The unsung Devils defenseman…Looking back at the Capitals trade deadline moves…The Stars must find balance…The soundtrack for HBO’s 24/7 Road to the Winter Classic…Victor Stalberg steps up offensively…A cynical look ahead at the next round of NHL CBA talks…What’s wrong with PK Subban?…New Year’s Resolutions for the Canadiens.

IN LOU WE TRUST: Meet Mark Fayne, the New Jersey Devils unsung defenseman, who’s playing better than projected for a second-year blueliner.

THE PEERLESS PROGNOSTICATOR: Looking back at last season’s trade deadline deals of the Washington Capitals, highlighting why trade deadline acquisitions are no guarantee of turning a team into a Stanley Cup contender.

DEFENDING BIG D: The Stars need to find the right balance of emotion and control.

BROAD STREET HOCKEY: The soundtrack for the first two episodes of this season’s HBO’s 24/7. Being the old fart I am, I recognized only three groups (REO Speedwagon, Foo Fighters, Blink 182). I’m ashamed to admit I knew the last one.

Stalberg providing more scoring depth for Blackhawks.

CHEER THE ANTHEM: Viktor Stalberg is stepping up offensively, providing more scoring punch for the Chicago Blackhawks. Like they don’t have enough already! On a personal note, Stalberg’s been my best waiver pick-up on my fantasy hockey team this season. Go Stalberg!

TOM BENJAMIN weighs in with a bit of a cynical take on the upcoming NHL CBA talks. Not that it isn’t justified, and as always, Tom makes some good points. For the record, I predict there won’t be another work stoppage. The players will agree to another pay cut, and in return they’ll get either the elimination of escrow or a cap on escrow payments, plus they’ll have their contracts guaranteed, they’ll retain their arbitration rights, maintain the UFA eligibility age at 27, and the cap remains tied to revenue.

BACKHAND SHELF: What’s wrong with P.K. Subban this season? Probably the fact he’s been thrust into the top defenseman role on an injury ravaged defense corps before he’s fully ready for the task.

PUCK BANDITS: New Year’s resolutions for the Montreal Canadiens.  One of them is bilingual, but not French.