Fresh from three days of practice, there are a few things of note from my boys.
Viktor Stalberg participated in practice with the rest of the team on Wednesday, the first time since he was injured in preseason. This bodes well for the guys, because they’ve been playing Musical Wingers since then. Ben Smith is also nearly ready to return, which is a very happy thing indeed.
Of course, their return means someone has to go, and Brandon Saad was reassigned to his OHL team in Saginaw. The kid had a good run in preseason and the first two games, and he’ll continue to grow and hone his game in the OHL. Maybe next year he’ll head to Rockford; in the meantime, he’ll have the memories of playing and winning in front of a sellout crowd at United Center for their home opener.
Now that he’s served the tail end of his suspension from the playoffs, Daniel Carcillo is ready to be loosed upon 29 other hapless teams. Since Monday, he’s been practicing on a line with Patrick Kane and Marian Hossa, which is well-played on Coach Q’s part. Kaner and Hoss are the team’s best puck handlers, and Carbomb can be the protection they need in the zone.
Tuesday’s practice also brought some confusion. There was Ray Emery in net, but no Corey Crawford. In his place was a college student (Winnipeg also did this recently, and Emma howled with laughter for a good five minutes over it). Wednesday’s practice had Crawford and the college goalie back, but Alex Salak was called from Rockford and Emery was missing. Coach Q said that Emery had the flu, and that Corey had sat out practice to rest (perhaps it was due to the sore groin he had last week at practice). They’ll announce who the starting goalie will be on Thursday.
Speaking of that game, I’ve decided to suck it up and write a gamer complete with pictures that contain a minimum of crappy Jets jerseys. It’ll be difficult, but I’m sure I’ll find something to post!