Tag: sidney crosby

HBK Line 2.0; McCann-Crosby-Guentzel..

Something a lot of fans do not talk about is Jake Guentzel. The 3rd round 77th overall in the 2013 NHL draft. Guentzel emerged in 2016-2017 when he scored 16 goals with 33 points in 40 games and continued his tear in the playoffs scoring 21 points in 25 games. The next season Guentzel scored 48 points, 22 goals in 82 games.

Since Guentzel emergence in the NHL he has been able to form a bond with captain Sidney Crosby and the two have been near inseparable since Guentzel joined Pittsburgh in 2016-17. Crosby and Guentzel had solid 2017-18 playoff runs but fell short. They struggled to find a third line mate all season but after the Jared McCann and Nick Bjugstad trade it seems they have found their third partner to help rally the Penguins.

One thing a lot of people credit the Penguins success to is Sidney Crosby byt Jake Guentzel has certainly been the main focal point of that lines success or could be an argument for being a major contributor to that McCann-Crosby-Guentzel success.

This season a lot of people clearly knew about Guentzel after his amazing playoff appearances and first 40 games in the NHL. But, not many fans had him on their radar as a potential 40+ goal scorer. On the year Guentzel has 36 goals in 71 games along with 68 points. Since the emergence of Jared McCann Guentzel has been on-fire, along with McCann himself. Since the February 1st acquisition of McCann, Guentzel has 12 goals in 21 games. The two paired up only a few games ago and since McCann has moved on the line of Guentzel and Crosby the three have propelled the Penguins to a top-three divisional spot and now definite playoff contenders.

Guentzel has not received the necessary praise due to McCann catching fire plus anytime you play with Crosby it is hard to stand out. Since February 19th Guentzel has 8 goals and 6 assists over 12-games. McCann has 5 goals and 4 assists in 12 games and Crosby has 8 goals and 12 assists in 12-games. The HBK line that helped surge the Penguins to their 2015-16 Stanley Cup could be in the making once again, this time with Guentzel-Crosby-McCann. They do not have a witty name like the HBK line but this trio could possibly be a huge deal breaker for the Penguins come playoff time.

Right now the Penguins are looking to be playing the Islanders. Their first round will not be an easy opponent no matter what but with the veteran ship of the Penguins and now their offense finally starting to pick up they could be a force to be wrecking with come April…

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NHL PICKS: Connor McDavid vs Sidney Crosby, Bob Murray First Game As A Head Coach

Edmonton Oilers vs Pittsburgh Penguins

Not an exciting night in terms of games for the NHL tonight. Only two on and this is one of them. Pittsburgh at home this year are 15-10-2, they are 4-5-1 in their last ten but coming off a big win vs the Flyers two nights ago. The Oilers on the other hand are 12-11-4 on the road, 3-5-2 in their last ten coming off a loss to San Jose. The Oilers have not played since Saturday night, as the Penguins last game came Monday. The Oilers should be well-rested and prepared for this game. The Penguins go with Matt Murray who is essentially impossible to get a read on this season. He played unbelievable vs the Flyers Monday but who knows what he can do tonight. Murray is 2-3 in his last five starts allowing 15 goals over that span. The Oilers go with Mikko Koskinen who has been very subpar since his signing. Koskinen is 1-3-1 in his last five starts allowing 17 goals in that span, he has allowed 3+ in four of these five starts. The Penguins are currently one point ahead of the Hurricanes for the final wild card spot and have no time to waste right now with the way the Hurricanes are playing. They need these two points desperately. We will see what they can do after a big win and no Evgeni Malkin tonight. Going Penguins.

Vancouver Canucks vs Anaheim Ducks

This is a rough match up. The Ducks are still spiraling out of control it feels like, they have their GM as their new head coach, they can barely score goals and things are not looking good. Chad Johnson is a probable in net for tonight as John Gibson either is hurt or has given up on the Ducks. Johnson is 2-11-0 on the year with a 3.63 GAA but is 0-5 in his last five starts allowing 15 goals in that span. The Ducks are on a seven-game skid and 2-8-0 in their last ten but 10-8 at home. The Canucks are 12-14-4 on the road, 4-4-2 in their last ten and coming off a loss vs San Jose. The Canucks are currently two points out of a playoff spot right now. They are a hopeful team just playing the season and taking whatever comes their way. They are a very young, competitive team that can sneak into the post season and a win tonight helps those chances. The Canucks go with Jacob Markstrom (probable), who is 2-2-1 in his last five starts allowing 13 goals in that span. I like the Canucks tonight but something tells me that with Bob Murray behind the bench for his first game, the Ducks pull this one out and end their skid. Going Ducks.

