In this evening’s medley of notable posts from the NHL blogosphere: Do goalies need more protection? And if so, from what?…Does Mark Howe raise a good point about player policing themselves? …Is there a truly great GM in the NHL?…A look at several struggling captains….The Lightning’s current woes…What not to like about the Flyers…A cure for what ails Magnus Paajarvi…What to make of the Leafs contact with Marty Turco? …Ways for Cody Franson to kill time in the press box.

PUCK DADDY: Greg Wyshynski believes NHL goaltenders are protected enough without creating new rules to protect them from getting hit outside the crease.

PUCK UPDATE: Steve Ovadia believes goalies, including Buffalo’s Ryan Miller, need to worry more about their teammates pushing opponents on top of them in the goal crease than  about collisions outside their crease.

CANUCKS CORNER: Tom Benjamin takes issue with recent HHOF inductee Mark Howe’s suggestion players should be allowed to police themselves, pointing out that inevitably leads to frontier justice where incidents like Todd Bertuzzi assaulting Steve Moore and Marty McSorley clubbing Donald Brashear over the head with his stick arise.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Excellent points by three of hockey’s smartest bloggers. I especially liked Ovadia’s point about how defensemen in recent years have taken to checking or pushing opponents on top of their own goaltenders. While I don’t condone Milan Lucic barreling into Ryan Miller (I believe Lucic could’ve avoided Miller), if a goalie leaves his crease to play a puck, or try to win a foot-race with a hard-charging opponent, he has to be aware he could get hit. Just because the rules say the goalie isn’t fair game doesn’t mean every player will abide by that rule. More likely than not, they’ll plead innocent by claiming it was an accident. If you’re a goalie and don’t want to get run over outside your crease, stay in the blue paint. And give your idiot teammate a smack upside the head for stupidly checking opponents on top of you, because that’s a far greater risk for injury, usually a blown knee or wrenched back.

ARCTIC ICE HOCKEY: An examination of the NHL’s current top general managers to determine if there’s a truly great one in the bunch.

THE CANNON: Looks at several currently struggling NHL captains, including Columbus’ Rick Nash, and what can be done to help them out of their current funks.

What ails the Lightning?

RAW CHARGE: What’s really wrong with the Tampa Bay Lightning? Nothing a little health, communication and effort couldn’t fix.

BROAD STREET BUZZ: Several things not to like about this season’s Philadelphia Flyers…apart from the fact they’re Flyers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kidding! KIDDING!!  Seriously, this is an interesting look at some potential problems areas for the Flyers.

THE COPPER & BLUE: Some suggestions to help Oilers forward Magnus Paajarvi out of his sophomore slump.

BACKHAND SHELF: Justin Bourne thinks it would be hilarious if the Maple Leafs sign Marty Turco, not in a “hilarious ha-ha” way, but in a “hilarious because misery loves company” way.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That the Leafs at least contacted Turco’s agent, even though they now have no further interest in him, indicates GM Brian Burke is indeed shopping around for veteran help between the pipes. Also, thanks to Justin for the unsolicited, appreciated plug! Keep up the good work with The Score.

DIRTY DANGLE: Some useful, funny tips to help Maple Leafs defenseman Cody Franson while away his time in the press box.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: On a serious note, nobody expected this when the Leafs acquired him from the Predators. Looks like Nashville GM David Poile knew something about Franson the rest of us didn’t.