It was a busy Monday for the Florida Panthers, from Jacob Markstrom being sent down to the San Antonio Rampage, and the injury to Florida Panthers prospect Jonathan Huberdeau. It was also a busy Monday for the entire NHL, from the Los Angeles Kings and San Jose Sharks playing for the first time since the San Jose Sharks knocked the LA Kings out of the playoffs, to it being the day after the St. Louis Blues fired Davis Payne, and hired Ken Hitchcock, as well as New York Islanders goaltender Evgeni Nabokov being put on the trading block. While there were only two games to watch, the day and night was indeed a wild one!
Florida Panthers prospect Jonathan Huberdeau suffered a broken foot during the morning skate with QMJHL and according to reports is out for about a month. Victoriaville Tigers right winger, Brandon Hynes will take Huberdeau’s place in the QMJHL lineup for now.
The Panthers made some bigger news at they NHL level by deciding to send down goaltender Jacob Markstrom and bringing back Scott Clemmensen, who was the original back up to Jose Theodore. Clemmensen suffered a knee injury during the pre season which put his season on hold for a while. I think this will be a good move all around, with the recent disappointment of losing three games in a shootout, the Florida Panthers needed a slight shake up, and this move could be the shake up that they needed. In the long run, it’s the best move for everyone concerned, especially Jacob Markstrom, as he needs to get a bunch of games under his belt.
The St. Louis Blues made what I would call a bit of a surprise move, firing coach Davis Payne, and hiring stodgy Ken Hitchcock. The St. Louis Blues may have struggled here a bit early in the season, but I don’t think they struggled enough to the point where Payne needed to be fired. I think this move shows that the St. Louis Blues are very serious about making the playoffs this season, and making the coaching change early may also help out struggling goaltender Jaroslav Halak, who is off to a 1-6 start on the season. Brian Elliott can not be starting this much if the Blues intend to make the playoffs, even though he has been shut down, they need their star goaltender back to full form. Hitch is known to ride his number one goaltender, and Halak is clearly that guy.
The New York Islanders put goaltender Evgeni Nabokov on the trading block Monday. For those not familiar with Evgeni Nabokov, he lead the San Jose Sharks to a presidents trophy, 2 Western Conference final appearances, three 40 win seasons, and was nominated for the Vezina Trophy. Nabokov is 1-2 on the season so far, and is currently day-to-day with a lower body injury. From what I hear a few teams have already made contact with the New York Islanders regarding Evgeni Nabokov, and I don’t expect to see Evgeni Nabokov in New York for much longer. The Islanders played the Boston Bruins and red hot Tyler Seguin in Beantown. Seguin continued his scoring by nothing his eighth of the year in the first period which say the Bruins take a 3-2 lead which held up till the third frame. Then the Bruins scored three unanswered goals including one by ex-Panther Nathan Horton, to give Boston only their sixth win ion 13 tries.
Monday also saw the Los Angeles Kings take on the San Jose Sharks for the first time since the Sharks knocked the Kings out of the playoffs last spring. This was the key matchup of the night on Monday, and though the Kings didn’t avenge their first round playoff loss to the Sharks, even though they got off to a good start with a goal by Jack Johnson, the San Jose Sharks came storming back to defeat the Los Angeles 4-2. San Jose scored four unanswered goals including Dan Boyle’s first of the season.
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Topics: Davis Payne, Evgeni Nabokov, Florida Panthers, Jacob Markstrom, Jonathan Huberdeau, Jose Theodore, Ken Hitchcock, Los Angeles Kings, New York Islanders, San Antonio Rampage, San Jose Sharks, Scott Clemmensen, St Louis Blues, Vez