
Sullivan also should have had a penalty shot, but we only got a tripping minor out of it.
Being at the game, it really left you wondering what the refs were watching tonight. I counted 6 intentional or borderline intentional goalie interference non-calls on Tomas Vokoun alone, and Mason was getting bumped considerably in the first half as well. The Carolina players crash the net, and the goalie hard. Believe me, it was getting way out of hand. Allison's injury was a direct result, in my mind, of the officials letting the GI get way out of hand. As a fan, there is nothing more frustrating than seeing your goalie hit repeatedly, the other team grabbing the goalie's stick after "falling" into the goalie, or an opponent lowering the shoulder after being nudged into the goaltender. It was really ticking me off.
And the officials in general tonight were just off....They called Kimmo on a tripping call when the Cane guy just fell down....Walker was hit with a tripping when he just hit the guy, and Allison took a penalty when the Cane guy initiated a hit and simply fell down (hooking or some other nonsense was the call). The shot disparity in the first (18 to 8) was directly related to the 6 minor penalties (two 5 on 3 powerplays) called against the Preds, and although it looks like we had a lot of PPs in the 2nd and 3rd......Most of them were of a 20 to 30 second duration only.....The officials always seemed to call a penalty on us while we were on the PP.
But enough whining, the game was fun, and aside from the goalie interference, the officials continued to call a lot of the interference and hooking (which will only benefit our team). We sorely need Hordichuk or Tootoo in this lineup. I really do not like the idea I suggested earlier of 4 scoring lines and the energy line being scratched......Put Stevenson and Hordi on a line and let them dish out some pain....
Hordichuk can really skate well, and it allows Trotz to throw him out there with the scoring lines on occasion and not miss a beat. The no look drop pass to Legwand, which in turn was tip-passed to Erat for a goal, was terrific, and while I do not expect more than 10 points out of Hordi this year......being able to skate a middleweight with out detrimenting our offense too much is a great asset....A 4th rounder was a solid deal for Poile. Hordichuk reminds me of a bigger Tootoo to be honest. Both skate well, hit well, and shoot straight into the pads of opposing goalies :biglaugh:
I think Perrault may very well win the second line center spot alongside Walker and Sullivan. They looked really good out there today. Walkers PP goal was a gimme from Perrault......Easily the best setup of the night from Yanic on that one as he split the defenders, threw it almost through the goal crease for an easy put in. Credit Walker for getting in behind the net and finishing it off for us.
Klein looked pretty solid, and he probably has the talent to stick with a few teams in the NHL right now. Next year will probably force managements hand on him.......whether it be trade him or keep him.
Kariya, Sullivan, and Walker all looked a little rusty, but each created a lot of scoring oppurtunities in the game.
Hall had a much better game in my mind, than he did Friday night. He fought his way through a bunch of crap thrown his way, and all in all, looked very strong on the puck and physical with the Canes.
Upshall, should stick with the club. I really think he is NHL ready. I loved what I saw out of him again tonight. A lot of energy, he finds his way to the puck, and he is not afraid to dig it out of the pile. He always seems to be around the puck as well......always a plus.
Suter - Going to be a star. Easily the best Predator drafted so far. Likely to be the first home-grown Predator superstar IMO.
Loved what I see, and I am sure I am overrating everyone.
Who cares! Its good to have hockey back! :D