NHL Blog Beat (Lockout-Free Edition) – October 10, 2012.

In today’s special “lockout-free” collection of notable posts from the NHL blogosphere: Debating the “top 25 under 25″, analysis of ESPN’s first telecast of a KHL game, exploring why save percentage stats are rising, the Islanders kids aren’t kids anymore, funny hockey gifs, and a review of “Breakaway”.

PUCK DADDY/BACKHAND SHELF: Greg Wyshynski and Justin Bourne offer up respective critiques of ESPN’s recent listing of the top 25 NHL players under 25.

Is Stamkos the best under-25 player in the NHL?

BACKHAND SHELF: Ryan Lambert analyses ESPN’s first telecast of a KHL game, reserving his harshest criticism for Steve Levy and Barry Melrose, who provided play-by-play commentary and analysis.

NHLNUMBERS.COM: “Eric T” offers up reasons why save percentage for NHL goalies has been on the rise in recent years.

HOCKEY INDEPENDENT: Chris Triants examines the NY Islanders maturing youth, and what it means for the club’s immediate future.

GREATEST HOCKEY LEGENDS: Joe Pelletier reviews “Breakaway”, a new book which looks back at players who defected from behind the Iron Curtain during the 1970s and 1980s to play in the NHL.

THE STRANGEST ONE OF ALL: Scotty Wazz thumbs his nose at the NHL lockout, and opts to play the cancelled opening two weeks of this season on the NHL ’94 ROM emulator! Hoo-hah!

MILE HIGH HOCKEY: Because we could all use a chuckle during the NHL lockout, enjoy these five hilarious gifs.