One thing I know is that Ottawa's had a power play problem for a while. You'd think that wouldn't be true with Erik Karlsson and Sergei Gonchar and their ability to move the puck, but the team's power play was completely predictable last year, and as a result, completely frustrating to watch.
That's supposed to change when the offensive reinforcements from Binghamton arrive. Guys like Mark Stone, Jakob Silfverberg, and Mika Zibanejad have filled the net or scored clutch goals at lower levels of hockey. They're supposed to be good.
So far this year, Binghamton has scored just 8 goals in 64 power play opportunities, good for a conversion rate of about 12.5%. That's putrid and it puts them in the bottom five in the AHL.
I wish I knew what the heck was going on, but I can't even begin to speculate. It's not a lack of talent or understanding of special teams--Binghamton's penalty kill units, comprised of many of the same forwards who play on the power play, are running at a sterling 89.2%, good for third overall in the league. On top of that, they've scored eight shorthanded goals. The next-closest team has five.
The problem with that, of course, is that a team shouldn't have the same number of shorthanded goals as power play goals. It's easy to speculate that because Binghamton Head Coach Luke Richardson is a former defenseman, he's got some stuff to learn about how to run a power play, and maybe that's even more challenging because he's a rookie head coach.
Maybe that's true, but I don't put a lot of stock i it. Richardson has played against enough good power plays to know what one looks like. More importantly, he's got very good assistant coaches helping him out.
- Binghamton lost their second straight last night in Syracuse by a 4-3 score. Mike Hoffman scored two of the goals, and Stone had the third. (Examiner, Press & Sun Bulletin)
- Bingo's dealing with a bit of a bug going through the locker room. (B-Sens Blog)
- Suggestion that Zibanejad would be better off playing in the WJCs. (The Hockey News)
- NHL gear isn't exactly flying off the shelves this holiday season. Big surprise. (Citizen)
- Erik Karlsson gently slides a stick in the general direction of the referees. He was upset, I guess. (The 6th Sens)
- New T6S podcast. Let me know if it's worth listening to. (The 6th Sens)
- Some stupid speculation based on European teams' actions, suggesting they somehow have knowledge that the lockout's on the verge of ending. (Puck Daddy)
- Bobby Butler continues to be a feast-or-famine scorer. He had only 8P in 19GP at this time yesterday, but scored four goals and an assist in the game last night. (The Record)