I can’t coherently recap tonight’s game courtesy of a headache that might be caused by, oddly enough, tonight’s game. The Thrashers allowed a team to get inside of their heads without even dominating the skill game, and they got checked off the puck and out of Philips Arena. The offense, defense, goaltending… hardly anything was right.
Positives of the night:
- Tobias Enstrom scored his 8th goal of the season
- Patrice Cormier scored his first NHL goal and finished +2
- Chris Thorburn also finished a +2 on the night
- Andrew Ladd scored his 14th goal of the season
Negatives of the night? Just look at the boxscore. Atlanta allowed five powerplay goals, all on Ben Eager penalties – one on a double minor for roughing and cross checking, and four on this match penalty for intent to injure that will get Eager suspended for a few games:
Nothing went well for the team tonight. Goaltending, well, switching from Pavelec to Mason to Pavelec back to Mason was probably not well advised. Defense? Byfuglien and Enstrom were solid and finished a +1, but overall the defense had a rough night. The worst thing, though, was that two doofy penalties by Ben Eager dictated the tempo and momentum of the game, distracted the Thrashers even worse than they already were (if that was possible), and brought completely negative attention on a team that has been working hard to command the respect of the league.
Other teams know that the loss is just a loss, and while embarrassing, will be overcome easily Sunday in Carolina. But what Ben Eager did is already front and center over at Puck Daddy, NBC’s Pro Hockey Talk, and NHL Fanhouse. The news of the suspension he’ll get will be just as public.
Eager’s move was inappropriate, and will more than likely be disciplined by the league. The reaction from the Thrashers remains to be seen.