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2022 NHL Playoffs


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5 minutes ago, Habs Fan in Edmonton said:

 

I don't dispute that Smith has let in a couple bad goals and had had a couple bad games. Overall his goaltending has been good in the playoffs and was he was exceptional the last part of the season. 

 

His save % during the regular season this year was .917 (same as Carey Price's career %) despite a bad start and playing behind what many on this forum consider a bad defense. His save % in the playoffs this year is .915 (better than Quick, Markstrom and Kuemper). 

 

I am not saying Mike Smith is an all world goalie. He is not. He is 40 years old and the Oilers have to do something going forward to stabilize their goalie situation. I am just saying that Mike Smith has been a lot better than many on this forum give him credit for.  Colorado is simply a better team and I will be surprised if they don't win the cup. 

I agree that Smith has better than I thought he would be. But he is not good enough for the Oilers to win. I don’t like Kuemper, but given the depth the Avs have, he is good enough for them to win. The oilers D and Goaltending are not good enough for them to win.
 

I think he is playing better than what you should reasonably expect from a 40 year old goalie. the  real issue is that the oilers are relying on a 40 year old goalie in this situation and have a below average D - not much better than ours. I

 

They were stuck with a lousy contract with Koskinan, and needed to make a deal that either unloaded that contract to get a legit starter (would have had to give up assets/picks), or gotten a much better young goalie. Signing smith to a 1 yr deal as a backup, would have been alright if they upgraded from Smith. Instead they not only kept Koskinan, but also handcuffed themselves next year with a 41 year old Smith eating away at next years cap.


They’ve wasted enough years of McDavid and Draisaitl’s career. At least this year they got some final 4 experience, but to go further, they need better D and better goaltending. Holland has a long history with Detroit of signing old men - and he continued with that approach last years with his signing of Smith and trade for Keith. If those two deals weren’t bad enough, the extension he gave to Nurse is ridiculous. Nurse is not worth the same as Makar, or more than Draisaitl. You can argue, that you have to overpay Nurse in the Canadian market, but you still have to stick with an internal salary structure, and paying him more than Draisaitl is stupid. One has won the Hart, the other, isn’t even a top 10, or even top 20 dman.

 

 

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22 minutes ago, hab29RETIRED said:

I agree that Smith has better than I thought he would be. But he is not good enough for the Oilers to win. I don’t like Kuemper, but given the depth the Avs have, he is good enough for them to win. The oilers D and Goaltending are not good enough for them to win.
 

I think he is playing better than what you should reasonably expect from a 40 year old goalie. the  real issue is that the oilers are relying on a 40 year old goalie in this situation and have a below average D - not much better than ours. I

 

They were stuck with a lousy contract with Koskinan, and needed to make a deal that either unloaded that contract to get a legit starter (would have had to give up assets/picks), or gotten a much better young goalie. Signing smith to a 1 yr deal as a backup, would have been alright if they upgraded from Smith. Instead they not only kept Koskinan, but also handcuffed themselves next year with a 41 year old Smith eating away at next years cap.


They’ve wasted enough years of McDavid and Draisaitl’s career. At least this year they got some final 4 experience, but to go further, they need better D and better goaltending. Holland has a long history with Detroit of signing old men - and he continued with that approach last years with his signing of Smith and trade for Keith. If those two deals weren’t bad enough, the extension he gave to Nurse is ridiculous. Nurse is not worth the same as Makar, or more than Draisaitl. You can argue, that you have to overpay Nurse in the Canadian market, but you still have to stick with an internal salary structure, and paying him more than Draisaitl is stupid. One has won the Hart, the other, isn’t even a top 10, or even top 20 dman.

 

 

 

I am not sure that any goalie would have been good enough for the Oilers to beat Colorado in this series. Colorado has been that good. Sometimes really good goalies don't look good when playing an elite offensive team like Colorado. Could Smith have been better against Colorado? Sure he could have been. Markstrom is considered one of the best in the NHL and then he played against Edmonton.  Did he not look good because Edmonton has some elite offensive talent or did he just play below average, likely a bit of both.  He may have been just tired and worn out.  

 

Edmonton does need to get better defensively and I agree that paying Nurse the same as Makar doesn't seem rational. The one thing Nurse had going for him is he would have been approaching UFA status so he had more leverage in negotiations and Edmonton is not a place where players play for a discount but he is not a 9.25M player. 

 

Going forward Smith is not the answer as he is 40 and Koskinen is way too inconsistent.  They need to do something. I actually think that Smith's play the last 8 weeks of the season may have saved Hollands' job.

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4 hours ago, Habs Fan in Edmonton said:

 

Giving up 3 goals on 42 shots against a team like Colorado is not a bad night.  But people on this forum like to dump on Smith at the 1st opportunity.  He has had a pretty good run. 

 

Colorado is simply a better team.  

 

The goal against, late in the game, with the score tied 2-2 is an absolute back-breaker though.  That was weak. 

 

That's after giving up 10 goals in the last 2 games. 

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1 hour ago, Commandant said:

I hate them both.  Still hate Kreider.

 

That contributes to prices knee issues.

 

Agreed, not interested in seeing the Rangers or Tampa win.  Hopefully Colorado wins if/when they take out the Oilers. 

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2 hours ago, Commandant said:

 

The goal against, late in the game, with the score tied 2-2 is an absolute back-breaker though.  That was weak. 

 

That's after giving up 10 goals in the last 2 games. 

 

That goal was a back breaker 10 seconds after Bouchard hit the post.  To have any chance of beating the Avs, Smith had to be at his absolute best every game and he wasn't. But Smith is a big reason the Oilers got this far. 

