Milestone Watch: Some significant numbers players can reach during the 2010-11 season

1 Comment

alfsalutes.jpgIn the last couple days, I tackled the NHL’s most “unbreakable” records as well as ones that are “off the beaten path.” To complete that leisurely triangle of numbers posts, I thought I’d look at some more attainable feats that could be accomplished during the 2010-11 season. Here is a look at some achievable milestones in the goals, assists and goalie stat categories.

(Hockey-reference.com was a huge help in putting this post together. Keep in mind these won’t always be full lists.)

1,500 Points

Mark Recchi needs 15.

1,000 Points

Three players are within striking distance: Daniel Alfredsson (8), Alex Kovalev (10) and Paul Kariya (11).

400 Goals

Jason Arnott needs 17, Alfredsson needs 25.

300 Goals

Dany Heatley needs 1, Joe Thornton needs 15.

200 Goals

Five players are within 10 goals of this milestone. In order of least goals needed: Pavel Datsyuk (2), Eric Staal (7), Brenden Morrow (7), Brad Richards (8) and Jason Blake (10).

100 Goals

Patrice Bergeron and Jay Pandolfo are within one. There are a lot of others who are just a few goals away.

600 Assists

Kariya needs 13, Kovalev needs 22.

500 Assists

Three players are within 10: Slava Kozlov (3), Marc Savard (9) and Arnott (10).

chrisosgoodsave.jpgGoalies

602 wins, 110 shutouts

Martin Brodeur will attempt to pad his all-time lead in wins and shutouts this season.

The active goalies with the next closest shutout totals are Roberto Luongo (51) and Chris Osgood (50).

1,100 games played

Martin Brodeur needs 24 to increase his all-time games played lead (1,076) over Patrick Roy (1,029).

Nikolai Khabibulin needs 4 GP to hit 700; Tomas Vokoun needs 25 to reach 600; J.S. Giguere needs 8 for 500.

400 wins

Osgood needs 4.

300 wins

Evgeni Nabokov finished his career seven wins short of this milestone.

40 shutouts

Vokoun needs 2

30 shutouts

Jose Theodore needs 1

20 shutouts

Niklas Backstrom needs 1

So, overall, this could be a pretty big year of milestones for Mark Recchi, Chris Osgood, Pavel Datsyuk, Paul Kariya and Alex Kovalev. Numbers like these really put careers in perspective, particularly how peerless Martin Brodeur really has been – at least quantity wise.

Lupul apologizes, takes ‘full responsibility’ after calling out Maple Leafs on Instagram

Getty
1 Comment

Joffrey Lupul made headlines earlier this week after appearing to make accusations against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Instagram.

The comments — which have since been deleted but caught on a screen grab — came after the Maple Leafs announced Lupul failed his physical prior to training camp for the second year in a row.

“I’m ready … just awaiting the call,” Lupul wrote in the comments section of the Instagram post, per the screen grab. “haha failed physical? They cheat. Everyone lets them.”

On Wednesday, the 33-year-old forward, who hasn’t played since the 2015-16 season, posted a statement on his verified Twitter account, saying his Instagram comments were an “inappropriate response.”

Here is his entire statement:

What’s also significant is that he stated he will not seek a second medical opinion regarding this failed physical. As previously noted, that option was available to him, although, per reports, the deadline for this was 5 p.m. on Thursday.

Lupul is in the final year of his five-year, $26.25 million contract.

Erik Cole retires as a member of the Hurricanes

Getty
Leave a comment

Erik Cole has officially retired.

The Carolina Hurricanes made the announcement on Wednesday, stating that Cole signed a ceremonial contract with the NHL team and retired as a member of the Hurricanes.

Now 38 years old, Cole played 892 regular season games in the NHL, scoring 265 goals and 532 points. A number of his best seasons occurred while he was with the Hurricanes, reaching 30 goals with the 2005-06 Stanley Cup winning team.

