Observations from the first week of the NHL season, including trouble in Philadelphia, strong starts for Kyle Turris, Tomas Hertl and Jaroslav Halak, the Maple Leafs goaltending competition, Martin Erats lack of ice time in Washington and more. Adrian Gonzalez Jersey . 1. There may have been reasons for the Philadelphia Flyers to fire Peter Laviolette, and they probably existed before the season started, but it would be fair to question how players were being utilized in Sundays loss to Carolina. In a game in which the Flyers trailed by a goal with about 32 minutes of regulation time remaining, LW Zac Rinaldo played 14:02 and registered 10 hits, while RW Jakub Voracek played 16:21, C Vincent Lecavalier played 16:33 and C Claude Giroux 18:06. Thats not the ideal disparity of ice time that should exist between scorers and a fourth-line mucker when trying to eliminate a deficit. 2. Senators C Kyle Turris is leading Senators forwards with 18:57 time on ice through two games, putting up four points and a plus-4 rating in the process. A healthy (ish) Jason Spezza frees Turris from the oppositons best defensive players. 3. Sharks rookie LW Tomas Hertl scored a pair of goals against Phoenix Saturday and has three points in his first two NHL games. Liked him coming into the season, because of his opportunity playing alongside C Joe Thornton and RW Brent Burns, so its encouraging to see immediate results. 4. Maple Leafs G James Reimer was yanked after allowing four goals on 21 shots against Ottawa Saturday. Jonathan Bernier stopped all 15 shots he faced as the Leafs came back to win in the shootout. In the early crease competition, that comes up as advantage for Bernier. 5. Blues G Jaroslav Halak has stopped 47 of 49 shots (.959 SV%) in the first two games, giving him an early edge on Brian Elliott in the Blues goaltending battle. Halak has 15 shutouts in 121 games with the Blues since coming over from Montreal. 6. Red Wings RW Justin Abdelkader is getting a premium opportunity this year, skating with Red Wings superstars LW Henrik Zetterberg and C Pavel Datsyuk, who he finished with last season, when he scored nine goals in the final 20 regular season games. Abdelkader has a couple points in three games to start the year, and is tied for third in the league with 15 hits, despite playing a modest 13:41 per game. 7. Theres something going on with Capitals LW Martin Erat and its not good. Hes averaging 7:59 time on ice through the first three games, spending his time on the fourth line. Erats puck possession numbers are okay, in that limited time, which might be reason enough to move him up the depth chart because six of the Capitals 13 forwards have a Corsi south of 50%. 8. Sabres LW Thomas Vanek is a man on an island. He had 9 shots on goal against Ottawa Friday and has 15 through three games. The next-most shots among Sabres forwards is RW Brian Flynn, with six. 9. Wild LW Zach Parise has registered 14 shots on goal in two games; his 7.0 shots per game ranking second only to Alex Ovechkin (8.0). 10. Ducks C Mathieu Perreault and RW Jakob Silfverberg are early team leaders with three points in two games. While Perreault talked of how he was familiar with head coach Bruce Boudreau from Washington, Perreault wouldnt be familiar with the 15:27 ATOI he has with the Ducks. He never averaged more than 12:02 per game in four years with the Capitals. Most encouraging about Silfverberg is that hes generated 10 shots on goal in three games while playing on Perreaults wing. 11. Devils RW Damien Brunner (2 G at NYI, 12 shots in two games) is taking advantage of his opportunity in New Jersey after he signed late in training camp. Hes split his time on lines with C Patrik Elias and LW Ryane Clowe (good) as well as C Andrei Loktionov and LW Dainius Zubrus (not as good). 12. Hurricanes D Justin Faulk was one of my preferred fantasy bargain picks coming into the season, figuring that as a strong puck-moving defenceman on a team lacking them, he would have significant power play opportunities. Early on, it appears that the Carolina power play will be featuring rookie D Ryan Murphy and four forwards. Faulk gets second unit time, but his 2:29 of PP TOI per game is only marginally ahead of Jay Harrison (2:18). 13. A few ice time observations: Carolina LW Nathan Gerbe has taken advantage of the Hurricanes lack of forward depth and played 19:32 per game in the first two. He played 12:30 per game for the Sabres last season. 