On Saturday, Jhonas Enroth will make his first of what could be 20-30 starts over the course of the 2011-12 campaign. That’s more playing time than Ryan Miller’s understudies have traditionally gotten, but as coach Lindy Ruff told the Buffalo News, he has confidence in Enroth:
We plan on using Jhonas a fair amount. So in back to back situations we’re definitely going to use him. The overall plan for him is every three or four games to get him in. He had a great preseason for us, had a great finish to the year for us so I don’t have any hesitation putting Jhonas in.
Enroth held his own in the NHL last season, with a 9-2-2 record, 2.73 GAA, and .907 save percentage in 14 games. However, that was on top of 41 AHL games, as the Sabres primarily used him when Miller was injured. This time around, netminder Patrick Lalime isn’t with Buffalo and Enroth is expected to spend the whole season with the Sabres. He shouldn’t challenge Miller for the number one gig in 2011-12, but he’s a candidate to be Miller’s eventual successor.
The Sabres made a number of additions in the off-season which made the team less dependent on Miller. However, that shouldn’t detract from the fact that the Sabres have also developed a reliable understudy in Enroth, who can play enough to keep Miller fresh and fill in admirably if Miller suffers an injury.
It seems there will be no NHL comeback attempt by Alex Semin. At least not in 2016-17.
Instead, Semin has inked a one-year extension with Magnitogorsk Metallurg, according to Sport-Express writer Igor Eronko.
At 32 years old, Semin still could have a lot of years left in him as a professional hockey player, but at this point it wouldn’t be surprising if he has played in his last NHL game. Early in his career his talent was clear and demonstrated by some great showings offensively, but he was plagued by inconsistency. In recent years though, he wasn’t so much inconsistent as he was underwhelming.
After being limited to six goals and 19 points in 57 games with Carolina in 2014-15, the one-time 40-goal scorer was bought out of his five-year, $35 million contract just two seasons into it. Montreal took a chance on him for 2015-16, but he only appeared in 15 games with the Canadiens before they put him on unconditional waivers on Dec. 9.
He’s fared better in the KHL though, with five goals and 14 points in 20 regular season games followed by another seven markers and 15 points in 23 playoff contests.
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.
Among the 21 NHL.com and NHL Network experts offering their prediction for the Stanley Cup Final, 17 of them are choosing the San Jose Sharks. (NHL.com)
The majority of ESPN’s experts are also picking the Sharks. (ESPN.com)
For CBS Sports, Adam Gretz and Chris Peters are split on the outcome. (CBS Sports)
Tickets for the first Stanley Cup Final in San Jose appear to be going for significantly more than their Pittsburgh Penguins counterparts. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
Inspired by John Scott‘s comments, here’s the start of a World Cup All-Snubs’ team. (TSN)
Peter DeBoer said that then New Jersey Devils GM Lou Lamoriello fired him from the Devils’ head coaching job late at night on Christmas. The news then broke on Dec. 26. (Tom Gulitti)
The Pittsburgh Penguins are Vegas favorites to win the 2016 Stanley Cup, but the odds lean toward a San Jose Sharks player capturing the Conn Smythe.
Bovada released a variety of odds on Sunday after others surfaced on Friday.
Joe Pavelski is pegged as a +400 favorite as a winner, edging some other top candidates such as Sidney Crosby, Phil Kessel and Matt Murray.
Here’s the full list:
Logan Couture +500
Martin Jones +600
Brent Burns +700
Joe Thornton +900
Evgeni Malkin +900
Kris Letang +1400
Bovada also released prop bets, including how long the series might last. Check that out here.