Chat with Scott Burnside
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday, ESPN.com's Scott Burnside will stop by to chat about the NHL's latest news and events.
Before joining ESPN in 2005, he was a reporter for the Windsor Star and Toronto Sun. Burnside has won numerous awards, including the 1990 National Newspaper Award, and also co-authored the best-selling true crime book "Deadly Innocence" in the mid-1990s. He is based in Atlanta.
Send your questions now and join Burnside on Monday at 2 p.m. ET!
Scott Burnside (2:12 PM)
Oops. Sorry for the technical difficulties. Now, where were we?
Cody (Mankato, MN)
Hello Scott, Any trade talk overheard that you'd like to share? Maybe even a prediction of what two teams make the next move?
Scott Burnside (2:15 PM)
Cody; Lots of buzz these days but not sure you'll much in the way of a blockbuster before the end of December. But obviously Kyle Turris who must sign in Phoenix or somewhere else before Dec. 1 is a hot name. Rene Bourque's name has surfaced as a Flame who could be on the move but he's got a big salary/term to move with him. The Leafs have a plethora of defensemen so it's possible that someone like Carl Gunnarsson might be available if the Leafs are looking to bolster their offensive depth. But big name free agents won't be on the market until into the New Year.
Jon (Des Moines)
Any chance the Wild look to deal Harding or Backstrom and if you were the GM which would you deal and what do you think either would bring back? Thanks.
Scott Burnside (2:17 PM)
Jon; I would think given Harding's strong play of late that GM Chuck Fletcher will hang onto both. Not sure there's much market for Backstrom given that he's got another year on his contract at $6 million and Harding is a bargain so unlikely to be made available unless the Wild really fall off the map.
Jim (San Francisco)
Weekly Crosby question: Will we ever see Crosby again in a NHL game?
Scott Burnside (2:18 PM)
Jim; Well apparently he's not being ruled out for tomorrow night (which would suck for those of us not yet in Pittsburgh) so my sense is having been there last week for a couple of days is that he's close. Now, close could mean Tuesday or this weekend in Florida or, well, you get the point. But, yes, I remain confident we will once again see Crosby on NHL ice.
Mixxy (buffalo, NY)
thoughts on Myers benching tonight - did we see him at his best in his rookie year? lacks the physicality we saw in the playoffs last year when he was knocking the snot out of those Phillies (aka Briere especially)
Scott Burnside (2:21 PM)
Mixxy; I give credit to Lindy Ruff for making a statement and giving Myers time to reflect on the state of his game. It's not all that surprising to see a guy like Myers who was so good so early take a step back. We saw it with Drew Doughty last season. He (Myers) is still a kid and still growing into a big frame. I'm sure the Sabres would like it if he got more snarly a la Chris Pronger but those attributes might come. I also think a big man like Myers who is still evolving may also take some more time to mature physically.
Nate (Bristol, CT)
Scott, is it just me, or was it an absolute crime to leave Seguin off the all-star ballot?
Scott Burnside (2:23 PM)
Nate; One thing you can never get too wound up about is the All-Star Game and anything connected to it because the entire event is rife with weirdness. The ballots are printed way in advance (isn't Marc Staal, he who has not played a game, is on it isn't he?). No question Seguin, barring a monster drop-off in production will be in Ottawa as he should be.
Aaron (Saugerties, NY)
Scott, any reason why the Blackhawks are never mentioned in coming to the East in realignment? If they bring Detroit, you can't leave the Hawks as the only Original 6 team in the West. Reunite all Original 6 together again. Last time I checked, Chicago is east of the Mississippi, and Detroit and Chicago are both in the East in the NBA.
Scott Burnside (2:25 PM)
Aaron; It's a fair question although Chicago's been entrenched in the NHL 'west' ever since expansion in 1967 and their position as a Central Time Zone team pretty much precludes them jumping into a current east/west format (I know some talk of Nashville moving east into the Southeast but that's more geography than anything).
The Red Wings seemed to have solved their issues. Do you see them going after a big name at the deadline? Parise?
