For many, Christmas Eve takes on special meaning. The same can be said of Deadline Eve for puckers everywhere. With such a brief chaotic period for GMs to trade, expect the unexpected. Who knows what will happen between now and tomorrow's 3 ET deadline. You know what's great is that sometimes, a couple of late deals sneak through making it all the more exciting for everybody.
While talks will continue, 24 teams are in action on the first busy night back from the Olympics. Sure. Detroit defeated Colorado 3-2 on Nick Lidstrom's winner. But there's a cool baker's dozen with all four Battle teams returning to the ice, including the Sabres taking on Crosby's Pens. Think Ryan Miller must be sick of him already? Don't forget the Winter Classic ending as well. The Islanders play host to the Blackhawks with Dwayne Roloson getting the start. The latest from CSN's Tim Panaccio has Rolo not going to the goalie-desperate Flyers, who lost Ray Emery for the season. Michael Leighton has played well but figure them to chase after Tomas Vokoun, who perhaps the Blackhawks might be interested in.
For the Rangers who are in Ottawa tonight, they'll be minus Mike Del Zotto and Marian Gaborik with Corey Potter in and Dan Girardi expected to play. As we noted in our updated post, our sincerest apologies on the Girardi oversight. He still could move following the game. We'll just have to wait and see. Also of interest, both Aaron Voros and Enver Lisin have been put on waivers. Funny how the first guy worked his butt off even if overpaid while the other never really got a fair shake from John Tortorella after the club acquired him for Lauri Korpikoski...typical.
The Devils have the late game in San Jose against fraud Joe Thornton, who as Buffalo contributor Brian Sanborn noted to me last night, smiled during Canada's celebration because he sure didn't do much to help them win gold. Sad but true. Between his disappearing act and Evgeni Nabokov's quarterfinal implosion along with Russian 'mates, you think Shark fans might be a little concerned?!?!?!?!?! As for the Devs, figure Martin Brodeur to be angry after being benched for Roberto Luongo in similar fashion to how he replaced Cujo at Salt Lake eight years prior. Though it's worth noting the year MB30 won gold in net, the Candy Canes eliminated them in the first round. Maybe sitting was a good omen. Zach Parise also wasn't satisfied with silver and should come out on fire. The Devs get back feisty winger David Clarkson, who will be a huge key down the stretch. Paul Martin is still a giant question mark. Might Lou be interested in another D?
A few players to note who are healthy scratches tonight:
Sure there is more but we're punching away quickly before the puck drops. What else? Well, 48 year-old Chris Chelios is back signing with Hotlanta. Sure is inspirational. The Thrash also added rugged Russian forward Evgeny Artyukhin last night from Anaheim for Nathan Oystrick and a conditional pick. The Ducks also swung a deal just before with Chitown sending Nick Boynton to the Windy City for future considerations. What might that be? An old Jim McMahon Super Bowl poster? ... The Wild have re-signed Marek Zidlicky for three years, $12 million. So, he's off the summer board.
Well, that's it for now. We'll have more later.