Canadian Corner – October 4, 2011.

In today’s collections of NHL Canadian team news: The Sedins won’t change their style of play…a breakdown of the Toronto Maple Leafs roster…No suspension for Ryan Malone for head shot check to Canadien Chris Campoli…Senators will need production from Nikita Filatov…Flames David Moss gunning for a career-best season…Jets rookie Mark Scheifele to be in opening night roster…Pressure building for new Oilers arena.

Don’t go changin’….

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Don’t expect the Sedin Twins to change their style of play this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Nor should they! Back to back Art Ross trophies indicates they’re doing something right! Yes, I know, there’s still that playoff inconsistency thingy, but that’s been getting better too. 

TORONTO SUN: Mike Zeisberger breaks down the Maple Leafs roster for the upcoming season, and what he finds is some concerns over James Reimer’s preseason, a deep blueline, and injuries reducing an already depth-challenged forward corps.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Reimer struggles this season and the Leafs fail to improve their scoring punch, it’ll be a long, long season for their fans.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Several Canadiens, including Chris Campoli, react to the new the league won’t suspend Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ryan Malone for his head shot to Campoli in a recent preseason game. Suffice it to say, they’re not exactly thrilled by the decision.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Thankfully, Campoli didn’t suffer a concussion and will be in the Habs opening night lineup, but this certainly hasn’t sat well with the Montreal fans and media. Already, there’s a dark muttering Shanahan didn’t suspend Malone because the Lightning GM is Shanahan’s friend and former Detroit Red Wings teammate, Steve Yzerman. I don’t buy into that conspiracy theory, but “Sheriff Shanny” can expect more stuff like this whenever he opts not to suspend a Lightning player.

OTTAWA CITIZEN: Nikita Filatov is going to get his chance to prove himself as an NHL scorer, starting this season on the same line as Jason Spezza and Milan Michalek.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As I’ve said before, it’s “make or break” time for Filatov.

CALGARY SUN: David Moss is hoping to stay healthy and shoot for twenty or more goals this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Moss can hit or exceed the 20-goal mark, it would be a welcome addition to a Flames offensive attack considered to be lacking depth beyond their first line.

WINNIPEG SUN: Rookie Mark Scheifele has signed an entry-level contract with the Jets and will be starting this season with the club.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: He’ll have the first ten games to prove he can carry over his promising preseason play into the NHL regular season. If he does, the Jets could have a potential Calder candidate on their hands. For now, though, he’s got to prove he belongs this season.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Oilers president Patrick LaForge is urging supporters to press Edmonton City Council to push through plans for a new arena by October 31.


  1. Seems like people are always saying ‘the Sedins are over-rated’, then they go out and prove their critics wrong. It used to be ‘the Sedins aren’t good enough for the NHL’. So they post solid seasons, then it became ‘the Sedins aren’t really an NHL second-line’. So they post super-star numbers. Then it becomes ‘the Sedins aren’t NHL first-liners’. So they get back to back Art Ross Trophies with a Hart Trophy thrown in for good measure.

    Now critics say ‘the Sedins can’t produce in the play-offs’. I say, just watch them prove those critics wrong!

  2. Schiefele needs to tuck those bangs in.
    It’s pretty hard to support Habs fans on this one; it was a fair call.

  3. On the no suspension to Malone, as I mentioned on another blog were Leafs fans were unhappy about the MacArther suspension and couldn’t understand the no suspension on the Malone hit which looked much more serious of a hit: My reasoning is in the MacA hit, the player was already in a vulnerable position when MacA went for the hit which could of been worse than it was, diving aside, where as in every replay of the Malone hit. Malone was coming in for the hit, and committed to it before Campoli reached out for the puck, thus putting himself in a dangerous position and thus Malone had no other option to make contact where and how he did. That is a hockey play and was unavoidable in a contact sport whereas the MacA one was a prime example of what not to do if you see a player already in a vulnerable positon… albeit the MacA penalty was a bit harsh.

    This is actually a very good call for all the fans out there that worry about the league becoming a non-hitting league as this is a prime example that not only the player laying the hit has to be responsible for his play but also the players getting hit, ie have to keep their heads up and not put themselves in a vulnerable position or play without fear of contact.

    Score one more for Shanaban!

  4. What about the toe drag from Ben Smith at the last minuit putting him in a vulnerable position on Red Wings Brenden Smith’s hit. What a joke that Malone didnt get anything at all and Smith gets 5 games. Consistency is always an issue in the NHL’s rullings every year! Ref’s too!

  5. It’s interesting that Malone was not only penalized on the play but also thrown out of the game. The referees viewed the incident, in the moment, as highly punishable. But with the technology of slo-mo replay, Shanahan and various pundits and blog commenters all can cite aspects of the hit that make it okay.

    I don’t get it. It was called a penalty at the time and it was a hit to the head … the story should end there with suspension but somehow this was an okay hit to the head. Right.

    There are as many compelling arguments from other pundits and blog commentators that read the same cues and call BS to the “no suspension” ruling and frankly at the end of the day all we can do is agree to disagree.

    But that is no way to run a league. Some head shots are okay and we’ll decide which ones. Good luck with that.

  6. Shaun, I take your point, especially regarding the slow motion. You watch anything in slow-mo enough times and anything can become acceptable.

    as for the penalty, the fact that there was no suspension does not say the hit was clean. What it says it that the call on the ice was enough punishment (making no comment on wether that is valid or not, just saying how it does nake sense to have that situation).

    As for some headshots being ok and others not makes perfect sense….as long as you take out headshot and and say contact with the head. The difference is that headshots are intentional. Head contact, however, can be either intention or incidental. The fact is that in a contact sport head contact will happen….unless we wrapp every player in bubble wrap several feet thick. There are such things as accidents.

    All that being said, I think the Malone should have gotten at least a game, but not more than two. He could have tried to avoid or lessen the hit but he seem to just keep up the follow through IMO.