If it weren’t for bad luck, the Pittsburgh Penguins would have no luck at all. The Penguins have found uncommon success through the worst, but Saturday night against the Toronto Maple Leafs will be the eye of the storm. The Montreal Canadiens will not hit the NHL trade market, so they say, but they’re now 0-5 after a drama-filled night in Montreal. NHL trade rumors are percolating in Ottawa, and Marc-Andre Fleury is on the shortlist of goalies for Team Canada in the 2022 Beijing Olympics.
Yeah, I really, really want to see Marc-Andre Fleury in the Olympics. And I love the tension in Montreal. That’s going to be a running story that goes BOOM, and the NHL trade rumors will get intense,
But first, the Pittsburgh Penguins…
Pittsburgh Hockey Now: Are you kidding? Jeff Carter and Tristan Jarry are in COVID protocol. And Sidney Crosby is out for Saturday against Toronto.
I wrote this before Carter was out. Yes–the Penguins grinders are beginning to define the Penguins. Mike Sullivan gave a wonderful answer when I asked him–he disagreed a bit–but here’s the big picture on the Penguins.
PHN+: Evan Rodrigues, you’re up. As the injury bug and bad luck tear through the Penguins like John Wick on a mission, “E-Rod” is now the number one center, and Drew O’Connor is in the middle, too.
Penguins Jesus makes me laugh with his Jeff Carter characterizations.
Can confirm he said it. I was there. https://t.co/UyhTpImUbg
— Dan Kingerski (@TheDanKingerski) October 22, 2021
NHL trade rumors, News & National Hockey Now:
Canada Hockey Now:
Montreal: Oh boy–the Jesperi Kotkaniemi saga hit a crescendo on Thursday. The Montreal Canadiens RFA was the first in nearly a decade to sign with a different team (Carolina Hurricanes), and his primary team didn’t match the offer. You know the back-and-forth between the Canadiens and Hurricanes that followed, both on social media and privately.
The water is about to boil in Montreal. Kotkaniemi scored, and Carolina embarrassed the Canadiens, which are now 0-5.
Calgary: Guess who is playing well and making a difference in Calgary? Yeah, big Erik Gudbranson.
Vancouver: A Statement win for the Vancouver Canucks over Chicago, 4-1. You can follow the game here–Rob Simpson’s unique postgame and analysis in one.
*If you’re a big fan of the Canadiens teams, you can subscribe to one of our Canadian sites and get access to all four. The coupon code is your favorite Canadiens team, and you’ll get $10 off.
Toronto Sun: There are rumors abound that Montreal will replace Bergevin, in the final year of his contract, with Patrick Roy…
News & NHL Trade Talk
TSN: The Insiders say Marc-Andre Fleury and Carey Price are on the Team Canada shortlist. Ottawa is looking for centers but may take wingers if they must. And Pierre LeBrun confirms what Marc Bergevin said on Wednesday–Montreal is NOT on the NHL trade market.
Detroit: Super rookie Moritz Seider has quickly become a minutes eater and the Red Wings go-to defenseman.
Boston: The Bruins got a bit of tongue lashing from their head coach, who said they didn’t play “winning hockey.”
Washington: Pittsburgh Penguins fans who were firmly behind Daniel Sprong may get the last laugh. The winger is off to a hot start, and the Capitals beat the Devils 4-1.
Florida: Sam Bennett is tearing it up in Florida. The Panthers are in first place, and George Richards writes–Yeah, the Florida Panthers are for real.
Colorado: The Avalanche are 1-3. Tension is rising after another loss on Thursday, but Gabriel Landeskog said, “Hey, we’ve got 78 games left..”
San Jose: Sheng Peng is on an epic road trip through Canada (I think his first trip like this) covering the Sharks. You may remember Kevin Labanc on the NHL trade market, but Labanc is critical to the Sharks success.