First, a shoutout to some interesting visitors in the last day:
Fargo, North Dakota
The Philippines (I overdosed on fresh pineapple there, it was great)
South Jordan, Utah
Thanks for stopping by!
Now to the game, a rematch against Nashville. I had been planning to write an article on the rookies who may make Nashville's roster, but then they went and sent everyone down this weekend. I guess Rich Peverley had to get back for his bobblehead night in Milwaukee.
Only Koistinen and Klein are left, and Klein is injured. We'll see if Koistinen even plays tonight.
Many of the players know each other very well, from the Chicago vs. Milwaukee rivalry. So if there's anything extra going on, it's probably from the heart.
1st intermission: What an empty building. But then what do you expect on a Tuesday night during preseason at 7:00?
I still do not understand why Colin Stuart is being played on a scoring line. He's not at all suited to it. He's a good skater and is defensive minded, but not physical. That spells checking line and only checking line. The mix of Stuart and Little doesn't work either because Little is used to being the most defensive-oriented guy on his line, as a center, so Stuart and Little are both trying to stay back, leaving only Ilya Kovalchuk to play offense. It just doesn't work. Then one time there was a rush, Little got between Kovalchuk and the net and was hit by the shot.
Enstrom continues to look good. He's so dynamic. On one play, he came off the bench to hold the puck in the zone and skated it all the way in for a chance. He took a hit behind the net earlier, but just bounced out.
Koistinen looks good too on Nashville's blue line.
I'm not a fan of Kwiatkowski's positioning in the zone or on the breakout.
2nd intermission: Ah, the waning looks at Bryan Little until later in the season. He just looks a bit timid out there. OK, maybe more than a bit. If you said 'pick out the 19-year-old', people would probably guess correctly. He played a shift with the fourth line once this period.
LaVallee hasn't gotten a ton of ice time, but he's done something good each shift, either a clear, a hit, or advancing the puck. Up and down the ice, a simple but effective game. He was my darkhorse in my training camp preview, and I'm sticking by that pick.
De Vries is a nice measuring stick as an opponent, since we know his abilities well. He had a takeaway from Stuart along the boards, and pushed Little to the ice near the net.
Pilar looks better in games than practice. The interference call on Enstrom might have been a bad one. It didn't go over well with the crowd.