Thursday, 28 June 2018

The steal of the offseason

We have observed a number of players over the years making the jump from obscurity into stardom when given the right opportunity. I have a player in mind that could do the same next season.

I believe the steal of the off-season will be whoever signs forward Rocco Grimaldi and gives him a top 6 role and an EXTENDED look.

Sample size
Rocco has gotten into 37 NHL regular season games and scored 5 goals to go along with 5 assists. It's a small sample size, but he has shown his potential in his limited opportunities. Meanwhile he has scored 76 goals in the AHL over his 4 pro seasons.

Criticisms of his game seem to always level on the defensive side, but such criticism is silly. Rocco is responsible defensively and can play a bottom 6 energy role.

His full potential will be maximized getting top 6 minutes and playing on the power play, but he can play any role that you need him to play. He just needs an opportunity.

Brendan Gallagher seems like a good comparison. A hard working player that's tenacious on the puck and can score when he gets his opportunities.

Jonathan MarchessaultViktor Arvidsson, and Tyler Johnson are 3 other players that come to mind. Each are small players that were eventually afforded an opportunity and took advantage of it.

My message to NHL general managers
Will one of you please sign him and give him an opportunity? He is the type of player and person you could be build your team around. He could be your captain someday! He is not a confirmed AHLer like some people think. He is a talented player that will be a 30 goal scorer someday in the NHL when and if he's given a REAL chance.

He will be a unrestricted free agent (group 6) on July 1st.

He reminds me of Pavel Bure on this play: Top shelf snipe vs Leafs

Monday, 13 June 2016

Eric Fehr and Matt Cullen win Stanley Cup

Congrats to Eric Fehr and Matt Cullen on winning the Stanley Cup! The Penguins won their 4th cup in franchise history last night, defeating the San Jose Sharks in 6 games.

Eric Fehr
Eric Fehr scored once in the finals; an insurance goal giving the Penguins a 3-1 lead with minutes to go in game 4. He played in 23 games through the entire playoffs, scoring 3 goals.

Fehr's daughter didn't show the same enthusiasm as her father after his Stanley Cup win, as she cried while she sat in the Stanley Cup.

Matt Cullen
Matt Cullen didn't pickup any points in the finals, but played a key role killing off penalties and taking face-offs. Cullen scored 4 goals in 24 games for the Penguins these playoffs.

Fehr and Cullen played on the 4th line together for a large chunk of the playoffs, and killed off penalties together. Cullen, in particular, played a significant role in the Penguins victory.

James Reimer
James Reimer, backup goalie for the Sharks, got in one game throughout these playoffs in relief of Martin Jones. Despite only the 1 appearance, Reimer enjoyed his time with the Sharks. He is a free agent this summer.

Congrats to these guys on their great seasons. God bless.

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Playoff Check In # 1

It’s been a while, but let’s jump right back in. The second round of the 2016 NHL playoffs is nearly over. We’ll take a quick look at how professing Christians are doing.

Fisher has had a good playoff for the Predators so far, scoring 5 goals in 13 games; including the overtime winner in game 4 of round 2 against the San Jose Sharks.
He has scored 4 goals in 6 games vs the Sharks this series.

Eric Fehr      
Fehr has scored 2 goals for the Penguins so far this playoff year; both being game winning goals.
Fehr missed one game with injury in the Penguins second round series against the Capitals, but was back last game and looks to be healthy.

Matt Cullen     
Cullen has played in each game for the Penguins so far these playoffs, and has scored 3 goals. 2 of his goals have been game winners.

James Reimer       
James Reimer hasn’t seen any game action for the San Jose Sharks through the playoffs yet this year, but still provides depth for the Sharks should starting goalie Martin Jones be injured.
The Sharks play game 7 at home against the Predators on Thursday.

That was a quick look at the outlook on the playoffs for professing Christians. Have a great day. God bless.

Thursday, 10 September 2015

Free Agency Frenzy Check-In Number 2

Time sure has passed fast, and preseason hockey will be underway in just 10 days!
Due to this information that no doubt shocks you beyond belief,  let’s take a look at 4 men of faith that have found work in the NHL since mid-July.

Eric Fehr
Eric Fehr signed a 3 year contract to join the Pittsburgh Penguins back on July 28th.            
Fehr scored 19 goals last season, and performed well as the Washington Capitals third center.            
He underwent surgery in the off-season before signing with the Penguins, and it looks like he should be ready for the start of the season.               

