Devils goalie Martin Brodeur really has enjoyed seeing a lot of game action and playing pretty well the last month during a late-season stretch in which his team is fighting for a playoff spot.
He never saw this opportunity coming… not after Cory Schneider played almost every game for two months … not after knowing for sure that being traded before the NHL’s March 5 deadline was a real possibility.
“It’s been a very trying time for our team,” Phaneuf admitted on Wednesday as he made the rounds on both Toronto sports radio stations. “I was emotional after the game … I was disappointed with the way I played and mistakes that I made.”
Now some of the Phaneuf criticism out there is fair and some of it’s not.
The last stretch of the Islanders’ season isn’t just for evaluating the young players who have been rotating through the lineup.
Evgeni Nabokov, for example, isn’t signed for next season. He’s had two injuries, including a groin problem that cost him a month and left the Isles hanging during their ugly November and December.
But he showed on Sunday a little bit of why the Islanders might be interested in a fourth season employing the 38-year-old in a backup role next season.
Harder. Better. Faster. Stronger.
St. Louis was all that and more for most of a cold March night. They dealt the sliding Leafs their sixth straight loss – seven in the past eight games – and a very loud exit from the current playoff picture. Once on firm ground toward a second straight trip to the postseason, Toronto now sits 10th in the East, trailing Columbus and Detroit for the final two wild card spots with only eight games left to play.
Darren Dreger: That’s certainly the hope of the Boston Bruins and of Jarome Iginla as well. I know Peter Chiarelli, the Bruins general manager, reached out to Don Meehan from Newport Sports last week. There’s been no official back-and-forth in terms of dialogue or a negotiation and the reality is that the Bruins don’t have the tag room or the cap space to close this deal in-season.