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The Daily Puck: Jarome Speaks

John Toperzer

John has written for since 2003 and serves as the beat writer for the Pittsburgh Penguins and Pittsburgh Pirates. He’s worked for the Pirates for 17 years, written for the Penguins’ Web site as the first game-day editor, and rooted for the Steelers dating back to the Immaculate Reception.

Around The Rink

Jeremy spoke in class today. Jarome Iginla potted his 11th career hat trick Friday, doubling his season total. Welcome to the jungle.

Colorado goalie Craig Anderson returned on Friday night and stopped 25 of 26 in a 5-1 win.

2-for-5 is good in baseball but not hockey, Mr. Braden Holtby.

Marc-Andre Fleury allowed four goals in regulation, but came up late. Those who kept the faith or bought low are being rewarded nicely. Fleury's 4-0-1 in his last five.

Man vs. Wild with Bear Grylls is okay, but Survivorman is the real deal. Actually Mantracker is the show I can't get enough of right now.

What's the over/under on the Washington & Philly game after Thursday's 15 goals?

NHL disciplinarian Colin Campbell sounds like a man who could use a break from his job. Calling Marc Savard a "fake artist?" Move over Milli Vanilli.

Let's hope some organization takes a chance on Marc-Andre Bergeron real soon so we don't have to keep hearing from his agent, Paul Corbeil, about how great he is.

"Is this the year?" Remember that marketing slogan? I'm just wondering if this is the year Martin Brodeur finally misses significant time. I've already accepted that his numbers will only be decent, not elite. If he plays, then I'll take my chances, but the question is more "Will he play?"

How do the Avs score five goals without Paul Stastny picking up a single point in 15-plus minutes of ice?

I'll gladly employ Henrik Lundqvist on any of my fantasy teams, but he can be a big baby. I still harken back to when that soothsayer of knowledge, Barry Melrose, called Lundqvist out for basically quitting on his team a few years back, and that's stuck with me. On Monday, the King threw his stick after Pittsburgh scored two late goals to take a lead, drawing a minor penalty for his petulance.

How is it that Daniel Alfredsson hasn't got hurt yet and Jordan Staal hasn't played?


Ilya Bryzgalov – Phoenix goalie 5-0-2 in last seven after a slow start.

Jussi Jokinen – Picked up two goals and two assists Friday. His 17 points in 19 games is actually ahead of last year's pace when he put together a 65-point campaign.

Brad Boyes -- He's got four goals and six points in four games. He won't be able to hide with Oshie out.

Ray Whitney – Three assists on Friday night, eight points in three games for this fossil.

Chris Kunitz – Two goals Friday night, all-around game has taken a notch up, appears fully healthy.

Mike Ribeiro – First two goals Thursday, but what was wrong with 14 assists in his first 16? Really!

Nikita Filatov – Four assists in four games, has cracked the 10-minute TOI mark the last seven games.

Tim Connolly – Awakening from disinterested start with four points in four games.


Sergei Bobrovsky – Just a bad game Thursday or a sign of things to come with Michael Leighton nearing return?

Alexander Ovechkin – Don't know why, but it feels fun putting Alexander the Great on the cold list. Pointless in three of his last four games, with nine shots on goal and a minus-2 rating – he's terrible, isn't he.

Mark Letestu – Hopefully fantasy poolies heeded our advice that his seven-point, seven-game start wasn't indicative of his skill set at this point in time. He's got two points in 14 games and is safe to cut. Letestu has settled into his role as third-line center, but even that will be in jeopardy if Max Talbot keeps playing well. Jordan Staal is due back in three weeks or so, too.

Recommended Pickup

Corey Crawford – I really like his odds of being a difference maker should anything happen to Marty Turco. It's a speculative call, but he's worth the add if you've got room. He's only played twice in November, but don't forget about him.

Probable Starting Goalies

Philadelphia (Brian Boucher) at Washington (Michael Neuvirth), 7 p.m.
Florida (Tomas Vokoun) at Islanders (Rick DiPietro), 7 p.m.
Los Angeles (Jonathan Quick) at Boston (Tim Thomas), 7 p.m.
Tampa Bay (Dan Ellis) at Buffalo (Ryan Miller), 7 p.m.
Nashville (Pekka Rinne) at Carolina (Cam Ward), 7 p.m.
Toronto (Jonas Gustavsson) at Montreal (Carey Price), 7 p.m.
Colorado (Craig Anderson) at Dallas (Kari Lehtonen), 8 p.m.
New Jersey (Johan Edberg) at St. Louis (Jaroslav Halak), 8 p.m.
Rangers (Henrik Lundqvist) at Minnesota (Nicklas Backstrom), 8 p.m.
Chicago (Corey Crawford) at Vancouver (Roberto Luongo), 10 p.m.
Columbus (Mathieu Garon) at San Jose (Antero Niittymaki), 10:30 p.m.

Rotowire Goalie Grid

Player Injury News

Philadelphia vs. Washington

Andreas Nodl – Questionable, day-to-day with a toe, a closer look shows he played and scored Thurs.
Michael Leighton – Out, getting close but no return date. Bobrovsky's worst game Thurs. – 4 gls, 11 shts
Matt Walker – Out, still a month away from returning from a hip injury.
Daniel Carcillo – Out, won't be playing in the next couple weeks because of an MCL sprain.

