Sunday, November 29, 2015

Patrick Kane Breaks American Record with Points in 19 Straight Games

Patrick Kane's red-hot ride continues. The Buffalo native poured in a goal to notch a point in his 19th consecutive game on Saturday during Chicago's 3-2 OT loss to the Kings at Staples Center.

Required Reading: The NHL's Top-10 All-Time Points Scored Streaks

Kane passes Phil Kessel and Eddie Olczyk, Americans who eached scored points in 18 consecutive games. The all-time NHL record for points in consecutive games belongs to Wayne Gretzky, who scored points in 51 straight games in the 1983-1984 season.

Kane's streak is just two shy of the all-time Blackhawks streak, set by Bobby Hull in the 1971-1972 season. Kane, who has scored 11 goals and 20 assists during the 19-game, 44-day streak, is now tied with Denis Savard for second all-time among Blackhawks players at 19.

"It's cool," Kane told reporters after the game, according to the Chicago Tribune. "You think about all the great American players that have played the game, the two players that had the 18-games point streak and what they've done in their careers. So it's pretty cool right now, but kind of overshadowed by the loss."

Arvidsson Won't Be Suspended for Cross-Checking Incident

Predators' winger Viktor Arvidsson was given a major and a game misconduct for the above cross-check on Sabres' defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo, but it appears that Arvidsson will escape further discipline.

According to John Vogl of the Buffalo News, Colaiacova has been released from the Nashville hospital where he was treated with a "dented trachea" and joined his team for its Sunday morning flight to Detroit.

Though the hit looked pretty brutal on replay, Sabres coach Dan Bylsma said he didn't feel that Arvidsson's actions were malicious.

“I don’t think there was intent there to maliciously cross-check,” Bylsma said, according to Vogl. “They kind of lose the puck, turn and his stick is right at that level and delivers a blow. When you look at it, it’s a pretty stiff cross-check to Carlo’s neck.”

According to Vogl, the NHL any further discipline for Arvidsson is unlikely.

Museum Worthy: Malkin Dazzles with Spin-O-Rama Goal

Evgeni Malkin brought the faithful to their feet at the Consol Energy Center on Saturday night when he produced this gorgeous spin-o-rama goal after pick-pocketing Oilers' defenseman Oscar Klefbom. Nice touch with the peanut butter backhand, which whizzes by Anders Nilsson before denting the top shelf.

Malkin would score again three minutes later to tie the game on the power play, but the Penguins ended up falling to Edmonton, 3-2 in OT.

"In practice, a couple times I've tried [the spin-o-rama]," Malkin said, "and today, why not?"

The victory was Edmonton's first in Pittsburgh since 2006, and just their second on the road vs. the Pens since 1993.

Tortorella on Penguins: They Whine Enough for the Whole League

After Columbus fell 3-1 to the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night, Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella took to the media to lob a few verbal volleys at the Pittsburgh Penguins. Playing without Brandon Dubinsky, who received a one-game suspension for this cross check to the neck of Sidney Crosby on Friday night, Columbus gave up two third period goals to fall to the Blues.

"He's contagious and he was our best player [Friday] night," Tortorella said of Dubinsky after the game.

Then the creative, cantankerous Torts got into character and added some fuel to the fire that is still burning after Columbus' 2-1 OT victory over Pittburgh on Friday.

“We’re not going to whine here. Pittsburgh can whine,” Tortorella told reporters. “Pittsburgh whines enough for the whole league, so there’s no room for any other team to whine. We just go about our business.”

The Blue Jackets dropped to 10-15 with the loss. They have gone 10-8 since Tortorella replaced Todd Richards as coach earlier in the season.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Video: Edmonton's Letestu Gets Kronwalled

One way you know you just got Kronwalled? You see start. Another way? When you come to, there's a brawl going on (An aside: Why does their have to be a melee every time somebody lays a clean hit in today's NHL?)

Just ask Edmonton's Mark Letestu.

Not only did Detroit's Niklas Kronwall deliver one of his bigggest hits of the season, he also scored his first goal of the season at :26 of OT to give the Wings the 4-3 won over the Oilers. The tally ended a 28-game drought for Kronwall.

Of the big hit, which was reportedly Kronwall's first giant hit since last year's playoff, the 34-year-old said the following:

"Everything just goes so fast. You see a guy with his head down and you're just trying to separate him from the puck."

Luongo Passes Hall, Moves into 8th All-Time in Wins

Things got a bit dicey at the finish for Panthers' goalie Roberto Luongo on Saturday evening, but thanks to a gaggle of snipes from his forwards in the skills competition, Florida emerged with a strange 3-2 shootout win that saw goalies stop only one shot in the ten rounds of extra hockey (see video above).

Note: According to Eric Hornik, statistician for the Islanders, Saturday's nine consecutive shoot out is an NHL record:

From his blog:

It's the first time in NHL shootout history that there have been 9 consecutive goals…It's the first time a shootout has started with 9 consecutive goals…It's also the first time only one shooter has not scored in a shootout of at least 5 rounds

The only save of the shootout, made by Luongo on Isles' forward Brock Nelson, moved Luongo past legendary Glen Hall and into sole possession of 8th place on the all-time NHL win list for goalies.

Luongo is 408-339 lifetime with 69 shutouts.

Next to catch for Luongo is Tony Esposito's 423 wins:

Dubinsky Cross Checks Sidney Crosby to the Head, Suspended for a Game

Blue Jackets center Brandon Dubinsky will have a disciplinary hearing with the NHL Saturday to discuss this cross check to the neck/head of Penguins center Sidney Crosby during the second period of the Blue Jackets 2-1 OT win on Saturday.

Video: Crosby Says He Was "Not Surprised" by Dubinsky Cross Check

The following from Jonathan Bombulie of Pittsburgh's TribLive Sports:

Crosby said he went through the NHL's concussion protocol then returned for the start of the third period. Dubinsky received a minor penalty.

“Didn't feel like (a minor penalty),” Crosby said. “I didn't see it. Maybe it didn't look as bad as it felt. The official's there beside the net. It's really up to him.”

Crosby and Dubinsky have a history, and discussing it will likely be on the Department of Player Safety's agenda when they meet with Dubinsky next week.

UPDATE: The NHL's Department of Player Safety has suspended Dubinsky for a game:

Lundqvist Takes Blow to Head from Marchand, Ridicule from Julien

Henrik Lundqvist took a hit to the head and fell hard to the ice on Saturday. Now the Bruins are trying to take the Rangers' star down with their words to add insult to injury.

Both Claude Julien and Brad Marchand accused Lundqvist of embellishment on the play.

“In preseason, Lundqvist did the same thing,” Julien said after Boston's 4-3 win on Saturday. “I know he does some acting on the side, but I don’t think it needs to be on the ice.”

