Preseason quick recaps – October 2nd

Here are the rest of the preseason recaps from action last night. If you’re missing the goods from earlier in the day from Europe, don’t worry we got to that already.

Columbus 4 – Atlanta 3

Plus: Maybe there’s something to this Nikita Filatov kid after all. Two more goals in the preseason certainly helps make us believe it.

Minus: In the battle of goaltenders named Mason, Chris came up short against Steve, stopping 25 shots.

Toronto 4 – Detroit 2

Plus: Toronto came out all guns blazing against a very AHL-like Wings lineup and did their job. They were even able to give their own AHL-bound goalie Jussi Rynnas a bit of a confidence boost after getting shelled the other night.

Minus: Detroit’s Justin Abdelkader got a chance to show how his boxing lessons in the off-season worked out for him against Luke Schenn. Perhaps going back for a few more lessons might be a good idea.

Montreal 7 – NY Islanders 2

Plus: Benoit Pouliot and Tomas Plekanec were able to jump start themselves for the regular season by each scoring two goals against the Isles split squad.

Minus: Mike Cammalleri getting kicked out of the game for slashing Nino Niederreiter. Of course, Niederreiter might’ve lit the fuse by hitting Cammalleri questionably the play before that.

NY Islanders 2 – New Jersey 1

Plus: Getting a solid start out of Rick DiPietro has to make the Islanders feel pretty good. Ricky D stopped 25 shots in the win.

Minus: The Devils rolled out what amounts to be their opening night lineup and couldn’t take out the half-Isles. Oops.

Ottawa 8 – NY Rangers 5

Plus: Sens getting hat tricks from both Zack Smith and Chris Kelly ranks out as one of the most unlikely things I thought I’d ever write, yet here we are. Rangers getting two goals from Todd White is nice as he’s in danger of not making the team.

Minus: How about that goaltending? Martin Biron stopped 20 of 26 shots he faced, meanwhile Pascal Leclaire stopped 25 out of 30. Barf-tastic.

Tampa Bay 4 – Florida 1

Plus: Steven Stamkos appears to be ready for the regular season after a two-goal night. Vinny Lecavalier got on the board with a goal of his own. Florida’s Mike Santorelli continues to impress the Panthers scoring their only goal.

Minus: Panthers goalie Jakob Markstrom has had a rough training camp and he takes the loss again, this time thanks to his defense hanging him out to dry stopping 36 of 40 shots.

St. Louis 4 – Dallas 3 (F/OT)

Plus: Alex Steen had two assists for St. Louis while four different goal scorers got them the win. Jamie Benn had a goal and an assist for Dallas.

Minus: After Kari Lehtonen stopped all 19 shots he saw, Andrew Raycroft stopped just eight of 12 shots in taking the loss.

Los Angeles 3 – Colorado 2

Plus: Ryan Smyth scored the game-winning goal late in the third period while Anze Kopitar had a goal and an assist. David Jones scored both goals for Colorado.

Minus: The Avalanche taking another loss in the annual preseason battle with the Kings in Las Vegas. The Avs are now 2-10-2 in the series that dates back to 1998.

Scroll Down For:

    Capitals shine glaring light on Blues’ goalie woes

    ST LOUIS, MO - MAY 23:  Jake Allen #34 of the St. Louis Blues makes a save during the first period against the San Jose Sharks in Game Five of the Western Conference Final during the 2016 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scottrade Center on May 23, 2016 in St Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
    Getty
    Leave a comment

    If you’re reaction to the headline “Something is off about the St. Louis Blues” was “Yeah, their goaltending,” then Thursday only emboldened that opinion.

    It wasn’t just that the Washington Capitals bombarded the Blues by a score of 7-3. It’s that they really didn’t need to fire a whole lot of shots on goal to get to seven.

    Here’s a harsh rule of thumb: when both of your goalies play in a game and each one barely makes more saves than goals allowed, that’s an awful night. Take a look at what Jake Allen and Carter Hutton went through:

    Allen: six saves, four goals allowed in 25:11 time on ice
    Hutton: five saves, three goals allowed in 35:49

    Allen got pulled from the contest twice, by the way. He’s been pulled from four games since Dec. 30. Woof.

    Even before these horrendous performances, the Blues goalies have been shaky. Hutton came into tonight with an ugly .898 save percentage; Allen wasn’t much better with a .900 mark.

