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October 26, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Barry Melrose

Barry Melrose
  (1:02 PM)

Hello!

Barry Melrose
  (1:02 PM)

Some great games last night! Pittsburgh still the story of the NHL. Hopefully more great games tonight!

Jason (Charlotte)

What has surprised you the most about the season thus far?

Barry Melrose
  (1:03 PM)

Probably Pittsburgh. With all the injuries they are still in first place in the East. They are doing it without Crosby or Malkin and with injuries to the defense. They just continue to win. It's a really great story.

Dave (New York)

In your opinion, what is more impressive, the Capitals being undefeated or the Pens being 7-2-2 without Crosby?

Barry Melrose
  (1:04 PM)

Capitals have their full team with no real injuries to speak of. Pittsburgh has just been full of injuries. Pittsburgh is a much bigger story.

Bill (Montreal)

What, in your opinion, do the Habs have to change in order to get their season turned around? I notice a lack of toughness, but are there other aspects to their game that the average fan may not see?

Barry Melrose
  (1:05 PM)

If they are going to turn things around Boston is a good place to start. They have a great rivalry and Boston is struggling. This is a great chance for Montreal to turn things around. If they lose games to Boston we could be looking at a coaching change in Montreal.

Josh (Toronto)

Will Phil Kessel be able to keep up his scoring pace and finish the year atop the leaderboard? How many does he finish with?

Barry Melrose
  (1:06 PM)

I would be surprised if he led the league. I don't think he can keep up this pace. He'd be looking at close to 70 goals if he did that and I just don't see that. He has always been able to put the puck in the net, even when the team hasn't been great.

Timo (San Diego)

Have you been to a Winnipeg game yet? Are you excited to see them back in the fold?

Barry Melrose
  (1:06 PM)

Not yet. Looking forward to it though. I really enjoyed my time there. I will be very excited to see a game soon.

Michael K. (Philadelphia)

Should the flyers be concerned with their goaltending?

Barry Melrose
  (1:07 PM)

No. Forget about that. You signed a guy that will solve all the problems. It's just a bump in the road so don't think the road is going to be washed away.

Scrapper (Chicago)

Thoughts on Patrick Kane being conversted to center this season? So far, so good.

Barry Melrose
  (1:08 PM)

Yeah, so far so good. I think he has 8 points in 8 games or something like that. Made a couple beautiful passes last night. The main thing is the Blackhawks are off to a great start. Kane is work in progress but he is a great player.

Jon (Des Moines)

Are you at all surprised by the success Sheldon Souray has had in his reutrn to the NHL this season? Granted it's pretty early yet, but he's playing very physical hockey and also contributing a ton on offense, too. DAL is great in between the pipes and with better defense, a deep playoff run is possible, correct?

Barry Melrose
  (1:09 PM)

Not really surprised. I was surprised he couldn't play for Edmonton last year to be frank. He is a big body, good skater with a rocket shot. He has been a great addition to Dallas. He has been one of the main reasons why they are off to such a great start.

Nick (New York)

Will the Rangers get some defensive help or will they just wait for the return of Marc Staal

Barry Melrose
  (1:10 PM)

I think what happens will determine on how they feel about Staal when he gets back. Their real problem right now is they can't get the puck in the net. If I'm a Rangers fan I'm worried about the lack of offense. Even the power play which was supposed to be so good hasn't produced.

Tommy (Washington, DC)

Do you think this Capitals team is better built for a deep playoff run? They seem to have found a nice balance.

Barry Melrose
  (1:11 PM)

They seem to have all the ingredients but its been that way for years. They are big and talented with a quality goaltender. Great special teams. Guys that can put the puck in the net. On paper they have everything. But you also know what paper is used for?

Austin (Cheeseburger West Side)

Is it just me or have the Lightning been more physical this year than last year?

Barry Melrose
  (1:12 PM)

The Lightning are a big team. Don't forget that. They have a gigantic defense. And the forwards are big. It's just a case of the games having more grinding. Closer games you see more board play and more physicality.

Kevin (Happy Valley)

Penguins to hold press conference tomorrow at 3pm for major announcement. Is this the return of Crosby?

Barry Melrose
  (1:12 PM)

I hope it is. Sydney got the go-ahead of for contact awhile back but you can't recreate NHL contact in practice. I miss seeing him play and want him back as soon as possible.

Scott Hartnell (Montreal)

Any chance I get traded this year?

Barry Melrose
  (1:14 PM)

I don't think so. You're a pretty important piece. Maybe not a top two line guy anymore but when Philly is playing well, you're playing well. Pretty important to the team.

al (denver)

who do you think is more likely to lose his starting job: halak or roloson?