14. Flames rookie LW Sven Baertschi (11:24 & 11:39 first two games) has come under criticism from team president Brian Burke, but its odd usage considering he finished last season with nine points in 10 while playing 15:48 per game. 15. Colorados big off-season defence acquisition was Andre Benoit a 29-year-old, who played 16:25 per game in 33 games with the Senators, the most NHL action hed seen in his life. Early on, Benoit has averaged 22:46 per game, more than any other Avalanche player by more than two minutes (Erik Johnson is at 20:30). 16. Blue Jackets rookie LW Boone Jenner started the year on Columbus top line, but was quickly replaced by Cam Atkinson, who joined Brandon Dubinsky and Marian Gaborik. 17. When Predators D Roman Josi was injured in the second game of the season, at Colorado, rookie D Seth Jones stepped up to play a game-high 25:46, a pretty big jump from 18:35 in his NHL debut the night before. 18. Bruins rookie D Torey Krug was stellar in the second game of the season, scoring a goal, an assist, going plus-1 with five shots on goal in 16:59 of ice time, including 4:15 of power play time with the first unit. 19. With Canadiens LW Max Pacioretty out, Rene Bourque played 19:28, with Tomas Plekanec and Brian Gionta, and produced (1 G, 1 A, +1) against Philadelphia Saturday night. 20. Senators D Patrick Wiercioch is effectively taking over for Sergei Gonchar, playing on the first power play. With a couple of assists and six shots on goal through two games, hes doing his part. 21. Blues LW Jaden Schwartz has played primarily with C Patrik Berglund and RW Vladimir Tarasenko, and is one of five Blues with three points in two games. Such is the early-season benefit of a 7-0 rout of Florida. 22. With RW Teeemu Selanne resting, five Ducks played more than four minutes on the power play against Minnesota Saturday: C Ryan Getzlaf, RW Corey Perry, D Cam Fowler, D Sami Vatanen and C Nick Bonino. 23. Wild C Charlie Coyle is expected to miss three-to-four weeks with a knee injury, prompting the Wild to recall Jason Zucker. Minnesotas second line is expected to be Zucker, C Mikael Granlund and RW Dany Heatley. 24. Oilers LW Taylor Hall took a minus-4 against the Canucks Saturday and the Oilers have apparently decided that experimenting with Hall at centre is done. With Ryan Nugent-Hopkins returning to action, Hall will take his familiar left wing spot on the top line with RNH and Jordan Eberle. 25. Sabres D Henrik Tallinder is expected to miss a week with an upper body injury, giving Jamie McBain an opportunity and while McBain played 19:36 in his first appearance of the season, he and partner Tyler Myers were obliterated at even strength against Pittsburgh Saturday. FIRST NHL GAMES I covered all the guys who were new to NHL rosters to start the season, but the Maple Leafs already dipped into their farm system. Spencer Abbott, RW, Toronto - A 25-year-old signed out of the University of Maine in 2012, after scoring 62 points in 40 games as a senior, 5-foot-9 Abbott has 35 points in 59 AHL games since and spent the bulk of his 5:16 of ice time in his NHL debut with Nazem Kadri and Joffrey Lupul, finishing minus-2. Jamie Devane, LW, Toroto - A 6-foot-5 winger who was picked in the the third round in 2009, out of Plymouth in the OHL, Devane is a tough winger who capably filled a role that would have belonged to Frazer McLaren. Devane played 6:52, primarily with Jay McClement and Colton Orr. CHIRPING "We got saved by our goalie. And realistically, our goalie has saved us in all three games (this season). Hes been superb. Not average, superb." - Jets coach Claude Noel, on Ondrej Pavelec after 3-2 loss to Anaheim. "I think I talked to Krej (David Krejci) about it, What should I do with the puck? He said, Just give it to Z, hes going to win every battle." - Bruins D Torey Krug. "I thought our training camp, quite frankly, was one of the worst training camps Ive ever seen. Im not talking about wins or losses. There was nothing exciting. Nobody shined. Nobody looked good. I couldnt point to one thing that I thought was a positive." - Flyers owner Ed Snider, after firing head coach Peter Laviolette Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook. Travis dArnaud Jersey . The Maple Leafs will play on the road for the first time this season after dropping home contests to Montreal and Pittsburgh to begin the campaign. After losing a one-goal decision to the Canadiens on Wednesday, they were bested 5-2 on Saturday by the Penguins. Tug McGraw Jersey . But history aside, theyre still happy to participate in the Par 3 contest, traditionally held on the day prior to the first round of the