With Kovalchuk out, Thrashers leave it to Peever for goals

Ya know…it’s too bad that this season is an Olympic year, causing the NHL to skip having an All-Star Game as to allow players to participate in the festivities in Vancouver. Because if this were not the case, I would right now…today…be opining, calling for…demanding… that fans in Thrasherville prepare to go forth and stuff the All-Star ballot box with votes for Rich Peverley.

Stuff the box like a Thanksgiving turkey for Peverley…fill the box with ballots faster than they can print ‘em.

Unfortunately…not this year.

Regardless…the Peever continued his stellar work last night in Montreal, scoring his seventh goal of the season and added two assists. For the season he has 16 points and is a +4. Since the Thrashers snatched him off the waiver wire last January, he has 20 goals, 31 assists and is a +20 in 50 games played.

All for the low, low price of $487,500…but wait, there’s more.

Rich Peverley has been in on 16 goal celebrations so far this season. Here, he parties with his teammates after earning the secondary assist on Pavel Kibina's power play goal (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Graham Hughes)

Rich Peverley has been in on 16 goal celebrations so far this season. Here, he enjoys Pavel Kibina's power play goal in which he earned an assist (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Graham Hughes)

The Pevs Dispenser was busy again dishing out goals and assists Tuesday night as the Thrashers defeated Montreal 5-4…a win that brings the Thrashers road record to an amazing 5-1-1. First, he banked the puck past Carey Price and into the Canadiens goal off Bryan Little’s skate at the 17:34 mark to open the scoring, then took a great behind the goal pass from Todd White to put Atlanta up 2-0 before the first break.

For Little, it was his first goal of the season or, as BG33Brown opined on my Hockeybuzz blog…”Peverley is so good he just scored Little’s 1st goal of the year”.

The 2-0 advantage turned into a 3-1 lead in the second as Mark Popovic netted his first ever career NHL goal. Maxim Afinogenov and Nik Antropov earn the assists after Antropov’s hustle beat out an icing call. But a pair of ugly turnovers in the Thrashers’ zone that left Ondrej Pavelec hanging out to dry led to Montreal tying the score.

The first one came with just seconds remaining in the second period when Peverley, of all people, misplayed the puck and Mike Cammalleri raced in to beat Pavs. Then, shortly after the third period began, Christoph Schubert failed miserably at his backhanded attempt to pass the puck out from behind Atlanta’s goal though the center of the ice. Brian Gionta was the beneficiary of this miscue, scoring his second goal of the game.

But on this night, the Thrashers were able to answer the adversity to retake the lead…not once…but twice.

Pavel Kubina put the Thrashers back on top at the 4:10 mark when Nik Antropov found the defender camped out on the left post while the Thrashers were on the power play…Peverley earned his second assists of the night with the secondary helper. It was Kubina’s first goal as a Thrasher…and Nik’s second assist on the night, giving him 12 on the year.

Eight minutes and thirty seconds later Tomas Plekanic pull Montreal even again…but that’s when Thrasherville sent in it’s Army to win the battle as Colby Armstrong scored off a nifty pass from Marty Reasoner for the game winner just 34 seconds later.

“Every time they scored”, Peverley said after the game, “We seemed to come back and have a good shift”.

Indeed.

Atlanta’s offense…in great part due to Peverley’s efforts…has continued to cruise despite losing Ilya Kovalchuk to a foot injury. In the three games played without Kovy, they have netted 11 goals. Counting the game against the Sharks when Kovalchuk left early on after taking a puck to the foot, the Thrashers have scored 14 times in just under four complete games without his services.

They have Mr. Peverley to thank for a tremendous amount of that production. During those four games, he has 3 goals, 4 assists and is a +2.

As I stated above, the Thrashers are now a very impressive 5-1-1 on the road this season. Both blemishes however… a 4-2 loss in Ottawa and a 2-1 shootout loss in Montreal…were avenged on this short 2-game excursion north of the border. This year’s odd schedule now has us finished with our trips to both Ottawa and Montreal just after 11 games played.

After a game Thursday in Atlanta against the Columbus Blue Jackets, the Thrashers will head out on the road again for a visit to Long Island Saturday night. We’ll view that game from the comfy confines of TJ’s bar and Grill…I hope you’ll be able to come out and enjoy the festivities. Keep in mind the game will not be aired on TV locally.

Oh yeah by the way…the Islanders right now own a winning record of 5-4-5.

