I swear sometimes these professional athletes are bionic. First it was Steven Stamkos returning to skates much sooner than predicted after breaking his leg, now it's the turn of Stephane Robidas to take to the ice far sooner than expected. For the first time since the injury, Robidas skated on Monday, and was out on the ice again yesterday.
"It's not close, but at the same time it is getting closer. I am trying to figure out that I am going to need so much practice with the team, maybe I could be there at this time and this is what is going to happen next. Your time table is getting closer and closer. I feel like I have more of a defined goal now, I have an idea of where I am going and what date and where maybe I can play. To me that is positive. And just to have a goal, at least I am training for something and that I'll be able to be back and playing this year." [Stars Inside Edge]
So don't everyone get too excited. It's still a matter of months before he returns. Baby steps, and with a broken leg that's not such a bad idea.
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Round two against Loui Eriksson and the Boston Bruins. Anyone notice that former-Star Reilly Smith leads the Bruins in goals, and former-Bruin Tyler Seguin leads the Stars in goals? Win-win? [Stars Inside Edge] [NHL.com]
And speaking of the Seguin trade, Mike Heika takes a look at that and some of the other former Stars around the league. [Sports Day DFW]
And no, I'm not harping on about the trade, but there is a guy named Rich Peverley who came to the Stars from the Bruins in that same trade. Well our Bruins friends on SB Nation have put together a musical tribute to Raptor Jesus. [Stanley Cup of Chowder]
Musing on the recently ended losing streak and the fickleness of sport. [On the Radar]
A quick look at the relationship between Brenden Dillon and defensive coach James Patrick, as well as other notes from around the league. [Over the Boards]
Now that the Stars have finally ended their six-game losing streak, it's time to turn our attention to other teams who are slumping in a bad way. Today I present you the Vancouver Canucks. The Nucks have now lost 7 of their last 8, albeit with three loser points in there, but more remarkably, they got absolutely walloped by the Ducks last night, losing 9-1. This on the heels of a 1-0 shutout at the hands of the Kings. 9-1 must not have been pretty viewing, but it made for an entertaining feed from the official Canucks Twitter account.
If we start a petition to avoid playing in California forever, will you sign it?— Vancouver Canucks (@VanCanucks) January 16, 2014
Somebody missing the Northwest Division much?
Fancy stat article of the week! Or the day, depending on whether I find one tomorrow or not. A look at what the underlying stats tell us about the league, who's really hot, who's really not. And despite the 6-game losing streak, the Stars are still performing highly on these metrics. [Hockey Buzz]
Now, this one talks about the East pushing back against the Western dominance of the first half of the season. What they don't mention, and I'm not going to tell them, is that the Stars going 0-6 against the Eastern Conference in January may be directly responsible for the change. [Pension Plan Puppets]
So the big news in the league yesterday afternoon was the Oilers trading backup goaltender Devan Dubnyk to the Predators for Matt Hendricks... for some reason. And then as if picking up the contract of an overpaid sub-par player from the Predators wasn't enough, they then sweetened the deal.
The Oilers retaining half of Dubnyk's salary is the most Oilers thing they've done since they traded Dubnyk for Hendricks.— Cyrus Manesh (@cmanesh_) January 15, 2014
Following that though the Oilers, now suddenly having a backup goaltender spot to fill, made a trade that made some sense, swapping a third-round pick to the Kings for Ben Scrivens. So Scrivens and his wife will be leaving sunny LA just before the Stadium Series game. Poor Jen Scrivens...
And lastly I don't usually embed videos, nor do too many links about fighting, but goodness. This is intense! Hope you're not squeamish.