Canadian Corner – October 30, 2011.

In today’s roundup of notable Canadian NHL team news: The Maple Leafs will honor Mats Sundin’s number…Oilers getting stellar goaltending…Senators captain sidelined…Canadiens win their third straight game…Flames Mikael Backlund hopes to return soon…Alex Edler plays major role in Canucks victory over Capitals…Jets shut out against Tampa Bay.


Leafs to honor Sundin.

TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs will honor former captain Mats Sundin’s number 13 on February 11, 2012.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: And rightly so! He’s the franchise leader in goals and points, plus assists for a forward.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers have received stellar goaltending from Nikolai Khabibulin and Devan Dubnyk as the club has rolled to its best October performance in ten years.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I still have concerns over the Oilers defensive play and blueline depth, but quality goaltending from Khabibulin and Dubnyk could overcome those deficiencies.

OTTAWA CITIZEN: The Senators lost team captain Daniel Alfredsson following an illegal hit to his head by NY Rangers winger Wojtek Wolski during the Senators 5-4 come-from-behind, shootout victory over the Rangers yesterday.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hopefully, Alfredsson didn’t suffer a serious head injury. He was forced from the game yesterday, and it remains to be seen how serious this injury could be.

LE JOURNAL DE MONTREAL: The Canadiens have seen a significant improvement in their fortunes this past week, winning three straight games, including back-to-back games against the Boston Bruins, to improve their record to 4-5-2.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’ll quiet the critics for the time being, but they’re not out of the woods yet.

CALGARY SUN: Flames injured center Mikael Backlund is eyeing a mid-November return from pre-season surgery on his left pinkie finger.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Defenseman Alex Edler was the star of the Canucks 7-4 romp last night over the visiting Washington Capitals, potting two goals and an assist.

WINNIPEG SUN: After beating the Philadephia Flyers two nights ago in a wild 9-8 game, the Jets fell 1-0 to the Tampa Bay Lightning.


  1. the Oilers are leading the league in GAA, I believe they’re 3rd in PK, and leading the league in blocked shots. Their assistant coaches have gotten everything out of their players so far, Smid is a machine back there this season, and yet you’re doubting their play? Not out to be a douche, but have you watched any of their games this season? They’ve lead in every game, haven’t been down by more then 1 goal in any game at any point. I dunno, but it smells like a successfully structured system that the players have been buying into by leaps and bounds. This team has a huge chip on their shoulder with everyone saying these same things you are, I don’t believe in them blah blah blah. I hope it keeps coming, gives them all the reason to keep the fires going. They’ve only beat Pitts, Wash, Van so far this early season.

  2. It’s a long season and I very much doubt Khabby can sustain those amazing numbers (less than 1 GAA) through the course of an entire season. The defense has looked great thus far but the goalies are still having to make a lot of saves every night and aren’t getting too much up front. If and when the goalies normalize their play will show if these Oilers are real contenders for a playoff spot.

  3. I think a defence shoiuld be judged on scoring chances not shots. The main reason the sv% is so high is because most shots are coming from the outside

  4. I doubt khabby”s groin can sustain itself all season