Hello, and welcome to the Weekly Reader, which is able to run each Friday and acquire information and views from across the hockey world on the week’s greatest tales. Seen one thing price highlighting right here? Hit me at [email protected], or do the identical if in case you have ideas for the column going ahead. Enjoy!
Ovechkin and Putin
Alex Ovechkin introduced one thing referred to as “Putin Team” this week on Instagram, and for a scorching second everybody was excited that he was releasing some model of Russian poutine. Alas, it was truly essentially the most overt endorsement of Russian president Vladimir Putin that the Washington Capitals captain has made so far, establishing a “social movement” to “show everyone how strong and united Russia can be.”
With that, Ovechkin graduated from sporting Putin T-shirts and dropping the occasional message about Russia’s meddling in sovereign nations to being the Flava Flav hype man for a Russian president searching for reelection.
Having coated him for a number of years on the Capitals beat, I discovered that Ovechkin has as fervent a patriotism as I’ve seen from a professional athlete.
Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin took to his Instagram account Tuesday to throw his help behind Vladimir Putin forward of subsequent 12 months’s Russian presidential election.
The Blues have taken the lead within the newest Rankings, however shut behind them are the Lightning and Kings. However, all three and the opposite 28 groups have slightly one thing about them that has us frightened.
Splurged on NHL.TV and do not know which video games to select every evening? These are the groups that stand out above the remaining, attributable to excessive scores, charming people, feel-good tales or all the above.
With this escalation, Ovechkin has lots to reply for. He’s enjoying in Washington, D.C., and it is not precisely glasnost between the U.S. and Russia today. He’s supporting a world chief who has been accused of nothing wanting crimes in opposition to humanity. He’s an expert athlete taking an overt political stance at a time when athletes who accomplish that are skewered on social media at greatest, ostracized in the actual world at worst. (Perhaps one of the best protection for Ovechkin in opposition to that demonization is Americans’ indifference to world information and international coverage.)
If you are in search of Ovechkin to reply for this, as Jeff Blair of Sportsnet and others are, maintain trying.
Note what he instructed the Washington Post on Thursday evening: “I don’t try to be politics man or someone like that,” Ovechkin stated. “I just support my president and just support my country because I’m from there, and you know, if people from U.S. came to Russia, they care about what happening in U.S. So, I care about what happening in Russia because that’s my home and that’s where I’m from.”
As he has prior to now, Alex Ovechkin is searching for a separation between patriotism from coverage. Can one actually create a “social movement” for a politician whereas declaring he is additionally “not being politics man?”
The nice Leafs Panic
The Toronto Maple Leafs misplaced two of three video games throughout their California highway journey, are 5-5 of their final 10 and at the moment are on tempo to complete one level out of the anticipated playoff cutoff level within the Eastern Conference. Which means it is time for early-season panic in Toronto, in fact.
Maple Leafs coach Mike Babbad is getting slammed for his participant utilization by Editor In Leaf. The staff “looks broken,” in accordance with Mirtle. And clearly Auston Matthews cannot do it alone. The California journey will come to outline the Leafs, in accordance with Last Word On Sports.
Look, Toronto is okay. The Leafs are younger. They’re studying. They are nonetheless a top-10 staff in possession regardless of an ongoing effort to seek out their defensive identification. If there’s any level of concern for me, it is how pedestrian most of the gamers in Toronto’s backside six have been, which is why depth on paper would not at all times correlate to depth in actuality.
Jersey Foul of the week
— Ed McMahon (@Edmc28) October 30, 2017
In equity, after I’m writing Anthony Beauvillier’s identify I normally nail the primary couple of letters after which let God kind it out.
Carey Price is usually portrayed as a helpless sufferer to the Montreal Canadiens’ total ineptitude, however let’s be actual: He’s been completely horrible this season.
Price has an even-strength save share of .877 by means of 11 video games, and is Three-7-1, which is by far the worst for any goalie with greater than seven begins. He’s 13th in low-danger save share (.982) for goalies with 300 minutes performed. In objectives saved above common — primarily, what number of objectives a mean goalie would permit if he confronted Price’s shot quantity — Price is 30th within the NHL at a minus-9.5. Last season? He was fifth at plus-14.9 (by way of Corsica).
Eric Engels writes that the “real” Price is nowhere to be discovered, whereas Stu Cowen is rightfully calling for the franchise goalie to show the franchise’s season round. Meanwhile, Omar White is having a significant debate in regards to the deserves of buying and selling a participant whose eight-year, $84 million contract extension would not kick in till subsequent season.
Please be part of us subsequent week for one more episode of “As The Habs Burn.”
Quick query: When your staff is down two objectives on the San Jose Sharks with about 10 minutes to go within the third interval, what’s one of the best resolution your No. 1 middle might make?
Is it staying on the ice and creating offense, as his new $64 million contract would point out is in reality his job? Or is it to combat Joe Pavelski as a result of “he didn’t like the hit” the Sharks middle placed on him, taking himself out of a possible rally for 5 minutes?
Asking for some buddies in Nashville.
Selena Gomez’s take care of the Devils
It seems Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber may be reconciling, which is pleasant information for followers of “his and hers” hockey jerseys. One latest signal: The time-honored custom of the girlfriend sporting her boyfriend’s hockey sweater, which the New Jersey Devils seized on right here:
— New Jersey Devils (@NJDevils) November 2, 2017
Yeah, nice. Just maintain him away from the emblem on the ground.
Women’s hockey merger speak
The New York Times wrote in regards to the necessity for and the obstacles to a merger between the Canadian Women’s Hockey League and the National Women’s Hockey League, which is considered one of these annual discussions about one thing so logical and good for the sport that can seemingly by no means occur till considered one of these leagues goes underneath, sadly.
Dinamo Minsk had a fantastic concept: Invite followers to decorate up in Halloween costumes for a contest. Alas, a lot of these followers did not learn the wonderful print on that said a KHL ban on “clothes and other means of concealing the identity, meaning that masks and make-up that make identifying fans difficult are not allowed.” Hence, why the police had been so upset. [BBC]
Semyon Varlamov set a Colorado Avalanche document in going through 60 pictures from Carolina, and as per regular is just about the lone purpose the Avs are thriving. [Mile High Hockey]
The NHL Brand energy rankings, which is an attention-grabbing take a look at how groups look. [Hockey by Design]
Perhaps the week’s greatest information: It’s Conor “SHARE-EE” not Conor “SHEAR-EE.” [Pensburgh]
Tyler Dellow with a protracted learn on Dallas Stars defenseman Julius Honka that is actually in regards to the broader debate relating to the notion that NHL coaches are “stupid” and the persevering with debate over badytics as an actual science. Chris Peters launched his Top 31 prospects rating, with some very excessive reward for American defenseman Quinn Hughes: “Having closely tracked American prospects in particular for the past decade, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a U.S. defenseman like Hughes.”
Hockey tl;dr (too lengthy; did not learn)
In case you missed this from your mates at ESPN
Tyler Dellow with a protracted learn on Dallas Stars defenseman Julius Honka that is actually in regards to the broader debate relating to the notion that NHL coaches are “stupid” and the persevering with debate over badytics as an actual science.
Chris Peters launched his Top 31 prospects rating, with some very excessive reward for American defenseman Quinn Hughes: “Having closely tracked American prospects in particular for the past decade, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a U.S. defenseman like Hughes.”