Antropov takes part in Thrashers morning skate

A quick report from Thursday’s morning skate.

Nik Antropov participated in the skate  after missing three straight practices with a “nagging groin injury.”

Before the skate, goalie Johan Hedberg made defenseman Anssi Salmela get in goal so he could take a penalty shot. Hedberg skated in from the blue line and got Salmela to fall to the ice, leaving the net wide open. Hedberg fired high past the open net.

John Anderson told me yesterday that Ondrej Pavelec would most likely start in goal. I’ll let you know if that changes.

Just wanted to get something to you quickly.

37 comments Add your comment

Smoothie

October 29th, 2009
10:32 am

C-Viv, thanks for the timely update on Antropov…I hope he feels okay after skating so he can go tonite…we need his size and we need his skill to keep the lines balanced.

I would think that Moose is not starting tonite if he is out there goofing around with Salmela. But then again, Moose always goes out there first for the morning skate. I hope Ondrej is seeing red and wants big-time vengeance against the Caps.

DWTOO

October 29th, 2009
10:41 am

Did Moose celebrate?

MashaPlayer7

October 29th, 2009
10:54 am

I want to see that on YouTube…

Toby

October 29th, 2009
11:18 am

Have they put together the lines yet?

Zach

October 29th, 2009
11:26 am

why would he celebrate if he missed?

Russian

October 29th, 2009
12:02 pm

Chris,
I like to know the practice lines today. Who is practice with who? Please let us know.

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
12:26 pm

I’ll just guess that Antropov goes to Slater’s spot who goes to Krog’s spot who goes to the pressbox. You may put Antropov to Reasoner who goes to Slater’s and then to Krog but I thought Reasoner & Slater were on the same line.

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
12:28 pm

Pavelec is confirmed as the starter while Varlamov was the first off after practice so it looks like he will start.

Brendan

October 29th, 2009
12:36 pm

Varlamov is a good goalie. I’m looking forward to tonight’s action.

kracker

October 29th, 2009
1:10 pm

6 hours until game time. It’s interesting that Kovy will be travelling with the team, at his request, while his injury heals. He might actually heal faster because he will be in a better frame of mind instead of being depressed at home apart from his team. Stress HIS team.

I’m sure Kovy feels he is letting his team mates down in this important year. The year where he has made significant growth as a team a condition of him re-signing. Strangely enough, him getting injured may make it more likely that he signs. It would be difficult to point to a bad season as his reason for leaving when the reason for missing the playoffs might be, for example, a 4-9 record during the games when the team captain was injured.

I say the above believeing that Kovalchuk is in fact going to sign the big contract. But it hasn’t happened yet.

Smoothie

October 29th, 2009
1:24 pm

Looks like JA is playing his cards tight to the vest tonite as he won’t tip off what line Antropov will be on if he plays tonite…and it sounds like, judging from JA’s presser, that he will play.

Let’s hope JA throws Washington a total curve-ball by icing lines radically different from the aforementioned practice lines. Kozzy – White – Finny have been a defensive disaster. White has been on the ice for 6 GA while Finny has been on the ice for 7 although 3 of them really weren’t his fault as he had just come onto the ice after Kovy had lingered too long (STL, NJ, WSH).

The lazy, slow or disconcerted line changes should stop now that Kovy won’t be out there on extended shift time making it a bit harder for the guys to know when to get on the ice. As long as Antro can skate well enough to be effective defensively, I trust Little, White and Kozzy to pick up the slack. My guess for the lines if Antro plays:

Slava – Antro – White

Kane – Pevs – Army

Little – Reasy – Finny

Greek gods

Toby

October 29th, 2009
1:32 pm

I’m hoping for:

Kane – Peverley – Antropov
Kozlov – White – Little
Army – Reasoner – Max
Boulton – Slater – Thorburn
Krog

Russian

October 29th, 2009
1:36 pm

**to Smothie**
WHat’s reason combine Antro and White? And Play Antro as Center?
If he is playing I like to see lines:
Kane-Pever-Army
Max-Little-Antro
Slava-White-Slater
Bolts-Reason-Throb

J.B.

October 29th, 2009
1:42 pm

yep. i like russian’s lines. ive been wanting to see antropov on the wing ever since he said he was more comfortable there.

Smoothie

October 29th, 2009
2:25 pm

Russian, I simply left Antro in the middle because Coach Anderson said he wouldn’t expect Nik to play wing. To paraphrase, he said he didn’t want to “screw him up” by moving him around. I want big Nik up the middle on that line to dish the puck to the other two who need to start shooting the puck. I figure having Nik on their line can give them not only the time and space they need to operate, but he is much more predictable and easy to play with than Afinogenov.

I’m intrigued by your lines though as each one has a playmaker to dish the puck to guys who can either score or drive the net. Plus, Max can’t be as much of a defensive liability with Little and Antro to protect his butt. Having Kozlov with Slater could work as Kozzy knows how to feed the puck to a guy who streaks up the ice in a straight line (a la Hossa in 2006-07) and Little last year.