Marchand was given a goaltender interference penalty on the play and J.T. Miller gave the Rangers a 3-2 lead on the ensuing power play.

“Referees are there to protect goaltenders and they should [but] goaltenders shouldn’t take advantage of referees and, you know, you may think it’s a good play for his team to get a power play but we’re all trying to get that out of the game."

Though its clear from the replay (see video above) that Marchand rams Lundqvist's head with his knee with pretty good force. The Bruins' cagey winger joined Julien in questioning Lundqvist's "dramatic" reaction to the hit:

The Bruins came away with teh 4-3 win to improve to 13-8-1 in the standings. After starting 0-3, and despite a 5-6-1 home record, the Bruins currently sit at third in the Atlantic Division.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Beleskey Plows Stepan, Breaking Ribs and Incurring Wrath

Matt Beleskey disrupted the flow of Saturdays' Bruins-Rangers tilt at TD Garden when he hammered Rangers pivot Derek Stepan after Stepan had moved the puck. Stepan would not return, and the Rangers hope that Beleskey is punished for the late nature of the hit (he was not penalized on the play but the NHL's Department of Player Safety says it will review the play).

“In our opinion, it was a late hit,” Rangers coach Alan Vigneault said of the Beleskey check, which came after Stepan had moved the puck up the ice. “More than a second and [Stepan] was a couple of feet from the boards. So we’ll have to wait and see [about a suspension]."

Beleskey later stated his case.

"I just think he didn't think I was going to hit him," Beleskey said. "He kind of didn't brace himself. I didn't take any extra strides. Maybe a little bit late, but he saw me coming. I came from in front. It's unfortunate, I think … he's hurt, so hopefully he's all right."

Dylan McIlrath stepped in immediately to fight Beleskey, incurring an instigating minor which led to a Bruins' equalizer.

It's not known how long Stepan will miss, but the Rangers are already figuring out how they might replace him.

Kane Extends Scoring Streak to 18 Games

The second goal of the Blackhawks' improbable win over Anaheim on Saturday kept alive Patrick Kane's scoring streak and enabled Chicago to get to overtime with the Ducks.

Kane tied the record for most consecutive games with a point by an American-born player with this third-period assist (see video above) against the Anaheim Ducks at Honda Center on Friday. The Buffalo native registered the secondary assist on Duncan Keith's goal with 27 seconds remaining. The Blackhawks would win on Artem Anisimov's OT winner, and Kane would finish the game with an 18-point scoring streak, the longest in the NHL since Sidney Crosby's 25-point streak in 2010-11.

Kane tied the American point record shared by Eddie Olczyk (Toronto Maple Leafs, 1989-90) and Phil Kessel (Boston Bruins, 2008-09). Kane is 10-19-29 during the 18-game run, and he's the NHL's leading scorer at 13-22-35 in 23 games.

If you're keeping score at home, the NHL's longest ever point-scoring streak belongs to Wayne Gretzky. The Great One scored points in the first 51 games of the season in 1984-1984. He registered 153 points in those games. Yeah, those were different times.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Kane's Point Streak Alive at 17

Patrick Kane increased his run of points scored to seventeen with two assists during the Blackhawks 5-2 win over San Jose on Wednesday night. The points move Kane within four of the all-time Chicago record of 21. It's the fifth-longest points streak in Blackhawks history.

Kane's streak is the longest that the NHL has seen in four seasons. The Buffalo native has 27 points during the 17-game stretch.

"It's something if it ends, it ends," Kane said of his streak, according to "I just want to play my game and make sure I'm doing the right things out there for the team. If it continues, it continues. I'm not too worried about it right now."

The all-time record for points in consecutive games belongs to Wayne Gretzky. The Great One notched numbers in 51 straight games during the 1983-1984 season. It's a tall order for Kane, especially given the fact that the NHL is notoriously tough to score goals in this season.

“Fifty-one’s almost like a season,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said in Tuesday, according to the Chicago Sun Times. “Especially in today’s game, where scoring is so difficult [with] checking mechanisms, being aware of a certain guy or what his tendencies are, or line tendencies. Night in, night out, somebody’s going to get the best of you. So that’s why it’s pretty remarkable. We’re happy with what Kaner’s achieved, knowing that the other guy, Gretz, is in a whole different class.”

Ref Nonplussed by Vatrano's OT Celebration in Detroit

Frank Vatrano may have felt like a big star after he scored the OT winner in Boston's improbable 3-2 win over the Red Wings on Wednesday night in Motown, but referee Dan O'Halloran wasn't buying it. Watch as he shoves Vatrano out of the way when the B's forward comes a little to close with his fist-pumping celebration.

The Red Wings, who by all accounts dominated the game before giving up the equalizer at 18:16 of the third period to Colin Miller, have now lost six straight to Boston, and 11 of 13.

The loss marks the fifth time Detroit has blown a third period lead. They have won three of those games, but Wednesday was a different story.

"Before when we had leads, we kind of been on our heels a little bit," Henrik Zetterberg said, according to Ansar Khan of Mlive. "But this time I thought we kept playing and kept having pressure on their D, but unfortunately that one was a tough goal."

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Watch: Richard Rakell Butt-Ended, Knocked Down, and Still Scores

How about this for a greasy goal? Check out the determination from Anaheim's center Richard Rakell. He's knocked down by a butt-end by Brandon Bollig (no call, no worries), but gets to his feet, joins the rush and buries the tying goal in the third period with the assist from Corey Perry.

Check him out, spitting some blood as he high fives his boys at the bench.

The goal fired the Honda Center up, and it got Anaheim going as well. Just over two minutes later, Corey Perry buried a power play goal to give the Ducks a 4-3 lead at the 16:00 mark.

Video: Williams Falls on Holtby During Warmup

Braden Holtby had a scare during warmups on Monday when Justin Williams took a spill on his back. Holtby would recover to put up his 21st career shutout against the Oilers, and after the game he joked that he hoped Williams isn't superstitious--otherwise he'd have to fall on Holtby in perpetuity (or at least until the Caps lost).

The incident inspire the headline "Maybe Braden Holtby's teammates should flatten him before every game," in the Washington Post. It's a good read if you have a moment.

Predators' Scoreless Streak Reaches Franchise Record

Relax, the Nashville Predators are still a really good team. No, wait, panic! They may never score again!!! After falling 3-0 to the Rangers on Monday night, the scoreless streak is now at 213:47, the longest scoreless stretch in team history.

“We’re getting quality chances," Predators defenseman Seth Jones said. "We’re moving the puck well, we’re shooting pucks. The past (three) games we’ve probably outplayed the teams and (we're) just not seeing results. There’s nothing much more to say.”