 

McDavid or Crosby? Who is better? Comparing two NHL superstars

Since Connor McDavid came to the NHL, it seems like many experts are saying that he is the best player out there, but don‘t forget about Sidney Crosby, who is also considered as the best player in the NHL. Well, only one of them can be the best, of course.

So who is the best? Or at least who is better? If we take a look at their first years, that is something incomparable, because meanwhile Crosby scored 39 goals, McDavid, limited to play just 45 games because of an injury, managed to score “only” 16 goals. But Crosby played fewer games in his first NHL campaign – 53.

Prominent stars set to dominate NHL for years

But the very next season McDavid scored 41 goals. This number was never achieved by Crosby in his first three years in the NHL. In his first three seasons, Crosby scored more points than McDavid, he beat him in this category 294 to 256 points.

Head-to-head:

  • 1st season comparison : McDavid averaged 1,07 point per game, Crosby 1,26 point per game.
  • 2nd season comparison: McDavid averaged 1,22 point per game, Crosby 1,52 point per game.
  • 3rd season comparison: McDavid averaged 1,32 point per game, Crosby 1,36 point per game.

In their respective first three years in the NHL, both McDavid and Crosby participated twice in the NHL All Star game. Both players won one Hart Trophy, McDavid won two Ted Lindsay Trophies compared to Crosby‘s one. McDavid won two Art Ross Trophies for the most productive player, Crosby “just” one.

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Can any of them challenge Wayne Gretzky one day?

Well Sidney Crosby is exactly 10 years older than Connor McDavid. Crosby won three Stanley Cups in total and also won the MVP honor in those playoffs. Crosby has achieved more collective trophies, two olympic gold medals, World Championship title and World Cup title. So far McDavid has won “just” one gold medal from World Championships.

Based on these numbers and stats and maybe more importantly, based on your own eye-test, please feel free to decide for yourself who is the better out of those two. If you cannot make a decision, please feel free to join our club, you are welcome!

Must Keep Fantasy Hockey CENTERS for the 2018-19 season

How does your fantasy league run? 2 keepers of any position? Perhaps you get five? Probably a little too much in my opinion. Must keep a goalie? However your fantasy keeper league works this article will be useful for you!

First we will start with Fantasy Hockey Centers all owners MUST keep. Centers come a dime a dozen usually you have a ton of them on the waiver wire and roster, but a GOOD center is not easy to come by in the NHL. Here are the top 10 Fantasy Hockey centers you should keep!

  1. Nathan MacKinnon: A nor brainer obviously the guy had more than a point per game last year almost 40 goals(38) and 58 assists, the Avalanche’s clear number one guy, you would have to be on every drug in the world to skip this guy.
  2. Evgeni Malkin: Does his value ever decrease? This guy does it all too, power play, penalty kill, scoring, assists and is always consistent.
  3. Connor McDavid: Top point scorer in the NHL two years in a row and only 21. Sure why not! Enough said.
  4. Sidney Crosby: Do we have to say anymore besides he will be a 90 point scorer next year and is the best player in the NHL.
  5. Tyler Seguin: If Seguin does not ink a contract extension soon, this may be a John Tavares 2.0 situation all over again the Stanley Cup winning and glorified scoring center has emerged into an elite level center quickly since coming into the league. Seguin has scored 30 plus four times in his career with a career high of 40 goals last season. Not much will slow this guy down!
  6. Anze Kopitar: He actually was not on my keeper list last year but he proved his worth and did not let the $900000 million contract get to his head. After a 72 point season and 35 goal year, Kopitar is viable fantasy keeper.
  7. Blake Wheeler: After inking a 5-year extension, Wheeler is going to be hitting his stride over the next few years, after a slow start in the first few years of his career, Wheeler has emerged into an elite level center. Tallying 91 point last season a 17 point increase from his 2016-17 season!
  8. Steven Stamkos: For some reason a lot of people are weary on the whole Stamkos situation, due to injuries, a lot of pieces in the line up producing, some may actually not keep Stamkos this year. Coming off a an 86 point year, his best season since 2011-12, I wonder what some think about Stamkos now? Definitely keep the elite center.
  9. Claude Giroux: I would have not kept Giroux coming into the 17-18 year but after the pieces the Flyers added on the offensive side and coming off a MVP caliber season, Giroux is a solid fantasy keeper. After a 102 point season and 34 goals, it would be silly to pass on Giroux.
  10. John Tavares: Heading back home to Toronto now and playing with that great young talent in Toronto, it will only make Tavares better. Lined up with Mitch Marner and Connor Brown the veteran center has a lot of tools to use and more freedom to his game. He will be targeted the same probably but having Auston Matthews on a different line will leave Tavares with some great defensive match ups.