Scott Burnside (2:27 PM)
Shawn; Wings appear to have turned a corner with four-game win streak. As for a big name at the deadline I think the Wings are more apt to wait unitl July 1 when they will have a huge amount of cap space to go after guys like Zach Parise, Ryan Suter and/or Shea Weber should those guys be available. If the Devils are shopping Parise my guess is they'll want the kind of package of young prospects and top draft picks that may take Detroit out of the running given how they're built.
Eric (Tampa, FL)
What'd you think of Lucic's hit on Miller? When a goalie leaves his crease I think players have every right to hit him like he's just another skater. I think the Sabres disagree
Scott Burnside (2:29 PM)
Eric; I'm torn. On one hand I think a netminder should be fair game should he choose to play the puck away from the net as Miller was doing when Lucic crunched him. But by the same token I respect Miller's assertion that like NFL quarterbacks you have to accept they are in a special position and have to be treated differently. Sorry to be so wishy washy on this.
Hi Scott - Where does Bergeron, Marchand, and Seguin rank amoung the leagues best lines right now? Thanks
Scott Burnside (2:32 PM)
John; No question the Bruins seem to have turned a gigantic corner and that line is the driving force at least offensively. Benn/Eriksson in Dallas and Malkin/Neal and whoever's lining up with them at the time and the Jagr/Giroux/Hartnell trio are pretty good units but that Bruin trio is making everyone forget that hangover that's for sure.
Terry Murray wins on saturday for his 1000th game, with that being said, Do you think he is the right coach to lead this Kings team to the promised land?
Scott Burnside (2:34 PM)
Bucky; Yes, Murray must be congratulated for reaching such a milestone and he's done a nice job in helping to create a different culture in Los Angeles. The problem is that it's not yet a 'winning' culture. I can't imagine there is more than a little anxiousness given the Kings' recent sputtering (two wins in nine). But I think the sense is this is Murray's team and they will get better. Now, if they continue to struggle into the New Year all bets are off.
Richard (Greensboro, NC)
Do you think Carolina's next few weeks either have Staal breaking out of his slump and the team winning or Maurice getting replaced, or do you think there is another probable outcome?
Scott Burnside (2:36 PM)
Richard; I think you're right on. I looked at their sked the other day and it's tough starting tonight and through the end of the month. Maybe that's what Eric Staal needs to keep him on the roll 'Canes fans hope he started on Saturday against brother Jordan and the Pens. If not I think it's going to get ugly for Paul Maurice.
Larry (Pennsauken, New Jersey)
What's your take on the Flyers this year?
Scott Burnside (2:37 PM)
Larry; Apart from standing around like statues for a minute or so last Wednesday night versus Tampa I like them a lot. Credit GM Paul Holmgren for undertaking a massive overhaul but not really losing anything in the standings. Jagr's been a pleasant surprise, Giroux taking steps towards being a superstar, Chris Pronger avoiding serious injury and getting back on the ice. Should be interesting to watch next spring when they draw a Pittsburgh or Washington. Can't wait frankly.
FYI, NHL.com is reporting Crosby is out on Tuesday.
Scott Burnside (2:39 PM)
ASN; Thanks was talking to someone in Pittsburgh just before the chat who said he wasn't ruled out but I also get the sense Crosby and all those involved will want more than the time between a morning skate and puck drop to decide. Ie. He'll know before the morning of a game if he's going to play so I'm not expecting him tomorrow night either. Thanks, though.
Jesse S. (Carmel, NY)
Scott, due to the flat out abysmal state of affairs in Columbus, when (not if) they start a complete blowup, do you think said blowup could involve trading Rich Nash....who would be a superstar in a big market. Just like the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team told Hall of Famer Ralph Kiner in the 1950s...if we can finish last with you, we can finish last without you. (A) Do you think Nash would request this? (B) Would their management do it? (C) What teams have the pieces and salary cap room to get him?
