Thoughts Are My Own: Trouba Has No Leverage

Thoughts as you realize it’s the first day of November. Woah, it’s the first day of November.

*Jacob Trouba is being Jonathan Drouin-ed. And will continue to be. The Jets want what no team will give for his services. He’s a solid, top four defenseman at 21 years old. He has the size, he has the projection of being a top defenseman. Winnipeg will let the situation ride itself out until the December 1 deadline, where which Trouba will forgo a full season should he not be signed then, which only hurts his value. Ball is in the court of Kevin Cheveldayoff and company.

*Auston Matthews and Connor McDavid facing off for the first time ever is the headliner of Tuesday’s games, and rightfully so; they’re special talents, the two most recent first overall picks, and two of the best in recent memory. But here’s some other matchups that might catch your eye: Tampa Bay at Islanders, Steven Stamkos vs. John Tavares in another showdown of first overall picks; Washington at Winnipeg, Alex Ovechkin vs. Patrik Laine, the greatest goal scorer of the post-lockout years against what looks like the next great goal scorer the game bears witness to; and Anaheim at Los Angeles needs no explanation.

*The matchup (not Tuesday, obviously, but down the road) I find most compelling is Toronto vs. Buffalo. Matthews vs. Jack Eichel in a showdown of the two top American youngsters, two guys who are among the faces in U.S. hockey as teenagers. This is only made better by the natural geographic rivalry that exists with the two franchises fighting for the love of southern Ontario.

*Elliotte Friedman reported on Saturday that there will be no changes to the All-Star Game voting format, which if true is the right decision. Last year’s game was as successful as it had been in quite some time, no need to overthink it. The league has bigger fish to fry.

*Nothing wrong with Mikhail Sergachev, the ninth overall pick in this past June’s draft, being sent back to Windsor. He’d played just three games in Montreal, might as well get another year of OHL experience under his belt. He’ll be on a Spitfires team that features fellow first rounder Logan Stanley on the back line and 11th overall pick Logan Brown up front. Sean Day was a third round pick.

*Ohio State hockey is out to a 5-0-2 start to the season, moving up to No. 11 in the USCHO.com poll. The Buckeyes should only expound on the strong record, with doubleheaders against Robert Morris, UConn, and RPI awaiting in the next three weekends. The big challenge doesn’t come until after Thanksgiving, when Ohio State travels to Minnesota to open its Big 10 schedule.

Links

Dave Tippett has a motorcycle shop in his house.

Bruce Boudreau was ‘grumpy’ at the Wild practice on Monday as Minnesota rode a short bench for multitude of reasons.

The latest in the class-action lawsuit that faces the CHL and threatens to change the landscape of major junior hockey in Canada.

Teams led by Peter Chiarelli and Marc Bergevin benefitting from questionable offseason transactions the two general managers made for the respective organizations, the Edmonton Oilers (Chiarelli) and the Montreal Canadiens (Bergevin).

Jay Bouwmeester reflects upon his career to date as he approaches his 1,000th career NHL game.

Coyotes rookie forward Christian Dvorak gets sent down to the AHL. The 20-year-old had three assists in seven games while averaging 13:45 of ice time per night.

A question nobody has asked, or even thought of – could Matthews/McDavid be the next great NHL rivalry?

In case you missed it: Episode two of the Bobcast with Bob McKenzie. He does a really good job with these, really offers a bit of everything; from inside information to the sharing of knowledge of the game to even veering outside the game. Worth the listen.

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Finland, Russia to Play for Gold in Helsinki

The only action from non-NHL hockey circuits on Monday occurred in Helsinki, where the medal round of the World Junior Championships got under way. The day ended with Russia in the Gold Medal game for a second consecutive year, facing off against host-country Finland, marking the third consecutive year the host country has played for the Gold.

*Russia knocked off Team USA, 2-1, to clinch its spot in the title game. The Yanks went ahead, 1-0, on a Christian Dvorak goal 9:03 into the game, but Russia scored two goals in a span of 2:48 during the second period to take a lead it wouldn’t relinquish.

*The Fins upset Sweden, 2-1. Like Russia, Finland spotted the Swedes a 1-0 first period advantage before a pair of quick strikes in the second. Roope Hintz and Antti Kalapudas scored 1:56 apart from each other. Earning the primary assist on both goals was Mikko Rantanen, the 10th overall pick of the 2015 NHL Draft. The Avalanche prospect has 26 points in 22 games for the AHL’s San Antonio Rampage, and has seen action in six games for the Patrick Roy-coached varsity. The Finnish captain has a goal and four points in six games during the tournament.

*Russia and Finland will play each other in the Gold Medal game for the four time in the tournament’s history, and the first since 1998, Finland’s lone win in three matchups (Russia won in 1980 and 1984, while still the Soviet Union). Russia has won 13 Gold Medals (9 came as a the Soviet Union/Commonwealth of Independent States), second only to Canada, which has won 16. It leads the world with 33 medals. Finland will be going for its fourth Gold, and second in three years.

*Russia beat Finland, 6-4, in pool play.

*Team USA and Sweden will faceoff for the Bronze. Sweden will look to medal for the fourth time in five years while the Yanks will try to avoid not medalling for the fourth time in five years. A loss will mean three straight years of the Americans being shutout of a medal, which hasn’t happened since the U.S. failed to medal for six straight years from 1998-2003.

*The US held Sweden to one goal in pool play, but couldn’t solve Swedish netminder Linus Soderstrom, who made 46 saves to record the shutout in the 1-0 win. Sweden scored at least five goals in each of its other three round robin games, as well as in the quarterfinals, a 6-0 win over Slovakia.