 

Why I think the Capitals can take this series…

Ok, yes the Capitals may have lost to the Penguins in the second round for the last two years and lost in the second round in general six times in the last seven years now. Or not having won a second-round series since the 1997-1998 season. The Capitals are certainly written off by many fans to take this series. Soley because of how the Penguins handled the Capitals in the playoffs and have beat them 9 times out of the 12 times they have met in the playoffs since the Capitals have been in existence since 1974.

Crosby vs Ovechkin… AGAIN. 

Sure Sidney Crosby and Ovechkin came in during the same draft year and have been compared to each other since they came into the league in 2005 and Crosby has won three cups and Ovechkin has won zero in his 13-year career. Yes, Crosby has the advantage over Ovechkin and will always haunt him when it comes to Cup wins and success throughout their careers. But Ovechkin is still a 7-time Rocket Richard winner, one-time art ross winner, 3-time hart trophy winner, 3-time ted Lindsay winner, and beat Crosby for the Calder trophy during the 2005-2006 season. His career has been successful but no matter what Ovechkin will always be remembered for his losses to Crosby in the playoffs and zero Stanley Cups to this day. And if he does not win a cup or a series against Crosby, a lot of Ovechkin’s achievements will go unrecognized by MANY. This is not why I think they can win. For some reason when the Capitals won four straight and beat the Blue Jackets, something I did not see happening, and then Ovechkin simply said “I can’t wait” when asked about playing Crosby and the Penguins next round. Some weird feeling came over me and made me think, the Capitals are going to win this series, they are going to do this.

A GUT feeling 

My real reason for making this case for the Capitals is solely based off a gut feeling. Don’t listen to my gut if you don’t want to, that’s understandable. The Capitals are flying a little bit under the radar this year, they have not been talked about as much as before. And a team that is not super talented or a powerhouse anymore. They have their key guys plus some depth guys that step in and chip in time to time. They have a Norris like defenseman right now, two other experienced defenseman and a bunch of young players who are just playing in the moment and seem to be doing just fine, one series but nothing that was alarming.

Year of the dog???

The Capitals core guys like Kuznetsov, Backstrom, Ovechkin, Holtby, Carlson are certainly tired of losing to Crosby and the Penguins. For some reason, the fact that this Capitals team is already written off by many fans and many people gives me a sense this can turn out a bit different than we think. It’s the year of the dog people, and I think this underdog, written off, defy all odds story remains true for one more playoff series. The Capitals do not match up terribly with the Penguins either. Holtby in net, their offense’s are similar, Penguins edge them there a little but not by a wide margin and the defense is about the same, if not Capitals are a little more experienced and better. Year of the dog people, this is going to happen, watch. Capitals in seven.

 

And….. The Penguins are back

I was for sure hoping for a Vegas win Tuesday night, but the Penguins came out and buried five goals on a team that has allowed four-plus goals, only ten times this season. The Penguins are fully and 100 percent back and ready to take the first round of the playoffs by storm, then beat Washington in the second round, then make the Conference finals. And, I’m ready to die.

The Penguins have picked up their play over the last month, winning 11 of 15 games, and four of their last five, which has landed them in second place in the Metropolitan division. I’m fully ready to flip my laptop in the middle of the class(yeah I’m writing in class, whatever), my head is ready to explode thinking about the Penguins being back.

God, why did I, matter of fact, any of us think the Penguins were actually at some point not going to be this good at some point or another? (don’t even lie you thought the Pens were done). The fact we all may have legitimately thought the Penguins were going to be a wildcard or borderline wild card team all season, wow way to go, everyone, we are all more idiotic then we thought.

Even when starting three different goalies over the last month, the Penguins have managed to cause this uprising in the standings, push themselves four points away from the Capitals for first place and now the Capitals start to hold their breath, knowing their one kryptonite are back and breathing down their throats for the division lead.

It all starts with the big three, not the big-three you’re thinking, none of that phony, boring basketball stuff, I’m talking the BIG-THREE. Malkin, Crosby, Kessel. Malkin has won the player of the month(January), tallying 12 goals, and 7 assists. Won player of the week, last week tallying 6 goals and 2 assists in three games. Phil Kessel is now one point behind Kucherov for the league lead in points(65) and over the last month has 6 goals 12 assists, over the last week has 3 goals and 3 assists and now has a six-game point streak. Crosby has 2 goals 15 assists over the last month and four assists over the last week, also coming off a 7-game point streak.