Barry Melrose
  (1:14 PM)

Right now I think they both have lost their job. Neither one has started well. The other goaltenders have played well. Basically they both lost their jobs.

Barry Melrose
  (1:15 PM)

If you're not starting most of the games you're not the starter anymore.

Dan (FL)

The Jackets must be relieved to get the first win. Can they build on it maybe run off a few more?

Barry Melrose
  (1:15 PM)

Of course they can built on it. They haven't been terrible. Most of the games have been close. Carter will be back eventually. Some young guys put the puck in the net. Mason played well. Lots of good news lately. They need to get hot for sure. But they should feel good about themselves right now.

Martin Brodeur (Newark, NJ)

Are my days of being an elite goaltender behind me, or do I have one or two more great years left somewhere?

Barry Melrose
  (1:16 PM)

I'm afraid your days are close to being over. Getting hurt too much and you struggled in the playoffs. The Devils aren't a great defensive team anymore which isn't helping. I think the Marty now is not the Marty we are used to.

Richard (Chino Hills, CA)

With the additions of Mike Richards and Simon Gagne, do you think the Kings have completely solved their offensive problems from the last couple seasons?

Barry Melrose
  (1:18 PM)

The Kings never really had problems. They could always score. But Richards is a great addition. Three great centerman on that team now. And Gagne is a known scorer who can also do damage in the playoffs. I know othey lost last night but this team can make some noise. They also have great special teams which is a good recipe for success.

DJ (Cuse)

Love the start the Avs have had so far. Is it due to the added size on the defense as their start Duchene and Stasny have not done much at all?

Barry Melrose
  (1:18 PM)

I think it's maturity. They have a lot of skill on that team and they have gotten excellent goaltending. Everything put together is getting them so wins but they still need to figure out how to win at home.

Keith (NYC)

Marty was never as good as he was made out to be. The Devils defense was.

Barry Melrose
  (1:19 PM)

Well, you can say that but he still has to make key saves at key times. You don't get the most wins without being a really great goaltender. That's not a fair statement.

Mike (Maryland)

Do the CAPS have a shot at the most wins mark set by Detroit?

Barry Melrose
  (1:20 PM)

I don't think so. There are no bad teams in the NHL right now. When Detroit did that there were a limited number of good teams. Montreal and Columbus are in last place right now but they are not bad teams. It would be really hard to break that record now.

George (Orlando)

Are you going to be doing college games again this year? The national tournament and Frozen Four are alot of fun to watch.

Barry Melrose
  (1:21 PM)

Yes. I expect to. We usually do 3-5 games. I really look forward to that. Also the Frozen Four in Tampa. Always a great time.

Jeff (Clearwater)

How many starts does Garon get for TB before Roli gets back in there?

Barry Melrose
  (1:22 PM)

It's tough to not go with him again. Tampa wasn't playing well and Garon has them winning. I expect him to stay in there until they lose.

Gene Mullett (Columbus, OH)

Congrats to Team Canada for the Pan Am baseball win. What are you real thoughts on Crosby? Will he really be on the ice by December?

Barry Melrose
  (1:22 PM)

I do think he will be out there by then. He is skating, has been cleared for contact .. if he's not playing in another month you have to wonder what's going on.

Studebaker (NJ)

Barry, I miss the ol' NHL2Night days with you and Bill Pidto breaking down the games. Awesome stuff. Any chance of that returning in some form?

Barry Melrose
  (1:23 PM)

Actually we are planning on doing segments during the 8pm SC ... 7-8 minute segments .. so we are really looking forward to that. If the NBA doesn't play, that opens up more time to do hockey.

Brett (Pittsburgh)

To follow up on Kevin's post. The news conference tomorrow will be to announce that Pittsburgh will be hosting the 2012 Nhl Draft...very exciting..but shouldnt be a Crosby related news conference...Still hoep for November 11th against the Stars!!!

Barry Melrose
  (1:24 PM)

Pittsburgh has the Frozen Four in 2013 also so they are keeping that building busy.

Jim (Denver,CO)

What is up with these AVS!?!? 6-0 on the road? I thought they were supposed to be bottom weeders of the western conference?

Barry Melrose
  (1:25 PM)

Don't forget Colorado is a very young team. At home they probaby try and get a little fancy for the crowd and on the road they get down to the basics. They just need to play at home like they do on the road.

Paul (NJ)

has the 2 poor games by the Wings exposed some issues or are they just badly played games?

Barry Melrose
  (1:27 PM)

When Howard is back in net we can judge them better. They sure didn't look great last night. They just haven't been getting quality goaltending of late. They just haven't looked like a team that started 4-0.Thanks for the questions. I know it's a quite night tonight but sit back and enjoy the action and we'll do this again next week! Take care.