Sheldon Souray will score more goals than Mike Green
Green scored 31 goals last year in 68 games. That’s unreal. Souray only scored 23 (in 81 games). However, with Pat Quinn now in Edmonton, he will lean on Souray's booming shot from the point on the powerplay. Souray has one of the hardest shots in the league and Edmonton has the personnel to get him open.
The St. Louis Blues will win the Central Division
Detroit is getting older. Chicago is already exhausted from all the adversity they have dealt with. Columbus not quite there yet. Nashville is even further from there. The Blues have a perfect mix of young and old—and they are all skilled. They could possibly have the most depth in the league. They have nine forwards who all meshed at the right time last year to squeak into the playoffs. They will carry that momentum into this year. Related: Patrick Berglund emerges as the league’s best young stud.
Washington doesn’t make the playoffs, Atlanta does
Malkin missed time due to injury in 2008. Crosby in 2009. It’s Ovechkin’s turn. His reckless play finally catches up to him and it leads management to be more cautious with him. Can Backstrom lead a team like Malkin did when Crosby was out? Hmmm. Related: Ilya Kovalchuk leads the league in points and wins MVP.
Sergei Shirokov wins Calder Trophy
Shirokov has arguably been the best player in Canucks camp. He has put himself in a great position to steal Mikael Samuelsson’s job on the top line with the Swedish Ginger kids. He scored 41 points (17 goals) in 56 games to lead CSKA Moscow in the KHL last season and has no plans of going back to Russia, even if he is sent down to the AHL. Good kid. Take lessons, NHL&id=2564&line=89370&spln=1">Filatov. Must read: Vancouver Sun interview with Shirokov. Related: Artem Anisimov is runner-up.
A decision by Judge T. Baum is finally made
Jim Balsillie is allowed to buy the Phoenix Coyotes franchise, but after Judge Baum visits Hamilton, he rules that an NHL team should never play there. Ballsillie drives an hour east and moves the Coyotes to the other armpit of Ontario—Oshawa. Oshawa actually isn’t as bad as its reputation leads it to be—just don’t go south of Highway 2.
more to come…