Wild blank the Devils, Ray Emery’s fighting Braden Holtby could result in a rule change, plus updates on Marc-Andre Fleury, Kevin Shattenkirk, Patrick Kaleta and more.
STARTRIBUNE.COM: Josh Harding collected his second shutout of the season backstopping the Minnesota Wild to a 4-0 win over the injury-battered New Jersey Devils, who’ve been held scoreless over seven consecutive periods. Mikael Granlund, Torrey Mitchell, Dany Heatley and Jason Pominville were the Wild goalscorers.
PHILLY.COM: Flyers goalie Ray Emery’s pummeling of Capitals netminder Braden Holtby (who clearly didn’t want to fight) could force the NHL to adopt a rule change to punish such actions, says NHL commissioner Gary Bettman.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Holtby had goaded Emery into fighting by word or deed and then “turtled”, that’s one thing. Holtby, however, wanted no part of fighting with Emery, who clearly wanted to jump into the line brawl between the two teams. That’s not part of the game at all. The NHL cannot suspend Emery under the current rules, but Bettman obviously wasn’t pleased by his actions. It’s also rumored some NHL Board of Governors and general managers took a dim view of Emery’s actions. Expect this to be on the agenda at the next NHL GMs and BoG meetings.
POST-GAZETTE: The solid early play this season of Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury could catch the attention of Team Canada’s management.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Fleury’s had a strong opening month, silencing his critics and allaying concerns of Penguins supporters. If he maintains that effort over the next four-to-six weeks, Fleury could play himself onto Team Canada. So far, it appears he’s regained his confidence.
STLTODAY.COM: After a slow start, Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk is rounding back into form.
LOS ANGELES TIMES: The Kings are off until Thursday, allowing time for some injured players (including Jeff Carter and Jarret Stoll) to heal before their next game.
BUFFALO NEWS: Patrick Kaleta cleared waivers over the weekend and has been demoted to the Sabres farm team in Rochester.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I realize some Sabres critics believe management is handling this poorly by demoting Kaleta after he’s coming off a 10-game suspension, but I think this is the best way to force him to change his ways. Coming on top of a lengthy suspension, spending a few games riding the buses in the minors will remind him that, if he doesn’t change his game, he’ll never play in the NHL again.
MLIVE.COM: Detroit Red Wings blueliner Brendan Smith will miss one-two weeks to a shoulder injury.