His best season came with the Montreal Canadiens in 2011-12, as he scored 35 goals and 61 points.

His last season was in 2014-15. He began the year in Dallas and was moved to Detroit at the trade deadline, but a spinal cord contusion essentially meant an end to his playing career.

From the Detroit Free Press in April, 2015:

Cole revealed Wednesday that he has a spinal cord contusion severe enough doctors have cautioned him not to play again this spring.

“It stems back from my neck injury in 2006,” Cole said. “When I ran into the player in the Arizona game, I bruised my spinal cord. A spinal contusion is something that you have to let heal and obviously, it’s a pretty serious occurrence. Doctors feel I need to look out for my well-being as a person, not just as a hockey player.”

Cole is now a team ambassador for the Hurricanes.

Eriksson looks to bounce back after ‘tough start’ with Canucks

Getty
7 Comments

The Canucks signed Loui Eriksson last summer, with the hopes he’d help give them a boost in scoring.

It didn’t quite turn out that way — at least not during Eriksson’s first year of a lucrative six-year, $36 million contract with the Canucks.

He scored only 11 times with 24 points in 65 games. The previous season in Boston, he scored 30 goals and 63 points in 82 games, so, yeah, it was a drastic drop in production in one year for the veteran winger, who started the year with a 13-game scoring drought.

“It was a tough start,” said Eriksson, per The Canadian Press. “I had to work uphill through the whole season.”

Read more: Under pressure: Loui Eriksson

That’s a difficult start for any player, but especially for one at the beginning of an expensive new deal in a new market.

“I’m anxious to see Loui. I’m confident that he’ll have a good season. We’ve talked about that … about the transition from Boston to Vancouver,” coach Travis Green said at the start of training camp. “He knows he has to have a better year than he had last year. I think he’s more than capable of it.”

The Canucks were active this summer, too, signing a number of free agents. Again, the hope is the additions they made heading into the new season — Sam GagnerThomas Vanek and Michael Del Zotto among them — could help give them a spark offensively, particularly on the power play.

Eriksson’s season ended in early March because of a lower-body injury. Now he’ll look to rebound from a disappointing season at the age of 32.

Panarin trying to ‘find chemistry’ with new teammates in Columbus

Getty
2 Comments

Artemi Panarin faced his old team, the Chicago Blackhawks, on Tuesday.

It was only preseason and Panarin didn’t register a point in just over 22 minutes of ice time, and 8:17 on the power play.

But there was an interesting nugget to come from his media availability following the game — Panarin’s first against his old team following this summer’s blockbuster trade between the Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

Panarin was loose and comfortable, occasionally chatting in English and frequently devolving into giggle fits with teammates Vitaly Abramov and Matiss Kivlenieks, who tried in vain to interpret for him. In fact, Panarin said he was ‘‘glad’’ to be with the Blue Jackets, where he’ll have more creative control on the ice. As dynamic as he and Patrick Kane were as linemates, Kane is basically a center playing wing, dominating the puck.

With the Blue Jackets, Panarin can be that guy.

‘‘I can play a little bit more with the puck,’’ Panarin said through the interpreters. ‘‘Just kind of express myself on the ice a little bit more.’’

In two NHL seasons, both with Chicago, Panarin has been a scoring threat, reaching the 30-goal mark twice. Now with Columbus, Panarin is on a two-year contract worth a total of $12 million and will be eligible for unrestricted free agency when this deal concludes, per CapFriendly.

With the Blackhawks, Panarin spent plenty of time alongside Kane and it appears there has been suggestions that his offensive production was inflated as the result of playing on a line with Kane.

That suggestion has annoyed Panarin. Still, he joins a Blue Jackets team already equipped with a strong nucleus of young players that made considerable progress with a franchise-setting regular season in 2016-17.

“We’ll see how the season will go,” Panarin told the Chicago Tribune. “Beginning of the season maybe I’ll need to make some adjustments, but I just try to find chemistry with my new partners. It’s still in progress.”