NHL Canadian Corner – January 16, 2012.

For the first time in years, the Battle of Ontario means something…Jets scorers slumping…Canucks fall to Ducks…Canadiens down Rangers…Devan Dubnyk shines in overtime for Oilers…New Flame Blair Jones settling in.

TORONTO SUN: For the first time since 2007, the “Battle of Ontario” between the Toronto Maple Leafs and Ottawa Senators means something, as it has playoff implications for both clubs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It would be terrific if both teams should meet in this year’s playoffs, as it would rekindle an intense playoff rivalry that had its heyday nearly ten years ago.

WINNIPEG SUN: With Blake Wheeler sidelined and several scorers slumping, the Jets forwards have been struggling of late.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If this keeps up, it could force management into the trade market for help. Ignore the “Shane Doan to Winnipeg” rumors, that’s not happening. As for Teemu Selanne to Winnipeg, it’s a slim possibility, but if I were a Jets fan, I wouldn’t get my hopes up.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: The Canucks fell 4-2 to the Anaheim Ducks in one of their worse performances since their early season slump.

Pacioretty lead Habs over Rangers.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Max Pacioretty scored twice as the Canadiens downed the Conference-leading NY Rangers 4-1.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A big win for the Habs following two disappointing losses to Boston and Ottawa, but they failed to gain any ground in the standings, sitting 8 points out of the last playoff spot in the Conference.

EDMONTON SUN: Devan Dubnyk made 21 saves as the Oilers edged the LA Kings 2-1.

CALGARY HERALD: New Flame Blair Jones is finally settling in with the club after joining the club a little over a week ago in a trade with Tampa Bay.


  1. Ryan jones doesnt play for the flames……blair jones does :p

    • Fixed.

  2. Just trade Campoli, gill, weber, Kaberle, and Kostitsyn already. They aren’t going to make playoffs. Trade these guys for 2nd an 3rd rounders and prospects. Sack the coaches and GM. Bury Gomez in the minors or use a CBA negotiated Penalty free buy out. Get a lottery pick and do your best to grab Forsberg. Then you can think about moving Plekanec for Suter. This season is virtually lost so they might as well trade guys before they get hurt and take the mid 2000’s penguins route this season. Just pack it in and get a blue chip center at the draft. Sign a vet D man who’s large and 30ish. Then work on a proper third line that has some skill. I don’t want to see a 10th place finish with a 9-12th overall pick. Hire Roy at GM and a quality coach with experience. It’s a waste to miss playoffs and not get a blue chip prospect out of it. If the Canadiens were competing hard and they were in the group of 5 teams fighting each other for the last two, then you go for playoffs. At this point, the Canadiens have not demonstrated any reason to think they can compete with the top teams in the league. They have one consistent line and goaltending. Have a fire sale, bring up some youth for experience, get a top 5 pick. Replace the management. Just do it already.

    Hope the jets can pull it together. I woul love to cheer them on in the playoffs.

  3. @SmielmanN – 8 points out of a playoff spot with roughly half the season to go is not enough for MTL to pack it just yet. If they slip further than that by the trade deadline (about 6 weeks away) then you’ll see some off-loading.

  4. SmielmaN -i agree. those mentioned players have to go. especially the streaky floater AK46.

  5. Alex- I know what your saying and believe me, I want the Canadiens to be successful. I spent a lot of money on my game room and hockey card collection over the years lol. I just don’t see this team being able to properly compete with the top teams in the east or west. I know they just whooped the Rangers but it’s more than probable that the Rangers underestimated the Canadiens. Plus, they have a chip on their shoulder to win because of the Cammy trade. Once that wears off it will be back to inconsistency. I’m just suggesting putting the lines out there now and start taking in prospects and picks. I’m a eternal optimist when les Canadiens are in the playoffs, to a fault really, but it’s painfully obvious that this team needs a retooling. I like the direction that Gauthier realized he had to take, that being skill AND SIZE. At this point the Canadiens have to win at minimum 7 of their next 10 to even be sniffing playoffs. It’s a tall order bro, and I would rather the team take this year to grab a blue chip prospect, unload at the deadline, and bring in the size next year. We will see what happens.

    Habsolutly416- yeah, these arent things that “might” happen IMO, they “MUST” happen.

  6. Oh goody. Bozak the savior is back and the ship will be righted once again. You can tell when Wilson is grabbing at straws. Reimer back in net against a high scoring team after a 16 day absence, Bozak back centering the top line after also not playing in 16 days , MacA finally back with last years linemates because not much else was working, Crabb dumped to the 4th line or pressbox (because he’s the only one that takes the body?), Gardiner back in after 11 days of sitting and Aulie back in the press box. All this comes at the heals of an embarrsing effort against the Rangers who out muscled the Leafs at ever opportunity.

  7. I hear what Smielman is saying…although I’m not sure about AK46…..I think it would depend on what the return was as he does have size and strength. I think he might fit in (at a lower price) on a bigger nastier team. I’m not sure Gauthier should go. He had and plan, help put it together in a flash with Gomez and rest of the smurfs. The gamble made sense at the time but it did not pay off and he has been working steadily to fix it. He brought in Emelin and Cole, both have been doing well. He brought in Eller who has been showing real promise. I was down on him about Cammy but 1) read Bob Mackenzie’s take and 2) realised that Cammay had a limited no-trade clause. I have a feeling that of the teams on that list, only Bourque offered size, comparable numbers, cap savings, and most importantly an GM willing to deal. I am willing to give him until after the trade deadline to see what he can do. If he makes it, he gets the summer. IMO