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The Monday Morning Specials

After a wild and wooly NHL weekend, there's much to cover, so I'll provide a number of items for you this morning.

1. I've updated the Penalty information over at the Google Spreadsheet, and in an effort to find the most useful and practical presentation, I've put the following columns out there: Player, Penalties Drawn, Penalties Committed, Penalty +/-, Position, and Team. This allows you to zero in on your favorite team, and also draw comparisons based on player position. My hunch is that defensemen will fare poorly here relative to forwards, due to the nature of their work; they're trying to prevent goals, and have to hook, hold or trip more often than the zoomers up front. For those not able to access the spreadsheet, I've included the best and worst players in this measure at the bottom of this post.

2. I took my oldest son (5) to his first NHL game on Saturday, as we watched the Predators defeat the Blue Jackets in a shootout. Ken Hitchcock went with an odd assortment of shooters, including Adam Foote, in lieu of scorers like Rick Nash and Sergei Fedorov. Apparently Hitch hasn't read that sending three right-handed shooters against a left-handed catcher like Chris Mason is a bad idea. All in all it was a fun evening, and my son had a great time. His twin sister gets to go to her first game this Saturday against St. Louis.

3. Just as I posted my memories of Vladimir Konstantinov last week, there are a number of other bloggers who shared stories about other retired greats as well, leading up to today's Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Head over to Greatest Hockey Legends for all the details.

4. Nashville fans have to be happy with how the Predators have responded since that 6-0 pasting at the hands of the
L.A. Kings on October 23rd. Since that game they are 6-1-1, and have started well in this crucial stretch of games within the Central Division that continues this week and next. In that time, team captain Jason Arnott has 3 goals and 4 assists, has a +4 rating. David Legwand has been even better (3-7-10, +6), and Chris Mason is looking sharp once again. And in the best news of all, stud defenseman Shea Weber is due to return from his knee injury sometime in the next week, perhaps as early as Saturday against the Blues.

5. I got a good portion of Saturday afternoon's Montreal/Ottawa match on Hockey Night in Canada, and it was probably the best game I've seen all season, not just in terms of how the teams were performing on the ice, but also given the energy in the crowd, which came through wonderfully on TV. There were plenty of Habs fans in the house, and each shot, hit, or slick move elicits raucous boos and cheers from the stands. It really feels like hockey season now...

Top Penalty Plus/Minus Players as of November 11, 2007
Player Drawn Committed Pen +/- Pos
PIT #87 CROSBY 20 7 13 C
WSH #8 OVECHKIN 14 3 11 L
NYR #19 GOMEZ 13 2 11 C
L.A #13 CAMMALLERI 11 0 11 L
L.A #11 KOPITAR 13 2 11 C
DET #13 DATSYUK 13 2 11 C
MTL #21 HIGGINS 11 3 8 L
EDM #83 HEMSKY 11 3 8 R
VAN #17 KESLER 12 5 7 C
S.J #12 MARLEAU 8 1 7 C
PHX #34 WINNIK 8 1 7 C
NYR #25 PRUCHA 9 2 7 R
CBJ #61 NASH 14 7 7 L
CAR #13 WHITNEY 7 0 7 L
BUF #19 CONNOLLY 9 2 7 C
ATL #13 KOZLOV 8 1 7 L
ANA #32 MOEN 9 2 7 L
STL #22 BOYES 8 2 6 R
S.J #9 MICHALEK 8 2 6 R
PHX #11 HANZAL 8 2 6 C
NSH #22 TOOTOO 8 2 6 R
N.J #16 ZUBRUS 7 1 6 C
MTL #73 RYDER 9 3 6 R
CAR #26 COLE 10 4 6 L
CAR #12 STAAL 10 4 6 C

Worst Penalty Plus/Minus Players as of November 11, 2007
Player Drawn Committed Pen +/- Pos
TOR #56 WOZNIEWSKI 0 11 -11 D
DAL #43 BOUCHER 0 10 -10 D
TOR #31 KUBINA 2 11 -9 D
PIT #55 GONCHAR 3 12 -9 D
PHI #22 KNUBLE 1 10 -9 R
OTT #25 NEIL 3 12 -9 R
NYR #51 TYUTIN 0 8 -8 D
EDM #24 STAIOS 0 8 -8 D
DET #3 LILJA 3 11 -8 D
CHI #7 SEABROOK 0 8 -8 D
CAR #6 HEDICAN 1 9 -8 D
S.J #10 EHRHOFF 1 8 -7 D
PHX #13 CARCILLO 3 10 -7 L
L.A #3 JOHNSON 1 8 -7 D
FLA #24 SALEI 2 9 -7 D
BOS #91 SAVARD 1 8 -7 C
ATL #28 HAVELID 0 7 -7 D
WSH #87 BRASHEAR 0 6 -6 L
WSH #4 ERSKINE 2 8 -6 D
WSH #2 POTHIER 2 8 -6 D
VAN #24 COOKE 0 6 -6 L
VAN #2 OHLUND 5 11 -6 D
NYR #27 MARA 1 7 -6 D
NSH #7 DE VRIES 2 8 -6 D
MIN #8 BURNS 3 9 -6 D
EDM #23 TARNSTROM 2 8 -6 D
DET #55 KRONVALL 1 7 -6 D
DET #33 DRAPER 5 11 -6 C
CGY #6 SARICH 1 7 -6 D
CGY #40 TANGUAY 2 8 -6 L
CGY #17 GODARD 0 6 -6 R
CBJ #25 CHIMERA 2 8 -6 L
ANA #25 PRONGER 4 10 -6 D

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