St. Louis Blues v Colorado Avalanche

A quick introduction for Jake Allen, the Blues’ Plan C in net


Jaroslav Halak isn’t walking through that door – at least not in the second round. So with the St. Louis Blues down 3-0 to the Los Angeles Kings and Brian Elliott struggling in net, it forces the question of whether wet-behind-the-ears prospect Jake Allen deserves a nod.

After all, Braden Holtby doesn’t have a huge playoff resume himself and he seems to be doing OK. Feel free to debate the merits of such a decision in the comments, but for the uninitiated (perhaps including Ken Hitchcock?), consider this Allen’s quickie resume.

(Much of this info via the Blues’ bio page.)

Jake Allen

Age: 21
Height: 6-foot-2
Weight: 195 lbs.
Drafted: second round (34th overall) in 2008
Career NHL regular season and playoff minutes: zero

You may remember Allen from his work in the 2010 World Hockey Championships, when he was part of a rotation that fell just short against Team USA in an overtime gold medal game. Beyond that, he was the CHL Goalie of the Year in 2009-10 and also was named the QMJHL best goalie (the trophy’s named after Jacques Plante, nifty) in the same season.

His numbers were solid with the Peoria Rivermen in the AHL. During this season, he went 13-20-2 in 38 games played, but his individual numbers were solid (2.93 GAA, .915 save percentage). He fared a little better in 2010-11, when he went 25-19-3 with a 2.52 GAA and .917 save percentage before struggling in three AHL playoff losses.


Those aren’t force-your-way-to-the-NHL numbers, but are they good enough for a desperate team to give him a try? Let us know.

Scary moment: Carlo Colaiacovo hospitalized with ‘dented trachea’


Buffalo Sabres defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo has experienced plenty of bad injury luck in his winding career, but Saturday presented one of his worst scares.

As you can see from the video above, Colaiacovo received a scary cross-check from Viktor Arvidsson of the Nashville Predators, who received a major penalty and game misconduct.

Sabres head coach Dan Bylsma said that Colaiacovo was hospitalized with a “dented trachea” yet is OK, the Buffalo News’ John Vogl reports.

Frightening stuff from an eventual 4-1 Sabres win.

PHT will keep an eye out for additional updates regarding Colaiacovo’s health (and a possible suspension for Arvidsson).

Comeback Kings: Gaborik pulls L.A. past Kane, Blackhawks

Jake Muzzin, Scott Darling

Patrick Kane set an American scoring record, and added another assist to make it more impressive, but the Los Angeles Kings just wouldn’t be denied.

In the end, Marian Gaborik‘s big night meant more than Kane’s; he scored the tying and then overtime game-winner, both assisted by Anze Kopitar, for a rousing 4-3 overtime Kings win.

Gaborik’s first goal:

And here’s video of the OT-GWG:

Noticing a theme tonight? Yeah, it’s been an evening in which it’s dangerous to assume a lead would stand.

With that, the Kings stick to the No. 1 spot in the Pacific Division, but Chicago shouldn’t feel all bad. The Blackhawks were able to piece together a decent run during their dreaded “circus trip.”

Patrick Kane’s streak hits 19 games, setting a new American record


When it comes to point streaks for U.S.-born NHL players, Patrick Kane now stands alone.

With a power-play goal early in Saturday’s Blackhawks – Kings game, Kane extended his streak to 19 games, breaking a tie with Phil Kessel and Eddie Olczyk (who finished with at least a point in 18 straight).

As of this writing, Kane has 11 goals and 19 assists during this 19-game streak. He also leads the NHL in scoring.

Bobby Hull’s 21-game point streak stands as the Chicago Blackhawks’ overall team record, by the way.

So, how would you protect a lead against the Stars?


You know what they say: it’s easy to bash a strategy in hindsight.

Slam that NFL head coach for going for it on fourth down … or settling for the field goal. Bury that MLB manager because he kept a pitcher in too long. And so on.

“Score effects” settle in during almost any lopsided hockey game, yet the Dallas Stars present quite a conundrum: what’s the best way to put a way a team with this much firepower?

Tonight may have presented the greatest evidence that this team won’t go away easy, as it seemed like the Minnesota Wild had the best of a tired Stars team* when they built a 3-0 lead.

Instead, the Stars scored three third-period goals while Tyler Seguin capped the comeback with an overtime-winner.

It was one of those bend-and-then-break moments for Minnesota. Dallas generated a 44-26 shot advantage, including a ridiculous 35-15 edge in the final two periods.

Does that mean that Mike Yeo may have tried to play too conservatively with a healthy lead? It’s a possibility.

On the other hand, would the Wild be wiser to try to run-and-gun with one of the most dangerous offenses in the NHL?

It sure seems like a pick-your-poison situation. Which way would you lean, though?

* – To be fair to Minnesota, each team was on back-to-backs.