71 comments Add your comment

BG33Brown

November 4th, 2009
10:25 am

Cross Blog promotion, you can’t ask for anything more than that.

Thanks Rawhide……FIRST

ChippersLoveChild

November 4th, 2009
10:29 am

Pshh the Isles are 5-9 just like we are 6-5… OTL are still losses. Good for the Isles though and good for Pevs! The guy has been quite the steal and is a huge reason why we are able to win without Kovy. Still need to cut down on our mistakes, but I really like what I’ve seen. The only downside is now ASG thinks we can win without Kovy so why pay him? I’m kidding, hopefully.

A2B

November 4th, 2009
10:31 am

Can we call Antropov the “big assist” since he just seems to dish out helpers like its no ones business. I mean the man makes it look easy.

Smoothie

November 4th, 2009
10:32 am

Since I got “smoothinized” on the last blog, I’ll re-post my comments:

Bill, so sorry to hear about your brother. Many prayers to you and your family for a speedy recovery. I too hope he won’t suffer too much pain and discomfort while healing.

LAC, thoughts and prayers to your family as well for your grand-daughter’s full and speedy return to good health

Smoothie

November 4th, 2009
10:38 am

“The Big Assist”…I like it A2B!! Nice work!

Speaking of nicknames, I’ll add to the litany of nicknames for Mr. Peverley. How about “The Smashville Jinx”?

The Predators have got to be sick about Richie Rich becoming the second coming of Marc Savard in Atlanta…nice work Poile / Trotz!!

five_hole

November 4th, 2009
10:44 am

Is Colby an “Army of one”? :wink:

Will try & talk the wife into making an appearance at TJ’s Saturday.

ThrashfaninPitt

November 4th, 2009
10:45 am

BG33Brown…. THAT was a fantastic quote. I had a good laugh.

It was great to see some resilience from the Thrashers fighting through the Habs and getting goals so soon after giving some up, especially following that woeful 3rd period in Ottawa.

Barry

November 4th, 2009
10:47 am

Ya Peverley was definately a man on a mission last night. Little also had some good jump and seemed more confident in his play. Man if we could only get Kozlov going. I’m not sure what is up with him. He seems almost afraid to shoot or try to make something happen if it’s not there. He’s got some moves and craftiness. I just wish he would use his skills more and create something for himself. I realy didn’t like that 4th goal Montreal scored. It just seemed to easy and I didn’t think Pavelec’s positioning was the best either. He seemed to come out to play that at a weird angle. Glad they won, but Thrashers definately need to start working on turn overs, especially in their own zone. That is going to cost them wins against better teams.

World Be Free

November 4th, 2009
10:51 am

For all the bashing manegement takes, I think it is a good time to give them CREDIT for getting Pevs (for nothing) and signing him to an extention. I wish it would have been a longer deal, but it’s a good sign. Now for Kovy.

Red Light

November 4th, 2009
10:54 am

The thought occurred to me before last night’s game that some teams actually benefit from their star player being out of the lineup, because collectively they simply cannot look for him to bail them out with a highlight-reel goal in tough situations. While these Habs are shadows of their former selves (they haven’t won the Cup since 1993!), are too small and defensively inept (last night anyway), these Thrashers showed me something last night. Gave up two two-goal leads, and each time responded with quick goals to take the lead again. Kubina’s goal was downright comical with the defenseman draped all over him and he still was strong enough to get his stick on the puck. Look, I am, and always have been, tough on this team because I can’t stand the way management deals with personnel issues.

However, at this juncture hope is more realistic than ever, due to the presence of Bogo, Kane, Little, Enstrom and the new leader of this team: waiver-wire Peverley. He makes a huge gaffe with a giveaway on Plekanec’s goal, but still led all Thrashers forwards in ice time and wins 75 percent of his draws last night. He has two goals and four assists since Kovy went on the shelf and competes as hard as anyone. I know many of you are fans of RP and rightly so. While Antropov isn’t cut out of the same mold as Peverley, he has eight assists in the last five games. Of course, it would be nice to see him end his goal-less streak soon. He hasn’t scored in 13 straight regular season games. The good news? He went 19 straight games without a goal last season in Toronto and still finished with 28 goals.

Sadly, there is a home game on the horizon. Maybe Rawhide can ask Anderson why the team won’t practice more often at Philips when it’s available. The dungeon on Satellite Blvd no way mirrors their home rink and the Thrashers are 14-24 in their last 38 games at home.

