NHL Canadian Corner – November 30, 2013.

Leafs, Canadiens, Jets, Flames and Oilers suffer defeats, a call for the Senators fans to give Daniel Alfredsson the respect and applause he deserves, and John Tortorella returns to New York.

Christian Ehrhoff's point shot beats Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer in overtime.

Christian Ehrhoff’s point shot beats Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer in overtime.

TORONTO STAR: The Maple Leafs woes continue as they fell 3-2 in overtime to the bottom-feeding Buffalo Sabres.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Leafs are now 3-4-3 in their last time and have dropped three straight. Getting nervous yet, Leafs fans?

LA PRESSE: The Montreal Canadiens saw their four-game winning streak ended with a 3-2 shootout loss to the Washington Capitals.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canadiens have the same number of points (31) as the Maple Leafs, but unlike the Leafs, they’re moving in the right direction, winning six of their last ten. Sets up for an interesting tilt between the two clubs tonight in Montreal.

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: For the 19th time in 28 games, the Jets were shut out on the power play, falling 2-1 to the Philadelphia Flyers. The Jets also lost winger Evander Kane to a lower-body injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I find it baffling a club with the firepower of the Jets (Kane, Andrew Ladd, Blake Wheeler, Bryan Little,  Dustin Byfuglien and Tobias Enstrom) are doing so poorly on the power-play. That’s only going to increase the heat on head coach Claude Noel.

CALGARY SUN: The Flames dropped their 18th straight at the Honda Center, falling 5-2 to the Anaheim Ducks.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Ilya Bryzgalov got the hook after giving up four goals on 23 shots as the Oilers dropped a 4-2 decision to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That loss isn’t all on Bryzgalov, as his teammates couldn’t seem to find their energy after having beaten the Nashville Predators the game prior. Also, why play Bryzgalov on consecutive nights when he’s seen little game action this season? Not a smart move by Dallas Eakin.

OTTAWA CITIZEN: Wayne Scanlan believes Daniel Alfredsson not only deserves the respect of Senators fans, but also thunderous applause when he returns to Ottawa on Sunday with the Red Wings.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Agreed. I’ll be very surprised if “Alfie” doesn’t get a hearty ovation from the Senators fans.

VANCOUVER SUN: Former Rangers coach John Tortorella returns to New York when his Canucks face off today against the Rangers this afternoon.


  1. #firecarlyle!

    Eakins should know better than starting Bryz in back to backs like that.

    Jets should figure out the Kane Noel thing (at the risk of sounding negative) probably fire Noel.

    • Love to see you change your name to CanTheMan to rally encourage firing Carlyle and to rally the troops.

      Not that it will happen because the wheels would have to completely fall off and we would have to miss the playoffs before he got fired but for fun who are you thinking as a replacement?

      • I think the wheels already have its just the bus is skidding along so fast no one has realized it yet.

  2. Just a little tid bit of info so far for all those who wanted Grabovski gone and Bozak re-signed

    Grabovski 26GP, 8G, 13A, 21pts, faceoff percentage wins 53.3%, Total minutes played 400, Pts/min .053
    Bozak 14GP, 4G, 5A, 9pts, faceoff percentage wins 46%, Total minutes played 300, Pts/min .03

    Grabovski’s salary at the time $5.5M Bought out
    Bozak’s new salary $4.2M resigned
    Lyles salary $3.875M not Bought out, now partially buried

    So the Leafs could have kept Grabovski, not resigned Bozak and used the Grabovski buyout on Lyles which would have saved the Leafs more cap room in the end.

    Hind sight is a beautiful thing.

    • What makes you think Grabo would have 21 points if he was still on the Leafs? He could have 5 and every fan base in the NHL would be laughing anyway saying why are you paying a 3rd line center 5.5 million/season? Yes hindsight is great but even Grabo’s points wouldn’t help the terrible defense and getting badly outshot.

