Boudreau Anaheim AP

Weekend Watch: Five games you need to see


This is the Weekend Watch. It’s a guide of what to watch this weekend.

Tonight: Philadelphia at Anaheim, 10pm ET

Check out these tweets from Eric Stephens of the OC Register:



The term “culture change” gets thrown around a lot, but it might actually mean something in Anaheim. For as good a coach as Carlyle is, he was regarded as a guy that — because of his gruff personality and grumpy demeanor — wore players down. Don’t get me wrong, Boudreau will probably wear out the Ducks in a similar manner. But for now, weeeeee! No meetings!

Saturday: Toronto at Boston, 7pm ET

The Bruins didn’t lose a game in regulation last month. The last time they did that was January 1969, when Phil Esposito, Ken Hodge, Johnny Bucyk and Bobby Orr were wearing the black and gold. Needless to say, the Bruins are on some kind of roll right now. They demand your attention. And if you don’t give it, Milan Lucic will run you over. (Joking.) (I think.)

It’s also worth mentioning that the Bruins were 3-7-0 on Oct. 31, dead last in the Northeast Division and Eastern Conference. On Dec. 1 the Bruins were 15-7-1, first in the Northeast and second in the conference.

Saturday: New York Rangers at Tampa Bay, 7pm ET

The Torts Bowl! Well, sorta. This won’t be the first time John Tortorella returns to the city where he won a Stanley Cup, but it will be the first time he goes back coaching ex-Lightning star Brad Richards, the 2004 Conn Smythe winner.

Gotta think Torts had this one circled on the calendar. In addition to the “return to T-Bay” angle, his Rangers lost all four games against the Lightning last year.

Saturday: Chicago at St. Louis, 8pm ET

One of the best divisional rivalries in hockey, dating all the way back to the old Norris Divison (see: St. Patrick’s Day Massacre, Mar. 1991 — yeah, you have to watch the whole thing.)

This particular game will hold extra meaning for the Blues, however. It marks the return of LW David Perron, who has missed the last 97 games with a concussion.

“What we talked about last July is that our best free agent signing this year would be getting a healthy David Perron,” Blues GM Doug Armstrong said. “We’ve waiting a little bit into the season, but his talent and his skill set is not easily replaceable in the lineup.”

Sunday: Calgary at Vancouver, 9pm ET

Expect this to be asked in advance of every Canucks game for the foreseeable future: Luongo or Schneider?

Kings GM says Mike Richards went into ‘a destructive spiral’

Mike Richards

The Los Angeles Kings may owe Mike Richards money until 2031 (seriously), but in settling his grievance, the team and player more or less get to turn the page.

Not before Kings GM Dean Lombardi shares his sometimes startling perspective, though.

Lombardi has a tendency to be candid, especially in the press release-heavy world of sports management. Even by his standards, his account of Richards’ “destructive sprial” is a staggering read from the Los Angeles Times’ Lisa Dillman.

“Without a doubt, the realization of what happened to Mike Richards is the most traumatic episode of my career,” Lombardi said in a written summation he provided to the Los Angeles Times. “At times, I think that I will never recover from it. It is difficult to trust anyone right now – and you begin to question whether you can trust your own judgment. The only thing I can think of that would be worse would be suspecting your wife of cheating on you for five years and then finding out in fact it was true.”

Lombardi provides plenty of eyebrow-raising statements to Dillman, including:

  • He believed he “found his own Derek Jeter” in Richards, a player who “at one time symbolized everything that was special about the sport.”
  • Lombardi remarked that “his production dropped 50 percent and the certain ‘it’ factor he had was vaporizing in front of me daily.”
  • The Kings GM believes that he was “played” by Richards.

… Yeah.

Again, it’s a powerful read that you should soak in yourself, even if you’re unhappy with the way the Kings handled the situation.

Maybe the most pressing of many lingering questions is: will we get to hear Richards’ side of the story?

Coyotes exploit another lousy outing from Quick

Jonathan Quick

Despite owning two Stanley Cup rings, there are a healthy number of people who aren’t wild about Jonathan Quick.

Those people might feel validated through the Los Angeles Kings’ first two games, as he followed a rough loss to the San Jose Sharks with a true stinker against the Arizona Coyotes on Friday.

Sometimes a goalie has a bad night stats-wise, yet his team is as much to blame as anything else. You can probably pin this one on Quick, who allowed four goals on just 14 shots through the first two periods.

Things died down in the final frame, but let’s face it; slowing things down is absolutely the Coyotes’ design with a 4-1 lead (which ultimately resulted in a 4-1 win).


A soft 1-0 goal turned out to be a sign of things to come:

Many expected the Kings to roar into this second game after laying an egg in their opener. Instead, the Coyotes exploited Quick’s struggles for a confidence-booster, which included key prospect Max Domi scoring a goal and an assist.

It’s worth mentioning that Mike Smith looked downright fantastic at times, only drawing more attention to Quick’s struggles.


After a troubled summer and a failed 2014-15 season, Los Angeles was likely eager to start things off the right way.

Instead, they instead will likely focus on the fact that they merely dropped two (ugly) games.