Pittsburgh Penguins
Phil Kessel and Evgeni Malkin led fun bus and Penguins to second place in Metro division.

This is unreal, I hate myself for actually thinking the Penguins could actually not make the playoffs, sure Matt Murray with two wins, a 4.00 goals against (GAA) and 50 saves of 58 shots against over the last week and a 3.33 GAA, three wins and 90 saves on 100 shots over the last month, sure why not let’s win 11 of our last 15 games. Rank ninth for most goals allowed per game(3.00) and sixth in the league for most goals against(165) this season, yeah no big deal Malkin, Crosby, Kessel will just score a million goals and bring this team back to a near top ten team in the NHL.

God, the Penguins are back and I never want to watch hockey again. See you tomorrow, or later. I am distraught.

NHL Headlines 11/14

Crosby’s back: In a game that probably should not have traveled past regulation, the Sabres found themselves neck and neck with the Pittsburgh Penguins Tuesday night. Coming into the game Sidney Crosby was on pace to set a personal worst 12-game streak without a goal. Well with 2:35 left in the second period Crosby found a pass from Patrick Hornqvist on the power play to make it 3-3 and end his goal drought. Benoit Pouliot would make it 4-3 with just seven seconds left in the second period. Phil Kessel tallied his 8th of the year with seven and change to go in the third. The game was forced to overtime where Connor Sheary scored his second of the game and game-winning goal from a Crosby feed from behind the net. The two have rekindled the flame finally and helped the Penguins earn their tenth win of the year.

Jackets strike in OT: In what was the most evenly matched game of the night, the Blue Jackets walked away with two points vs a red-hot Montreal team. For the entirety of the game, it was 1-0 Columbus until Paul Byron scored off a far pad shot from Shea Weber 12 minutes into the third. The game would remain at zero and forced to overtime. Where Zach Werenski managed to be left wide open in the high slot and score just 1:09 into overtime. The win would be Columbus’s eleventh win and Montreal picked up one point and their second overtime loss.

Preds break open: The Capitals defense and last week star of the week Braden Holtby would like this to be forgotten about. Holtby allowed six goals on 31 shots as the Predators toppled the Capitals 6-3 on home ice. Nick Bonino back in the line up added a goal, Kevin Fiala scored his first of the season and this game was a bore after T.J Oshie’ pair of goals and Alex Chassion’s goal. The rest of the game was all Nashville as they added four goals in the remainder of the second period. Nashville improved to 10-5-2 on the season and get ready to take on red-hot Devan Dubynk, Thursday night.

Dubynk in the zone: Devan Dubynk recorded his third straight shutout and has stopped the last 98 shots thrown his way. Dubynk became the third goaltender since 1967-77 to collect three consecutive shutouts, more than once in his NHL career. With Dubynk’s shutout, the Wild won 3-0 and third straight win, but another story is Jason Zucker recent point spree. Zucker has eight points in his five games and has been the focal point of this Minnesota offense. With Zach Praise and Charlie Coyle out, Zucker has stepped up big time for the Wild but can he continue this tear, will find out Thursday night vs Nashville.

Oilers are alive? The Oilers finally scored some goals! The Oilers erupted for eight goals in a blowout 8-2 win vs Vegas Tuesday night. This was the first time since 2015 the Oilers scored eight or more goals in a game and it is something this team desperately needed. Being that help came from all over and Connor McDavid and Ryan Nugent Hopkins slotted four of the eight goals is a good sign for Edmonton. This team has struggled all season but this win puts a little more confidence heading into Thursday night vs one of the top teams in the league, St. Louis.

Canucks keep on knocking: The Canucks are a surprise team for sure, being fifth in the division and in the second wild-card spot this team is just staying afloat somehow. With barely any goaltending and versus one of the hottest teams in the West, the Canucks scored three straight goals to atop the Kings, 3-2. Game winning goal coming from Sven Baertschi, and Bo Horvat, and Daniel Sedin added the other two, positive sign is Horvat and Brock Boeser seem to be gelling. The Kings had Anze Kopitar and Tanner Pearson as their goal scorers. Although the Kings outshot the Canucks 32-27, the loss is not one to throw your hands in after, the Kings now just focus on the next opponent, the Boston Bruins. As the Canucks get ready for Vegas, a team that just the doors blown off them in Edmonton.