How do you think Anaheim’s Randy Carlyle is feeling today? After seeing two other head coaches with better records than he’s got this season (Bruce Boudreau and Paul Maurice) wind up getting fired today, you’d have to think that he’s not exactly feeling too cozy in southern California.
The Ducks have lost 16 of their last 18 as well as seven in a row now and are just one point ahead of Columbus for dead last in the Western Conference. A team with the reigning league MVP in Corey Perry as well as stars like Ryan Getzlaf, Teemu Selanne, Bobby Ryan, and Jonas Hiller is playing about as miserable as any in the league.
Teams that do that poorly don’t generally stick by the head coach but in Anaheim, things are a little different. The Ducks locked Carlyle up to a three-year extension during the summer meaning that if they were to part ways with him, it’d cost the Ducks a kick in the wallet. Carlyle has won the franchise a Stanley Cup and while they’re struggling badly now, word from those on the inside is they’d rather not let Carlyle go.
If there’s something Anaheim needs badly it’s a stud defensive defenseman. Those are tough to come by though, but if there’s a deal willing to be made out there, Anaheim will explore the possibility. If there isn’t though, and the losses continue to mount, Ducks GM Bob Murray might not have any recourse other than to get a new coach in there to spark the team.
For a little more than a minute, Brandon Saad was going to be the story of the Columbus Blue Jackets’ opener. Instead, his power-play goal merely got the ball rolling on a flabbergasting finish.
The New York Rangers scored three goals in 1:17 of game time to manage a 4-2 win.
They’ve now spoiled home openers for the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets to begin their 2015-16 season.
It might be easiest just to show you when the goals were scored, noting that the third period began with a 1-1 tie.
Brandon Saad power-play goal: 16:10 into third period (2-1 Columbus)
Oscar Lindberg: 17:24 (2-2 tie)
Kevin Hayes: 17:41 (3-2 Rangers)
Mats Zuccarello: 18:41 (4-2 Rangers)
Yikes. Zuccarello scored two of the Rangers’ goals, while a beauty by Cam Atkinson is likely long forgotten.
This post will be updated if there’s video of that staggering sequence.
Mike Babcock admitted that there might be a painful transformation as he tries to fix the Toronto Maple Leafs.
His old friends made that abundantly, painfully clear on Friday.
As of this writing, the Detroit Red Wings are up 4-0 on the Buds. Justin Abdelkader just completed a hat trick with James Reimer in net, so the subplot isn’t just about Jonathan Bernier having another tough start.
The big story might just be Detroit’s varied new line of Abdelkader, Dylan Larkin (who scored his first career goal) and Henrik Zetterberg. At the moment, they’ve combined for seven points.
This post will be updated if Detroit’s tribute video to Babcock surfaces.
Really, though, this beating has been about as ugly as this blanket so far.
Here’s video of Abdelkader’s hat trick: