Chat with Matthew Barnaby
Welcome to Sportsnation! On Thursday, ESPN NHL analyst Matthew Barnaby will stop by to take your questions on the NHL.
Barnaby played 14 seasons in the NHL for eight different teams. He netted 113 goals and 300 total points. He was also one of the league's tough guys, accumulating 2,562 penalty minutes.
Send your questions now and join Matthew Thursday at 3 p.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (3:01 PM)
We're getting Matthew!
Buzzmaster (3:03 PM)
Hang on a sec folks, Matthew is just finishing up a taping.
Matthew Barnaby (3:04 PM)
We're halfway through the year. It looks like teams are starting to separate themselves. Hopefully I won't tick off too many people today. To the questions!
The Pens scored 8 goals and Cosby only had one assist, fluke or does Pittsburgh actually have some depth that is overlooked?
Matthew Barnaby (3:05 PM)
I think Pittsburgh is a very good team, but this team goes how Crosby and Malkin go. Tampa came off an emotional win. They came off back to back games. Pittsburgh is not a deep team but they are star studded.
Jesse S. (Carmel, NY)
Matthew, who had the bigger collapse last night...the Canadian World Junior Team versus Russia...or Steven Stamkos on his penalty shot?
Matthew Barnaby (3:06 PM)
Wow! That's a tough one. I'm going with Team Canada. You have a 3-0 lead in the third. The coach doesn't call a TO after the first or second one and you melt down with 5 goals in the third period to lose a gold medal. But Stamkos getting hit by a dart and losing a wheel was pretty funny.
What is your take on the goalie carousel in Philly? Did the Flyers make the correct move with Michael Leighton?
Matthew Barnaby (3:06 PM)
I think they did. He did have a great year last year in the playoffs. But if you look at the play of Boucher and Bobrovsky, there just wasn't room right now for Leighton.
Jesse S. (Carmel, NY)
Matthew, what did you think of the Winter Classic alumni game? How come you weren't on the Pens team and if you were do you think you would have been on the power play over Mario, Francis, Coffey, Murphy or Stevens.
Matthew Barnaby (3:07 PM)
Definitely didn't get the invite. I was very sad. Very sad. A lot of great players. There was no chance that I deserved to be on that power play. That was about an $80 million power play.
Mario (Milwaukee, Wi)
Mr. Barnaby, what is wrong with the LA Kings?
Matthew Barnaby (3:08 PM)
The Kings are struggling. It's all about learning how to play every night. We expect a lot from this team. A lot better than they're showing. They will respond. They still are very young.
Blueshirt (New York)
Rangers. Can they get passed the Flyers and other teams with what they got, or do they really need to get better defenseman to take the bulk of the load off of Lunqdvist?
Matthew Barnaby (3:09 PM)
They are playing better than I thought they would. They're still an offensively challenged team. They will need some help to get past a Flyers or Pittsburgh. But the way Lundqvist has been playing, anything's possible. We saw it with Halak last year, a goalie is an equalizer.
Wes C (Kensington, MD)
Hey Matt. Do you think the addition of Roloson to the Lightning in Tampa Bay make them a contender come playoff time? I understand his numbers likely don't reflect what he's capable of as a result of being with NYI, but he's 41 years old!
Matthew Barnaby (3:10 PM)
I think this is a great addition. This has been a very strong team, but they average giving up over 3 goals per game and that's not good enough. Even with him, I don't see them as a serious contender, but they are better than what they were.
Matt, i'm not trying to pessimistic about the Sabres chances to make the playoffs, but let's be real. any shot of that went out the window when Roy went down for the season. besides Miller/ Myers, is there anyone on their team that has any trade value?
Matthew Barnaby (3:12 PM)
To me, there is not a lot of trade value on that team. I think when you look at the dynamic of that team, you have young guys who are producing that you're not going to trade. And you have experienced guys who would have value to other teams, but with too high a price tag. Injuries and a slow start have really hurt this team and will cost them a playoff chance.
Top 3 Adams Trophy candidates? The way he has them playing, Torts has to be considered, no?
Matthew Barnaby (3:13 PM)
For Jack Adams, for me right now, is Guy Boucher in Tampa. Torts is definitely in there. And Mike Babcock in Detroit, to consistently lead your team to the top is very impressive. But what a turn around the organization has made in Tampa.
hey matt, what do you make of the canuck's chances at winning the cup this year?
Matthew Barnaby (3:14 PM)
A lot better than the start of the year. I had them up near the top, but with the emergence of Kessler and the additions they've made on defense and Luongo finally playing like we expected for years, it would not surprise me one bit if they won the Cup.
Jason (Long Island, NY)
Hey Matthew! Where do you want the Winter classic next year? I keep hearing Philly or Minnesota will host it. Any preferences yourself?
Matthew Barnaby (3:15 PM)
I would love to see it in Yankee Stadium. New York Rangers-Flyers. Two teams that really hate each other and an awesome city like New York.
Can St.louis stay in a playoff position?
Matthew Barnaby (3:16 PM)
I do, but the main thing will be goaltending. Halak will have to be the first star on most nights. Injuries have really hurt this team. They really don't have a go-to star to really count on. They score by committee.
