Loui Eriksson slipped under the radar for quite some time, but the Dallas Stars winger finally earned an All-Star nod last season. That being said, some might have attributed that breakthrough to the impact made by Brad Richards.
With that in mind, Eriksson’s ability to produce without the star center was a serious question coming into this season. It’s too early to say that he’ll be just as productive, but the initial results are promising.
Eriksson was involved in all three of the Stars’ goals against the Anaheim Ducks last night, with two goals and one assist. That bumps him up to seven points in seven games, which indicates that he has a great chance to match or exceed his career-high of 73 points from last season. (He won’t continue to score a goal for every three shots, but the crafty forward has a knack for finding soft spots in a defense.)
Naturally, Eriksson might succeed in a familiar way: by retreating into the shadow of a new dynamic center in Jamie Benn. The young up and comer also has seven points this season. Benn is known more for his locomotive attacking style and goal-scoring abilities, but if this clip is any indication, he might be able to close some of the playmaking gap left behind by Richards too.
Report: Coyotes shut down Vitale (concussion) for the season
Matt Frattin was traded by the Leafs to Ottawa yesterday as part of the Dion Phaneuf blockbuster.
But for now, he’s staying in Toronto.
On Wednesday, Sens GM Bryan Murray announced that Frattin will remain with the Leafs’ AHL affiliate — the Toronto Marlies — on loan, but will be available for selection should Ottawa require his services down the road.
Frattin, 28, has spent all of this season with the Marlies, scoring nine goals and 22 points in 47 games. His last NHL appearance came during the ’14-15 campaign, with the Leafs.
Prior to that, the former North Dakota standout had spent time in Los Angeles and Columbus.
Gaudreau, Monahan, Bouma express remorse after benching
“We want to apologize to the organization, the coaches, our team especially, and the city of Calgary and the fans,” Gaudreau said, per the team’s Twitter account. “For us not to show up like that, and miss a game like that, it’s not professional on our part.”
“I’m a young guy and I’m a leader on this team,” Monahan added. “I’ve got to step up and take that back and earn that respect again.”
More on what transpired at Tuesday’s practice, from Sportsnet’s Mark Spector:
Calgary Flames head coach Bob Hartley did his best to keep an epic Super Bowl party under wraps. But two of his players — Lance Bouma and Sean Monahan — arrived at the Saddledome at 10:15 am for a 10:30 Monday morning practice, and those two barely beat Johnny Gaudreau in the Saddledome doors.
Then practice started, and in the words of Calgary winger David Jones: “It’s a little embarrassing when we’re not (making) five-foot passes.”
“I think (Hartley) was pretty pissed off.”
The trio was then subsequently benched for last night’s game against Toronto, which the Flames won 4-3.
Tonight, the New York Rangers are in Pittsburgh to take on the Penguins at Consol, in a rematch of the ’14 and ’15 playoffs (the Blueshirts eliminated the Pens from each of the last two postseasons, you’ll recall.)
You can catch the game at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN, or watch live online with NBC Sports’ Live Extra.