Matt Cullen
Nine days after Fehr signed with the Penguins, Matt Cullen joined him, signing a 1 year contract on August 6th.               
Cullen is still a productive NHL player, and should be a good fit with the Penguins as a depth forward.    
Cullen was a leader on the Nashville Predators last season, and tallied 25 points in 62 games.
Peter Budaj                    
Peter Budaj was invited to the Los Angeles Kings’ training camp on a professional tryout contract (PTO). 
Though Budaj has had success in the NHL in past years, winning at least 10 games in 6 seasons, last year he did not record a win in 19 appearances in the AHL. 
Budaj will have to pass Jonas Enroth on the Kings depth chart to be their back-up goalie, but let’s not count the veteran out.   

David Booth    
David Booth signed a PTO with the Florida Panthers yesterday, and will attend their training camp.   
David is a Panther alumnus, having played parts of 6 seasons with them. His most successful years in the NHL were in Florida. 
In each of his 3 full seasons with the Panthers, he scored over 20 goals.
He scored 7 goals and 13 points with the Toronto Maples Leafs last year.   
Let’s hope he can make the team.

Let's keep these men in our prayers as they seek to bring Christ glory on and off the ice. I’ll try to keep you updated on how their seasons are going. There are a lot more Christians out there in the NHL representing the faith too. God bless!

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Free Agency Frenzy Check-In Number 1

Hello again everybody! It’s been just over a month since the Chicago Blackhawks won their third Stanley Cup in 6 years. The NHL draft has passed, and free agency is well underway.
Today we’ll look at 3 Christians that have recently been signed as free agents.

Mike Fisher
Mike Fisher re-signed with the Nashville Predators to a 2 year deal late last month. Fisher and Predators GM David Poile each had kind words for each other following the signing. Mike is happy to be sticking around Nashville for another 2 years. It will be a challenge for the Predators to win their division again next season, but re-signing Fisher was the right decision.
Paul Postma
Paul Postma re-signed with the Winnipeg Jets just over a week ago to a 2 year deal. Last year was a challenging one for Paul, but the contract extension will no doubt be a relief. You can expect him to be ready to compete for a top 6 defense position on the Jets when training camp comes around.

Dan Ellis
Dan Ellis has battled through a lot in his life, but he has earned himself another contract, as he was signed by the Washington Capitals to a 1 year deal about 2 weeks ago. He played in 8 games with the Florida Panthers last year, and it was enough to earn him a deal with the Capitals. He will be in a battle with Justin Peters for the Capitals backup goalie position.

There are still more Christians out there looking for contracts, most notably Eric Fehr, Matt Cullen, and David Booth. I'll keep you updated as the deals come in.

God bless you! Bye for now.

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Staal Has Successful Surgery

A week after Marc Staal and the New York Rangers were bounced from the Conference Finals by the Tampa Bay Lightning, Staal underwent successful surgery to remove a bone chip from his ankle. He is expected to be ready for training camp.

Staal tallied 20 points this past season with a plus 18 rating. He signed long-term contract extension with the Rangers during the season and should be back next season.

Please feel free to comment with any recommendation for future stories, or if you would like to be interviewed to share your experiences with Christianity in hockey.

God bless!

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Third Round Well Underway

The third round of the 2015 NHL playoffs is well underway. Let’s see how Marc Staal is doing in his series against the Tampa Bay Lightning. We’ll also see where Dan Hamhuis and Team Canada finished at the World Championships.

Marc Staal
Staal and the Rangers are deadlocked with the Lighning at 2 games apiece in their Eastern Conference match-up. It’s been a wild past 3 games in particular, with 25 goals being scored. It was predicted to be a low scoring series, but that has not turned out to be the case. Lots of goals is never what a defensemen wants, but Staal has been battling with his Ranger teammates, and they came up with a 5-1 win last night.              

Dan Hamhuis
Dan Hamhuis and Team Canada have won the World Championship Gold Medal! Canada went undefeated on their way to winning the World Championship . Hamhuis picked up an assist in the goald medal game, as Canada routed Russia 6-1 for the victory. This is Canada’s first gold medal at the World Championships since 2007. Hamhuis was a member of both teams. Dan tallied 6 assists over the 10 games he played in the tournament, and did all he could to get Canada their gold medal!
Dan has one year remaining on his contract with the Vancouver Canucks, and will look to lead the Canucks back to the playoffs next season.
What great news seeing Hamhuis and Canada get gold. We’ve only got 1 last player to profile in the coming weeks, as Marc Staal and the Rangers hope to advance to the Stanley Cup Finals for the second straight year. 

Have a great day! God bless!