Looch In The Mix

by

Milan Lucic Happy To Be Back

One in, one out in Atlanta.

The good news is Milan Lucic, out since Mid-October with a broken finger on his right hand, will be in the line-up tonight against the Thrashers. There’s no indication of how much he might play (word is he’ll skate with Steve Begin and Byron Bitz) but the team desperately needs whatever boost his presence will bring. Don’t look for him to test that finger with the gloves off anytime soon, however. The question is, will opponents use that knowledge against him? We’ll see.

Now the bad news.

Tim Thomas is out because of an undisclosed, minor injury. We’ll hope to hear more about it at some point but look for Tukka Rask in net for the second game in a row and see if Thomas’ issue is anything to be concerned about afterwards.

Meanwhile, word is that the team and Marc Savard have a new deal in the works that could extend the center’s contract in Boston for another seven years.

This surprises the hell out of me, I have to admit. If the reports are true, the deal would take Savard pretty close to the age of 40 and cement him as the offensive cornerstone of the team for as long a stretch as anyone since Rick Middleton. I had honestly wondered if the team and he might part company after his current deal was completed, leaving the no. 1 pivot spot to David Krejci and him to seek his fortunes elsewhere in free agency.

Apparently both he and the B’s think otherwise. It would offer some incredible stability to the team’s offense and leadership, now and for the forseeable future and would allow Savard to flourish even more in the veteran role he has so effectively adopted in Boston. It could be a brilliant move. It could also be a disaster.

More on that if the deal, rumoured to be completed by Thanksgiving, comes to pass. I need time to ruminate.

Game Update: I have never seen an arena so empty as the Philips Arena is tonight. Entire sections are empty. There is practically no one sitting in the loge section other than directly behind the benches.

Game Update Update: Apparently 4000 people decided to be fashionably late or got the start time wrong because the lower section is now nearly filled up as the second period starts. Q’est que le fuck, Atlanta?

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