Welcome to Hourihan 27's Blog. This week I will give you early season noticables about all 30 NHL teams. Here are the first 5 (Teams in Alphabetical Order):
: The Ducks are not winning games so they are banging skulls. Interesting fights between their two games with the Wings and Blues are Perry vs Datsyuk and Ryan vs Perron. Ryan manhandled Perron. With Lydman and Sutton out, and the retirement of Scott Neidermeyer, the ducks D is extremely weak. Cam Fowler has looked above average so far in the first 2 games of the season and is making me wonder how he dropped so far in the draft. The NHL is a mobile defensemans game these days and Fowler looks like a steal at #12.
: Evander Kane looks very good so far and he is going to need to be Atlanta's best player if they hope to get into the playoffs this year. He looks as if he has taken another step in his development. Ben Eager is showing that he has some skill to pair with that grit as he scored a nice goal off a perfect shot against Tampa on Saturday. Zach Bogosian could have a big year this year as he also looks a step further in his development. Byfuglein is being wasted on defense. Atlanta is already solid on the back end and is in need of offense up front.
: Nathan Horton looks like the stud he was supposed to be all along in Florida. Tyler Seguin showed why he went #2 overall in last years draft as he had a nice breakaway goal for his first ever NHL tally against the Coyotes on Saturday. I love the move of extending Patrice Bergeron for 3 more years, that guy can do it all. Things will get interesting cap wise when Savard is close to a return.
: Can you say sophomore slump
?? Tyler Meyers looks shaky, to be polite, to start the season and is currently (-5). Derek Roy is on fire and I think Drew Stafford is going to produce in his contract year. Thomas Vanek has been quiet so far but he is known to be hot/cold. Tim Connoly looks like he's trying not to break a nail out there and I can not wait until Luke Adam (Portland Pirates) takes over as the #2 center next season. Tyler Ennis is a nice boost to the offense and should contend for Rookie of the Year honors this season. Jordan Leopold looks equivalent to Henrik Tallinder, however he is more dangerous on the Power Play so we can call this an upgrade. I like the acquisiton of Shaone Morrison as he may prosper under Lindy Ruff's Defensive system. Craig Rivet looks like he should've retired before this season rather than next.
: Jeff Skinner, Jeff Skinner, JEFF SKINNER!! I absolutely love this kid and I think he is a future stud in the making. Here is his beautiful game-winning shootout goal in the second game of the season. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDpnxrpFQ34
If you did not know, Skinner led the OHL playoffs last year with 20 goals in 20 games and is an offensive phenom. Look for him to make Carolina's offense much more potent this season. Cam Ward also looks great between the pipes and is looking to have a huge bounce back year.