Roberto Luongo

Hot vs. Not: Vokoun vs. Luongo tonight in Vancouver


If we were silly enough to judge how the season will go based on the first few weeks of the year, tonight’s matchup between Tomas Vokoun and Roberto Luongo in Vancouver would be a brutally lopsided one.

Vokoun has been stellar going 6-1-0 with a goals against average under 2. Luongo, meanwhile, has been brutal going 2-3-1 with a goals against average of nearly 3.5 for his trouble as well as getting a lot of grief from the fans at home. If there’s one guy that Luongo has in his corner while he struggles though, it’s Vokoun.

Stephen Whyno of The Washington Times finds out that Vokoun knows just what Luongo is going through and he supports him.

“It happens to everybody. It’s a common thing,” Vokoun said. “One things as an NHL goaltender, you’re judged from not a week or two weeks. You’re judged on how consistent you are throughout the years. He’s been one of the best.”

We’re quick to pass judgment and give instant reactions when things are either good or bad and for Luongo, things have been bad since Game 3 of the Stanley Cup finals. Luongo being a notoriously slow starter for the year is forgotten about at the start of each season and this year is no different. He’ll get it figured out and while Vokoun has his back, he’ll hope to do his part in extending his misery tonight.

Flyers want to prove doubters wrong

Jakub Voracek, Claude Giroux
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Jakub Voracek totally understands why nobody’s expecting much from the Philadelphia Flyers. When a team finishes 14 points out of the playoffs the year before, that’s typically going to be the case.

“We weren’t good enough last year, let’s face it,” Voracek told CSN Philly. 

So, no, it doesn’t upset him that the Flyers aren’t considered among the Stanley Cup favorites.

That being said, “it makes you feel you want to prove them wrong.”

The Flyers get going tonight with a tough game against the Lightning in Tampa Bay. They also play Saturday in Florida against the Panthers, before a rematch with the Panthers Monday in Philadelphia.

“My biggest concern would be getting off to a good start,” GM Ron Hextall said. “That’s one thing that we need to do.”

That’s something they didn’t do last year. In fact, they won just once in their first six games. By the end of November, they were 8-12-3 and in a big hole — one that proved too deep to climb out of.

Related: Flyers to start season with seven defensemen

Coyotes place towering enforcer John Scott on waivers

John Scott, Brandon Davidson
The Canadian Press via AP
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The Arizona Coyotes might not be using John Scott‘s services after all.

The team waived him this afternoon, per Craig Morgan. It’s possible that the Coyotes are simply giving themselves options as Scott clearing would allow them to send him down quickly at any point until he plays in 10 games or 30 days pass. At the same time, any team looking for a gritty fourth-line forward or third-pairing defenseman might be tempted to claim him in light of his affordable $575K cap hit for the 2015-16 campaign.

Scott is an imposing presence on the ice at 6-foot-8 and 260 pounds, but he doesn’t bring much to the table other than his physical play and willingness to drop the gloves. In terms of offensive abilities, he’s among the least capable in the league. In fact, the four points he recorded last season with the San Jose Sharks represented a career-high for the 33-year-old.

Meanwhile, Dan Cleary went unclaimed on waivers, according to Bob McKenzie, setting the stage for him to be reassigned to the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins.