Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty has been taking a beating all playoffs, but it hasn’t seemed to affect his play.
Following L.A.’s 2-0 win in Game 2, the physical toll he’s taken through the first two games against Anaheim was brought up to Doughty and, as Corey Masisak of NHL.com shares, he’s playing it off like it’s not a big deal.
“I’m always going to see that kind of stuff, even in the regular season I see the exact same stuff,” Doughty said. “Maybe not to this extent, where I’m getting run at 10-15 times a game. The San Jose series, I think they were running me way more than this team, so I’m not complaining.”
Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said they’re making it a point to hit him and get him off his game, as Jon Rosen of L.A. Kings Insider shared, but Doughty’s performance is showing it’s not working. Not yet at least.
Through nine games of the playoffs, Doughty has a goal and seven assists and is carrying the bulk of the workload on the blue line averaging over 27 minutes of ice time per game. Now with Willie Mitchell and Robyn Regehr out, he’s having to do a lot more. That might just work out to the Kings benefit if he keeps playing like this.
Arizona Coyotes fans anticipating Dave Bolland‘s debut for his new team will have to wait, and a long time, too, by the sounds of it.
On Thursday, the Florida Panthers traded the 30-year-old Bolland and prospect Lawson Crouse to the Coyotes in exchange for draft picks. Bolland, who has an annual cap hit of $5.5 million, played in only 25 games last season, scoring once with five points.
The move frees up plenty of cap space for the Panthers, while the Coyotes did well to pick up a young forward in Crouse, a former first-round pick who has yet to play in the NHL.
However, at the moment, Bolland is dealing with an injury that could keep him out of any lineup for quite a while. Perhaps the entire season.
#Coyotes' Chayka says Dave Bolland likely "won't be ready to play for the foreseeable future." Injured for the long term.
This latest development might add salt in the wound of Red Wings fans who wish the skilled but aging center was still playing for the Original Six franchise.
He has now scored his first goal since returning to the KHL. Another former NHLer, Ilya Kovalchuk, set it up off the rush. Datsyuk finished off the play with a slick backhander coming down the right wing.
At age 43 Jaromir Jagr was the oldest player in the NHL last season by more than four years.
You would have never known it when watching him play.
He was still a dominant top-line player and on many night was the best player on the team. His 66 points were more than any player in NHL history age 43 or older, and he finished as the team’s leading scorer.
While he has obviously slowed down from where he was during his peak years in the league when he was one of best players ever, he is still playing at a level that almost no other player in NHL history has been able to match at this age. And there doesn’t seem to be any sign of him dramatically slowing down in the near future.
So with Jagr back in the mix for another year, will he end up leading the Panthers in scoring once again even though he will be 44 years old? Jagr is one of just three players in NHL history that has ever finished as his team’s leading scorer over the age of 40, a list that includes only him, Gordie Howe and Teemu Selanne. He is the only player that has done it over the age of 43 and the only one that has done it for two different teams (New Jesrey in 2013-14 and Florida in 2015-16).
The one player that seems to be a significant challenger is Aleksander Barkov. He finished just seven points behind Jagr in 2015-16 (in 12 fewer games) and spent most of the season playing on a line with Jagr and Jonathan Huberdeau, a trio that was one of the most dominant lines in the league when they were together. But given how Jagr still seems to be in great shape and was still a 60-point player a year ago he is not going to be easy to overtake.
One of the most intriguing UFAs left on the open market has reportedly found a new home.
Brandon Pirri, the 25-year-old forward that’s scored 36 goals over the last two seasons, is set to join the Rangers on a one-year, $1.1 million deal, per Sportnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
Taken 59th overall by Chicago in 2009, Pirri’s always been high on offensive ability and shown a consistent knack for finding the back of the net, even with limited opportunities.
In ’13-14, he scored 13 times despite only appearing in 49 games.
In ’14-15, he scored 22 times despite only appearing in 49 games.
(This is not a typo. For some reason he hit that 49 game mark with regularity.)
Last year, Pirri had 11 goals in 52 contests before the Panthers flipped him to Anaheim. He proceeded to score three goals and five points in nine games as a Duck — missing a good chunk of time with a serious ankle injury — but failed to crack the lineup during an opening-round playoff loss to Nashville.