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The Blue Line column archives.

December 19, 2012

The Blue Line: AHL Goaltending During The NHL Lockout

by Matthew Coller

The AHL has been a hybrid league during the NHL lockout, with some big-league talent added to the mix but some lesser players pushed down into the lower minors. So how has AHL goaltending fared during the first half of this odd season?

December 10, 2012

The Blue Line: The Growth Of Jacob Markstrom

by Matthew Coller

Since debuting in North America as a raw young goaltender, Florida Panthers' prospect Jacob Markstrom has come a long way in just a couple of years.

December 2, 2012

The Blue Line: 48 Games Is Enough

by Matthew Coller

Assuming we ever get a hockey season, a 48-game schedule wouldn't be all that bad.

November 19, 2012

The Blue Line: While You're At It, Fix The Game

by Matthew Coller

Is it too much to ask that the game be improved when NHL teams eventually hit the ice again?

October 26, 2012

The Blue Line: Fright Night In Bingo: A Lockout Tale

by Matthew Coller

Amidst the NHL lockout, Matt found himself in Rod Serling's hometown of Binghamton, New York for what turned into a strange and memorable game.

October 2, 2012

The Blue Line: 30 Players Hurt By The Lockout

by Matthew Coller

Whether they might miss out on a last hurrah, need a little extra for a near-HOF resume, need to bounce back from a down year, or are an RFA looking for a contract, these are the players who may have the most on the line over a long work stoppage.

July 31, 2012

The Blue Line: The 2013 Vezina Winner?

by Matthew Coller

Cam Ward came up huge during the Carolina Hurricanes championship run in 2006, but then suffered through some lackluster seasons. With the major upgrades to the Canes roster, could Ward be in the Vezina discussion next June?

March 17, 2012

The Blue Line: The Disappearing Power Play

by Matthew Coller

Power play scoring has dropped to its lowest levels since 1967-68.

March 1, 2012

The Blue Line: Darcy Regier Steals The Show

by Matthew Coller

On deadline day, Buffalo Sabres general manager Darcy Regier either saved his job, or at very least, kept Sabres fans from marching on First Niagara Center with torches and pitchforks.

January 30, 2012

The Blue Line: Regehr Another Blue Line Bust For Regier

by Matthew Coller

Craig Rivet, Shaone Morrisonn, and now Robyn Regehr: none of these stay-at-home defensemen has panned out for Buffalo GM Darcy Regier.

November 2, 2011

The Blue Line: Why Scoring Is Down

by Matthew Coller

An ever-decreasing number of power play opportunities seems to be one factor decreasing goals this season.

October 16, 2011

Premium Article The Blue Line: Shake Up The Canucks?

by Matthew Coller

Is it too early for the Canucks to look to make a deal?

October 7, 2011

Premium Article The Blue Line: Why Not Vanek?

by Matthew Coller

Jason Pominville was certainly a viable candidate for Sabres' captain, but wouldn't their best player, Thomas Vanek, have been a more suitable choice?

October 3, 2011

The Blue Line: Jacob Markstrom

by Matthew Coller

With the injury to Scott Clemmensen, talented goalie prospect Jacob Markstrom makes the opening day roster with Florida, at least as a backup to Jose Theodore. But will he stick with the club, and should he?

September 22, 2011

The Blue Line: Wi'Ilya Bounce Back?

by Matthew Coller

Even with the fantastic second half, 2010-11 was a season that the Devils and most of their players would like as a mulligan. High-priced scorer Ilya Kovalchuk is one of many Devils with something to prove in the upcoming campaign, coming off the worse year of his career.

September 15, 2011

The Blue Line: Tavares, Myers, and Marchand

by Matthew Coller

The New York Islanders, Buffalo Sabres, and Boston Bruins each locked up a valuable young contributor.

August 26, 2011

Premium Article The Blue Line: Imminent Trade?

by Matthew Coller

The Sabres are over the salary cap and ideally should add a second line center. We smell a trade coming!

August 19, 2011

The Blue Line: Hot Seat In Buffalo

by Matthew Coller

New owner Terry Pegula may have brought renewed hope for a championship to the Queen City, but it's brought a new weight of expectations to four faces in the Sabres organization.

August 14, 2011

Premium Article The Blue Line: Top 10 Best Backup Goaltenders

by Matthew Coller

After having already seen which teams are in the most trouble when their starter isn't between the pipes, we look at the teams that are clearly two deep in nets.

August 10, 2011

Premium Article The Blue Line: Top 10 Worst Backup Goaltenders

by Matthew Coller

Matt takes a look at which teams had better hope for excellent health for their starting goaltenders in 2011-12, because the option's not going to be very pretty.

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