It’s the holiday season and we here at the 4th Line are in a giving mood. We figured we’d share this generosity with the NHL teams and bring a little joy in these turbulent times. As we’re still negotiating a 4th Line merch deal, let’s see what else Santa Gritty has under the tree in the Atlantic Division:
Youth: Seems like every season the Bruins skirt the line with needing to rebuild and contending. With Patrice Bergeron on the last year of his deal and the forward core aging, it may be time for Boston to look to the future and try and get younger.
The season to end: While the Sabres are not at the bottom of the division, they could be by the end of the year. They have 3 first-round picks in the 2022 draft, but with pieces either UFA or RFA at the end of the season, they should go full in the tank and get what they can.
Detroit Red Wings
Reinforcements: You read that right, the team that had the longest playoff streak snapped a few years back should bring bodies in to help them make a push. They are three points up on the Bruins with five (yes you read that right 5!) games in hand.
Time to bring Hockeytown some hope. Steve Yzerman should work the phones.
Health: Just like there in-state neighbors, they have been embattled with injuries this season. While they held the top spot for most of the season the Panthers need their big guns back. While they have started to trickle back in there is an Aleksander Barkov size hole in their roster which only he can fill.
Help, and quickly: Being one season removed from playing for the Stanley Cup against the division rival Tampa Bay Lightning, the Habs boast an injured reserve list that would make Santa Clause blush. Carey Price is back on the ice, but from us, at the 4th line, we hope he takes his time and is getting the help that is needed.
To embrace the tank: While fans have had to deal with a lot, the Senators should still be in tank mode. They are three points ahead of the Habs (at the time of this writing), and need to slink back down.
While they have had some impressive games beating both Florida teams by a combined 12-2 in two games, they are showing promise at least in short bursts.
Tampa Bay Lightning
But the team has rebounded after a slow start, but missing two of their top guns on the powerplay has left them searching for answers.
Toronto Maple Leafs
Wins: What do you get from the team that has everything? Wins. They need to keep adding wins and aim to win the division. A president’s trophy wouldn’t be turned away under any Christmas tree in Toronto.
While all these teams have different items on their Christmas list, from the 4th line podcast we wish everyone happy holidays and stay well!