Pierre,I would like to sit down with the NHL, Glendale city council, and Matt Hulsizer and do a Can I afford it roundtable? If you can't pay cash without taxpayers help you should be denied.
Glendale in a tough bind. I agree taxpayer money should not be helping pro teams. But flip side is Coyotes leaving town and taxpayers on hook for empty arena. Between a rock and ...
Do you expect the Pens to still make it to the Stanley Cup Finals if Crosby is not back in time for the playoffs?
No Cup finals unless 87 is back.
If the playoffs would start today, who would win the Cup - Bruins, Canucks or Flyers?
My top two picks right now would be Vancouver or San Jose; I'm always biased towards West so full disclosure there.Second tier would have Washington and Detroit.Third tier Boston, Philly and Pittsburgh (if Crosby returns I put Pitt in higher tier)
Who do you think will be the 2010-2011 Stanley Cup Champions?
Gotta stick with my September pick otherwise I'm not loyal: San Jose Sharks (although Vancouver looks mighty good...)
All the media jumped on the Islanders for how they handled their "revenge game" against the Pens. That being said, how weak does Montreal look today? The didn't get the two points, nor get any sort of physical revenge.
John, how could Montreal get any physical revenge? Like Detroit, although not as good obviously, the Habs are built on skill and not brute force. It's worked for the Wings. The Canadiens refuse to get involved in arms race. You can argue that on either side.
Should Tomas "The Lumberjack" Plekanec be getting a call from the NHL for his two handed swing at Nathan Horton's face? Seemed pretty intentional to me.
didn't look intential to me
Good morning Pierre,Do the Isles make the playoffs next year by keeping the current team intact without any major acquisitions or do they need a top 6 winf for JT? We do get Streit back which is the equivalent of signing a top 2 d-man. Thanks
I certainly like what I've seen from their young core in the second half. One of the concerns you always have with second-half runs from teams that were essentially eliminated at Christmas is whether it's a mirage or not. But I think if they can add a legtiimat top-six force and Streit comes back healthy, they can be in the bubble mix next season
As a life long Islander fan (23 years) I've seen no success from the team. The second half of this season it appears they finally have turned a corner with a young core group experiencing a good level of success. What do you make of the Isles 2nd half run and what is your outlook for next year? Thanks
See answer above :)
Have you heard anything new about the bonds?
Chad, I haven't looked into the matter in a few days, no sorry. I mean, they're either going to sell soon, or they won't ! And you know what that means either way
Dave Stubbs reported that Andrei Markov is skating this morning? Does Markov still make Mtl better? What does MTL do with Scott Gomez in the off-season?Thanks Pierre, love your work.Rob
Would be shocked if Markov came back this year
Hi Pierre thanks for the time and expertise. I will not ask what the Panthers need to be competitive as I am to frustrated at this point. Instead I will ask if you could see them there much longer? No playoffs and pitiful attendance can't last forever right? Thanks.
Sean, thank you. You raise an interesting point. You hardly ever hear about the Panthers moving anywhere despite their poor attendance and non-playoff record.... The focus right now obviously on Phoenix and Atlanta... I know the panthers have a great, sweet lease in Sunrise and that's part of reason you never hear about them possibly moving
Could you give me 3 names for the MVP in NHL this year?
Right now if I had to fill out my Hart ballot, and I may change my mind 10 more times before I actually fill it out and send it to the NHL in two weeks, here's where I'm at:1. Daniel Sedin2. Jonathan Toews3. Carey Price4. Corey Perry5. Steven Stamkos
My buddy is a huge Calgary fan I mean huge goes from Jersey to Calgary atleast twice a year to see games. For his sake could you see the Flames making the playoffs?
They MUST beat Anaheim on Wednesday to have ANY chance
Any ideas as to what Ovechkin's "nagging injury" may be? Do you think this rest will ultimately benefit or hurt the Caps?
rule I have as a hockey journalist: NEVER guess on players' injuries
Which Sharks team do we see when it counts in a couple of weeks? The one that looked slow, took dumb penalties and generally got pushed around for big chunks of last night? Or the one that pushed back ferociously in the third (when it wasn't taking more dumb penalties)?
The good one
With Chris Osgood back on IR, do you have any concerns about the Red Wings' goaltending situation for the rest of the season and playoffs?
Mild concern, yes
Pierre,What would you say, right not, are the Preds chances of advancing to the second round of the playoffs for the first time in franchise history?
