The trade deadline is tomorrow and that means “contenders” shell out picks for players on bad teams to get them over the hump. For the most part, players rarely contribute and most aren’t on the team the next season. The Kings are the rare exception when two trades got them over the hump and they hoisted the Stanley Cup.

The Panthers got Jarormir Jagr for a couple of picks, which is a lot considering it’s highly unlikely he will resign with them. Jagr at least scored a goal and an assist in his second game with the team. The Capitals also gave up a couple of picks for Curtis Glencross, which isn’t going to be worth it. The Blackhawks gave up a 1st round pick and a prospect to have Antoine Vermette pretend to be Patrick Kane. I bet you can guess how that’s going to turn out. They gave up way too much for him. The Blackhawks also gave up two picks for Kimmo Timonen. The Rangers trade for Keith Yandle was probably they only decent trade that was somewhat fair. Even then they had to give up a 1st round pick. If you think any of these players will help lead their team to the Stanley Cup, think again. If you’re wondering, the Kings picked up Andrej Sekera for another defenseman and, you guessed it, a 1st round pick.

Things I like

1. The New York Rangers are in the midst of their second run of the season. Catapulting them to the top of the division, albeit briefly. 8-1-1 in their last 10, the Rangers can actually win the division, something you never thought would be possible about a month ago, as they have three games in hand of the first place Islanders. Cam Talbot has played fairly well in relief of injured Henrik Lundqvist. It seems very possible they win the division. The problem is their scoring is by committee, minus Rick Nash. Come playoff time you need someone to lead the team. Rick Nash is not that guy, as he generally struggles in the playoffs. You also hope Martin St. Louis can endure a long playoff stretch.

2. We’ve had a few young goalies do really well this season, most notably Michael Hutchinson, and Andrew Hammond has also fit that bill. He’s a perfect 5-0 as a starter with shutouts in two of those games and he was pretty much the only reason the Senators beat the Kings. Like Hutchinson, Hammond was undrafted which makes you wonder many things. Hammond is trying to keep the Senators faint playoff hopes alive.

Things I don’t

1. It’s starting to look like the beginning of the end for the San Jose Sharks as we know them. They’ve resisted change for awhile and I agreed with them doing that until their last playoff exit. After that debacle changes should have been made but nothing happened. If the Sharks miss the playoffs this season, which seems likely, then changes would have to be made. Coach Todd McLellan will definitely be gone. He’s a good coach but sometimes your message gets old and it’s time to move on, as is the case here. One wonders what to do about Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau though. Both have two years left on their contracts after this season and both almost make about 7 million. Antti Niemi is in his last year of his contract. He hasn’t been very consistent and would also not likely be back. Interesting times for the Sharks ahead.

2. Top scorers are dropping like flies recently. First Tyler Seguin and now Patrick Kane. Unlike Seguin’s injury, Kane’s injury was just a fluke thing. It’s a blow to the Blackhawks who won’t get him back until the 2nd round of the playoffs and a blow to the NHL scoring race which has now lost it’s second league leader. I’d hat to see what happens to Nicklas Backstrom or John Tavares…

3. I’m not sure I get why the Buffalo Sabres are on national TV so much. They aren’t a big market, they stink, they have no good players and they haven’t been in the playoffs in four seasons. Yet they seem to be on a game on NBCSN every other week. Here they are again this week on Tuesday Night. Show somebody else. They’re on more than the Ducks who had the second best record last season.

Fights of the Week

Special thanks to hockeyfights.com for making this section a lot easier to do.

Gabriel Landeskog vs Shea Weber

You don’t normally see two captains fight each other but you do here. Not a bad fight either.

Tom Wilson vs Brett Bellemore

A decent scrap between two big men.

Goats of the Week

Mike Smith – Arizona Coyotes

Mike Smith continues his terrible play for the year, by taking a brief stroll behind the net and the Bruins capitalize. A bad tone to start the game as the Coyotes lose again.

Oscar Klefbom – Edmoton Oilers

Rookie Klefbom makes a bad pass to a covered teammate in his own zone that leads to the Blues first goal in the game. An important goal in a 2-1 loss for the Oilers.

Stat Line of the Week

2/24/15 Edmonton 2 vs Minnesota 1

Skater

TOI

G

A

+/-

SOG

Bks

Hits

B. Pouliot

19:08

2

0

2

5

0

0

The Oilers don’t get much love I this section and rightfully so. But I figured I’d give them some this week. Benoit Pouliot scored both of the Oilers goals in the 1st period to help beat a red hot Minnesota Wild team and give them only their second loss since the All-Star break. The addition of Pouliot has been one of the few bright spots fro the Oilers this season.

Numbers, Numbers

3:40 – To score three goals in the Ducks comeback win against the Red Wings
6:44 – To score three goals in the Ducks comeback win against the Kings
24 – Game point scoring streak for Connor McDavid, the eventual number one pick
1.88 – GAA for Carey Price, the only goalie under 2
9 – Losses in a row for the Arizona Coyotes, they aren’t that good

This Week in Hockey History

Special thanks to the Hockey Hall of Fame site for making this section a little easier to do.

February 23, 1992 Tim Cheveldae recorded his 4th career shutout to lead the Red Wings to a 4-0 win over the Whalers at Hartford, for their sixth straight win. The victory put the Red Wings 17 games over .500 for the first time since the 1969-70 season.

February 24, 1993 Buffalo’s Pat LaFontaine scored twice and added three assists to lead the Sabres to a 10-7 win over the Red Wings, at the Aud.

February 25, 1983 Winnieg’s Dale Hawerchuk became just the second player in NHL history to score his fifth career hat trick before age 21, when he scored three times in a 5-3 Jets’ win over the visiting Hartford Whalers.

February 26, 1986 Richard Brodeur became the first Vancouver Canucks’ goaltender to appear in 300 career games. But Vancouver lost this night, 4-2 at Montreal.

February 27, 2000 Pat Verbeek had two assists to give him 1,000th career points as the Red Wings won 3-1 against the visiting Lightning. Verbeek became the second NHL player (along with Dale Hunter) to collect 1,000 career points & 2,000 career penalty minutes.

February 28, 1942 Montreal’s Terry Reardon scored three goals (the only hat trick of his NHL career) and added three assists in the Canadiens’ 8-3 win over the visiting Brooklyn Americans.

March 1, 1970 Minnesota North Stars ended their team-record 20 game winless streak (0-15-5) with an 8-0 win over the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs. Cesare Maniago recorded the shutout for the North Stars.

Rankings

The rankings are based on how the teams are currently playing.

Top 5
1. NY Rangers
2. Montreal
3. NY Islanders
4. Minnesota
5. Nashville

Bottom 5
30. Arizona
29. San Jose
28. Florida
27. Dallas
26. Columbus

Alex Mueller

Author: Alex Mueller

Alex Mueller graduated from Temple University with a minor in journalism over a decade ago. He’s been writing about NHL hockey, on and off, since the Fall of 2009. He’s written for Pucking Awesome, the Checking Line and now Hockey Recaps. He played goalie at San Diego Ice Arena. His first novel, Bobby Sterling vs Truth, is available on Amazon now.

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The trade deadline is tomorrow and that means “contenders” shell out picks for players on bad teams to get them over the hump. For the most part, players rarely contribute and most aren't on the team the next season. The Kings are the rare exception when two trades got...