There are questions surrounding Detroit’s defensive depth after the departures of both Brad Stuart and Nicklas Lidstrom this summer.
Up front, it’s a different story.
That’s what Wings GM Ken Holland told the Detroit Free Press on Monday, suggesting that his squad will have 16 players battling for the 14 forward spots on the active roster.
The 16 are (projected): Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen, Valtteri Filppula, Mikael Samuelsson, Dan Cleary, Darren Helm, Todd Bertuzzi, Jordin Tootoo, Damien Brunner, Patrick Eaves, Gustav Nyquist, Drew Miller, Jan Mursak, Cory Emmerton and Justin Abdelkader.
All are under contact except for Abdelkader, who Holland continues speaking with on a weekly basis. The Free Press reports Holland’s “closing in on a contract” with the 25-year-old RFA, likely to be in the $1.5 million cap hit range.
Mike Babcock said Brunner — the reigning Swiss league scoring champ — will “be a top-six forward to start” and Nyquist will push hard for a spot after debuting strongly for the Wings in 2011-12 (seven points in 18 games.)
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger