Greetings and salutations to everyone here at Litter Box Cats, and thanks for stopping by. We had a chance to catch up with Five For Howling, the crazy bunch of Coyote fans who follow our fellow "southern" team in the left-hand conference. Brendan Porter fielded some questions that I wanted to know the answers to, and I in turn answered some of his (you can find them here).
Kevin (LBC): We know a little about old guys getting the job done, so it's gratifying to see 39-year-old Shane Doan leading the 'Yotes in goals. Is he a Jagr in waiting? Or to put it another way, can he get the job done for four or five more years?
Brendan (FFH): Can anybody really be a Jagr in waiting? But it's hard to imagine Shane Doan retires after this season. He's the team's goal leader, and has looked particularly unstoppable with Brad Richardson and Jordan Martinook on the third line.
I don't know how long he'll play, but given he'd only need a season or two to hit 1,000 career regular season points and given the Coyotes are a young team on the rise, if he wants to keep playing, chances are Arizona will leave a spot open for him.
Kevin: After Mike Smith, I don't think anyone else here in Panther Central is familiar with Arizona's collection of goaltenders. Can you tell us a little about your current stable?
Brendan: Arizona is in a difficult position with its goaltending situation. Mike Smith is not expected back for another month, while backup Anders Lindback is done for the year with an Achilles injury. That leaves 2010 5th round pick and rookie Louis Domingue as the team's number one, with German league stud Niklas Treutle backing him up for now.
Domingue has a .913 save percentage and two shutouts through 26 games played this year, which is more than respectable for a rookie. But it remains to be seen if he can play at a high level everyday, and there's nobody else really in the system that's capable of replacing him.
Kevin: We already know that Max Domi has a great hockey name. What about his game has some talking about possible Rookie of the Year consideration?
Brendan: If I only had one word to describe Max Domi, it would be "exhilarating". He has excellent speed and a great shot, but his best asset is his vision and passing ability. He's made some cross-ice passes this year that I'm not sure most other NHLers could make.
With Shayne Gostisbehere's scintillating season, and Artemi Panarin's campaign in Chicago, it might be hard for Domi to edge out Dylan Larkin or Connor McDavid to be a Calder Trophy finalist, but he absolutely deserves to be in the conversation. Whether or not the fact he plays in Arizona keeps him out of the conversation is also something to watch.
Thanks to Brendan and his blog for taking time out of their schedule for a little chalk talk. Keep on checking back here at LBC for breaking Panther news, pre-game, in-game, post-game, preseason, in-season, postseason, and out of season developments.