Scott Burnside (2:41 PM)
Jesse; It's a great question and although Scott Howson has downplayed those kinds of queries I must admit I'd be shocked if Nash would block a move if that's how ownership/management wanted to go. Like the Devils if they have to part with Parise, though, it would take a giant mouthful in terms of picks and prospects. Kings? Wild? Caps? Panthers? Lots of teams with lots of good young talent and of course there's Toronto. I think the first question though is who will be the GM that will entertain that idea.
Do you think the Rangers have turned a corner? Do you see them as a team that could ride a hot streak into a deep playoff run this spring?
Scott Burnside (2:44 PM)
MSG: When you roll out six straight wins I think that's definitely signs of a corner turned. Nice to see Brandon Dubinsky and Ryan Callahan shaking off slow starts as that takes so much pressure off Richards/Gaborik. Artem Anisimov has been a nice surprise and of course Dan Girardi has been a rock with Marc Staal out. Staal's absence is still a big issue vis a vis a long playoff run, I think, but I also think the Rangers will be looking to add again at the deadline so may move to fill that hole if it still exists.
What will it take for Stamkos/St. Louis to get it together? Or will they?
Scott Burnside (2:45 PM)
slick; Those guys are too good and have enjoyed too much chemistry not to get it together.
B-Diddy (Munstoeville, WYO)
Hi Scott- Thoughts on Hejduk being named Avs captain? I think it's great, if there's one guy who can teach the kids that good offense starts with good defense it's him.
Scott Burnside (2:47 PM)
B=Diddy; I like it. Very quiet and understated and I suppose you wonder if that's the personality you want your captain to have. Of course Joe Sakic used to joke that he was 'quoteless Joe' so the Avs' tradition of quiet captains continues. But you're right about providing an example. Hejduk has 11 straight seasons of at least 20 goals. The epitome of consistency which is, I think, one of the biggest hurdles for young players to confront.
Mike (Pittsburgh) [via mobile]
Bylsma just announced no change in sid's status.Will let media know when he plays
Scott Burnside (2:48 PM)
Scott, do the Caps just need to let Ovechkin out of the cage. To me the Caps are holding him back on the way he should be playing.
Scott Burnside (2:50 PM)
Jack; I honestly don't think it's an issue of systems that's contributing to Ovechkin's sharp downturn in production. Yes, Bruce Boudreau wants his guys more responsible but you still see Nicklas Backstrom putting up numbers this year that are closer to what we saw from him two years ago. Not sure what the deal is with Ovechkin but I don't think it's a structural thing. Is he too predictable now? Have teams figured his M.O. and simply closed down shooting lanes and forced him into areas that don't allow him to use his explosive shot or body his way to the net? Maybe it's more about Ovechkin finding new ways to use his tools.
Kevin (Buffalo, NY)
is it too early to panic in Buffalo? Terry Pegula spent a lot of money on free agents and extensions and now we are a national story for the wrong reasons.
Scott Burnside (2:53 PM)
Kevin; Lots of new faces to integrate including guys like Christian Ehrhoff and Ville Leino that weren't used to being the 'go to' guys in other markets. Plus there's Ryan Miller's early season woes. You know he's too good to play like that (assuming a quick return from the Lucic steamrollering) long-term. I think they'll get better but I still wonder about the leadership. It was an issue after the Boston game but where's the guy like Chris Pronger or Jonathan Toews or Patrice Bergeron that pulls the team out of its funk? Do they have one?
Joe (New Jersey)
Any word on when Kovy gets back on the ice?
Scott Burnside (2:54 PM)
Joe; Just checked in on Twitter and my colleagues in New Jersey are reporting that Kovalchuk will go on road trip to Boston and could play Tuesday night. Good news for Devils fans for sure.
Freeloe (Cogent, CO)
Is this year's Calder going to be the closest one ever with the way these kids are playing ?? WHo do you like so far through the first quater of the season?
Scott Burnside (2:57 PM)
Freeloe; I thought last year was pretty interesting, too, but sure are lots of great young players making an ealry name for themselves. How about Craig Smith in Nashville? Older rookie that I'm not sure was on many people's radars. Luke Adam is another good story in Buffalo. Will definitely be tough voting time.
Scott Burnside (2:58 PM)
Okay folks got to run. Let's do it again next week.