It certainly hasn't come from a lack of trying for Nashville. According to War-on-Ice, the Preds had 24 scoring chances to just 13 for the Rangers during the game. They finished with 31 shots on goal to 19 for the Rangers.

But it was the Rangers who came away with the win, and it is the Predators who are left scratching their heads after being shutout three times consecutively for the first time in franchise history. "You try to work through it, but when it happens three times in a row, you're getting pretty frustrated," Predators coach Peter Laviolette said. "I don't think that they're not trying to put it in the net when you end up with 30 quality chances out of 75, 80 attempts at the net. The guys are trying to score, and it's not dropping right now. They worked their tails of tonight and again it didn't go our way."

Despite the tailspin, Nashville still sits at 11-6-3, which would be good for the first wild card in the Western Conference if the season ended today.

Marchand Swings for the Fences, and Scores!

Brad Marchand's second shorty of the season was a beauty, as the 27-year-old Nova Scotian uses incredible eye-hand coordination to bat the puck past Dion Phaneuf and into the Leafs goal for his ninth of the year. Marchand would add another, and the B's would win in a shootout, 4-3.

There was some debate about whether or not Marchand had batted the puck in with a high-stick, Steve Dangle aptly refuted that call in his latest video by saying: "Who are we kidding, Marchand can't high-stick."

Quietly, Marchand has been prolific for the B's this season. He's scored ten goals in 18 games and he's on pace to score more than 40 goals this season. His previous high was 28 in 2011-2012.

Also: Marchand's shorty is the 17th of his career. He's had more of those than any other NHL player since beginning his career in 2009.

Colin Wilson Blows his Boot out and Does some Nice Ice Dancing

This is why hockey players work on those one-skate drills during practice. Because you never know when you will suddenly find yourself with the puck, in on a good scoring chance, and sans skate. Note the incredible force that Nashville's Colin Wilson places on his right skate while digging into the ice as he secures possession of the puck (see video above). Unfortunately it was a little too much force.

But nice job by Wilson to hang on for the wild ride for a bit. Eventually he turned it over, but he really looked kind of cool for a while there. If he somehow managed to score we'd be looking at the viral video of the 2015-2016 season.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Landon Ferraro Interviewed by Chicken Parm (Ferraro) During Intermission

Landon Ferraro scored his first goal as a Boston Bruin in his debut on Monday as the B's defeated the 'Leafs in a shootout, 4-3. Wait a second. CHECK THAT. The goal was later credited to Brad Marchand, but this interview with Landon and his dad is absolutely better than any goal could ever be.

Ferraro was picked up on waivers from the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday.

He ended up credited with an assist on the goal that was originally credited to him. His father, Ray Ferraro, is a former NHLer that scored 408 career goals and currently works as an on-air personality for TSN.

Foligno Praises Torts

Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella has been publicly "motivating" his captain Nick Foligno this month, using the press to call him out and ask him for more production, and that's just fine with Foligno.

Foligno, who has one goal, eight assists and is a minus-11 this season, told the Ottawa Citizen the following: “I love how he empowers guys. When he comes at you, it’s really black and white. He has done it to all of us. The guys want to go out there and do it. Probably the hardest part in this game is to motivate each and every guy differently and he’s done that.”

According to Ken Warren of the Ottawa Citizen, Foligno is grateful that Tortorella wants to help free him from off-ice distractions by getting his coaching staff to help more with dressing room dynamics. “It was much appreciated, knowing what he was trying to do,” said Foligno. “A lot of emotions were coming into it and I was probably getting away from (my game). I’ve learned a lot in the past month and a half. You never stop learning in this league.”

Columbus is currently in last place in the Metropolitan Division with a record of 8-14-0. The were 0-7-0 when Tortorella took over as coach on October 21.

Gagner Bloodied after Face-First Fall

Flyers Center Sam Gagner took this big hit from Carolina's Brad Malone and ended up face-planting during the Flyer's 3-2 OT win over the Hurricanes. Gagner left the game and did not return. He was bloodied and it was not clear if his visor what was what actually cut him.

Rookie defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere scored a power-play goal 24 seconds into overtime to give the Philadelphia Flyers the win. The Flyers had a 2-0 lead after two periods, but the Hurricanes got goals by Victor Rask and Brett Pesce, which forced the OT.

It was the Flyers first win at home in seven games.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Eichel: I Can Do More

Sabres rookie Jack Eichel is still growing into the grind of a full NHL season, and he's not shy about admitting that he still has a lot to learn with 20 NHL games under his belt. “I have a long way to go,” Eichel said after the Sabres 3-0 loss to Dallas on Saturday. “I have not been too happy with a lot of my peformances so far this season. We’re 20 games into the year. I think I have a lot more to give in all areas. I don’t think this is nearly where I should be."

The overall No. 2 pick has been held without a point in his last five contests.

“I can do more. Scoring, faceoffs, power play, penalty kill. Everything.” Eichel has created highlight reel beauties, and leads all NHL rookies with 67 shots on goal. But he is only ninth in rookie points with 10 (He's still behind Edmonton's Connor McDavid), has and is carrying an minus-6 rating. “It’s long, quite a schedule,” Eichel said of the NHL schedule, according to the Buffalo News. “You’re playing a few games a week. You’re on the ice every day and it can be tough to manage your body and be up to play every game. But that’s part of a being a pro and I’m still adjusting to it. It’s something I need to get better at and get more comfortable with.”

Habs Lose Gallagher Indefinitely with Broken Fingers

Montreal center Brendan Gallagher will be out indefinitely after breaking two fingers while blocking a Johnny Boychuk slapshot on Sunday during the Canadiens 4-2 victory over the Islanders.

Per, Gallagher will undergo surgery on Monday.

"Every time you lose a player that has an important role on any team, it's always a huge loss," Habs coach Michel Therrien said. "He was playing his best hockey, obviously. He's progressing every year, he's still a young player. It's a big loss, but what are we going to do? We can't feel sorry for ourselves. That's the way it is." Gallagher ranks third on the Canadiens with 19 points (nine goals, 10 assists).

Sharks Finish Perfect Road Trip with Columbus Explosion

Joe Pavelski, Brent Burns and Brenden Dillon all scored 7:02 apart in the third period to complete a stunning comeback in Columbus on Sunday night. With the win the Sharks become the first NHL team to sweep a road trip of at least six games in four years (the last time to do it was the Bruins in 2011). The improve to 13-8-0 on the Season.

The victory also marked the first time in seven tries that the Sharks have come from behind in a game that saw them trail after two.

The Sharks started the road trip as a sub .500 team surrounded by question marks. They finish in first place in the Pacific Conference, and will head home to face the Blackhawks on Wednesday evening.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Isles Hamonic Requested Trade, GM Snow Looking for Deal

New York Islanders' defenseman Travis Hamonic asked for a trade before the season, and GM Garth Snow has been actively searching for trade partners, reports SportsNet.

