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Bullet Points: On all four series and it should be Skinner time; Fri's Buzz

May 20, 2022, 11:49 AM ET [20 Comments]
Hello Hockey World. I am two-thirds through what will become the Trade Rumor Chart which will launch in the next few days. This summer has a feeling of insanity surrounding it. The fixed cap will bring with it it’s share of pain. There are MANY coaches and goalies to decide on….and we are looking at some serious UFAs who are still not locked up, along with some RFA’s who could be game changing and up for offer sheets.

Tomorrow we will find out who signed MA Fleury in the “You’re the GM” game and we will put our next UFA up for you all to bid on…

But first….

Friday Bullet Points…

* The Tampa Bay Lightning are still a force, in fact ten wins from a dynasty. Since they lost Game 5 in the Leafs series they have found a defensive level that is simply ridiculous. Add to that a goalie who is virtually unbeatable…As Joe Smith, Bolt Beat From the Athletic Tweeted…
“Since @TBLightning faced elimination in Game 6 vs Leafs, Andrei Vasilevskiy has stopped 128 of 134 shots (.955 save percentage). A .970 save percentage the last three (one goal apiece). “He’s the best player in the league,” Mikhail Sergachev says.”

* It’s not just their skill level in Tampa. They are willing to pay the price…players are working crazy hard and have the bruises to show it…

* All that being said, Florida has been ion two games that they really haven’t played well in. I am really baffled by the power play…and its not just the fact that they haven’t scored a PP goal yet in the playoffs…They look terrible doing it right now. I have always HATED the “Slingshot” power play break out…(where an attacking team keeps passing the pucks backwards until the final guy skates with speed into the zone while his five line mates are waiting standing still at the blue line..)

*. Also, why is Anthony Duclair on the first power play unit, while the player who is been their best in the playoffs, Carter Verhaeghe, sits and comes out on the second unit. The regular line of Barkov, Giroux and Verhaeghe were so good in the Washington series…why not give them a shot on the power play? I know Carter Verhaeghe Is playing hurt, but hopefully he can get better with the extra day off before game 3.

* The Blues are dangerous and starting to really believe in themselves. Binnington has found has Cup level again and at times this Blues team looks better than the Cup winning team from three years back. The Avalanche should be worried…

* The Oilers NEED to try something new, and in my opinion there is ZERO reason to not go with Stuart Skinner in goal. I do believe the Oilers forwards may be too tough for Calgary to handle, built Smith and Koskinen are clearly not the answer for a team with Calgary’s forward talent. It;s not just that Smith and Koskinen are struggling, they both play a style that keeps them far back in their net. The Flames have some sharp shooters and they are eating these guys alive.

* The Rangers/Carolina Series has the potential the be the surprisingly most competitive series…It feels like several OT games are in their future. The Rangers have the talent and goaltending to tackle this series and maybe the next one.
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