[...] like Nik Antropov is back at practice after missing three straight for the Thrashers and that’s good news for [...]

timthebrave

October 29th, 2009
2:47 pm

We got to win tonight or the hot start on the road will be out the window. No cheap goals. Go Thrashers!

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
3:15 pm

The only thing is that White never played RW whereas Antro spent a lot of time there, not sure why JA would say that is screwing him up. Antropov was listed as a C/RW even before the year began so that is based on Toronto/NYR.

AK-47

Reasoner-Little-Antro (or Reasoner-Antro-Little)

Koz-White-Max

Greek gods

Vivs, will it be Salmella-Popovic on the 3rd pair?

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
3:24 pm

Varlamov is definitely starting. Fleischmann is going to make is return tonight so it will be interesting to see how he does against us in his first game back this year.

Smoothie

October 29th, 2009
3:55 pm

Pops got the scratch so Schubie-dooby-doo is doing the D-man tango with Salmela. I hope Salmela can get the offense going again like he did against Tampa when he was aggressively pinching.

EOB – I think Anderson wants him to know that he’s playing C so he doesn’t have to change his approach on the fly without practice time. Remember he hasn’t practiced at all this week. He may have some natural instincts at wing that would kick back in, but we need Nik’s responsible play up the middle.

Also, if I recall correctly, White got to play some 4th line RW at the end of his first season here when he earned the apt nickname of “Charmin”…I hope he’s not heading back in that direction. In his defense, he seems to be playing hard, but I think playing with Max has him retreating the O-zone earlier than normal to get back on D.

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
4:17 pm

Thanks Smoothie, so it is Schubert & Ansii. Ansii definitely pinches and can join the rush, that’s why I want him to be one of the guys on the 3rd pair. I think Boris got voted off the island.

I can see some of the instincts maybe kicking in. Not sure if we want Antro or Little on the wing, but one thing to note is that they both spent time with Kovalchuk and they both have racked up some assists. Antro leads the team, Enstrom is next, then Little (tied with Peverley & Kubina). So they are producing up there, and goal scoring will come in spurts.

As for White, put Little or Kozlov or a number of other NHL top liners on the 4th line and they are not going to bang like the goons and grinders. And actually White does quite well as a 3rd line center which in the grand scheme of things would be a nice spot for him on this team. He can play defense and he is pretty good at faceoffs and is capable of scoring 20-30 goals. He can also be pushed up to 2nd line and gel just fine there so when an Antro goes down we can go on without missing a beat.

Chris Vivlamore

October 29th, 2009
4:32 pm

Sorry folks, had to race back to the office following the morning skate and interviews. Also had to finish my Sunday notes column (filed four hours late!)
Pavelec definitely in goal. Popovic one scratch. Krog the other, if Antropov can’t go. He thought he could, but need doctor’s clearance. I didn’t get to see line combos. They did mostly one-on-one drills during the skate. Again, the line combos are going to depend on Antropov status, but Slater definitely gets back in. He’ll be center fourth line if everything is the same or will play left wing if Antropov is out.

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
5:26 pm

AH, so if Slater moves to LW then they must want to move Thorburn higher up (if Antropov is a no-go). Thanks Chris. These gamedays are driving me nuts after a few days off.

stendec

October 29th, 2009
8:04 pm

Losing streak now at four! Or will be in a few minutes. Yet another heartless giveup job. Where? Why at Loseland of course. The home away from home for every visiting NHL team! Where rivals get to skate freely without fear of being hit or even impeded. Thrashers want pity. Captain Ilya Kovalchuk out. Goalie Sori Letemin out. Wah wah wah! Excuse for not scoring any goals. Correction. Quitters are fantastic at putting puck into their own net! Cannot score on a f#cking penalty shot. On home ice! Totally unacceptable. Pavs looks like a damn Kari Lehtonen Jr! Sorry bestard. Rest of Thrashers have called it quits! Fans might as well too. This slide will continue until scumbags hit rock bottom! Just cannot plummet any lower than that. A total embarrassment! KL and IK hoist two more brews. Why the Hell should they worry? About to check in on football game. May not be back to watch this shet! Uncaring toilet residue. How is that for gloom and doom apologists? ++STENDEC++

stendec

October 29th, 2009
8:23 pm

Give quitters a pass if you feel so inclined! Are they not well paid to WIN hockey games? I sure as Hell thought alleged professional athletes were! These bums are strictly amateur hour rejects. Thrashers have put puck in net twice. Behind Pavs. Oops! So instead of up 2-1 it is 3-0 to an extremely mediocre outfit. Team cries about absence of star. Wah wah wah! F#ck whining quitters. Just looking for an excuse to lose. Hope they get shut out. Hope they do not put puck in rival net over next 10 games! Anyone that gives positives about this shet effort can kiss my a$$! Thrashers have packed it in. Fans with any intelligence should too. Damn bestards! ++STENDEC++

Russian

October 29th, 2009
8:47 pm

**to stendec**
Yeah man. I am very upset. 3:0 is very big gap. Why Coach mix lines again? Pavs is playing good, man. Do not make him look bad. 2 PP goals and 1 goal from Ovi were unstopable. look like we are going to loose this game. :-(

Terptwin

October 29th, 2009
8:47 pm

I don’t blame you for being frustrated, Stendec. The Thrashers are sporting one of their deepest teams ever. They should be competitve, even without Kovi out there. That said, I wouldn’t ever call the Caps mediocre. They’re stacked on offense and are riding the resurgent play of grieving netminder Theodore (with understudy Varlamov). It’s only 3-0 and as Dick Motta used to say, “It’s not over til the fat lady sings!”