Hamonic, a 25-year-old top-4 defenseman on the Islanders, is considered by some to be the team's best blueliner. He's currently in the third year of a seven-year deal that pays him $3.875 million. Hamonic, who is from the Winnipeg area, lost his father when he was ten and reportedly wants to be closer to his family.

Newsday's Arthur Staple is reporting that Hamonic will address the media about the situation after Thursday's practice.

Snow has been searching for a deal all season, but with Hamonic on such a team-friendly contract and locked up long-term, the right deal has been hard to find.

Hamonic, in his sixth season with the Islanders, is 18-96-114 lifetime. He's a plus-24 in 342 games.

It Takes Two to Tango (with Big Buff)

It was a rough-and-tumble contest between the Jets and the Canucks tonight, and of course Dustin Byfuglien made his presence felt. Watch as the big, bad Buff handles two canucks in a goalmouth skirmish. He takes Derek Dorsett and Jannik Hansen for a twirl and neither has the gumption to interrupt the dance. Go ahead and laugh, it's funny. Byfuglien is just scary big and scary strong and that is all we have to say about it at the moment.

Jets won, 4-1, to earn their first win since November 5. They improve to 9-9-2 on the season.

And, in other news, the Jets calendar, featuring puppies, is available.

Video: Hall Tripped and Dragged by Kero

Note to Tanner Kero: Your stick is not as important as Taylor Hall's leg. Even if it is the stick you scored your only career NHL goal with...

Maatta Still in Hospital after Dangerous Shove from Niederrieter

Penguins' defenseman Olli Maatta spend the night in a Pittsburgh hospital, according to the Post Gazette, but the 21-year-old blueliner appears to be recovering. According to sources, Maatta's injury is not to the shoulders and his internal organs are not damaged due to the awkward hit and fall that took him into an open door on the Minnesota Wild's bench (see video above).

That's good news for Maatta, who has already had two shoulder surgeries in his career. According to reports, he will remain in the hospital and undergo more tests on Wednesday.

Niederreiter will not be disciplined by the NHL, according to the Post Gazette. Here's what Dave Molinari wrote today:

There is some encouraging news about Maatta, however. An individual familiar with his case said Maatta apparently did not suffer damage to any internal organs, which had been a major concern.

Maatta, however, is said to be in considerable discomfort.

The Penguins have said only that Maatta's injury is not related to any he sustained earlier in his career. He has undergone shoulder surgery twice since entering the NHL.

A league source said that the NHL will not fine or suspend Minnesota winger Nino Niederreiter, who shoved Maatta into a door that had just been opened at the Wild bench midway through the second period.

There was no penalty assessed on the play.

“You never want to see anything like that,” Niederreiter said. “Obviously, I feel bad. It's unfortunate.”

The league source said the Department of Player Safety reviewed the incident "long and hard" before deciding that no punishment was in order.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Toothless Grin: Bieksa Loses Tooth in Fight with Fisher

Fans of hockey fights will enjoy this skirmish. And dentists, too! Stick with this video until the 1:00 mark, because the true payoff comes with the slo-mo. Watch as Mike Fisher lands a Mike Tyson-esque left to die for right into the pucker of Anaheim's Kevin Bieksa. It almosts hurts just watching. Mama don't let your babies grow up to be hockey players, is all we can say.

Remarkable, Bieksa lived to tell, and even picked up an assist later in the game on this nifty play:

The Predators came away with the 3-2 win to improve to 11-3-3, while Anaheim drops to 6-9-4.

Um, yeah, that's high-sticking. Never been an easier call to make. Watch the video above and see Brad Marchand's stick actually get lodged in the ear of Tommy Wingel's helmet.

Good call, ref!

The Bruins killed the penalty but still ended up losing to San Jose on Tuesday night, 5-4.

Boston drops to a very disappointing 2-6-1 at home with the loss.

Should Bogus Penalty Calls be Challengeable?

NBC's Pierre McGuire makes an interesting point at the end of the above video. Note that Penguins' defenseman Olli Maatta actually clips the face of his teammate Kris Letang and the ref mistakenly gives the penalty to Chris Porter. Should coach's challenges be extended similar situations in the future? If you can challenge bogus offsides calls, why shouldn't you be able to challenge horrible calls be refs?

Another thought: When a team gets a coach's challenge right, shouldn't they be able to keep their timeout? Let us know your thoughts.

Video: Malkin's "Magic Mits" Lead to Gorgeous Goal

Hockey fans, we don't know what to tell you other than BOW DOWN. We had to watch this goal a few times before truly grasping the ungraspable nature of Evgeni Malkin's brilliant play. At full speed it's difficult to tell just how nasty Malkin's toe drag to between-the-legs self pass move is. Oh, but rest assure, it is filthy (just ask the two defenseman that he left dying on the vine as he split them to break free).

It was the second of a pair for Malkin on Tuesday night, and it helped the Pens erase the bitter taste of a 4-0 shellacking in New Jersey on Saturday night. Malking also had two assists, pushing his totals to 6-10-16 for the season.

"We talked yesterday and I think we changed the momentum tonight and showed how we can play," Malkin said. "We're still not perfect, but it's a little bit better, and I hope that now we're starting to understand what's going on with the team and support each other, and start winning." The Penguins improve to 11-7-0 with the win, good for fourth in the Metropolitan Division.

Video: Saad Catches Lehtera in Throat with Dangerous High-Stick

The Blues lost forward Jori Lehtera in the first period after the Finn took this inadvertent but vicious high-stick from Brandon Saad to the throat in the first period. Lehtera left the game and did not return. He was taken to a local hospital.

The Blues went on to drop a 3-1 decision to the surging Blue Jackets in Columbus.

No penalty as given to Saad on the play. No update was given on Lehtera's condition by the Blues after the game.

The Blue Jackets started the season 0-7 under Todd Richard but have since gone 7-5 after John Tortorella took over as coach.

"They work hard, they forecheck," said Blues' defenseman Jay Bouwmeester. "That's what they do. They don't want to give you any time to make plays or any easy ice. We knew that coming in. To counter that [we] have to do that. You have to dump it in, go get it and make them play in their own end and we didn't do that tonight.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Barkov Returns to Panthers Lineup, Nearly Scores 'Tweener Goal

Aleksander Barkov returned to the Florida Panthers lineup on Monday after missing ten games with a broken bone in his hand. Barkov was the only Panthers forward to play more than 20 minutes, registering two shots, three hits and three takeaways in the Panthers 1-0 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Though he didn't score on the play, Barkov wowed with this dazzling between-the-legs move that was stopped by Andrei Vasilevskiy.