Daculafan

November 4th, 2009
11:00 am

Hey Buddy!!…boy has Pevs not been phenomenal?…just about had a heart attack on the knee to knee in the second frame.

Rawhide

November 4th, 2009
11:02 am

Cross Blog promotion, you can’t ask for anything more than that. Thanks Rawhide……FIRST

BG33Brown – Yes…a little “Cross-Blogitization” as Austin Powers might say! Thanks for the great quote!

Pshh the Isles are 5-9 just like we are 6-5… OTL are still losses.

ChippersLoveChild – I hear ya…but in the world of NHL hockey, anytime you have earned more than 50% of the points available to you, you have a winning record. Maybe one day they’ll remedy that issue.

Is Colby an “Army of one”?

five_hole – Nicly played, sir! Hope to see ya Saturday!

For all the bashing manegement takes, I think it is a good time to give them CREDIT for getting Pevs (for nothing) and signing him to an extention

WBF – Agreed 100%. If it’s fair to rag on ‘em when they screw up…it’s only right to do so when they do good.

Can we call Antropov the “big assist” since he just seems to dish out helpers like its no ones business. I mean the man makes it look easy.

A2B – I like that… or “The Big A” given his name and the word “assist”??

ThrashfaninPitt – Welcome aboard!

Daculafan – Hey buddy…. you making a TJ’s showing Saturday?

Smoothie

November 4th, 2009
11:02 am

I know the coaches like Schubert’s size and the physical element he can bring in front of the net, but does anyone else think we’d be better off with Salmela playing 2nd pair mins with Kubina while Hainsey is on the mend? At the end of last season, Salmela was solid playing 2nd pair mins with Hainsey.

I’m just fearful that a 3rd pairing of Pops and Peanut is a bit too aggressive at the wrong times and having Schubie on the 3rd pairing might be wise. But then again, perhaps having a more defensive minded guy on his pairing helped free up Kubina to be more aggressive on offense…he seemed to be jumping into the play early and often.

A2B

November 4th, 2009
11:19 am

The Big A it is. I do have to say management has become rather intellegent in the last two years… I don’t want to jinx anything here but it looks like the Thrashers are starting to see more of the money than the Hawks are right now.

Spud Webb

November 4th, 2009
11:28 am

Smoothie, I love Salmela and agree, move him up.
Who should we blog about now?? Little scores for us after the last posting by rawhide!!!! Next…

Smoothie

November 4th, 2009
11:37 am

Red Light – that home record over the last 38 is quite frightening. However, since we are all extolling the prowess of Mr. Peverley, we were 11-9-0 at home after we plucked him off of waivers. With our 1-3-0 record this season, that’s an even 12-12-0 with Pevs. If we get off the schnide at home against the CBJ’s tomorrow, we will be rolling!

But I like your idea about practicing more at Philips, but that place is just too darn busy and probably presents a logistics conundrum.

Rawhide

November 4th, 2009
11:40 am

Who should we blog about now?? Little scores for us after the last posting by rawhide!!!! Next…

Spudster – Ummmm…how about, oh I don’t know…KOZLOV??

hip czech

November 4th, 2009
11:41 am

Definitely Kozlov…

Puck Jones

November 4th, 2009
12:02 pm

Bye Equ
ATL 4
BAL 3 1
TEN 3 1

World Be Free

November 4th, 2009
12:15 pm

Spud-pls don’t blog about Slater, it’s nice to have him 100′ above the ice surface (in the press box) for every game! Blog about Max, maybe then he’ll learn how to play hockey.

Red Light-great point about playing with the star. I think this is what Kovy is really trying to see, if the team can survive on its own without him. I can’t find any other reason why he hasn’t signed yet.

Another point about Montreal-they are proof that you cannot build a winning team through free agency. Keep your high draft choices and draft smartly and compliment your roster with reasonable free agent signings. Toronto is making the same mistakes. They have not learned from the “New York Ranger” mistakes.

Anyone see Toronto last night? The Leaf’s version of Guy Lafleur, Phil Kessel made his debut. Phil tried an end to end rush and Ohlund flattened him at the Tampa blueline. One good thing for Toronto-The Monster played pretty well in goal for the Loafs.

