Welcome to November, everyone, or as some people know it, "Movember" in honor of growing mustaches to raise awareness for prostate cancer. Given that growing hair is not really my thing, I'll leave that to the more hirsute of our readership. We're in the middle of another break for the Red Wings, but at least this one is because they are leaving for a Western Canada road trip. Let's see what's going on around the blogosphere.
Red Wing news and notes:
Caption Mondays, Volume 2 - Are you witty? Do you like to make believe what other people are saying? Do you have a thing against Todd Bertuzzi? If you answered "yes" to all 3 questions, head on over to SSDD and take part in the second of her caption contests. The winner of the first one made up a story about how Osgood saved Howard's life one day, prompting a lot of people to remark "only save he's made in a long time" (ouch, too soon?).
Chris Osgood injures groin in practice; Jimmy Howard will return to action on Wednesday - Khan(!) updates us on what happened today at an eventful Red Wing practice. The most notable news is the headline, but buried there is the note that Jonathan Ericsson will return to the lineup, and Doug Janik has been sent down to Grand Rapids. Therefore, please now insert "Ericsson" in place of "Janik" when talking about the weakest Red Wing defenseman.
Consider Kindl On Notice - A quick note from Matt Saler after the Ericsson-Janik news was announced: this should be a wake-up call to Jakub Kindl that his place in the lineup may be in jeopardy. Personally, I think Kindl is regressing a little, although I give him more leeway given his status as a rookie. Still, it's a trend I'm not digging, and if Ericsson comes in and plays well, then once Brian Rafalski comes back (he's slated to begin skating soon), Kindl could be watching games from the press box.
TPL Store and International Shipping - Have you ordered your Shirtuzzi yet? Head on over to TPL and order yours today (don't forget to pick up a WIM shirt while you're here), but note that if you do not live in these here United States of America, you'll have to let the boys know so they can the shirt to you. Christmas is coming, so act fast.
Around the League:
On the Upswing - I hate the Leafs with a passion, mostly because of the bad memories of their fans yelling "choker" at me from 1992-1996 (curiously, the chants stopped after 1997). Still, reading about the Leafs reminds me of home, and PPP has a good write up for Leaf fans on why there should be optimism in Toronto, not depression. It's a good read and should have Leaf fans feeling a little better about their team.
Some Thoughts Thus Far - You know who I haven't paid much attention to this year? The Penguins. I just don't care, although those Winter Classic jerseys certainly caught my eye, much in the same way a 400 lb hairy man in a speedo does. However, they break down the Pens' season to date, and I guess there is some question within the fanbase about whether Dan Bylsma should remain the head coach through the year. Seems like a tough question for a guy 2 years removed from winning a Cup.
Enhance Your Experience - Last Friday, you may have noticed JJ's excellent post on how to improve the fan experience with regards to watching an NHL game. This is a theme that is going on throughout the SBNation network of NHL sites, and Canes Country links you to some of the other ideas promoted by the other blogs (Bubble Tops and cleaning your TV were good ones). Head on over and check them out, and be on the lookout for further posts from us and the rest of the Nation on this.
Danny Briere Suspended Three Games - The ladies at Chicks Who Give a Puck report on the suspension handed down to Danny Briere for trying to save Frans Neilsen the cost of a visit to the dentist. This was an ugly game all around, with Rick DiPietro wanting to fight Dan Carcillo (get in line, Ricky) only to become tangled up with Chris Pronger. After reviewing the video, I like the suspension: that kind of play should never be ok, head rules or not.
Not Related to Anything Except Us:
The Weight of a Book - Kids, your parents will tell you that peer pressure is stupid and should be ignored. Well, I'm here to tell you that is a load of bunk. We pestered Cath (aka Baroque) to get a blog because we felt her opinions and thoughts should be shared with everyone. She finally broke down and set up this blog, and her first post is a great read about books and their importance to her. Give her a read even though it's not hockey-related, because that's the reason we all wanted her to do this in the first place.