Is there actually good news in Leaf nation? Coach Ron Wilson, in an inspired bit of retro-line building has combined new Leaf acquisition Ryan Hollweg with waiver prize Dominic Moore. Moore and Hollweg famously played together (with Jed Ortmeyer), on the New York Rangers 2005-06 HMO line, a high energy line that was part agitator line and part checking line. They were very tough to play against. The Rangers liked the line but felt the players were interchangeable and traded Dominic Moore, never really successfully recreating the same energy.
Of course, while this is good for the Leafs, I think people are more concerned about their top lines.
Over in St. Louis, defenseman Erik Johnson is out for the season with a torn ACL. He hurt it in a golf cart. This now puts the Blues in the mix for Mathieu Schneider, which will maybe light a fire under the Kings. The Blues would need to dump some salary for Schneider, though, which might be a deal-breaker for them. Every defenseman who puts on a Blues uniform ends up horribly injured, so maybe that’s a deal-breaker for Schneider.
Finally, Mark Everson had a great piece establishing New Jersey Devil Zach Parise as the NHL’s greatest bargain: he’s the league’s lowest-paid leading scorer, who’s not on an entry-level contract. To me, this is Devils GM Lou Lamoriello at his best, getting a player locked in long-term right before the player’s stock rises.