MarcMethot

Methot sits again, eyebrows raised in Ottawa

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Prior to tonight’s game against Tampa Bay, Sens head coach Paul MacLean confirmed his lineup would be the same one that defeated Washington on Tuesday — a lineup that didn’t feature defenseman Marc Methot.

That means Methot will sit for the second straight game and, as he sees it, he’s sitting as a healthy scratch.

“Obviously it’s tough,” he said, per the Ottawa Sun. “As a player you’re competitive and you don’t want to be told you’re not good enough to play or whatever it is.”

According to MacLean, the 28-year-old rearguard was parked on Tuesday because of an injury suffered in practice. But Methot disagreed, saying he “felt really good,” adding the injury wasn’t serious enough to sideline him.

“I was a little caught off,” Methot said following the Washington game. “It’s their decision and I have to deal with it.”

Today, both parties essentially acknowledged Methot is now a healthy scratch, leaving things wide open for the media:

According to the Sun’s Bruce Garrioch, MacLean said he simply didn’t want to change a winning lineup and Methot said he understands the decision — all fine and well, but that won’t quash the unease coming out of Ottawa.

Methot was a vital contributor during the lockout-shortened ’13 campaign, scoring 11 points in 47 games while averaging 22:14 TOI per night. His steadying presence in the absence of Erik Karlsson (sliced Achilles) earned him high praise, enough to warrant an invite to Team Canada’s Olympic orientation camp this summer.

Yet in a manner of months, his stock has fallen dramatically. This marks the second time Methot’s been a healthy scratch this season.

NHL on NBCSN: Rangers, Penguins renew acquaintances on Rivalry Night

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Tonight, there’s a big Metropolitan Division showdown at Consol as the Pittsburgh Penguins host the New York Rangers. You can catch the game on NBCSN (8 p.m. ET), or watch live online with NBC Sports’ Live Extra.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH LIVE

Some relevant linkage for tonight’s affair:

Rangers ‘are doing a lot of good things’

‘I wonder if that’s Crosby, what happens?’ — AV upset after McDonagh concussed by Simmonds

Malkin (lower body) to miss rest of week

Crosby, Karlsson and Trocheck are NHL’s three stars of the week

 

 

PHT Morning Skate: It’s not like they robbed a bank

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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Calgary Flames head coach Bob Hartley seems pretty chill about healthy-scratching Sean Monahan, Johnny Gaudreau and Lance Bouma. That goes for Monahan and Gaudreau in particular, noting that they’re “great kids.”

Besides … it’s not like they robbed a bank. (NHL.com)

Uh oh, did Nazem Kadri make the throat-slashing gesture to Mark Giordano? See for yourself in the video above. (Puck Daddy)

What should the New York Islanders do with unrestricted free agent Kyle Okposo, who’s enjoying a productive contract year? (The Hockey News)

What a playoff berth would mean to the Florida Panthers. (Sportsnet)

Checking in with various teams as the trade deadline looms. (NHL Numbers)

On the Canucks using those Pavel Bure-era jerseys. (Greatest Hockey Legends)

Despite tough fight, Stars hand Wild their sixth straight loss

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The Minnesota Wild put together the kind of effort that would beat a lot of NHL teams on Tuesday. Unfortunately for that beleaguered group, it wasn’t enough to edge the Dallas Stars.

Despite generating 40 shots on goal and generating 1-0 and 2-1 leads, the Wild lost to the Stars 4-3 in overtime. With that, they’ve lost six straight games.

(The view doesn’t get much prettier if you pull away a little further, either, as Minnesota’s only won once in the last month, going 1-9-2 in their last 12.)

Ultimately, the Stars’ big guns were too powerful. Tyler Seguin generated two assists and so did Jamie Benn, who set up John Klingberg‘s overtime game-winning goal.

Again, the effort sure seemed to be there for the Wild, even if they’re far beyond the point of accepting moral victories.

As frustrating as this must be, Minnesota’s not that far from a playoff spot. Still, it has to sting to see “Close, but not good enough” as a prevailing theme as of late.

Royal beating: Lucic, Kings crush Bruins 9-2

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The Boston Bruins welcomed Milan Lucic back on Tuesday. Maybe they shouldn’t have extended such a warm welcome to the Los Angeles Kings overall, however.

You won’t see many games as lopsided as this one, at least in 2015-16, as the Kings walloped the Bruins by a humbling score of 9-2.

Lucic wasn’t just there, either, as he scored a goal and an assist in his quite triumphant return to Boston.

Tuukka Rask had a short night in Boston’s net, yet it wasn’t as if Jonas Gustavsson enjoyed his time. It was a pretty sound beating by all accounts.

This dominant win is a heck of a way for the Kings to begin an imposing seven-game road trip, which continues against the New York Islanders on Thursday. The Bruins probably want to burn the tape on this one themselves, as they’re about to head on a six-game road trip.