Barkov, a 20-year-old Finn who scored a career-best 16 goals in 71 games last season for the Panthers, also made his active stick pay dividends, causing this turnover by Matt Carle.

Barkov also drew a tripping penalty on Victor Hedman late in the third period, and he set up Jaromir Jagr for a golden opportunity with just under a minute left but Jagr directed the backhand wide.

Aaron Ekblad scored the game winner with 21 seconds to go on a seeing-eye goal that bounced off Victor Hedman's leg and into the net to give Florida the win.

"Aaron Ekblad should buy a lottery ticket," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said after the game. "He should send somebody to buy a lottery ticket in the last minute of the game."

Roberto Luongo notched the shutout, the 69th of his career, for the Panthers. The veteran netminder is the all-time active shutout leader, and leads Henrik lundqvist by 13. Luongo also tied Glen Hall for 8th on the NHL's all-time list with his 407th win.

Florida climbs into a tie with the Lighting and Red Wings for third in the Atlantic Division with the win. The Panthers have two games in hand on the intrastate rivals, however.

Jake Allen Saves Blues' Bacon Late vs. Jets

Jake Allen made only 18 saves tonight against Winnipeg and finished with a .889 save percentage, but man did the New Brunswick native ever save the day for the Blues late in the third period when this Dustin Byfuglien shot nearly found the twine with :17 seconds left in St. Louis' 3-2 win on Monday.

More: Daniel Sedin Bloodied By Inadvertent High-Stick from Gallagher

Allen's positioning is perfect on the play and his glove is high and ready to react when he finally picks up the puck through the screen at the last second. That alone is impressive, but how about the use of the pads to kick the puck away from a drooling Blake Wheeler as it drops? Absolutely amazing puck sense from Allen.

The Jets continue to sink in the Central Division and they've now lost six in a row.

"It was a better effort," Winnipeg's leading scorer Bryan Little said. "Does it make it easier to swallow that we lost again? We skated much harder tonight. We were competitive in the game. We were down. We stuck together as a team throughout the whole game, and like I said, it doesn't feel better and make this trip better that we put in an effort. Sometimes it's not enough."

The Jets are currently clinging to sixth in the Central. They're three points ahead of the Avalanche but Colorado has two games in hand.

Desharnais Pots Winner, Vancouver Now 0-6 in OT

The Vancouver Canucks blew a 3-0 lead at the Molson Centre on Monday night, and by the time regulation had ended they must have been expecting exactly what they got: A sixth consecutive overtime loss to start the season.

“I think they had a bad change and we ended up with a 3-on-2,” said game-winning goal scorer David Desharnais, according to the Montreal Gazette. “It’s not the best situation in overtime but I knew if I got the puck, I had a good chance to score.”

"If we play like this we'll get our wins for sure," said Vancouver's Daniel Sedin. "It hurts, but like I said, we'll build on this and get better."

"It just seems that we're getting caught," said Canucks' coach Willie Desjardins of his team's OT troubles. "We had a great chance and we missed the net. It went around the other way and they got a three-on-two out of it. We score on that other one, we're all happy. We didn't, and we're certainly disapointed again."

Montreal improves to 14-3-2 with the win. Vancouver drops to 7-6-6 with the loss.

Watch: Canucks Rookie Hunter Shinkaruk Pranked in Montreal

21-year-old Albertan Hunter Shinkaruk got played by the boys prior to making his NHL debut on Monday night at the Molson Centre. It's a time-honored tradition and it never fails to bring a smile to anyone who bears witness. Even the player who got punked. It seems like the rookie was too amped to feel embarrassed. He enjoyed his solo moment and made it last. Good for him.

Shinkaruk was tied for the AHL lead with ten goals before he got the callup.

He's logged 6:52 of ice time in two periods tonight in his debut.

Ouch: Unintentional High-Stick by Gallagher Bloodies Daniel Sedin

Late in the first period of tonight's Canucks-Canadiens tilt in Montreal, Brendan Gallagher's inadvertend high-stock clipped Daniel Sedin right in the face. Lots of blood. Not for the meek.

Remarkably, not only did Sedin return without a full shield, he also netted a power play goal in the second period to give Vancouver a 3-0 lead.

Vancouver currently leads 3-2 after two. Sedin has logged 10:58 of ice time through two periods.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Patrick Kane Increases Goals Streak to Career-Best Seven

Patrick Kane kept up his torrid play on Sunday night at the Mad House on Madison, scoring on this backhand chip shot to extend his goals scored streak to seven games.

Kane, who also has a 13-game points streak, is the first Blackhawk player to score in seven consecutive games in over 20 years:

The Blackhawks netted three goals in 1:55 during the second period to overcome an early Flames lead on Sunday. They are now unbeaten in 14 games at home vs. Calgary. Kane's goal was the first of the three. The 26-year-old leads the NHL with 13 goals and 28 points.

Chicago rookie Artemi Panarin also scored. The 24-year-old Russian now has six goals and 12 assists to lead all rookies.

Bad Goalie: Stepan's Floater Beats Bernier from Center Ice

It's hard enough beating the New York Rangers with great goaltending, but softies like this are making it even harder for the 5-8-4 Toronto Maple Leafs in York on Sunday night. Jonathan Bernier has stopped 23 of 26 Blueshirts shots thus far, but we're thinking he'd like to have this one back. Ya think?

Goals like the one below (see video) haven't helped, either. Just ask water bottle-throwing Mike Babcock about that.

Charity aside, the Leafs are hanging in with the Rangers midway through the final period, tied at 3-3 on the strength of a Dion Phaneuf slapper at 5:15 of the third.

The red-hot Rangers are seeking their ninth consecutive win.

Update: The Rangers have now won nine straight as Mats Zuccarello's goal wins it late in the third for the Blueshirts. Toronto drops to 5-9-4, while the Rangers now lead the NHL with 30 points (14-2-2).

Statisfaction: Mountain to Climb for Four NHL Teams

1. Teams four or more points out of playoff spot on Nov. 1:

According to Elliote Friedman of Sportsnet, teams that are four or more points out of a playoff spot on Nov. 1 have made the playoffs on only 5 of 44 occasions since 2006-2006. A little late on this, but thought it would be nice to track the progress of this year's six teams. Which ones do you think will make it?


2. Vancouver's fortunes in close games have turned this season:

Only the Anaheim Ducks (33-1-7) were better than the Canucks (22-4-5) in one-goal games last season. It’s been a different story this year. Vancouver has eleven games, ten of them by one goal. Five times already have the Canucks (7-6-5) lost in overtime. (Source: Elliote Friedman's 30 Thoughts)

3. Leon Draisaitl is the NHL's point-per-60 mins leader at even strength

The 20-year-old German is riding a three-game points streak and has picked up six games in the Oilers' last three. In eight games he has already eclipsed his 2014-15 total (9 points in 37 games).

