• Was Patrick Kane treated fairly by the media during the investigation into his alleged sexual assault? And now that he’s off to a ridiculous start, leading the league in scoring and generating excitement on almost every shift, is it OK for all fans to start cheering for him again?
Michael Blinn: I’m with Sam on this one. I think he got a pretty fair shake from the media. The biggest outcry was due to the fact a lot of fans didn’t understand what role the team and league could—or should—have been playing but didn’t. There was definitely a lot of blind rage over the suggestion that he take care of his personal life before stepping on the ice. I don’t really think it’s up to me to decide who it’s OK for everyone else to root for, though this whole situation has forced me to look hard at my fandom across the board.
AM: Sure, call the rulebook. Force teams to serve the full two minutes on minors and take away the right to ice the puck. Reduce the size of goalie equipment. These are all good ideas and all are likely to see the light of day before the league starts messing with the dimensions of the net. But that day is coming, boys, and you may as well start warming up to the idea. Look, this is a sport that once featured seven skaters and prohibited forward passing and penalized goalies who dropped to the ice. You can bet there there was much rending of garments when those rules were changed and there will be before this happens as well, simply because most people are like Sam—they hate change.
AM: Low seed? I think they win the Pacific for the fourth consecutive season. After that horrible start they’re just six points out, and that’s despite a steady dose of B games from both Getzlaf and Ryan Kesler. This team has depth across the board, it’s battle tested. The underlying numbers are promising and Anaheim has the assets in place if GM Bob Murray feels the need to upgrade. Don’t sleep on the Ducks.
• The Devils might be the best surprise of the new season. Can they keep up their pace?
MB: All of the Devils’ possession numbers defy their success. I feel like we went through this with the Avalanche in 2013-14. I’m not saying it’s all going to come crashing down soon, but maybe Devils fans should enjoy it while it lasts.
SP: The Devils are not really good at anything. They rank dead-average in save percentage (15th), poor in goals-for (22nd), and OK on goals-against (11th). Their power play is good so far, but it prominently features Jordin Tootoo! (And I’m Jordin Tootoo’s biggest fan.) I say Cory Schneider keeps them out of the basement, at best.
SP: Five Guys is better than In-n-Out. Who wants to have that debate? I feel strongly about this.
AM: You also feel strongly about Teen Mom Orlando, so your taste is highly suspect. In-n-Out is clearly the best fast food burger. Sit down, nothing beats Windsor’s Motor Burger. Order the Deux Chevaux and thank me later.