Best: For a team that doesn’t have a long history of sweaters, the Wild got it right with their beautiful third sweater they unleashed two seasons ago. When you think of the wilderness you think of the color green and that’s just what this sweater has. It’s green all over with “Minnesota Wild” in script across the front. It’s simple, elegant, and honestly beautiful. It’s got a touch of that old school feel to it and reminds us of the All-Star Jerseys from when the game was held in St. Paul in 2004.
Worst: Oddly enough, the Wild’s worst sweater is also an all green affair. The team’s original road jersey was even-handed match to their white home sweater just green all over. The red and gold piping wasn’t enough to help distract from the heaps of green all over this sweater and was roundly disliked in Minnesota and elsewhere. It’s odd that this one was so disliked while the home whites (still the look of their road sweaters now) are beloved. That says something more about making things look nice for one’s eyes rather than blowing them away with one color. It just goes to show you more reasons why the design of their new third is so particular and special to the fans.
Circular Madness: In 2003, the Wild introduced an “iron range red” third jersey that featured the Wild logo within a circular ring that had the team name going around it. The design made the team’s logo look instantly old school and for us hockey fans, anything that looks old-time hockey-like is something we’ll warm up to right away. Well, most of the time anyway. For the Wild, going away from the forest green and into their other team color in red was a huge success and the sweater took over as the team’s home sweater in 2007 and remains that way now. When it’s done right, the circular logo can be perfect. Minnesota’s one of the few teams that’s pulled it off right.
Assessment: The Wild’s current sweater array is about as good as it gets and looks like a “best of” collection of what they’ve done through their short history. The home red is great, their road whites have sustained years of changes, and their green alternates are a thing of beauty. While the Wild are still finding their way on the ice with their play, they sure look good while trying to figure things out.
PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
—Martin Jones is a calming presence in the Sharks’ net. (Sports Illustrated)
–The Rangers should go after Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk. (The Hockey News)
–Some people have pretty wild hockey tattoos. (BarDown)
–Watch the highlights of last night’s game between the Penguins and Capitals. (Top)
–A great piece on how Bruce Boudreau impacted the Ducks and Capitals. (Sportsnet)
–It should be an interesting off-season for the Anaheim Ducks. (Daily Breeze)
—Adam Henrique is a funny guy. He took to Twitter to try and get himself on the cover of NHL 17:
Get this: the Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins seem divided on the legality of Kris Letang‘s hit on Marcus Johansson.
(Take a moment to gather your thoughts amid this shocking revelation.)
You can watch the hit over and over in the video above. This post features some takes on that check, which the NHL’s Department of Player Safety is reportedly reviewing.
Generally speaking, the three things people discuss regarding the check is how late it might be, if Letang used his feet and if Johansson’s head was the principal point of contact.
Letang told his side of the story:
The Capitals disagree:
While Barry Trotz pleads the Fifth after his previous comments about Brooks Orpik‘s suspension:
No doubt about it, Letang’s status is the top story to follow in this series between Games 3 and 4. We’ll find out soon enough how it all shakes out.
If Marc-Andre Fleury suiting up bothers Matt Murray, then the rookie goalie channeled those feelings into a masterful performance on Monday.
The Washington Capitals absolutely dominated Game 3, but Murray was even better, stopping 47 shots as the Penguins stole one 3-2 to take a 2-1 series lead.
(Capitals fans might see some parallels to Washington’s Game 5 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers; they fell 2-0 despite a 44-11 shots on goal edge thanks to Michal Neuvirth‘s heroics.)
Murray stopped chance after chance before Alex Ovechkin finally broke through for his first goal of this series. Justin Williams then brought the Penguins’ lead down to 3-2 to make for a hold-your-breath final minute.
A driven Ovechkin and strong overall play from the Capitals (despite this defeat) aren’t the only reasons why Game 4 might present some twists.
First things first: Kris Letang might get suspended for Game 4 (if not for more than one game) thanks to this controversial check on Marcus Johansson.
Beyond that, there could be some bumps and bruises from this contest.
Bryan Rust left during the first period and didn’t return to the game after blocking a shot. Brian Dumoulin seemed shaken up after an Alex Ovechkin hit in the third period. The Capitals might have a player or two to look at, as well.
In other words, the Penguins could really lack for quality defensemen with Letang possibly suspended and possible injury absences for Dumoulin and Olli Maatta.
This series is living up to the hype … and really building up the hate.
It remains to be seen if Kris Letang will get suspended for his hit on Marcus Johansson … and if he does, for how long.
(You can read initial reactions and some analysis about the specifics of the check vs. the one that got Brooks Orpik suspended here.)
There are a few things we do know already.
For one thing, the NHL’s Department of Player Safety is reportedly looking into it.
Another factor that could help Letang avoid a suspension or limit the duration of supplemental discipline: Marcus Johansson returned during the second period.
In fact, Johansson delivered some hits on Letang.
There have been some nasty moments in Game 3, and more might be coming. The Penguins lead 2-0 with a few minutes remaining in the middle frame.