Here's the top 5 Points-Per-60 min players at even strength (min 120 mins played):

Note: Draisaitl leads the NHL in PP60 in all phases with 5.13 per 60 minutes of hockey. Tyler Seguin (4.44), Patrick Kane (4.31)and Jamie Benn (4.17) are the next three on the list.

4. Avs' MacKinnon fastest two goals by one player in 14 years:

5. It was the best of times. It was the worst of times:

The Bruins still lead the NHL in power play percentage (33.3), but they are dead last in the penalty kill (71.7). Interesting dichotomy there for the B's.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Red-Hot Dallas Stars off to Franchise's Best 17-Game Start

The Dallas Stars followed their tried and true formula to victory on Thursday night at American Airlines Center: Timely goal scoring, timely puck stopping and kick saves by defensemen. Okay, that last part isn't by design but it worked tonight. Jason Demers stole Kari Lehtonen's thunder when he made the save of the game late in the first period (see video above), robbing Andrew Ladd to help his team stay within a goal of the Winnipeg Jets.

(Note: Lehtonen stopped 35 of 38 Winnipeg shots and improved to 7-1-0 with the win, so he needn't feel jealous of Demers.)

Dallas would score five of the game's final six goals, including Jamie Benn's league-leading (tied with Chicago's Patrick Kane) 11th tally, which ended up being the game winner.

The Stars have never accumulated this many points (26) in the first 17 games of any season in the franchise's 48-year-history.

Punch Drunk Love: Landeskog's Big Hit Earns Him Sucker Punch from Marchand

The Bruins had a difficult night in many wans in Beantown. They blew a two-goal lead to the Avs, falling 3-2 and failing to 1-5-1 at home this season. Boston has now lost to Colorado a club record eight times at home. The B's (7-7-1) also had a scary moment during the second period when Brad Marchand was clocked and sent twirling by Avs' winger Gabriel Landeskog.

Here's the AP description of the play:

Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog received a match penalty at 5:46 of the second period for an illegal hit to the head of Bruins forward Brad Marchand. After slumping over on the ice for a few seconds, Marchand calmly stood, skated over to Landeskog and sucker punched him in the face. Marchand received a minor penalty and Landeskog is automatically suspended the next game, pending an NHL review.

‘‘I tried to let up and then I tried to skate up and apologize and tell him I didn’t mean to come across and ... obviously he wasn’t hurt with that sucker punch,’’ Landeskog said. ‘‘I'm happy he didn’t get hurt. I feel like the principle point of contact was the shoulder.’’

Marchand would pick up a roughing call for the sucker punch. He stayed in the game, playing 25 shifts and finishing with 19:51 of ice time.

Marchand later said that the sucker punch was "heat of the moment," and that he believed that Landeskog didn't mean any harm with his hit.

According to Bruins Insider Joe Haggerty, the NHL will be looking at both incidents (the hit and the sucker punch) to determine if any additional discipline is required.

Here's the sucker punch in sl-mo. Not your everyday roughing minor.

The Bruins night wasn't all bad. They did get Dennis Seidenberg back on the ice for the first time this season.

For the Avs, who improved to 6-9-1 with the win, Jarome Iginla picked up an assist to tie Peter Stastny for 37th on the NHL's all-time point scoring list.

Williams Wants Selke Consideration for Shutting Ovechkin Down

For the second time in less than a week, Justin Williams has rained on Alexander Ovechkin's parade. Last Saturday at the Verizon Centre, Alexander Ovechkin had what would have been his 484th career goal disallowed when a coach's challenge revealed Williams had interfered with the goalie on the play. Tonight, during Washington's 5-2 victory over the Flyers, Williams was deemed offsides after a coach's challenge, nullifying Ovechkin's record-breaking goal for a second time.

Thus the Russian's quest to become the No. 1 Russian-born NHL scorer continues...

"It sucks," Ovechkin said after his goal on Sunday was disallowed. It would have given Ovechkin his 484th career goal and would have seen him move him ahead of Sergei Fedorov and into No. 1 on the all-time goals scored list for Russian-born NHL players.

After Thursday night's win in Philadelphia, Ovechkin summed his tantalizing evening up similarly. "It sucks again," he deadpanned.

The sniper said he'd have family and friends in attendance at the Verizon Centre on Friday when he goes for the record for the fourth time.

“It’s probably fitting that he gets a chance to do it in front of his own fans,” Capitals Coach Barry Trotz said, according to Isabelle Khurshudyan. “They’ve supported him all along, and I think it’d be a nice thing for him to do it at home. I was saying, he’s on pace for about 76 goals, and Williams has nullified two of them already.

Sweet Snipe: Tarasenko Rattles Laser off Post

Wow. Apparently Vladimir Tarasenko didn't get the memo that bigger upper body padding is preventing NHL goal scorers from hitting their quotas in 2015. Check out this Rocket from the Crypt. You have to have a lot of mustard on your shot to make such a sweet music with the iron.

Credit must also go to the Russian for his breakaway speed on this play. He makes the interception down around his own blue line and takes off to the races, gaining distance on Viktor Stålberg before snapping his quick-release wrister as he runs out of room.

The goal was Tarasenko's 8th and pulled the Blues to within a goal, but they would never get any closer against the streaking Rangers.

"I thought when it was 4-3 we were going to win for sure," Blues coach Ken Hitchcock later said. "We've done it three or four times this year already."

The Blues drop to 11-4-1 with the loss, good for second in the Central and fourth overall in the NHL.

Rangers Nipping at Montreal's Heels after Win over Blues

The hottest team in hockey used to be the Montreal Canadiens, and they are still rolling with a 6-2-2 record in their last ten, but the New York Rangers are making statement after statement of late, and tonight's 6-3 win over Central Division powerhouse St. Louis was yet another reason for the rest of the NHL's Stanley Cup aspirants to take notice.

The Blueshirts won their seventh in a row and have now gone 9-0-1 in their last ten (they are unbeaten in their last 11) after Thursday night's effort.

It really doesn't come as a big surprise given how convincing the Rangers were in 2014-2015. They won the President's Trophy with a 53-22-7 record and made a trip to the Conference finals. This is a team that looks dead set on building upon what they've already accomplished in the last two season, and the pieces are in place to do so.

Tonight they were paced by Mats Zucarello's three points. The shifty winger casually inside-outed Blues' defenseman Jay Bouwmeester on the way to a highlight-reel beauty (see video above) and the Rangers would never trail despite seeing the pesky Blues pull within a goal after two.

The Blues (11-4-1), who had won three in a row, all on the road, including consecutive shutouts in Nashville and New Jersey.

