Thoughts on Part 2 of the Euro-NHL opener

I got to watch most of both games in Europe today, and I noticed a few things that didn't seem to get touched on much.

- The Senators gave a lot of heat to Crosby during today's game, and he still managed an assist with a second left in the game. Can we expect more of the same treatment-wise from other teams? And can Crosby still produce despite it?

- Dany Heatley looks to be back on his 05-06 and 06-07 track, starting the year off with 3 goals in 2 games. Heatley scored 50 goals in back-to-back seasons after the lockout before facing injury troubles and "only" scoring 41 goals in 71 games last season. Of course, in that same pace, Heatley would've had 11 more games to score 9 more goals, so he might have still hit the half-century mark if he had remained healthy.

- Sidney Crosby was all for showing his critics that he can play physical, laying a heavy check on Chris Kelly and taking several hits from Senators players without the response his critics would expect (rushing to complain to the refs, etc.).

- Lauri Korpikoski sure seemed to fit in as a Ranger in the second game, creating several offensive opportunities and playing a good game overall. For a while, I always had Korpikoski and now-Stars prospect Lauri Tukonen in the same category because their offensive production was no good. However, Korpikoski appears to have broken through, and he should be another strong young player on the Rangers roster.

- Steve Stamkos rang a shot off the crossbar. That's gotta be painfully close to a first goal for the '08 #1 pick.

- I was way under-informed on how weak Tampa's blueline really was. I mean, I knew it was thin, but Janne Niskala already with an NHL job, and Jamie Heward is a veteran presence? Ouch! Maybe no playoffs for the Bolts after all.

Alright, short thoughts for now. I'll try and get a post up tomorrow about the Stars-Oilers game, and if any of you link to this from BallHype, sorry about my last submitted post, I said it was the last Stars pre-season game but I was wrong, tonight's is.

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