The PHT Nightcap: Wednesday, August 25th

Even in the depressingly hockey-free summer, we expect to be a productive bunch here at Pro Hockey Talk. Sometimes it might be difficult to follow our pace. We understand that. For that reason, whenever we can, we’ll put all of the day’s stories in one convenient post called the PHT Nightcap. Enjoy, hockey fans.

Canucks sign Raffi Torres to one-year deal – As if Vancouver didn’t have enough grit to begin with …

Lack of Sheldon Souray trade is holding up other Oilers moves – Yep, getting rid of the $5 million-plus defenseman might be a good way to clear up space for other players.

NHL reportedly shoots down another Kovalchuk contract – Although Bettman & Co. deny the rejection. OK, then.

Jere Lehtinen still unsure about his playing future – Maybe it’s time for the great two-way Finnish forward to call it quits, then?

Lightning re-sign Steve Downie – I’m not a fan of his dirty hits and tomfoolery, but he does bring an awful lot more to the table than you’d expect on offense.

Will Roberto Luongo still be the Canucks captain? – Vancouver might be better off going in a different direction.

Joe’s breakdown of the NHL on NBC schedule

Kings hand Willie Mitchell to a two-year deal – His concussion issues make this a risky move, but it could pay out big dividends for LA.

AHL releases its 2010-11 schedule – 30 teams worth of minor league fun.

Lightning re-sign Randy Jones – Another busy day in a busy summer for new GM Steve Yzerman.

Kovalchuk update – Bettman denies … the denial. The KHL is still knocking on the door.

My breakdown on the Versus schedule

Donald Fehr reportedly accepts NHLPA head position – Cue Scooby Doo’s “ruh roh.”

Brian Burke explains the NHL’s Olympic doubts – When Burke speaks, something interesting usually happens.

KHL president is optimistic about improving their relationship with the NHL – Yet, no flowers or chocolates?

Sharks GM shoots down Owen Nolan, Antti Niemi rumors – Sorry, San Jose fans.

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    Scary moment: Carlo Colaiacovo hospitalized with ‘dented trachea’

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    Buffalo Sabres defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo has experienced plenty of bad injury luck in his winding career, but Saturday presented one of his worst scares.

    As you can see from the video above, Colaiacovo received a scary cross-check from Viktor Arvidsson of the Nashville Predators, who received a major penalty and game misconduct.

    Sabres head coach Dan Bylsma said that Colaiacovo was hospitalized with a “dented trachea” yet is OK, the Buffalo News’ John Vogl reports.

    Frightening stuff from an eventual 4-1 Sabres win.

    PHT will keep an eye out for additional updates regarding Colaiacovo’s health (and a possible suspension for Arvidsson).

    Comeback Kings: Gaborik pulls L.A. past Kane, Blackhawks

    Jake Muzzin, Scott Darling

    Patrick Kane set an American scoring record, and added another assist to make it more impressive, but the Los Angeles Kings just wouldn’t be denied.

    In the end, Marian Gaborik‘s big night meant more than Kane’s; he scored the tying and then overtime game-winner, both assisted by Anze Kopitar, for a rousing 4-3 overtime Kings win.

    Gaborik’s first goal:

    And here’s video of the OT-GWG:

    Noticing a theme tonight? Yeah, it’s been an evening in which it’s dangerous to assume a lead would stand.

    With that, the Kings stick to the No. 1 spot in the Pacific Division, but Chicago shouldn’t feel all bad. The Blackhawks were able to piece together a decent run during their dreaded “circus trip.”

    Patrick Kane’s streak hits 19 games, setting a new American record


    When it comes to point streaks for U.S.-born NHL players, Patrick Kane now stands alone.

    With a power-play goal early in Saturday’s Blackhawks – Kings game, Kane extended his streak to 19 games, breaking a tie with Phil Kessel and Eddie Olczyk (who finished with at least a point in 18 straight).

    As of this writing, Kane has 11 goals and 19 assists during this 19-game streak. He also leads the NHL in scoring.

    Bobby Hull’s 21-game point streak stands as the Chicago Blackhawks’ overall team record, by the way.

    So, how would you protect a lead against the Stars?


    You know what they say: it’s easy to bash a strategy in hindsight.

    Slam that NFL head coach for going for it on fourth down … or settling for the field goal. Bury that MLB manager because he kept a pitcher in too long. And so on.

    “Score effects” settle in during almost any lopsided hockey game, yet the Dallas Stars present quite a conundrum: what’s the best way to put a way a team with this much firepower?

    Tonight may have presented the greatest evidence that this team won’t go away easy, as it seemed like the Minnesota Wild had the best of a tired Stars team* when they built a 3-0 lead.

    Instead, the Stars scored three third-period goals while Tyler Seguin capped the comeback with an overtime-winner.

    It was one of those bend-and-then-break moments for Minnesota. Dallas generated a 44-26 shot advantage, including a ridiculous 35-15 edge in the final two periods.

    Does that mean that Mike Yeo may have tried to play too conservatively with a healthy lead? It’s a possibility.

    On the other hand, would the Wild be wiser to try to run-and-gun with one of the most dangerous offenses in the NHL?

    It sure seems like a pick-your-poison situation. Which way would you lean, though?

    * – To be fair to Minnesota, each team was on back-to-backs.