NHL Canadian Corner – Tuesday, April 30, 2013.

Updates on Cory Schneider, Tyler Bozak, Jason Spezza and Brendan Gallagher plus the latest on the Oilers, Flames and Jets.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: The ongoing mystery over the “body injury” of Canucks goalie Cory Schneider persists the day before their opening round series with the San Jose Sharks.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Schneider appears to be shaking off some sort of illness rather than an injury. I’m sure in time the super-secretive Canucks will reveal what it is. In the meantime, if Schneider’s unable to go, they can fall back on Roberto Luongo, who isn’t exactly a playoff neophyte.

Tyler Bozak remains questionable for start of Leafs-Bruins series.

Tyler Bozak remains questionable for start of Leafs-Bruins series.

TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs hope to have center Tyler Bozak in the lineup for their opening round series against the Boston Bruins. Bozak has been sidelined by a suspected shoulder injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Leafs will most feel Bozak’s absence in the faceoff circle, where his 52.6% is tops of all sixteen playoff clubs. Linemate Phil Kessel will also miss him. Some Leafs fans believe Bozak should have been traded before the deadline for a goalie or doubt he’s worth re-signing before he becomes a UFA this summer. We’re about to get a good idea of Bozak’s value if he misses this series against the Bruins.

OTTAWA CITIZEN: Don’t expect to see Senators center Jason Spezza (back) returning to the lineup for his club’s opening round series against Montreal. GM Bryan Murray believes his club will have to go “a little distance” in the post-season to see Spezza return.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Senators have adjusted well to Spezza’s absence, but this is the time of year when a player like him would make a huge difference. They might be able to get through a round or two without him, but at some point, his absence will be costly.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens rookie Brendan Gallagher is looking forward to his first NHL post-season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gallagher’s pesky style is one reason the Habs made the playoffs this season. Expect him to be an impact player for the Canadiens against the Senators in their opening round series.

EDMONTON SUN: Oilers GM Craig MacTavish believes he needs to add more grit and scoring depth to his roster.

CALGARY HERALD: The Flames failed to move up in the NHL entry draft lottery, and will pick sixth overall.

WINNIPEG SUN: The Jets will pick 13th overall.


  1. If Carlyle would give McClement a shot in Bozaks spot should he not return I think the fans would be quite happy with the out come. It would still give Toronto two scoring lines and takes care of the faceoff issues on Kessels line. Bozak is over rated but at the same time the Leafs could use him since they haven’t allowed anyone else to shine in that number one center spot. Two games for Kadri isn’t exactly considered a shot. Besides pulling Kadri off the number two right now just screws things up.

    If Bozak returns, the Kessel Bozak combo have to change something drastic if they want a different out come then they have gotten against Boston for the past two years. Those two disappear everytime they play against Chara. A crazy thought would be to move JVR to Kadri/Lupul’s line and try rotating McClaren and Orr on Bozak’s wing just for this series to try and open up some ice for Kessel and Bozak. People will say it’s stupid but If Kessel and Bozak disappear again on Wednesday then Carlyle will need to make a drastic change to combat Chara and Lucic. So far he has stuck with the status quo on the top line against Boston and it hasn’t worked for that top line. Guess we will see what Thursday morning brings should be interesting.

  2. The loss of Spezza all season has been the lack of success in the faceoff circle and “goals for“ by the Sens.

    Sens fans only want him to return when he is 100%. If not for the playoffs.. then next season…

    This team is young. A lot of inexperience in the lineup.. This playoff run, as long as it lasts, gets these young guys NHL playoff experience.