It is still preseason, won't get too worked up yet, just worry about injuries already?
Looks like Wilson played a few shifts at center tonight? Goose, big on the dots! Have not seen a game yet, so hard to judge from radio/boxscore. Will wait until televised before making any judgements.
Yes Hornqvist played 80,79, and 76 games the 3 yrs before last year. He still played half the games last year. He gets minor injuries a lot but he hasn't missed months at a time with a major injury. Glad there was no broken bones and hopefully he'll be ready by opening night.
Well I was at the game last night and it wasn't pretty. Several of our best players did not play, but that's not really the point. The score was 4-1 but it could have been worse pretty easily.
• Ekholm - Really, really terrible game positionally and with the puck. He really could not handle 1v1 with any of the stronger Washington forwards. This was disappointing for me given all the positive things I've heard about him recently.
• Spaling - He had one of the worst plays in recent memory; burned SO badly one on one in the corner, to the point he fell flat on his face, and led directly to a goal (Fehr iirc). Just generally not great throughout the game.
• Goose - Terrible with the puck last night, and I don't seem to remember him dominating the circle, but I was also drinking. Just invisible out there; Nystrom looked vastly superior to him and it makes me want to sit Goose and give Beck more time.
• Hutton - He gave up a weak short side goal and was just generally not great with rebound control. He had a disastrous 2nd period, but he had some great saves in the 1st and he closed the game out well. All-in-all, he's pretty close to the bad bucket, but the defense was just terrible and gave WSH some amazing chances.
• Wilson - Wasn't terrible, but it was a disappointing performance. Wasn't strong on the puck and seemed to be just coasting around for the most part.
• A lot of players were largely invisible and fell somewhere between average and not great. Hornqvist, Beck, Klein, Bartley, etc. Not going to spend much time here.
• Jones - Just average. Some basic stickhandling / possession errors, but no major mistakes. Just didn't really stand out. The defense pairings from last night are clearly not going to persist going forward, so I won't worry too much about it.
• Moser - I actually had to look up who this was when the game started because I didn't recognize the number and I was sitting in the cheap seats. He was one of the few bright spots; had some nice carries with the puck that led to some decent chances. Not awesome defensively, but he looked pretty solid.
• Ellis - Ellis was pretty great. He was possibly the only person on the Preds other than Fisher who looked like he knew what he was doing when he had the puck. Solid zone clearing whether he was passing or skating it out and he had some good entries that led to decent chances. He was not great as QB on the PP though.
• Fisher - Had a great fight with someone and looked like one of the few people who cared last night. Some great chances and played like Fisher normally does.
• Nystrom - Color me surprised, but he was one of the best players on the ice. Physical, great fight, and had the best chances on the team. He was surprisingly good behind the net with the puck and I thought he looked like 4x better than Gaustad which is a reasonable comparable.
That's about all the strong impressions I had. Not a great game at all; was most disappointed with the lack of effort, even from some fringe players like Beck, Spaling, etc. I think Spaling hits the trade block; when he got burned and WSH scored, the coaches did a minor huddle on the bench. We'll see.
Also, my heart stopped when Hornqvist took a slapshot off the side of his skate. He immediately went to the bench on one skate and could not put any weight on the other foot; I seriously thought he broke a bone in his foot. Glad he's ok.