    Those are the type of numbers that would make Dallas Stars fans cringe, or at least experience some uncomfortable familiarity.

    Now, is it all on Hutton and Allen? Much like with the Stars’ embattled goalies, much of the struggles probably come down to a team struggling in front of them.

    Even so, if you assign more of the blame to Allen and Hutton, nights like this Capitals thrashing definitely strengthen your argument. Yikes.

    Rangers overwhelm Leafs, make life pretty easy for Lundqvist in win

    TORONTO, ON - JANUARY 19:  Henrik Lundqvist #30 of the New York Rangers faces a shot in the warm-up prior to play against the Toronto Maple Leafs in an NHL game at the Air Canada Centre on January 19, 2017 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
    Getty
    Leave a comment

    Heading into Thursday, many were wondering how the New York Rangers will handle Henrik Lundqvist‘s struggles. Instead, the focus shifted to the Toronto Maple Leafs’ difficulties, perhaps specifically in dealing with Morgan Rielly‘s absence.

    The Rangers handily won this one 5-2, at least giving Lundqvist the win. He wasn’t especially busy, stopping 23 out of 25 shots, so you can probably file his story under “To be continued.”

    Really, it was all about the waves of attackers the Rangers can send at opponents and the trouble that caused for the Maple Leafs. It wasn’t the easiest night for Frank Corrado, in particular, who took a couple costly penalties.

    The Rangers’ next two games come in a road contest vs. the Red Wings on Sunday and a home game against the Kings on Monday. Perhaps those matches will serve as a better barometer for where Lundqvist’s really at, as he passed tonight’s test … but it wasn’t a particularly difficult one.

    So, is Mike Condon actually really good? He certainly was against Columbus

    OTTAWA, ON - JANUARY 8: Mike Condon #1 of the Ottawa Senators stands at the bench during a break in a game against the Edmonton Oilers at Canadian Tire Centre on January 8, 2017 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.  (Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images) *** Local Caption ***
    Getty
    Leave a comment

    Considering their numbers heading in, many were perplexed when the Ottawa Senators essentially replaced Andrew Hammond with Mike Condon. Now many are perplexed by just how strong Condon’s often been for Ottawa.

    Thursday might stand as the prime example that this guy could be better than many expected.

    The Columbus Blue Jackets dominated much of the play, generating a 42-28 shots on goal advantage, but Ottawa ended up winning 2-0 tonight.

    Condon already came into tonight with a solid save percentage (.915 before this shutout), and he’s now won four of his last five games. Three of his four career shutouts have come this season.

    Ignoring his one game with Pittsburgh this season for the sake of simplicity (it was bad), just consider his tough times with Montreal last season. He went 21-25-6 with a shaky .903 save percentage.

    This marks just his 21st start and 23rd appearance of this season, so it’s not a guaranteee for future results. Still … it’s another example that goalies are as just about as unpredictable as they are crucial to a team’s fate.

    More and more, it seems like Condon might just be a difference-maker, and in the positive sense this time around.

    Greiss blanks Stars as Isles win in first game of post-Capuano era

    NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 19:  Doug Weight of the New York Islanders handles his first game as head coach against the Dallas Stars at the Barclays Center on January 19, 2017 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
    Getty
    Leave a comment

    The New York Islanders began the Doug Weight era in the same way Jack Capuano’s ended: with a shutout.

    Yeah, it’s easy to forget that the Islanders actually won their last game under Capuano, consider all that’s happened since.

    They blanked the Boston Bruins 4-0 on Monday and generated a 3-0 shutout against thd Dallas Stars on Thursday. It’s quite a feather in the cap of goalie Thomas Greiss, who owns these back-to-back shutouts.

    (It’s worth mentioning that, for all the Bruins’ and Stars’ flaws, they can be very explosive on offense …)

    That Monday shutout wasn’t enough for Capuano to save his job, and the Isles still have a long way to go after this encouraging outcome. The East’s second wild card spot still seems like a long shot for Weight & Co.

    Even so, the Islanders will take it. They play their next five games at home and seven of eight in Brooklyn, so if there’s ever a time for movement, it would logically come now.

    If nothing else, maybe life will be a bit better for John Tavares. He scored another goal on Thursday to add to his beautiful 1-0 tally.

    Baby steps, right?