Daculafan

November 4th, 2009
12:19 pm

Wouldn’t miss it…that place was a blast last time…maybe you can get Thrash to eat a wing this time

Daculafan

November 4th, 2009
12:21 pm

I’ve got a post on Kozzy on my blog…check it out at FanThrashtic

Darren

November 4th, 2009
12:39 pm

I definitely crapped my pants a little when Peverley got hit knee-on-knee at the start of the 2nd. I was definitely relieved to see him back later in the 2nd, apparently no worse for wear.

Good teams are able to respond to big goals like Atlanta did last night. Past Atlanta teams would have folded up tent and lost 5-3 or something. I have yet to see that at all from this team.

Until I read the post-game recap, I hadn’t realized it had been 5 years since we’d won in that building, a rather tough place to play. That’s another reason to believe my hopeless fandom will be rewarded this season come April.

Trixie (Rawhide's Secretary)

November 4th, 2009
12:43 pm

Mr. Daculafan – I have successfully linked your blog with the text in your 12:21 pm comment.

Midfield

November 4th, 2009
12:54 pm

Darren, you’re bringing up a good point. Looking at the highlights, it strikes me as reckless the way the White line turned the puck over and allowing Montreal a 3 on 2 leading to their 1st goal. The team with the 2-goal advantage should not get caught in this type of situation.

Daculafan

November 4th, 2009
1:03 pm

Thank you Trixie…you’re awesome!!

LAC

November 4th, 2009
1:08 pm

Thanks Smoothie, doing a little better this AM, She got some much needed sleep last…

Buzzeng

November 4th, 2009
1:17 pm

Regarding Peverley – it seems that he has stepped up to score the goals, but also stepped up as a team leader in Kovy’s place. He seems to be the one quoted most often in the reports, and speaks well of the team. I like that side of the coin as well.

Dwayne

November 4th, 2009
1:18 pm

Had to listen to the french speaking fellows, my head was ringing, it was aweful, thank the good Lord the good guys won, had we not, i would have placed my own head in the guillotine and gladly pulled the lever myself.

Daculafan

November 4th, 2009
1:23 pm

@ Buzzeng – I totally agree. If this trend keeps up I see Mr. Peverley wearing an “A” next season. He continues to impress at each game. The thing about him is that he’s not a sniper eaither..he’s a lunch pail player who is grinding it out and finding ways to score..he’s making everybody on the ice better when he’s out there.

Rawhide

November 4th, 2009
1:36 pm

Thanks Smoothie, doing a little better this AM, She got some much needed sleep last…

LAC – That’s good to hear. I hope she continues to do better.

Paminski

November 4th, 2009
1:36 pm

Smoothie – I like your idea, but will go one step further. Salmela with Kubina all the time and Hainsey with Pops/Schubert. However, I by no means consider it a demotion for Hainsey. We seem to have a whole team this year and this would balance the defensive pairings much like our offense. Its something to try anyway.

Also, was great to meet you and the lady at the SJ game. An attractive girl that likes hockey? Better lock that down!

Zoomo

November 4th, 2009
1:42 pm

From Thrashers PR:
Kari Lehtonen underwent successful back surgery on Friday, Oct. 30 at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY. The procedure, which was performed by neurosurgeon, Dr. Paul Maurer, was to remove edges of bone that were applying pressure to nerve roots in his back at two locations that were different than that of his original disc surgery on July 20. He will be sidelined for 6-8 weeks.

Good thing Pavs is stepping up. We may never see Kari again. Seriously.

Alan R.

November 4th, 2009
1:48 pm

Good to hear, LAC

A2B

November 4th, 2009
1:56 pm

That is really sad to hear for Kari… that isn’t a laziness injury, that is something that is truly serious and maybe last year he really was dealing with a ton of pain and that is why he started sluggishly.

Christoph Schubert

November 4th, 2009
2:02 pm

Scheiße! Ich habe ein schreckliches spiel hinter dem ziel gemacht. Ich habe keine Idee, was ich dachte!

Viking

November 4th, 2009
2:11 pm

Off the subject;

Does anybody know what the photography policy is at Phillips Arena and how it is implemented?

Some time ago I e-mailed Thrashers or wherever it went about this, but either I did not receive a reply or it was severely delayed and I deleted by mistake thinking it was “NHL spam”.

