But even with that post in the bag, we still felt compelled to highlight this exchange between Dallas’ Steve Ott and Philly’s Claude Giroux.
[WARNING: Salty language ahoy, matey]
1) At one point, Ott might’ve been fifth in faceoffs (he’s currently 10th, winning draws at a 55.7 percent clip) — but that Philly game didn’t help his cause any. Ott had trouble against the Flyers’ French-Canadian forwards, going a combined 4-11 against Giroux, Maxime Talbot and Danny Briere.
2) I can see guys bragging about how many goals they’ve scored or how they’re leading the league in points. But faceoffs? And how you’re fifth in the league in faceoffs? I didn’t know that was an acceptable chirp, but am glad it is. It totally opens the door of possibilities for other players, like Travis Hamonic (“Fifth in the league in blocked shots buddy, look it up”) and Alex Burrows (“Fifth in the league in plus-minus on the road buddy, look it up”).
3) Ott’s Babe Ruthian calling of his own shot (pointing to the corner, saying “I’m probably going to win it right there”) was priceless. Not because he lost the draw and Dallas got scored on. It’s priceless because he was calling his shot eight minutes into the first period of a December game against a non-conference opponent.
After establishing himself in the Swedish league, Anton Lindholm will head to North America.
The Colorado Avalanche announced that they have signed the 21-year-old defenseman to a three-year, entry-level contract. They selected Lindholm in the fifth round of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.
More of a defensive defenseman, Lindholm only registered four assists in 30 Swedish league games with Skelleftea AIK in 2015-16, but he also had a team-high 85 hits despite missing a chunk of the season due to injury. During the playoffs he helped his team reach the SHL Finals by leading them in both hits and blocked shots.
That was his second full campaign with Skelleftea AIK. The next step for Lindholm will likely be for him to continue his development in the AHL.
PHT Morning Skate: Sidney Crosby eyes more history
Hot take: the Pittsburgh Penguins probably won’t deal with a goalie controversy going into Game 7.
(Ugh, that’s a failed hot take … you can’t use “probably” in those things, right?)
Matt Murray was fantastic at times during Game 6, much like his counterpart in the Tampa Bay Lightning’s net in a 5-2 win. Granted, there were some tense moments during the Bolts’ late-game push:
Much has been made about experience, especially from those calling for Marc-Andre Fleury earlier in this series. It’s telling that the praise Murray draws sure sounds like what you’d expect from a “veteran.”
“He has a calming influence,” Sullivan said. “He doesn’t get rattled. If he lets a goal in, he just continues to compete. That’s usually an attribute that usually takes years to acquire that, and to have it at such a young age is impressive.”
Thanks in part to Murray’s efforts in Game 6, he’ll get a chance to prove his resolve in something new: a Game 7 in the Eastern Conference Final.
Matt Murray is third in expansion era to win 10 playoff games before hitting the mark in his regular-season career: pic.twitter.com/jiFvIA6QDg