Brendan

October 29th, 2009
9:22 pm

Enstrom just missed on a short-handed breakaway, while the score was 3-1. The effort is there. Kozlov, Little, Slater, Enstrom have all had their chances tonight. Peverley missed one standing on the door step, with a gaping net in front of him. Atlanta has had a great 3rd period. They’re closing in on 40 shots. Varlamov, like I said, is a good goalie.

And the Capitals … are a Stanley Cup contender. They nearly took out the Penguins last year. Up 2-0 in the series, Game Three went to overtime, where Kris Letang scored for Pittsburgh. Had Ovechkin scored, or any other Capital, the series would have been, 3-0. And over. And who won the Cup last year? Still think Washington is “mediocre?” Better take another look. The Capitals, with some breaks, could win the Stanley Cup this year. Ovechkin is the kind of player who could lead a team to such a feat.

I’m very pleased by the Thrashers’ third period. Perhaps, “too late,” but at least they’re putting forth a hardworking effort.

stendec

October 29th, 2009
9:48 pm

Brandan you make me f#cking nauseous! Caps stopped skating in third period. So spare me the close loss bullshet! Do not bother quoting misleading close final statistics. Another defeat! Another heartless giveup job at Loseland. You can sugar coat it any damn way you choose to! Morons like you who are pacified by close moral choke jobs hurt this untalented team more than help it. No accountability is sought so the status quo (losing) remains the same! Real damn caring fans demand the best. Pavs is a tad better than Sori Letemin which is just not good enough at this level. Only three players (at most) possess NHL caliber talent! F#cking losers. Hey Brandon. How many points tonight? Zero. None. Zilch. Zippo. Tell me how great these damn commode residue quitters are! May the streak continue! Well into Novemver. Coach John Petrino is still a clueless ignorant son of a betch! Whining bestard. Bad bounces? No sun in eyes? No monkey pucks? Starting to sound like damn you know who! Announcers should be fired or executed. Personally do not care which one! ++STENDEC++

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
9:56 pm

I just sat down about 20 minutes ago after finishing up some other stuff for tonight only to find out I didn’t dvr the game because it was on the NHL network/Turner South and not the centerice package. I am so irate that I know what it feels like to be Stendec after a game.

Thanks for the update Brendan.

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
9:57 pm

What were the lines tonight?

Brendan

October 29th, 2009
10:02 pm

Stendec, you’re really falling down on the job. Here’s what you could have said instead. “Cash is better than our CZECH! Trade him NOW!! For a bag of pucks! And a water bottle, MAYYYYBE. But only if it were autographed by Kovalchuk, so we’d have something to remember him by!” Stinking, FKKING QUITTERS. 0-3-1 in last four games, LOSELAND LUBBERS!! That’s one (1) outta eight (8) possible points!! Choke on it, Coach Sunshine backers!! Minor league Coach, hired by Minor League GM, who hired Minor League Scouts!”

I don’t even know WHAT you were saying up above?? But it’s nowhere NEAR your Top 10 rants. It’s not even in the Top 20. Whatever meds you used to be on, get back on ‘em, and buy more! I don’t care if you have do go to a “back alley” rogue pharmacist. When I see Stendec rant, I expect something good.

Try something more like, Bryan “LITTLE TO NO CHANCE” couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn from 5 feet. Or “Little to NO CHANCE” could even bury it into the other team’s zip code.

stendec

October 29th, 2009
10:05 pm

Well said. Agree totally. Cheerio. ++STENDEC++

Brendan

October 29th, 2009
10:16 pm

Vivlamore, can you rescue my post to Sara on the Red Wings game tonight? Thanks!

R. Stroz

October 29th, 2009
10:43 pm

Why didn’t Afinogenov get an assist on Ovechkin’s second goal?

Oh yeah, different team.

Brendan

October 29th, 2009
10:49 pm

Every post is now going into the black hole.

The Earl of Bud

October 29th, 2009
11:02 pm

“Why didn’t Afinogenov get an assist on Ovechkin’s second goal?

Oh yeah, different team.”

Classic Max move, circling in the zone and dangling the puck, going back to the blue line instead of going to the net, passing with his eyes closed, turns the puck over. This is what World Be Free and I are talking about guys. Get used to it because it’s only Oct and Max isn’t even warmed up yet.