There is an unclear sentence under “Fan conduct” (Fanzone A-Z) on Thrasher’s web site touching on the subject, prohibiting cameras and recording devices “when posted”, however this seems to be copy and paste verbiage geared toward concerts etc. It is easier to find information about the Zamboni and Wedding proposals than something that I believe would be more important and really save a lot of potential aggravation at the gate. I have read horror stories about ignorant gate personnel at different arenas around the league for different sports and how they handle photo policies. Policies may have unclear text and may talk about professional equipment and you can imagine what could happen when an agent’s definition of “pro gear” is implemented!

Some day I will research my old negatives from the 70s and 80s taken in Sweden. I bet I have some action photos of Börje Salming or other budgeoning star from the past that could be fun to print.

Does anybody know what is at hand for Thrashers games?

hip czech

November 4th, 2009
2:15 pm

Just a question…does Lehtonen’s salary count against the cap? I have never figured out at what point a player is considered on the long term IR and when his salary does not count.

Rawhide

November 4th, 2009
2:22 pm

Viking – The Divine Mrs. R has taken her camera to Philips Arena a couple of times and has been able to take stills. They have, however, requested that she check her camera bag at security near the stairs.

Alan R.

November 4th, 2009
2:22 pm

Christoph, if you continue to screw up like that, it’s back to the minors for you!

ThrasherTim

November 4th, 2009
2:29 pm

Dawyne – Funny comment on the French feed from Montreal last night! It seemed like a lot of shrieking every time someone from Montreal even shot the puck.

Someone above mentioned the Whit line turnovers last night and I agree. Too many times guys were trying cross-ice passes after entering the zone instead of dumping and cycling with the lead.

I still don’t know what folks are complaining about with Slater. He hustles, seems to be making the smart play by dumping and chasing and also hits some folks, bringing some energy to the team.

I think Hainsey’s value to the team is showing itself this year being paired with Kubina instead of Ex or Boris and the last couple of games without him, we are seeing more turnovers than ever from Schubert and Salmela. This signing looks better and better as each game passes by.

Max played a much better game too…

Christoph Schubert

November 4th, 2009
2:30 pm

Ich brauche eine Umarmung. :cry:

Alan R.

November 4th, 2009
2:37 pm

Just ask for one from the Blue Crew, Christoph. I’m sure they’d be more than happy to oblige!

Spud Webb

November 4th, 2009
2:49 pm

World, not sure if it’s because we’re both from the buffalo area, but we agree on a lot!! I like seeing Slats in civies also. Nice guy though.
Kozlov, I’m not sure anymore, I hate to say it, but father time has won that battle in my opinion.
Max, all of you are seeing what world and I have seen for years, FRUSTRATING. The guy has a sh&t ton of talent but is soooooooooo up and down. I’d swear he was still 18. He will drive you mad!!!!!!

Rawhide

November 4th, 2009
2:59 pm

Just a question…does Lehtonen’s salary count against the cap? I have never figured out at what point a player is considered on the long term IR and when his salary does not count.

hip czech – Yes, it does still count toward the cap. That comes straight from Don Waddell.

Smoothie

November 4th, 2009
3:06 pm

Bill, how is that possible? The only way Philly stayed under the cap last year was due to their LTIR exemptions (see Hatcher, Rathje etc). Kari should be on LTIR and it would seem like gross mismanagement to not put him on the shelf indefinitely.

Smoothie

November 4th, 2009
3:08 pm

Paminski – glad you agree! Great minds think alike! LOL So Assistant Coach Paminkski, what do we do with Max and Kozlov…what line combos do we use when Kovy comes back? If Kozzie doesn’t find his game in the next 3 weeks, I reckon he can find it somewhere in the pressbox next to Jim Slater’s shooting touch! Sorry Koz, I love you, but it’s time to elevate your game…we need you man!

hip czech

November 4th, 2009
3:18 pm

That’s what I have never understood, I think NJ was in the same situation a couple years ago with Elias, the only way that they started the year under the cap was because Elias and others were LTIR.

Not that were up against the cap, but if we are ‘buyers’ at the deadline a few extra mil may come in handy.

Rawhide

November 4th, 2009
3:23 pm

Bill, how is that possible? The only way Philly stayed under the cap last year was due to their LTIR exemptions (see Hatcher, Rathje etc). Kari should be on LTIR and it would seem like gross mismanagement to not put him on the shelf indefinitely.

Smoothimatorshrugs…I dunno, but that’s what the man said.

Oh and for the record, I second what Paminski said about Miss-10.

Lock her down!

Biscuit

November 4th, 2009
3:35 pm

Peverley is a chemist. The guy produces instant chemistry on any line he’s on. Love that guy.