St. Louis Blues

Goalie nods: Gibson’s struggling, but starts fourth straight for Anaheim

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All the latest from the blue paint…

Ducks stick with Gibson

The Anaheim Ducks, losers in seven of their last 10, will keep rolling with John Gibson as they look to get things on track tonight in Calgary.

Gibson, forced into action with Frederik Andersen injured and Ilya Bryzgalov struggling, hasn’t played especially well of late — in four games this month, he’s allowed 13 goals on 101 shots for a .886 save percentage, and has just one win.

“My biggest worry on it is that we are allowing way too many goals,” Bruce Boudreau said following a 4-1 defeat to Tampa Bay on Wednesday, per the O.C. Register. “We’re not losing pretty.”

The Ducks are hoping Gibson, a highly-touted prospect that broke onto the scene late last year — can reclaim some of the form shown earlier this season. In a three-game stretch in late October, the 21-year-old allowed one goal in a win over Columbus, posted a 38-save shutout against the Blackhawks and stopped 27 of 29 shots in a loss to St. Louis.

For the Flames, Jonas Hiller will start in goal.

Elsewhere…

Rangers at Sabres: No word yet on starters for either team.

Canucks at Devils: Eddie Lack vs. Cory Schneider

Leafs at ‘Canes: James Reimer vs. Cam Ward

Bruins at Blues: Malcolm Subban vs. Jake Allen (more on Subban’s NHL debut here.)

Avs at ‘Hawks: Semyon Varlamov vs. Corey Crawford

Wild at Oilers: Devan Dubnyk for Minnesota, no word yet on an Edmonton starter.

Video: Garbutt’s undisciplined play has him in hot water — again

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The latest from the “Reckless Ryan Garbutt” files — during last night’s 5-2 loss to San Jose, Garbutt was benched by Stars head coach Lindy Ruff after taking an elbowing penalty in the second period with Dallas trailing by two.

“That can’t happen, it just can’t happen this time of the year, it can’t,” Ruff said, per the Dallas Morning-News. “He didn’t hurt himself, he hurt 19 teammates.”

The penalty in question:

After exiting the box, Garbutt played a grand total of nine seconds and didn’t touch the ice at all in the third period.

The 29-year-old may well be the NHL’s most reckless player. He’s been suspended twice this year — one for kneeing Tyalor Hall, once for slew-footing Dustin Byfuglien — and, all told, has been suspended 10 games over the last two seasons; he was also fined during last year’s playoffs for spearing Corey Perry in the groin.

Here, now, is a sampling of the PHT headlines Garbutt’s behavior has produced:

Ruff reaches out to Garbutt’s dad about son’s reckless play

Garbutt’s undisciplined play has ‘got to stop,’ says Nill

Ruff angry, fed up with Garbutt’s lack of discipline

Steve Ott offers advice for Stars’ Ryan Garbutt

One has to wonder what the Stars will do with Garbutt moving forward. He’s on the books for one more year at $1.8 million, and has been a good producer — 17 goals and 35 points in 75 games last season, seven goals and 18 points through 50 games this year — but, at the same time, repeat warnings from both the league and Stars organization don’t appear to have altered his approach or playing style.

Stars chase Elliott with three goals on six shots — in under nine minutes

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The Blues experienced one of their worst home starts of the season tonight against the Stars at Scottrade.

Two goals from Jamie Benn and another from Cody Eakin — all inside the opening nine minutes of the game — forced Blues head coach Ken Hitchcock to burn his timeout early and yank starting netminder Brian Elliott in favor of Jake Allen.

Here’s Benn’s opening goal at the 2:47 mark, which began St. Louis’ free fall:

From the Dallas perspective, this is a really impressive start. The club struggled to score goals in its first game without Tyler Seguin on Saturday — losing 4-1 to Colorado — and will need to continue finding the back of the net while its leading scorer is sidelined for 3-6 weeks with a knee injury.

 

 

Goalie nods: It has to be Johnson for the Isles… right? (Update: Yep)

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All the latest from the crease…

Who goes for New York?

The Islanders won’t announce their starting goalie until 5 p.m. ET today, so we don’t know if it’s Chad Johnson or Jaroslav Halak in net for tonight’s affair against Carolina.

Update: It’s Johnson.

One would suspect Johnson gets the nod, given tonight is the second of a back-to-back; Halak played last night, and allowed six goals on 42 shots in an emotional loss to the Rangers.

That said, head coach Jack Capuano could possibly be persuaded to let Halak try and bounce back; the 29-year-old Slovak looked rattled and a bit shaky as the Blueshirts made a concerted effort to get into his kitchen.

Related: The Isles are surrendering too many goals

“I want to get shots,” captain Ryan McDonagh said, per Newsday. “We wanted to make it more difficult on Halak tonight than in other past games. He’s been a big difference in why we haven’t been able to beat them in the past.

“We talked about getting in front of the net and making it tough on him, make him fight through screens. We were a lot hungrier in front of him for sure.”

No word yet on who’ll start in goal for the ‘Canes.

Elsewhere…

Blue Jackets at Flyers: Curtis McElhinney vs. Ray Emery

Caps at Pens: Braden Holtby vs. Marc-Andre Fleury

Sabres at Devils: Cory Schneider for New Jersey, Michal Neuvirth likely for Buffalo.

Panthers at Leafs: Roberto Luongo vs. Jonathan Bernier

Stars at Blues: Brian Elliott for St. Louis, Kari Lehtonen likely for Dallas.

Sharks at Preds: Alex Stalock for San Jose, Pekka Rinne likely for Nashville.

Update: We missed the part where Ovechkin said Getzlaf might be jealous because ‘he don’t have hair’

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Earlier, we passed along Alex Ovechkin’s denial of Ryan Getzlaf’s diving accusations, but (regrettably) didn’t see that Ovechkin suggested Getzlaf’s comments might’ve come from follicle envy.

From the Washington Post:

After Ovechkin buried the Anaheim Ducks in a 5-3 win beneath his second four-point game of the season, his counterpart captain, Ryan Getzlaf, accused him of diving. Did Ovechkin have an answer?

“No response,” Ovechkin said, before then offering one. “Maybe he’s just jealous. I have hair, he don’t have hair. We can start talking about it all day long. I think it was comment because he was disappointed they lost. Again, it is what it is.”

You don’t normally hear players go after other players’ hair — or, lack of it — but I think Drew Doughty opened the floodgates during All-Star weekend in Columbus when he ripped on Kevin Shattenkirk’s salad during the Fantasy Draft.

As such, everything is f-hair game now.

/zing