Mike Knuble – Out, puck to the face will keep him out a couple days per Bruce Boudreau.
Tom Poti – Questionable, didn't play in Friday's fiasco because of a groin injury.
Semyon Varlamov – Out, it wouldn't be surprising to see him recalled soon with Holtby struggling.

Florida vs. Islanders

Rostislav Olesz – Out, broke finger Thursday and is out indefinitely.
Steve Bernier – Out, will miss another couple of weeks after undergoing orbital surgery.

Jack Hillen – Out, still no timetable for a return from concussion.
Doug Weight – Probable, missing practice but continues to toil in games.
Andrew MacDonald – Out, back skating with glove after suffering hand injury, working on game shape.

Los Angeles vs. Boston

Los Angeles
Alexei Ponikarovsky – Out, original timetable says he'll be out another two weeks with broken finger.
Scott Parse – Out, hip injury will have him out until February, if not longer.

David Krejci – Questionable, could return as soon as Saturday from concussion.
Marc Savard – Out, “faker” will start practicing in non-contact team drills.
Marco Sturm – Out, timetable for a return has been moved up from Jan. to early-mid December.

Tampa Bay vs. Buffalo

Tampa Bay
Simon Gagne – Out, back skating with team but not participating in contact drills.
Vincent Lecavalier – Out, out about three more weeks with hand injury.
Mattias Ritola – Out, serving second game of two-game suspension.
Matt Smaby – Out, placed on IR Saturday with ankle injury.

Patrick Kaleta – Probable, returned to action Friday after sitting out Wednesday with upper body.
Drew Stafford – Out, has missed nearly two weeks after suffering an upper body injury.

Nashville at Carolina

David Legwand – Questionable, No. 2 overall pick in 1998 is day-to-day with lower body.
Ryan Suter – Probable, he's played two games this week since returning from a lower body injury.
Matthew Lombardi – Out, will miss another week but getting closer to returning.

No reported injuries.

Toronto vs. Montreal

Dion Phaneuf – Out, could hit the ice as early as next week, likely out 2-4 more weeks.
Colby Armstrong – Out, still weeks away from coming back, though he's back on skates.
Jean-Sebastien Giguere – Out, likely out another week with groin injury.


Jaroslav Spacek – Questionable, left Thursday's game with undisclosed injury, could be game-time dec.
Andrei Markov – Out, will miss an indefinite amount of time, sad as he's one of the best when healthy.

Colorado vs. Dallas

Kyle Cumiskey – Out, has missed the month of November with a concussion.
TJ Galiardi – Out, could be back in mid-December after undergoing wrist surgery.
Peter Mueller – Out, a shame to be so young, talented and concussed.
Kyle Quincey – Questionable, thought to be a game-timer Wednesday but still hasn't come back.

No reported injuries.

New Jersey vs. St. Louis

New Jersey
Martin Brodeur – Out, nagging injury not good news in New Jersey.
Jamie Langenbrunner – Questionable, unlikely to play, has missed three games with concussion/neck.
Olivier Magnan-Grenier – Probable, played Thursday despite suffering a foot injury last weekend.
Matt Taormina – Out, missed Thursday's game and isn't expected to play Saturday, either.
Mark Fraser – Out, hasn't played in November because of hand injury.
Anssi Salmela – Out, hopes to return sometime in December from knee surgery.
Bryce Salvador – Out, has missed all season with a concussion.
Jacob Josefson – Out, still looking at 3-5 weeks after undergoing hand surgery.
Zach Parise – Out, no new news, out until February.

St. Louis
David Perron – Questionable, probable won't play as the Blues aren't taking chances with him.
Barret Jackman – Out, hasn't played since suffering knee injury in early November.
Carlo Colaiacovo – Probable, happily he's not hurt and scored a goal on Friday night.
T.J. Oshie – Out, this pre-season breakout candidate will probably miss another three months.
Roman Polak – Out, not likely to come back until the turn of the calendar.

Rangers vs. Minnesota

Michal Rozsival – Out, getting close to a return but not quite there yet.
Vaclav Prospal – Out, return date has been updated to mid-late December.
Chris Drury – Out, he's five weeks into a six-week diagnosis regarding his broken finger.

Chuck Kobasew – Questionable, missed Thursday's contest with no timetable for a return from groin.
Pierre-Marc Bouchard – Out, practicing but still feels pressure in his head, might want to try Botox.
Guillaume Latendresse – Out, skating and working out on own, but still likely weeks away from a return.

Chicago vs. Vancouver

No reported injuries.

Alexandre Bolduc – Out, skated Friday and looking at an early December return from ankle injury.
Sami Salo – Out, looking at January return, only two 70-game seasons since 1998-99.

Columbus vs. San Jose

Derek MacKenzie – Questionable, missed Friday's game with a lower body injury.
Anton Stralman – Questionable, did not play on Friday with flu-bug.
Kristian Huselius – Out, no timetable for a return from ankle injury.
Ethan Moreau – Out, figure to be day-to-day by this point in his recovery from hand injury.

San Jose
Douglas Murray – Questionable, didn't play in Thursday's 5-4 loss to Dallas.
Niclas Wallin, Questionable, sat out Thursday's game with an undisclosed injury.


Michael Vernace – recalled by Tampa Bay, defenseman hasn't shown offensive prowess.
Blair Jones – recalled by Tampa Bay, 16 points in 12 AHL games thus far.

RIP Pat Burns, 1952-2010