      • All very good points. I’m just pointing out the stats for each player and showing that running him out of town based on how Carlyle was using him may not have been the best way to handle it. Don’t forget the year prior to Carlyle’s arrival when Grabovski had his best year he led the way on his line defensively and showed Kuli who was basically still a rookie the importance of back checking.

  3. Please take JVR off tonight’s penalty kill. Last night he looked like he was playing with two broken legs and weights in his skates every time he had to kill a penalty along with the fact he looked totally lost and was always out of position on the pk. He was absolutely brutal killing penalties and I don’t know why Carlyle didn’t also see it.

    • I think there could be a couple better fits…Carbonneau has a winning record as a coach won 3 cups as a player, had a good defensive system with a team built simmilar to the Leafs. Laviolette has a cup winning record and very good attacking system that would have produced better results in Philly if they had better goaltending. Theres 2 candidates off the top of my head. The Leafs are not built like the Ducks the Cycle game and collapsing to the net are not working, look at Addams goal last night again wide open no coverage how many goals like that does Nonis need to see? Its going on 2 years of horrible play in their own zone sitting back like that no lead is safe they have to attack and have players with speed to do it. Instead they chip pucks ou dump in to a corner where they dont have a big center to go get it, small wingers who are not built for dirty areas, the one winger with som size (JVR) is having a pretty decent year but the rest of the top 6 is getting completely taken out of the game. McClement dosent have tjhe skill for it Bozak dosent have the size…..The list goes on and on

    • JVR on the penalty kill a mistake??? Nah couldnt be Randy dosent make those…

      • I agree with your comments and it made me reflect on which players have shown noticeable improvement under Carlyle’s direction offensively and defensively. I really couldn’t come up with more then one or two.
        Kessel is pretty much the same with maybe a slight improvement in his defensive abilities
        JVR, Phaneuf, Gunnar, Bozak are all about the same as two years ago
        Gardiner, Franson, and Kadri are either in the penthouse or the dog house depending on the game of the week
        Lupul, Clarkson, MacArthur and Kulemin all slipped from previous years
        Lyles and Grabovski turned into train wrecks under him
        Fraser did well under him last year but has suffered this year either due to injuries or having a different D partner every game
        Raymond has been brought back to his 09/10 production year
        McClement has definitely improved
        Bolland showed signs of being a great pick up but he always played well so not sure if we could consider him improved under Carlyle since his ice time was increased when coming to the Leafs
        Reilly is still a work in progress so no comment
        Ashton has been turned into a 6min per game fighter
        Orr and McLaren have been turned into a useless 4th liners good for nothing more then gooning it.

        Off topic I still would like to see McLaren shifted a few times with Kessel and Kadri to see if he can open up some ice for them and stir up crap in front of the net ala McSorley/Semenko. Not saying it will work but I’d like to try it against the B’s just once for fun.

  4. Hey Lyle, not to be the spelling/grammar police but, “3-4-3 in their last time” under the leafs section should probably read “3-4-3 in their last ten”

    Good point on the Bryz starting back to back nights, rookie coach move indeed!

    • What’s the big deal about starting Bryzgalov back to back? It’s not like he’s played 40 games. It’s NHL game 2 for him coming off a shutout. For a team desperate to win it probably made sense.

      • I think they are saying it would have been better to give him a day off after playing his first full game in a long time. Try going to the gym lifting as much as you can for 3 hours on every body part and see how you feel the next day.
        If that’s not one reason the next would be to keep Brz’s confidence up knowing the team played the night before and they might crap the bed on the second night of action.
        I think Eakins put him in so it didn’t look like he was prepared to throw Duby to the wolves.

      • They have started to play better in front of Duby aswell. Shouldnt throw Bryz right into the fire, he had a good game leave it at that and kind of go back and forth till 1 gets into a good rhythm then go with him. Particularly in back to back games. The idea would be to get him hungry and grow confidence not to anoint him as the starter after 1 game.