Unwritten Rules, NCAA Thriller, "Sharkolov," and more
Links, news, and notes about the Leafs "controversy", Quinnipiac's OT winner, Egor Sokolov's first goal, and much more
Some links, news, and notes on this Easter Monday:
- In one of the dumbest "controversies" I've ever seen, Chris Wideman was upset that the Toronto Maple Leafs played emergency signing and UofT goaltender Jett Alexander for the final couple minutes of their 7-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens:
Some have also said that it was a bad look for the Maple Leafs to be using their top powerplay unit when the score was already 7-1, so...which is it? Is it unsportsmanlike to use your best players or your worst players in a blowout? This would be different if it were kids playing, but if you don't want this to happen, maybe don't lose 7-1. It's not as if this is David Ayres either, Alexander is a college goaltender, and he got to live out his dream. Thankfully, general consensus seems to be Wideman's complaining was the issue.
- On the topic of "unwritten rules," what are some of your least favourite ones?
- Egor Sokolov scored his first career goal on Saturday, and he remains one of the most wholesome humans ever:
- The Boston Bruins won their 63rd game of the season on Saturday, passing the 1995-96 Detroit Red Wings and 2018-19 Tampa Bay Lightning for the most wins of all time in an NHL season—and they still have two games remaining. Previous eras didn't have shootout wins though, and some seasons only had 80 games. Regardless, it's been a season for the ages for Boston.
- Have you ever thought you have the perfect draft lottery system? Personally, I think the Gold Plan accomplishes that, although Sean McIndoe (via one of his readers, Drew) at The Athletic proposes a radical idea about non-playoff teams picking playoff teams to win, and whoever is connected to the most successful playoff teams will get the highest picks. It'll never happen, but it's pretty fun to think about.
- Quinnipiac won the NCAA National Championship on Saturday night, as Jacob Quillan scored 10 seconds into overtime against Minnesota. Considering the other star-studded rosters, it was quite a surprise to see them win it all. Their top skater, Collin Graf, had 59 points in 41 games and was undrafted, so he is an interesting free agent who could sign down the line.
- Sidney Crosby became the 15th player of all-time to reach 1,500 points. What's sad is that if he didn't have so many concussion issues during his prime years from 24-26 due to the David Steckel hit, he could easily have around 150 more points or so.
- Speaking of milestones, Connor McDavid became the 6th player ever to reach 150 points in a season, as he's at 151 in 80 games. The last player to reach 150 points was Mario Lemieux in 1995-96, and McDavid is clearly on another level above everyone else.
- Jack Hughes' brother (no, not that brother) has signed his entry-level contract with the New Jersey Devils. Luke Hughes was taken 4th overall in 2021 and put up 48 points in 39 games at the University of Michigan as a defenseman. The Devils are already a scary good team, and adding Hughes (even if he isn't a full-time regular to begin) makes them even more intimidating.