1. Justin Hodgman
Although he was initially featured on the Coyotes' roster for opening day, Hodgman was soon sent back to Portland where he would be guaranteed playing time. But soon after an injury sidelined Martin Hanzal, Hodgy was making his first NHL start and scoring his first NHL goal against the Florida Panthers on Saturday night in Glendale. Hodgman looked comfortable down the stretch and found himself in perfect position to bury a late equalizer and give the Yotes a chance to win in OT. After last night's performance, Yotes fans shouldn't be surprised to see him back on the ice soon.
2. Martin Erat
Erat was certainly hot-worthy last week, and considering the Czech winger has done nothing but continue to prove himself, we have no choice but to give him a lofty spot on this week's list. Erat has rebounded tremendously from a disappointing 2013-14 campaign, showcasing his skill as well as his grit on a nightly basis so far this season. Adding a goal in last night's blowout loss to Tampa Bay doesn't hurt either.
Paul Bissonnette joined the Portland Pirates on a Professional Tryout Contract.
Excited to be staying in the @ArizonaCoyotes organization.
— Paul Bissonnette (@BizNasty2point0) October 27, 2014
Excited to be staying in the @ArizonaCoyotes organization.— Paul Bissonnette (@BizNasty2point0) October 27, 2014
4. Response to Canadian tragedy
Arenas across the league paid their respects by playing the Canadian National Anthem before puck drop after recent events in Ottawa forced fans and players to put things into perspective. Americans provided enormous support for their neighbors to the north in numerous outstanding displays of compassion and sportsmanship.
5. A beauty of a backhand from Pavel Datsyuk
1. Puck possession
After the Coyotes yet again gave up a slew of goals, this time in Tampa Bay last night, one might be inclined to blame goaltender Mike Smith, who was pulled in the third after allowing his sixth of the evening. Yet when a team like Tampa Bay is consistently able to maintain possession and generate quality chances, the puck is going to find its way into the net. Smith shouldn't be blamed for the team's inability to keep the puck away from him for an extended period of time.
2. The benching of Hodgman
Although the Coyotes should be grateful to have a healthy Martin Hanzal in the locker room, its surprising that the coaching staff neglected to ride Justin Hodgman's hot hand into the match-up with Tampa Bay. Maybe another ugly high-scoring loss will prompt his re-insertion back into the lineup.
3. Bloodbath in the Garden
Monday night's game featuring the New York Rangers and the Minnesota Wild saw two players ejected, three players injured and a three-goal Wild lead blown in the third period. Wild defenseman Jonas Brodin flew violently into the boards following a check from Chris Kreider, Zach Parise took a teammate's stick to the face and John Moore delivered a vicious elbow to Wild forward Erik Haula's head which will likely earn him a hefty suspension.
4. Zack Kassian jumps into the wrong bench
Watch Vancouver's Zack Kassian desperately (and awkwardly) try to avoid a too-many-men penalty:
5. Howe suffers a 'serious stroke'
Red Wings great Gordie Howe is resting after suffering a stroke on Sunday in Texas. We here at FFH wish Mr. Hockey a speedy and full recovery. Howe won four Stanley Cups and six Hart trophies during his NHL career.