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2 hours ago, Commandant said:

I hate them both.  Still hate Kreider.

 

That contributes to prices knee issues.

I often wonder about that. I feel like he has never been the same since that crash.

 

Edit. He was the best hockey player in the world, the following season, but still, I feel like that knee injury kept coming back. Maybe I'm wrong.

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39 minutes ago, BCHabnut said:

I often wonder about that. I feel like he has never been the same since that crash.

 

Edit. He was the best hockey player in the world, the following season, but still, I feel like that knee injury kept coming back. Maybe I'm wrong.

 

I think you are right. 

 

Yes, he can still be the best goalie in the world when he is able to stay healthy, get in a groove and play. 

 

But damage to his knee means that its a bit a of a ticking time bomb, just waiting to be re-injured, especially with the amount of stress he puts on it. 

 

Markov had the mulitple knee injuries but once he got healthy, he was able to stay healthy.  A goalie with a hip injury or knee injury; its hard to recover cause you strain those parts of your body so much in the butterfly. 

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Well, now 4-4 and Oiler just took dumb penalty.🧹

 

5-4 Aves and its over...most likely.

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Great for Lehkonen! Two years in a row it was his OT winner that sent his team to the Stanley Cup Final.

 

He is having a pretty good playoffs so far. 11 points in 14 games. 

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32 minutes ago, Habsfan84 said:

Great for Lehkonen! Two years in a row it was his OT winner that sent his team to the Stanley Cup Final.

 

He is having a pretty good playoffs so far. 11 points in 14 games. 

 

I am happy for him. It will be interesting to see what kind of contract he gets. He hasn't hurt his bargaining position. 

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48 minutes ago, Habsfan84 said:

Great for Lehkonen! Two years in a row it was his OT winner that sent his team to the Stanley Cup Final.

 

He is having a pretty good playoffs so far. 11 points in 14 games. 

Lehkonen was one of my building pieces in the rebuild, but I like the return the Habs got: Barron seems like a solid top-4 RD prospect and the second may be as good a Lehks was in MTL under  Therrien, Julien and Ducharme.

 

I am happy for the kid

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1 hour ago, Prime Minister Koivu said:


Something tells me that either Smith or McDavid won’t be with the Oilers next year 


Haha that pic says it all.

Didn’t they give up more than 40 shots per game, can’t recall seeing playoff goalie give up so many goals and stil be considered a difference maker.

Seems to me he gave up a lot of softies too.

Ignoring défense was a trend this year but seems to come at a great cost unless you are the best of the best a la Aves.

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The Oil had a two goal lead in the third and blew it. They simply were outclassed by the AVs, period. The only thing I’ll say in their defence is that they did not seem to get much “puck luck” in this series…from what I saw the funky bounces generally went Colorado’s way. But when you’re overmatched, every bad break becomes an insurmountable obstacle.

 

Strange to see the pace at which Lehky is producing. Like others, I liked the trade, but it does make you wonder why old Cement Hands is suddenly offensively effective. Was it the Habs’ coaching or systems holding him back? Mediocre linemates? Or is he just a late bloomer? Or is he just on a hot streak and will settle back to his career norms pretty soon?

 

You know which other former Hab had a great playoff? Brett Kulak.👍 Happy for him, too, since unlike Lehky (who I saw as a quality plumber) Kulak seemed genuinely unappreciated by our coaches. Whether this is enough to improve his market position, I don’t know, but I always pulled for him.

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It's a small sample size. But linemates definitely make a difference. He was producing more for the Habs, too, in his brief stint with Suzuki and Caufield.

 

Colorado is surely very happy with the trade. Hopefully Barron will turn out well and make the trade a win-win.

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A snippet from the Avalanche article on the Athletic:

Quote

But front and center Monday night was Artturi Lehkonen, whom Sakic acquired from Montreal for former first-rounder Justin Barron and a second-round pick. The forward grabbed a rebound in front of the net less than two minutes into overtime and made sure it was on his stick. Then, after what Makar said felt like a full minute, he fired it past a sprawling Mike Smith.

 

Game over, series over.

 

“That’s why you trade for guys like that at the deadline,” MacKinnon said. “I’d trade 10 first-rounders for him right now.”

 

It wasn’t the first time Lehkonen has come through in a big moment. Playing for the Canadiens last season, he scored a conference finals overtime winner against Vegas to send his team to the Cup.

“Chance to play for the Stanley Cup doesn’t come very often,” he said after the game. “You’ve got to make the most of it. This year is an opportunity for us.”

 

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38 minutes ago, tomh009 said:

It's a small sample size. But linemates definitely make a difference. He was producing more for the Habs, too, in his brief stint with Suzuki and Caufield.

 

Colorado is surely very happy with the trade. Hopefully Barron will turn out well and make the trade a win-win.

 

He would fit nicely on the Habs Suzuki-Caufield line at LW. If I am not mistaken, Lekhs had a high High Danger Scoring Chances stat, and I I remember correctly had the highest or second highest generated scoring chances of the lot.

 

If Domi hadn't sucked the second year, I think he would have produced with Drouin and Domi when they played together. He was not given a chance after that.

 

I miss him, but I believe Barron will have a long career on the Habs D after Lehks has retired. It was a good deal.

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Looks like it’s either Perry or Lehkonen who win a cup this year.

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13 hours ago, xXx..CK..xXx said:

Looks like it’s either Perry or Lehkonen who win a cup this year.

I think 99.99% of Hab fans are pulling for one of those guys, more than the other.

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