Alex Ovechkin has been underwhelming since the Russians got spanked 7-3 by Canada in the 2010 Olympic quarterfinal. Photo borrowed from the über-talented Pat Molnar at http://www.patmolnar.com.
We started our series on surprises in the NHL with a look at Martin Brodeur and the New Jersey Devils, who continue the play that took them to the Stanley Cup Finals last season. Loads of pundits called the LA Kings to roll roughshod over the Western Conference in defence of their championship, but you’ll be hard pressed to find one who thought the Devils would be the class of the East at the quarter pole after the lockout.
If we’re going to discuss head-scratchers, we have to talk about the Washington Capitals. They sit dead last in the league with just nine measly points after 13 games. Four years ago, this team was poised to become a perennial contender. They had an explosive core of offensive talent and an owner in Ted Leonsis who was willing to spend the bucks necessary to bring a Cup to DC.
More after the jump.
Like any year in any sport, the shortened 2013 NHL season has provided some yawns, some gimmes, and some head-scratching surprises. Yawns: Despite throwing buckets of money at Zach Parise and Gary Suter, the Minnesota Wild are still a snoozefest every single night. Gimmes: No one is shocked to see the Calgary Flames and New York Islanders near the bottom of the standings. Head-scratchers: the apotheosis of Martin Brodeur and continued success for the New Jersey Devils.
With 1,200 games, 662 wins, 372 losses and 120 shutouts, Martin Brodeur has guaranteed himself not only a spot in the Hockey Hall of Fame, but a full-on apotheosis in New Jersey when he retires. Here we see how the ancient Romans thought of his work between the pipes. Photoshop hack job by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.
Why would we scratch our heads for Marty rattling off a few more wins, you ask? Read why after the jump.
Vancouver Canucks defenseman Alex Edler readies to take part in a two-on-two scrimmage during a practice on January 8, 2013. Photo by Jason Kurylo for Pucked in the Head.
The Vancouver Canucks signed Alex Edler to a six-year, $30-million contract extension on the eve of the shortened 2013 season, according to General Manager Mike Gillis.
The move means two big things for the Canucks: 1) the team medical staff is confident that Edler’s back is 100%, despite spasms and pains that kept him out of a number of games over the past two seasons. And 2) Vancouver will continue to have one of the deepest bluelines in the league for the foreseeable future.
More after the jump.