Any chance Brodeur can get his head right and ever be a solid goalie again?
Matthew Barnaby (3:17 PM)
I think the best days are behind Brodeur. Marty was a great goalie and one of the best I ever faced, but I think his style has caught up to him and butterfly goalies are more successful now.
Marc (Malden, MA)
A couple weeks ago, you yelled at me for suggesting the NHL has an agenda against the Bruins. So tell me how Milan Lucic gets a 2 min penalty for telling the referee "you're a joke" but Matt Cooke can yell at the ref the entire game and get nothing.
Matthew Barnaby (3:18 PM)
I don't know. It all depends on what ref you're getting and what you said before that. There are certain guys I knew I could get away with stuff and certain guys I couldn't even say "have a nice day." There is no agenda against the Bruins.
If you were the Avs, you'd have to lock up Anderson, right? He only struggles because the defense is so porous. Can they find a stud defenseman out on the market to provide the team with some consistency?
Matthew Barnaby (3:19 PM)
Anderson is a guy I waited for him to falter last year. He had a great season, but I would not be opening the vault for him. This is a young team and he deserves a lot of credit, but I would not open the bank.
kiel (SF Bay Areaq)
The sharks aren't showing their regular season dominance this year. Could some adversity be good for this team and do you think they have a deep playoff run in them?
Matthew Barnaby (3:20 PM)
I think so. I don't think they are a great team, but I don't think they are any worse than last year. This might be the best thing for them. Expectations won't be as great as in last years and that might relax some guys in the playoffs.
What do you think of the All star game changes? Personally I love they are trying new things and even if this doesn't work I hope they don't get shy and keep trying other stuff.
Matthew Barnaby (3:21 PM)
Absolutely. I'm in total agreement with you there. The NHL all star game is what it is, like other sports. The skills competition is always a lot of fun, but the game itself is usually pretty boring. I like that they continue to think out of the box and hope they continue to make it a lot of fun.
Hey Matt, do you think there is a clear cut starter between Bobrovsky and Boucher, or are we gonna see split time until playoffs?
Matthew Barnaby (3:22 PM)
I think you're going to see whoever is hot stay in there. Until someone emerges as the clear cut No. 1. It will go down until playoff time to see who that is.
Matt, loved when you were in the Burgh. How'd you like to be skating next to Crosby or Malkin or Staal or Conner or Letestu or in front of Letang or GoGo? Think you could add anything to the mix?
Matthew Barnaby (3:23 PM)
I would love to play on any of those lines. It's a great team. It seems like they have a lot of fun together. I probably wouldn't get much time on those top two lines, but having the chance to play with Cooke and add some fiestiness to the team. Great city to play in.
Imre (Missoula, MT)
I think it's getting pretty close to panic time in Chicago. Absolutely no consistency at all for this club! I have no idea who they are, what they're capable of or what to expect. Do you?
Matthew Barnaby (3:24 PM)
This is a team that is out of the playoffs right now, but injuries, a lack of goaltending and a lot of changes in the offseason have hurt in the first half. I still see them making the playoffs and I can gaurantee that no one in the West wants to see them in the first round.
Timmy G. (California)
Do the Sharks have a legitimate shot at the cup without fixing their defensive unit? Who should they go after to fix that?
Matthew Barnaby (3:25 PM)
I don't think they do. I think they need to add someone to get through that Western Conference for sure. If you look at Vancouver and Detroit, they have a wealth of experience and a solid D. I just don't think they match up with those two.
Matt, the Coyotes have scored 18 goals in the last 4 games after scoring just 4 goals in the previous 4 games. Do you think they keep scoring like this - this is something they have struggled with the last couple of years.
Matthew Barnaby (3:26 PM)
I think it's a little much that they'll keep up on that pace, but they do have some guys that can put the puck in the net. Shane has recaptured that scoring touch that he had, but this team is a defensive minded team and that's how they're going to win, 2-1, not 6-4.
Marcus (White Plains, NY)
Matthew: Which building did you enjoy "silencing" the most as a visiting player: Wachovia or whatever in Philly; Montreal; somewhere else?
Matthew Barnaby (3:27 PM)
I love Philadelphia. They hated me and I hated them. But I also loved the passion that they have for their team. That's what it's all about. That's what makes the game fun.
Does Brandon Dubinsky have a chance to make the Eastern Conference All Star Team?
Matthew Barnaby (3:28 PM)
I would say yes. Because they have to take a player from each team. Although, I would bet more that Staal would make it. Or Lundqvist.
Jeff (Columbus, OH)
Matt, thanks for doing these chats, lots of good info. Give me 2 reasons why the Blue Jackets will make the playoffs this season... go ahead, try it.
Matthew Barnaby (3:29 PM)
I don't think they will. The West is way too tough. If you look at some of the teams outside looking in right now that have not hit their stride, I think there are three teams that will fall out of the playoffs that are in right now. Anything is possible, but I wouldn't bet on it.
Matthew Barnaby (3:30 PM)
Enjoy the games. We're halfway through the season. I hope your teams make an improvement in the playoff race.
Matthew Barnaby (3:30 PM)
Talk to you next week.