Interesting you should ask, I've got a Preds story running later today after speaking with Barry Trotz this morning... I like their chances better if they get healthy
What do you make of this Flyers team? Plays great one game, not so great the next game. Bob is incredible 1 game, horrible the next game, and awesome the game after that. What is going on??!!
They defintely lost their way coming into March. Losing to Crosby-less Pens and Ovechkin-less Caps in two straight games, even if both were shootouts, was not good... But I still think they'll iron things out
Pierre, with 3 capable young goaltenders in Washington - who will play in the playoffs this year? And, who is the future of the franchise in net?
So hard to predcit but I'll go with Neuvirth
To channel my inner LeBrun "Merci" what a game between the kings and sharks, how did you fall asleep?
haha, I'm sick with a cold plus my two-year-old wakes up real early... Watched rest of game this morning. Great stuff.
Detroit: resting in wait, or having trouble getting 100% effort and teamwork?
Joe, thanks for joining us from over there ! hope you're well.Two things:Wings need to get healthy (Datsyuk, Franzen), number one. Number 2, needs to play better defensively (17th in NHL in goals against per game)
Do you really see the LA Kings going deep into the playoffs?(Western conference finals and beyond)
They've got a shot for sure. I know this sounds cliche but I believe it more than ever: all 16 teams who get in have a real shot. PARITY. No. 8 Montreal last year? No. 8 Edmonton in 2006?
So now that we've had a nice cold splash of reality thrown in our face here in NJ, its time for the Devils fans to start thinking of how we can build upon this turnaround next year. To do that will require two important pieces to return Lemaire and Parise. Any inside word on which way they may be leaning?
Nope... but Parise contract talks I believe have to wait until Devils ownership situation irons itself out
Your gut feeling. Crosby in or out for the playoffs?
Total guess on my part: IN.
How many points do you think it will take to make the playoffs in the western confrence?
What was your reaction to Sergei Bobrovsky's big bounce back last night keeping his team in the game and earning them a point?
That was a needed performance. He was fantastic. I still think if I'm Laviolette, I give Boucher Game 1 _ veteran can handle that pressure _ then you know you've got Bob in the bullpen ready to come in if you need.... That's how I would play it
Who do you think is more a more valuable return on the Caps blueline- Poti or Green?
Poti does a lot of things that doesn't get attention but I still think Caps PP needs Green back there
Hi Pierre,Can the Caps really make a deep run/win the Cup if they platoon Neuvirth and Varlamov in goal for the playoffs? I'm not a hockey historian but is there precedent for this in recent memory?
Boucher and Leighton both had turns last spring for Cup finalist Flyers.Cam Ward and Martin Gerber both had starts on '06 Cup champion Hurricanes.It's not very common, but it happens
Do you have the Hawks making the playoffs? and if so, how far do you see them going??
Do the New York Rangers have the ability to pull off a first round upset?
Yessir. In King Henrik we trust !
How big of a loss is Manny Malhotra for Canucks?
To me, that's a big loss. I wrote about it on Monday, check it out: http://espn.go.com/blog/nhl/post/_/id/5797/manny-malhotras-injury-reinforces-why-visors-should-be-mandatory-in-nhl
Can the Caps get to the cup final, with a trio of untested youngsters sharing the load in goal? Who do you see getting the majority of starts in the playoffs?
Who do you think will win the Calder trophy? Grabner, Skinner, or Couture?
yup... plus Carlson, Crawford, Subban, Marchand.. what a year for rookiesLikely Couture will get my first-place vote
Any talk of a league review of the Komisarek hit last night? Or, God willing, are tough, clean open ice hits still allowed???????
nope he won't face any league discipline
Who do you think is this years sleeper in the playoffs that could suprise some teams, like Montreal did last year?
Not sure if Chicago would be a surprise since they won Cup last year but as current No. 7 seed, they'll have some major bite
If the Oilers win the draft lottery again who should they draft 1st overall?
Good question. Good picks would be Sean Couturier, Adam Larsson or Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. Larsson is a d-man and the other two are centers _ both positions of need for Edmonton
The Leafs won again last night. Can our Canes keep pace in the race for the last playoff spot?
I predict they take 3 out of 4 points from home-and-home vs. Bolts this weekend
jonas hiller struggled last night. with ellis and emery proving to be a solid tandem, what should the ducks do?
