Jason Arnott, Ilya Bryzgalov

Ilya Bryzgalov joins Roberto Luongo in the goalie doghouse


Much like a kicker who missed a big field goal, a struggling goalie exists in an unkind and lonely place. People tend to forget the mistakes of players around them when a netminder turns into Swiss cheese.

Roberto Luongo probably feels like Frankenstein’s monster in Vancouver, as Canucks fans seem like they’re a blowout away from gathering outside his home with torches. In a way he’s not really alone, though; Ilya Bryzgalov might feel the same type of heat at his door from Philadelphia Flyers fans after being dismantled by the limp Montreal Canadiens offense 5-1 on Wednesday night.

Much like Luongo, Bryzgalov is an expensive starter with a long-term contract and a well-documented cold streak. Breezy has dropped four games in a row while allowing 17 goals (and this is after he opened up about his individual struggles).

Each goalie also has a promising young backup to make their lives a bit more miserable, with Sergei Bobrovsky being Philly’s answer to Cory Schneider. It’s likely that every goalie and quarterback controversy gnaws at head coaches, but things get a whole lot tougher when the “unwashed masses” might actually be right.

A lot of fans probably want to push the big red button on both netminders right now, but the truth is that when it comes to crucial roster decisions, patience usually pays off. That won’t make it any less awkward when the boos start cascading down after the next soft goal, though.

Already without Eberle, the Oilers could also be missing Hall tonight

Taylor Hall
1 Comment

Taylor Hall is sick and reportedly “doubtful” for tonight’s game in Dallas.

Hall did not skate with the Oilers this morning. If he can’t play, Edmonton’s top two lines against the Stars could feature Ryan Nugent-Hopkins between wingers Teddy Purcell and Benoit Pouliot, followed by Connor McDavid centering Lauri Korpikoski and Nail Yakupov.

The Oilers — forced to start the season without top-six winger Jordan Eberle — have scored just once in their first two games, losing 3-1 in St. Louis and 2-0 in Nashville.

Edmonton returns home after tonight’s contest to play St. Louis on Thursday. Then it’s back out on the road for games against Calgary and Vancouver.

Sabres waive d-man Donovan

HKN Sabres Senators
1 Comment

Buffalo has put blueliner Matt Donovan on waivers, per Sportsnet.

Donovan, 25, signed a one-year deal with the Sabres on the opening day of free agency after spending his entire professional career with the Isles organization.

The fact he’s being waived isn’t a huge shock. Donovan failed to draw into a single Sabres game this year despite a whittled-down blueline; Jake McCabe, recently called up from AHL Rochester, drew into the lineup for Monday’s win over Columbus at the expense of Carlo Colaiacovo, who played the first two games of the year.

The fact both McCabe and Colaiacovo were ahead on the depth chart didn’t bode well for Donovan. Today’s move could also suggest that Zach Bogosian, who hasn’t played this year due to injury, is ready to return.