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NHL on TSN Quiz: Which team will finish last overall?

TSN.ca Staff

3/9/2011 11:33:36 PM

Each week, the members of the NHL on TSN panel voice their opinions on the hot topics of the day in the Wednesday Night Hockey Quiz. As a follow-up, TSN.ca offers you the opportunity to chime in on all the big issues with our insiders. Read up on all the questions and answers from TSN's hockey experts, and put in your own two cents on our popular Your Call feature.

Question #1: NHL GMs will debate the merits of expanding penalties for headchecking at next week's league meeting: which direction should the league go?

Ray Ferraro: Expand penalties. I like the direction that the league has finally taken on this. We've seen that the implications of headshots are very severe. While the hits are not always enough to make you think that there should be a total ban, I think there should be the latitude to create a more stiff penalty than there is in game.

Aaron Ward: Maintain status quo. I think once you have a blanket rule, you leave too much room for debate over what's the severity. Everything has to be dealt with on an individual basis on intent and on severity.

Bob McKenzie: Expand penalties. You don't have to go to the extreme of a headchecking penalty specifically, there are other things that you can do. I have the advantage of having spoken to close to 30 GMs in preparation for the GMs meetings and there is a sentiment to expand the penalties a little bit, especially when it comes to suspensions on players that are pretty flagrant offenders.

Question #2: Which star player obtained during the deadline period has been the most offensively underwhelming in the early days with his new team?

Ward: Tomas Kaberle. Boston has tried Dennis Wideman, they tried Derek Morris and they just haven't found it. Kaberle has a short period of time in which to deliver, he hasn't met expectations right now. They have their triggerman there in Boston with Zdeno Chara, but at some point they're going to have to consider making some changes to improve that power-play.

Ferraro: James Neal. The Penguins have been decimated with injuries in particular to their forward core. So they bring in Neal, who has been a 20-goal scorer before, he's a big powerful guy, a young guy. I think this trade is made as much for the future as it is for right now, but they need Neal to score now and he's not. He looks a little bit stuck to me between the system Dallas played and the one Pittsburgh plays which is a go-go system.

McKenzie: Mike Fisher. He's already played 12 games because he was traded much earlier than those other guys. I realize that he's not as pure an offensive player as what Kaberle should be or Neal should be, but still I expected a little more than one goal in 12 games to help the Nashville Predators out.

Question #3: Nine of 18 games Sunday-Monday-Tuesday were three-pointers; are you for or against the extra point?

McKenzie: For extra point. Simply because Im old as dirt and even though there aren't ties allowed in the NHL anymore, I still kind of like the idea that you get a point for an overtime loss or a shoutout loss and you can still rationalize it as a tie.

Ward: Against extra point. I'm against rewarding mediocrity. I'm against giving that extra point. I hate the fact that you show up and get an extra point for it. Rewarding mediocrity, I may have made a career out of it, but these guys have to step up and maybe open up. If you're not great in shootouts, maybe you have to open up in overtime, so it forces teams to manipulate their system.

Ferraro: For extra point. There are 22 teams within seven points of a playoff spot in the NHL, the extra point helps contribute to that. I'm in favour of it, in no small part because of that extra point keeping the playoff races tight.

Question #4: Who are you projecting to finish last overall: Edmonton or Ottawa?

Ferraro: Edmonton. I think Craig Anderson will play better than the Oilers goaltenders down the stretch. 

McKenzie: Edmonton. I think it's going to be the Oilers, because Anderson has gone in and stablized an unstable situation in Ottawa where they look like they're playing some pretty good hockey. By default I'm going with the Oilers.

Ward: Edmonton. When you have a goalie like Anderson playing with a chip on his shoulder, I can't see Edmonton performing better than the Senators.