It still doesn't feel any better this morning, after the 4-3 loss the Nashville Predators suffered on home ice to the lowly Toronto Maple Leafs. Of course, it was made all the worse by seeing Phil Kessel, who at one point during the summer seemed to be a potential acquisition by the Preds, score the winning goal against them.
After the jump, however, let's try to heal. Wallow in a wide swath of reaction from the Nashville blogosphere, and take in some broader hockey news as well, such as Cal O'Reilly competing in the AHL All-Star Skills Competition, Colin Wilson experimenting on the wing, and a vicious hit from a junior game that will surely result in a hefty suspension for a New Jersey Devils prospect...
Toronto Maple Leafs Fans and Friends Raise Over $2,000...So Far! - Pension Plan Puppets
First off, kudos to SBN's Toronto blog for using last night's game to help raise funds for Haiti relief!
What The Puck: 1/18/10 - Toronto at Nashville: L 3-4
Rachel says it perfectly - last night was "a tease of a game", the way they came back to tie things up, only to lose it late.
Preds On The Glass: Preds Lose Trap Game to Leafs 4-3
Be sure to check out Buddy's recap for the post-game audio, including a (justifiably) surly Barry Trotz.
Toronto Takes Advantage Of Another Slow Start In Nashville, Win 4-3 - Brandon Felder
I love Brandon's post-game question to Barry Trotz about the "shutout rule" that normally would have had Dan Ellis start last night... If Trotz hadn't called that a tradition previously, then the question wouldn't be raised, would it?
The View from 111: Predators Stink Up The Joint in 4-3 Loss
Last night's loss left Mark pretty grumpy, and I can't say I blame him...
Leafs 4 Predators 3 - Pension Plan Puppets
The Toronto crowd sums it up: "If not for Pekka Rinne we would all be in much worse spirits. Rinne let in three laughers in the first ten minutes which took Nashville out of the game."
Preds 101: If you like KENNY BRITT, you'll love PATRIC HORNQVIST
Another example of outreach to the football-loving crowd, to help the hockey newbie appreciated Nashville's sensational Swede.
Showing Some Love At The Halfway Mark - The Hockey Writers
Some belated half-season awards for the Preds, from Jas Faulkner.
Wilson on the wing in Milwaukee - Inside Predators
John Glennon reports that Colin Wilson has been getting some time on the wing in Milwaukee. This is an interesting idea, one I've wondered about previously; given that his skating speed isn't quite NHL-caliber, might it make sense for him at some point to move over?
O'Reilly Helps Canadian All-Stars to Skills Competition Win - Milwaukee Admirals
After being sent back down over the weekend, Cal O'Reilly enjoyed a good night at the AHL's All-Star Skills Competition.
Preds forced to master the draft - The Globe and Mail
David Shoalts write about David Poile's ability to ice a competitive team with one of the NHL's lower payrolls.
Around the NHL
What We Learned: NBC's bad week continues with NHL - Puck Daddy
While there are solid criticisms to make over NBC's broadcast Sunday, offering up lots of Hockey 101-type tidbits is hardly one of them. Ryan's blast here is totally off-base for a league that wants expand its audience. Heck, if clarifying the OT rules is "mortifying", tell that to Donovan McNabb, who didn't even know that NFL games could end in a tie.
Overconfidence Could be San Jose’s Achilles’ Heel - PuckUpdate
Might the rollicking San Jose Sharks be setting themselves up for another playoff disappointment?
A Friend and Their First Time | Hockey From the Cheap Seats
Matt took a friend to his first-ever hockey game, and shares the experience of creating a convert.
Frequent-flier Bruins deserve break - BostonHerald.com
Boo-hoo.. Steve Buckley complains that the demands of travel may have resulted in the Bruins getting stomped by Ottawa. As an East Coast team, their travel burden is nothing compared to most teams in the West. (via Kukla's Korner)
Tidbits: Statistical Milestones & Others Worth Mentioning - Canes Country
Cory finds a silver lining around the dark clouds that have obscured Carolina's season.
Injury should not determine suspension length, but it always will - Silver Seven
An excellent point made by DarrenM; punish the act, not the effect. So many dangerous and dirty hits go unnoticed because the target was fortunate enough to avoid injury, and that is why the current discipline system fails to modify player behavior.
Lastly, we'll leave you with one of the most vicious elbows I've ever seen thrown in a hockey game, this by New Jersey Devils prospect Patrice Cormier. Jonathan Willis at Hockey Do or Die! highlights this, along with a previous hit that Cormier put on a Swedish player in a pre-World Juniors exhibition. If ever a player was deserving of a season-long suspension, this would appear to be it. Simply put, this guy isn't tough, he's a punk, a dangerous punk who needs to be given a stern lesson.