Henrik Lundqvist improved to 9-2-2 and made 31 saves, including this version of highway robbery:

Wings Extend Abdelkader, Datsyuk Due Back Friday

Justin Abdelkader signed a seven-year contract extension with the Detroit Red Wings, general manager Ken Holland announced Thursday.

The contract is worth $29.75 million, and will play the Michigan native an average annual value of $4.25 million, according to TSN.

"Really thrilled," Abdelkader said, according to Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press . "It brings me back to the day I first put the Red Wings sweater on, how excited I was to play my first game as a Red Wings player. "Now to sign an extension to, hopefully, end my career here in Detroit is a dream come true for me. It is something that, as a kid growing up in Michigan and being a Red Wings fan -- it has been very special to me."

Abdelkader registered a career-high 23 goals last season for Detroit.

The Wings also are ready to welcome back Pavel Datsyuk to the fold on Friday when Detroit faces San Jose at home. The Russian practiced on Thursday morning on a line with Abdelkader and Henrik Zetterberg. Datsyuk has missed the first 15 games of the season while rehabbing from an ankle injury.

Video: Fans Fight for Lundqvist Stick

Why hockey fans can't have nice things: Because they'd rather kill each other.

This is what happened when Henrik Lundqvist threw his stick into the crowd after his first shutout of the season on Tuesday night at the Garden. Turns out it wasn't such a good idea.

Nobody ended up with the stick, as security had to intervene and pry it way from this gang of maniacs.

Lundqvist later announced that the stick would be auctioned off for charity--a far better cause, clearly.

Lundqvist has been a busy man of late. He also stopped by the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon studios to stop a few pumpkins. Yeah, he pitched a shutout there, too:

Kings' Quick on Board with Reductions in Size to NHL Goalie Gear

Jonathan Quick says leave the nets alone. But have at the goalie gear. In an interview with the Orange County register on Wednesday, the L.A. Kings netminder says that he's fine with smaller gear with NHL goalies, and he gave his own very sophisticated take on the matter.

"I’m on board. I know there’s a coach who came out a couple weeks ago talking about nets. I think that’s ridiculous. If you look around the league at the goalies, in their street clothes and then with their gear on, the difference in size is a little too much. So I’m on board with that. If they’re trying to find a safe way to do that -- that’s the key, a safe way -- to reduce the size of the equipment, I’m all for it. Obviously if it starts to risk injury and stuff like that, then you have to find a different route to do it. But you can just tell. You look at goalies on the ice and off the ice, and you can just tell that it’s something that can be addressed."

Quick adds that the NHL needs to bring in some help for their Supervisor of Goaltending, Kay Whitmore.

"The biggest issue is, there’s one guy, Kay Whitmore, who is the only guy who checks the gear. He’s the only guy I ever see come to the rinks and check gear. At the same time, he’s the guy who has to be at the factory approving the gear that’s getting shipped out, and watching tapes and seeing which goalies look big. Then he has to visit. There’s just way, way too much work for him to have to do in order to keep it in check. "If you look, there’s been zero fines. I don’t think, since I’ve been in the league, there have been fines for goalie equipment. For sure there’s some, I don’t want to say cheating, but there’s some guys trying to supplement the gear a little bit. That happens around the league. There’s no question about that. To put one guy in charge of all that, it’s too much on his plate. So you’re not getting anywhere."

At the GM meetings this week, NHL brass continued to support the move for smaller goalie equipment, with the belief that it will force more goalies out of their crease to actually make saves, rather than playing the percentages and taking up as much space as possible between the pipes. In a column for Sportsnet, Mark Spector mentions that he believes the NHL is at a point where goalies are starting to believe that enlarged pads are bad for their craft. In other words, the pads are making average goalies look great and thus diluting the position.

Colin Campbell, the NHL's Senior Director Executive VP and Director of Hockey Operations, says the NHL's plan is to limit the size of goaltender's equipment, starting next season.

"We are making an attempt this year. Usually we make that attempt every year and the manufacturers tell us they can't do it in time after our June meeting. So last year we said okay you've got a year and a half to do it."

Campbell told SN590's "Prime Time" that the NHL will start to see downsized goalie's equimpment, starting in 2016.

"Some goalies are playing the position according to the size of equipment," he said. But Campbell didn't seen all that convinced that the program will help increase scoring in the NHL. "Hopefully we get this done (increasing goal scoring), if not then I guess we go to Plan B, Mike Babcock's."

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Watch: Boychuk Scores from outside Blue Line vs. Stalok

Having scored nine goals in their previous six games prior to the beginning of their west coast trip, the New York Islanders have been desperate for goals. In other words, they'll take this one.

Watch as Islanders' defenseman Johnny Boychuk lays the lumber into this 75-foot slap shot, sending it past Sharks' goalie Alex Stalock. Islanders' color commentator Butch Goring was tough on he goalie, but truth be told: this shot by Boychuk is pretty damn wicked.

Sharks coach Peter DeBoer looked like he wanted to pull Stalock, but he had already pulled his starting goalie, Martin Jones, after he gave up two quick goals in the first three-and-a-half minutes of the first period.

The Isles currently lead 3-1 with just over 12 to play, despite being outshot 31-20.

Highway Robbery: Sabres' Johnson Stops Lightning

The Buffalo Sabres got tired of being the Tampa Bay Lightning's doormat and pulled out a big road win in their fourth meeting with the Bolts on Tuesday night at Amalie Arena in Tampa.

More: Marlies' Nylander Could Force Leafs Brass to Call Him Up, Says Asst. GM Dubas

The Sabres has dropped three meetings to Tampa already this season, but rallied tonight to secure the biggest win of their young season. The 4-1 scoreline sounds breezy but it might not have been such an uncomplicated finish had Chad Johnson not made this miraculous flop save to rob Tyler Johnson and whoever else was whacking away at the puck while Johnson lay face-down on his belly.

The victory snaps a seven-game losing streak against the Lightning for the Sabres. Rookie Jack Eichel continued his torrid play, notching a goal and an assist for his first NHL road points.

Eichel had seven shots on net, one off his season high, and got his first NHL assist on this beautiful feed to Cody Franson.

“I wanted to get their ‘D’ flat-footed and I tried to back them all off,” Eichel said. “I saw ‘Franny’ going to the net up high and just gave him the puck. That’s an NHL shot right there, great shot by him and great to see him get his first.”

Buffalo improves to 7-8 with the win, and they've now won two straight.

The struggling Bolts drop to 7-8-2.