Bursnide and I discuss this in Daily Debate which will be posted shortly and we disagree: He'd to to Emery; I'd go to Hiller
Carey Price mvp ?
You saw last night why he deserves consideration. When he's not super-human, you see how pedestrian the Canadiens really are as a team. Hence that's how valuable Price has been to Montreal this season
I'm tired of the small market excuse - When are the Predators and Rinne gonna get some love? It's a joke he is not mentioned more for the Hart.
Andrew, I've got a Preds blog coming later today !
What was Montrael supposed to do? Who on that team is going to send Chara "a message?" Chara would pound on any 2 guys on the Habs at the same time.
Will I be named a finalist for the Calder Trophy or will my playing on a samller market team that only gets recognition because of Trevor Gillies and Rick DiPietro cost me?
You'll be on my ballot, but can't speak for other voters !
If you were a betting man, what are you odds on the Jets^H^H^H^H Coyotes relocating back to the 'Peg?
Honestly impossible to tell. I know lots of people want to know that, but people invovled in that situation don't even know for sure at this point. Can go either way
Do you think it is possible for Reimer to be ROY if he finishes off the season strong and the leafs make the playoffs?
Tough competition from fellow rookies who have gone wire to wire this season
Give me the best 3 defenseman this year for the Norris?
My ballot, in no particular order, will include Lidstrom, Visnovsky, Letang, Chara and Yandle
Do you think the Stars can pull it off, and all 5 Pacific teams will make the playoffs?
will be mighty tough: Stars play 7 of their final 9 games on the road. Stars only have 11th-best road record in West at 18-14-2...
What are your thoughts on the Leafs goaltending situation for the 2011-2012 season? Reimer seems to be a shoe-in but does Jiggy come back? And does the Monster get back off the farm? Or are other options likely?
Don't think Giggy will be back (UFA).... Question is whether they want Monster to back up Reimer or go out and signe quality UFA (Byzgalov?) to play ahead of Reimer... time will tell...
Is Teemu Selanne amazing or what? And the Ducks have to be low-seed team everyone fears most if they make it. Sick front four plus Hiller back plus the criminally overlooked Lubo/Lyd pairing?
He's a superb story as always. To do what he's doing at this age? Plus a classy guy. One of my favorite guys to interview in my career
The caps have been on a pretty monster roll lately, with some key injuries, they had a slip up in philly the other night but found a way to win. How do you like this teams chances in the playoffs?
Well I picked a San Jose-Wash Cup finals last September. Can't back down now !
Does Thomas get the Vezina with his near historical save percentage or do voters go with Rinne because he played more games.
Thomas, Price and Rinne _ those are clear 3 choices
How do you see the Sabres faring the rest of this season?
playoffs baby !!!!
Hey Pierre, any chance we can get an Canadiens player arrested for the multiple high sticks (on Seguin/Horton)? I mean, they were legal hockey plays and we have a precedent set for this kind of thing, right?
Bruins fans upset at Habs high sticks.Habs fans upset at Chara/Pacioretty hit.Gotta love this rivalry !
Pierre, last night's 7-0 Bruins win over Montreal reminded me a lot of the 1996 Colorado-Detroit situation. Lemieux crushes Draper, and it took Detroit a year to finally be ready to fight, but in the meantime Detroit acted shell-shocked and were easily handled by Colorado in the Western Finals. With Boston and Montreal having a good chance of playing each other in the first round, do you agree with me in that Montreal looks like they might have developed a mental block against Boston after the Pacioretty hit, and that it might take them too long to circle the wagons just like it did for Detroit in 1996?
Interesting comparision. We'll see !
By the way, the Canadian government may be toppled during a 1:30 p.m. ET confidence vote. Interesting !
How is your Toronto Media Hacks Fantasy team doing?
haha, after winning the media fantasy league last season I've chosen to rebuild this year. It's a keeper league with salaries and salary cap so the trend is to go for it one year, rebuild with cheap re-signs the next.
Can you settle down the Flyers fans who think that Crosby will be getting special treatment when he returns? The conspiracy theorists seem to think he won't be allowed to be hit. As a Pens fan I don't expect that to be the case at all.
anyone who thinks any player gets any special treatment is crazy. Simply not true.
With all the hype around head shots...is Komisarek's hit to be made worse than it actually was?
yes that's the knee jerk reaction now because we're all so senstiive about head shots
What team(s) should be most concerned about their goaltending heading in to the playoffs?