Masters. http://www.metsrookiestore.com/Customized/ .Bacca took advantage of Cristian Alvarezs hesitation to head a lobbed pass over the goalkeeper and then used his feet to roll the ball into an empty net in the eighth minute. The Colombia strikers 10th goal pulled him level with Lionel Messi as the leagues third-leading scorers, far behind Cristiano Ronaldos runaway tally of 23 goals. DENVER -- Miguel Montero predicted this kind of night for himself, an evening he would long remember. He told Henry Blanco as they hung around the batting cage before the game that he was due to have "one of those crazy days when you get 6 or 7 RBIs. ... So, I guess I called it." Certainly did. Montero drove in a career-high six runs, Paul Goldschmidt hit a go-ahead, three-run double in the eighth inning and the Arizona Diamondbacks sent the Colorado Rockies to their sixth straight loss, 16-8 on Wednesday night. The Rockies led 8-5 when the Diamondbacks scored six times in the eighth to reclaim the lead. They were hardly done, adding five more in the ninth to turn a close game into a runaway. The Diamondbacks tied a season high with 21 hits. The top five hitters in the lineup had three hits each and combined for 14 RBIs. Montero led the way as he drove in two runs on sacrifice flies, had a run-scoring single and hit a three-run homer in the ninth. "It was awesome," Montero said. Brad Ziegler (2-1) got two outs in the seventh to earn the win. Rex Brothers (2-4) took the loss after the big eighth. The Rockies starter Jordan Lyles broke his left hand in the first inning when he tried to tag out Martin Prado at home after a wild pitch. Lyles used two hands to catch the ball when it was thrown back to him then left after the fourth. "I knew something was wrong, because Ive never felt that feeling before," said Lyles, who was wearing a bandage on his hand. "I didnt want to come out in the first, make the bullpen go nine. Thankfully, we got four innings." Asked how long Lyles might be out, Rockies manager Walt Weiss said, "for a little bit." Arizona surrendered four runs in the seventh to fall behind, but responded right away as Brothers imploded. The reliever gave up four straight singles, including a run-scoring liner by Chris Owings, and then then walked Gerardo Parra with the bases loaded to bring in another run. Nick Masset was summoned from the bullpen and promptly gave up Goldschmidts double down the line. "Youre just looking for something you can hit hard," Goldschmidt explained. Darryl Strawberry Jersey. "The pitch ran a little bit inside but I think it was right on the corner and I was able to hit it." Didi Gregorius led off the game with a solo homer as Arizona built an early 4-0 lead. The Rockies came back with four runs in the fifth and four more in the seventh. D.J. LeMahieus two-out infield single in the seventh tied the game and a throwing error by Owings at shortstop allowed the Rockies to take the lead. Pinch-hitter Drew Stubbs also added a two-run single. Brothers faced five batters without getting an out. He allowed five runs. "Im not going to talk about Rexs situation right now, as far as his future," Weiss said. "Just got to keep working through it, like all of us do. Its up to us to turn this thing around, each guy. Nobody is going to do it for us." Arizona starter Josh Collmenter, coming off a complete-game win, was cruising until the fifth when the Rockies broke out of their offensive funk. Troy Tulowitzki had a two-run double and Michael Cuddyer followed with a two-run single. Tulowitzki slid just past Monteros tag for the tying run. Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson challenged the play but after a quick review, the call was upheld. Tulowitzki leads the majors in batting (.354) and All-Star votes (1,419,718). "With the streak weve been on, to have Lyles break his hand, its unfortunate," Tulowitzki said. "Weve had a lot of hand injuries." Before the game, Rockies All-Star outfielder Carlos Gonzalez was placed on the 15-day disabled list with an inflamed left index finger. Its another big bat out of the lineup as third baseman Nolan Arenado (fractured finger) went on the DL on May 24. NOTES: The Diamondbacks said on their Twitter account Wednesday that INF Cliff Pennington underwent surgery to fix a partially torn ligament in his left thumb. ... Arizona will send RHP Bronson Arroyo (4-4) to the mound in the series finale Thursday, while the Rockies counter with RHP Juan Nicasio (5-3). ... Prized prospect RHP Eddie Butler will make his major league debut for Colorado on Friday. ' ' '