Dubas: Nylander Could Force the Hand of Leafs for Call-up

Toronto Maple Leafs prized prospect William Nylander is on the verge of making the show. The 19-year-old center and son of former NHL star Michael Nylander, is currently leading the Marlies in scoring at a 7-7-14 clip in 12th games. That puts him tied for third in the AHL in points. His performance has not gone unnoticed by Toronto brass. In an interview with Sportsnet, assistant GM Kyle Dubas hinted that Nylander's improved play in the defensive zone might soon force the team to give him a shot at the NHL level.

"William, especially of late, has begun taking another step in his development. I think if he can continue to sustain the way that he's played this past week or two on both sides of the puck--his offensive ability has always been there and now he's starting to really become consistent in not playing on defense very long. He's back in the right position, separating players from the puck and moving the puck back on to offense--if he continues to do that consistently he'll start to force the hand of the team.

How long that is, I'm not sure. I know that we have a patient approach. We don't want to leave him down there over-baking, but at the same time we want to make sure that he's mastered that level before he comes up and we rush him up to the NHL."

Burrows Doesn't Think Line Was Crossed in Tootoo Incident

We still don't know what exactly Canucks' winger Alexandre Burrows said to Jordin Tootoo during the Devils' 4-3 OT win on Sunday in New Jersey, but we do know that Tootoo and Burrows disagree vehemently about those words.

On Sunday the Devils right wing went hunting for Burrows on the ice, and when Burrows wouldn't accept his invitation to drop gloves, Tootoo took to the media to voice his disapproval.

"If you're going to talk the talk, you've got to walk the walk. To make the remarks he did about my personal life and family is classless and unacceptable in this day and age," Tootoo said. "That's why I went after him."

Burrows spoke with Vancouver media today about the incident (he was unavailable by the time Devils' reporter Tom Gulliti went to the Canucks' dressing room to ask about what he said), saying that he didn't step out of line.

"I don't think I crossed the line" said Burrows, according to Vancouver's Twitter feed. "I've said and heard it before, it should have stayed on the ice. It's a battle out there"

Price to Miss Another Week, Does Not Need Surgery

Montreal's Carey Price is back from his doctor's appointment in New York, second opinion in tow. Habs' coach Michel Therrien reavealed to media on Tuesday that Price's second opinion corroborates what the team doctors have diagnosed. Price decided to get a second opinion, he said, after his injury hadn't responded very well to treatment.

Price will be out another week at least.

As far as the exact nature of the injury, your guess is as good as our's.

Marty Turco: "Nobody in the World Is Better than Carey Price"

Marty Turco, speaking with in a one-on-one interview, talked all things goaltending on Sunday, and the conversation eventually took him to his favorite current NHL goaltenders.

Read the whole interview in its entirety at here Carey Price is the man, says Turco, but not the only man:

"Nobody is better in the world now than Carey Price. Man, it just looks like it's effortless for him, so easy. When you don't think he ever moves quick, all of a sudden, boom, he just flies across. But even when he's flying, it doesn't look like he's flying. He's a big guy too. I don't think people appreciate how big he is. He has a great head on his shoulders too. He's kind of how you'd want to build 'em.

Turco also gave major props to Nashville's Pekka Rinne.

"Pekka Rinne to me is a blast," Turco said. "High energy. To be that tall and athletic, amazing. He plays the puck and he doesn't get enough credit for that."

Finally, the winner of 275 NHL games with the Stars, Blackhawks and Bruins (plus 21 in the post-season) gave his take on the issues of whether or not the size of NHL goals should be enlarged to allow for more scoring.

"It's going to skew the game forever," he said. "Essentially who cares if you rewrite record books, but I do think the goal scoring will be tainted."

Turco added that there are different ways to address the lack of scoring, namely limiting the size of goalie equipment.

"There are things that they can do to the equipment," he said. "I remember talking to the League, the powers that be, about how the equipment works and I still don't think they realize fully how all of this stuff works and what is making saves, why guys are moving so good. You can easily slow these guys down and it's not necessarily the size of the equipment."

Carey Price in New York Seeking Medical Evaluation

Montreal goaltender and last year's Vezina winner Carey Price was in New York on Monday seeking further evaluation for the lower body injury that has kept him out of action for over a week, the Montreal Gazette reports.

The Canadiens had no comment on Price’s trip other than to say that he was out of the country seeking a medical evaluation and that he was expected to return later in the day. There was no indication whether Price was acting on the advice of the Canadiens’ medical staff or seeking a second opinion.

Coach Michel Therrien is expected to provide an update on Price’s health prior to the team’s departure Tuesday, but it’s unlikely that Price will play in Pittsburgh.
Not great news for the Canadiens, but the silver lining is that the Habs' backup goalie Michael Condon has gone 6-0-1 and leads the NHL with a 1.57 GAA. Condon was named one of the three stars of the week by the NHL on Monday, along with Dallas' Tyler Seguin and Patrick Kane.

“It’s a nice personal honour, but it doesn’t mean much in the grand scheme of things,” said Condon.

We expect to know more about Price's status on Tuesday when Montreal coach Michel Therrien addresses the media before his team departs for Pittsburgh.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Prust Calls Devils' Farnham out for Showboating

Out with injury Vancouver Canucks' winger Brando Prust has been pining away to get into the action of late, but an ankle injury, suffered against Montreal on Oct. 28, has kept him out of the Canucks lineup. On Sunday, Prust found a way to get involved from his Twitter account. After Bobby Farnham fought Prust's 19-year-old teammate, rookie Jake Virtanen, Prust took to Twitter to hit Farnham with 140 characters (or less, I did not count).

Prust wasn't upset with the fact that Farnham fought the kid (Virtanen racked up 249 PIM with the Hitmen in the last three seasons, and is no stranger to dropping the gloves), he was more irked that Farnham, a journeyman who has logged 666 (seriously) penalty minutes in his last three AHL seasons, did some showboating after the tussle.

Was Farnham out of line? The fans at the Rock in New Jersey didn't seem to mind...

The Devils went on to win in OT, 4-3.

Hemsky Leaves His Feet to Smash Ericsson into Boards

Dallas' Ales Hemsky rattled the bones of Jonathan Ericsson with this booming hit, leaving his feet to deliver a big blow which then sends the Red Wing defenseman's head into the glass, bloodying it in the process. Ericsson quickly reacts by throwing a few blind punches and ends up being the only one penalized on the play. The hit, and the call, infuriated Red Wings' coach Jeff Blashill.

His protestations were to no avail, an the Stars went on to add two empty-netters to finish off the 4-1 victory at the Joe.

Dallas increases its lead atop the Western Conference to three points with the victory. They improve to 12-3-0 while the Wings fall to 7-6-1.

Ericsson's penalty wasn't the only difficult moment of the game. Wings' goalie Jimmy Howard had to be removed after being kneed in the head by Jason Spezza. According to Blashill, he's fine:

Here's the hit on Howard in case you missed it: