Shrapnel - 9/21/11

With last night's pre-season split squad affair, there as a bit of a buzz in Columbus, and a massive roar up in Winnipeg.

For as many people excited about the 5-1 win, and as many jeering over the 6-1 loss, it's important not to get too high and too low. We're thrilled for the guys who came out and performed, but remember that plenty of the guys on both squads will be bagging groceries by Friday.

The team is expected to start making cuts soon - potentially before today's game against Washington, so let's give them time to see what the roster looks like after some trimming before we start making too many predictions.

One thing I will say - I didn't like the way the Jets came out in both games trying to flatten guys. There's a difference between hard checks and good board play, which I think the home Columbus squad generally showed, and trying to take players out. One wonders if part of the precautions in holding out Mark Dekanich wasn't just the hopefully minor leg injury, but also the fact that the Jets squad was running the goalie at the slightest provocation.

Guys want to get noticed. I get that. But what purpose did that serve? What are you really telling your coaches? You're willing to make dirty plays and hurt people, in a game that doesn't matter? 

The NHL doesn't need that. 

You want to get noticed? Play like Boone Jenner. Play like Oliver Gabriel. Play like Maksim Mayorov. Hustle, compete, and play the game hard without taking cheap shots. 

We'll now go back in time a little bit to catch a few things from before the puck dropped.

Over at TMM, it was "Ready, Set, Go!", and Scott Howson made his case for realignment, which sounds like it met with a good reception. With a plan in place to set the solution by December, expect the news of potential moves to start ramping up before long.

For the first time in almost 15 years, they played NHL hockey in Baltimore, but the ice was a big concern.

A couple more takes on last night from Columbus Wired and Martini Hockey.

With the new changes to boarding and hits to the head, the NHL has produced some nice video tutorials.

Over at the Dispatch, Bob Hunter waxes eloquent about James Wisniewski's X-factor - particularly his shot. As one person said on Twitter last night, "It's nice to finally have defensemen, isn't it?" I will say, in addition to his booming shot and a couple of nice defensive plays, the biggest thing I noticed about Wiz last night was the A on his chest, and how he spent time talking to his teammates, but also checking in with the refs and asking some questions here or there when he seemed to have concerns about a call. 

Don't be terribly surprised if, when the dust settles, he ends up keeping that "A", even if he's part of a rotation.

Blake Kessel, a Flyers prospect, got to match up against his brother Phil in Toronto last night - but the real star of the show was his geocities-esque website.

Finally, a sweet little story about hockey vs. the prom.

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