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Quick hits: Tanking, icing and bonuses

Apr 2, 2010, 1:15 PM EST

Here are a few mini-stories from around the league, newspapers and blogosphere today.

Versus beefs up coverage

Great news for hockey fans gearing up for the stretch run as Versus added a bunch of games for the next week. Here’s the lowdown from Puck Daddy.

Exclusive regularly scheduled games:
April 5: Boston Bruins at Washington Capitals, 7:00 p.m.
April 6: Washington Capitals at Pittsburgh Penguins, 7:30 p.m.

Bonus games:
April 6: Colorado Avalanche at Vancouver Canucks, 10:00 p.m.
April 7: Toronto Maple Leafs at New York Rangers, 7:00 p.m.
April 8: Buffalo Sabres at Boston Bruins, 7:00 p.m.
April 8: Montreal Canadiens at Carolina Hurricanes, 7:30 p.m. (airs only in Buffalo and Boston)
April 8: Vancouver Canucks at San Jose Sharks, 10:30 p.m.
April 9: TBD, 7:00 p.m.
April 9: TBD, 7:00 p.m. (game to air in TBD markets of above game)
April 9: Chicago Blackhawks at Colorado Avalanche (Joined in progress following TBD 7:00 p.m. game)

To Tank or not to Tank?

I’ve been mulling over this point for quite some time myself. From the Rink asks the question: should a bubble team try to make the playoffs and therefore face a tough match against a top seed or improve their future with a better draft pick? It’s hard to say; while most teams end up like the New York Islanders in the Rick Dipietro healthy era (in other words, just barely making the playoffs before bailing out), every once in a while an underdog makes a run. Just look at the Chris Pronger Oilers, the Ducks a few times and the Flames during Kipper’s first year.

Icing on the Cake

Behind the Net has some interesting analysis of icing, something I rarely see in statistics anywhere. If you want to try to attribute a huge correlation between icing and winning, this post won’t help you; apparently the Edmonton Oilers commit the infraction the least.

Teams who ice the puck the least

  1. Edmonton
  2. Pittsburgh
  3. Buffalo
  4. Ottawa
  5. Toronto

Perhaps most interesting is the players who are sent out the most often to take a post-icing faceoff. Obviously, the guilty team is forced to use the group of guys who were already on the ice while the opposing coaching staff can throw out anyone they want.

Players who are sent out the most often to take faceoffs after icing

  1. Sidney Crosby
  2. Mikko Koivu
  3. Antoine Vermette
  4. Jonathan Toews
  5. Henrik Sedin
  1. Tapeleg - Apr 2, 2010 at 1:34 PM

    I hate the tanking question. Think about the future UFA who is still playing for the team. What value do they get by tanking? If they don’t resign with the team, how does that first round pick benefit them?
    Hockey players play hockey. They do it for money, winning, and also pride. Tanking isn’t much of an option.

  2. Tapeleg - Apr 2, 2010 at 1:36 PM

    I hate the tanking question. Think about the future UFA who is still playing for the team. What value do they get by tanking? If they don’t resign with the team, how does that first round pick benefit them?
    Hockey players play hockey. They do it for money, winning, and also pride. Tanking isn’t much of an option.

  3. James O'Brien - Apr 2, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    I can never make up my mind about it. On one hand, Tapeleg is right. On the other hand, see: Pittsburgh, Washington and Chicago. Hard to say.

  4. Tapeleg - Apr 2, 2010 at 5:14 PM

    Yeah, because Jagr benefited soooo much from sucking in Washington. As did Eddie O. in Pittsburgh.

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