Philly (as always), Washington, Detroit
How about the wild finish to the Sharks/Kings game last night? Is this finally the year all three California teams make the playoffs at the same time?
That would be great to see. I tweeted yesterday that if Ducks/Kings both make it and Kings have home ice in their respective series, Anaheim opening on road in another, I'd like to set up shop in SoCal in first round.. we'll see what the boss thinks ! haha
Mr. LeBrun, I know Price has played more games than Thomas and has the most wins in the NHL but last nights game was a Vezina showdown of sorts and it appears that Thomas still has it. I want to know your thoughts on this. Even though Thomas has had his ups and downs, what do you think are his chances of taking home a second trophy in three years?
I think Thomas will win the Vezina.
Pierre, Why is no one giving the yotes love? We dont have an owner, we dont even have a 20 goal scorer, and yet we are battling SJ for division lead. Bryzgalov has been insanely good these last couple of games giving up only 1 goal per game over the last 5. Everyone wants to talk about the queens and the guppies from CA. I got the bottle pierre I just need a "CUP" to poor it in.
Shouldn't we be talking Dan Bylsma for Jack Adams award?
Yes.Bylma, Tippett and Trotz would be my three choices
Crosby skated for 30 minutes this morning. Seems he is picking up his speed here. How long do you think it will be until he has full contact practices? And how many practices/games do you think he'll need before he is 100%? It's not like he's going to step right in and be the player he was in December his first few games back.
Impossible to tell
Does Scott Gomez have the worst contract in the NHL? He makes Sheldon Souray look like a bargain.
certianly one of
Hey Pierre, What is preventing Detroit from being in the top tier for Cup favorites? And how come you weren't at the Table Hockey tournament in Toronto last Saturday?
haha, table hockey tournament? Nice. Wings 17th in goals against per game. I'm concerned.
Do you think a defensive defenseman like Marc Staal could ever win the Norris?
Big-scoring blue-liners have largely prevailed in voting for years
Pierre, you guys should have a tropher tracker for the Selke too!
haha, you're right !
Scratch that question, it was already answered. Can you talk about your experiences while interviewing Bryzgolov. Your interview with him in the preseason was hilarious. Who's your favorite player to interview?
yeah Bryz is awesome, great sense of humor. Other guys I enjoy interviewing:Marty Turco (funny), Brad Richards (smart), Mike Knuble (insightful), Chris Pronger (all of the above), Daniel Briere (insightful)...Lots more.. just don't have time to name them all
Pierre, NESN had The Great One and Ray Bourque on during the first intermission last night. What are the chances we see a comback from either of them? Their legs might not be what the used to be, but I'm willing to bet they both still have the hands.
Wasn't that great to see last night? Smart of NESN to have them on.
Do you think there should be a trophy for a defensive defenseman? I know the Norris is for defense but only seems to reward high scoring defenseman
What are the chances of Detroit picking up a Bob Probert (god rest his soul) or another Darren McCarty ??? I love watching them win but I know its possable they can win still with at least one enforcer! and not a bertuzzi or Erickson I am talking a PROBIE OR MCCARTY... they won with at least one enforcer before why not now?? The other day Lidstrom got popped good on a cheap hit and nothing came out of it.. makes me want to resurect Probert and unleash hell
Wings decided they don't need a tradional tough guy. Montreal and Vancouver have also made that call.. interesting pro's and cons to that decision
No need for a Selke Trophy Tracker. Just give it to Bergeron and be done.
He certainly is a top candidate for it !
If you could have cloned yourself many years ago so that you and your clone could then answer these hockey chatroom questions faster, would you have?
YES !!!!!!!But hopefully my clone would be 50 pounds lighter and didn't enjoy beer so much :)
When voting for the Hart trophy you need to consider all around play not just offensive numbers. What the player means to the team in its overall makeup. Guys like the Sedins are surrounded with studs, Chicago has its studs but the only offensive stud in L.A. is me!!!! No one on the team is at 30 goals yet. I also play stellar defense when are you guys going to wake up and change your though process....
yes you deserve some consieration as well Anze. No question
Has their ever been a goaltender like Henrik Lundqvist who is solid year in and out but never win a Vezina trophy?
Folks, sorry there's more than 200 questions I didn't get to. Popular chat today ! Apologize to those I didn't get to, did my best to answer as many as I could. Cheers and talk next week everyone. Enjoy the playoff races.