Preds goalie says NHL should ‘definitely’ have coach’s challenges


In the wake of Matt Duchene’s egregious offside goal from Colorado’s 6-5 win over Nashville on Monday, the discussion of implementing coach’s challenges in the NHL has fired up again.

Not surprisingly, the goalie victimized on Duchene’s tally says hockey could use them.

“I think it would be a great element to have in this game,” Nashville netminder Chris Mason told Sportnet. “We have the video as they do in football. The reality is that people make mistakes. There’s nothing wrong with that, but if you have the ability to challenge it and use your timeout as leverage or something like that, I don’t see why you wouldn’t [have challenges].

“I’ve said it before, I definitely think it should be in the game of hockey.”

Of the four major professional sports in North America, only the NFL has implemented coach’s challenges.

But that doesn’t mean others have stayed stagnant when it comes to video replay.

In 2008, Major League Baseball implemented instant replay for fair/foul balls, whether the ball actually left the playing field and balls subjected to spectator interference. In 2014, it’s expected that MLB will expand its replay system.

In 2012, the NBA decided to further expand on its instant replay practices — adding three additional uses — building on rules originally put in place for the 2002-03 season (the league also made some additional rules regarding replay in 2010.)

Mason thinks adding some sort of replay/challenge system would allow for the correction of egregious missed calls, like the one on Monday.

“I can accept mistakes, but it’s tough when it’s that blatant,” he explained. “It’s not like it was a close call or could’ve gone either way.

“He was like eight feet offsides.”

Campbell’s perfect snipe sinks Wings in OT


Brian Campbell doesn’t score as many points as he used to, but he came up with a huge goal against the Red Wings on Sunday afternoon.

With the game tied, 1-1, in overtime, Campbell skated into the slot and beat Petr Mrazek with a perfect wrister to end the game.

It was also a pretty nice passing play between Jussi Jokinen, Jonathan Huberdeau and Campbell.

Dylan Larkin opened the scoring in the second period before Reilly Smith leveled the score with just over five minutes remaining.

The Wings have blown a lead in three straight games.

Detroit was up 2-0 and 3-2 in their last game, against Edmonton, before they finally closed the game out with an overtime goal by Niklas Kronwall.

They weren’t so fortunate against the Bruins on Wednesday, as they lost 3-2 in OT after leading 2-1 with under two minutes remaining in regulation.

This was the first meeting of the season between Detroit and Florida, but they’ll see each other three times between Feb. 4 and Mar. 19.

With Jonathan Bernier sputtering, we’ll meet Garret Sparks

Garett Sparks
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You can’t blame Mike Babcock for siding with the relatively unknown when the other option is Jonathan Bernier, a goalie who’s 0-8-1 so far in 2015-16.

With that in mind, meet Garret Sparks, the Toronto Maple Leafs’ expected starter for Monday’s game against the Edmonton Oilers.

Sparks was a seventh-round pick (190th overall) in 2011, a guy who was off to a great start in the AHL. That much wasn’t lost on Babcock.

Let’s face it, though; this is as much about the Leafs’ other two goalies as it is about Sparks (whose name inspired a very obscure reference in this post’s headline).

In Bernier’s case, there’s an “enough’s enough” feel:

Meanwhile, James Reimer‘s not quite healthy enough to play yet, so the window of opportunity is open for Sparks … a little bit.

Sparks will get a chance to make an impression, even if it’s just a small one.

Video: Dylan Larkin adds to his rookie goals lead

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So far, the 2015-16 crop of rookies is living up to the hype, if not exceeding it. Connor McDavid‘s unfortunate injury hasn’t even derailed this year’s crop.

The Detroit Red Wings are watching their own blue chip blossom, as Dylan Larkin is making an instant impact.

No. 71 scored his 10th goal of the season against the Florida Panthers on Sunday, fattening his rookie goals lead.

He still needs five points to match rookie points leader Artemi Panarin, though.

Latest report leaves Carey Price’s injury timeline fuzzy

Carey Price
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There’s one thing we seem to know about Carey Price‘s injury situation: he first got hurt stepping on a puck on Oct. 29, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

Contrary to earlier reports about him missing about a month, it sounds like his window of recovery is still up in the air (which, to be fair, could mean that he’ll still miss about a month when it’s all said and done).

ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun reports that Price underwent testing with Montreal’s team doctor on Saturday and is expected to go through more; we may not know more about his expected injury timeline until early this coming week.

So, basically, Price’s situation is fuzzier than his mustache right now.

Leg injuries can be tricky anyway, so we shouldn’t be too surprised that there are mixed signals regarding Price, and this may remain a fluid situation for some time.

(But we’ll hopefully know more soon enough.)