Whether you’re interested for fantasy hockey reasons or just want to know which goalie your team is playing in a given day, we thought it might be helpful to share our best guesses (based on various previews from newspapers and Web sites plus our own instincts) on who might start each day.
Let’s take a look at who might start in tonight’s four games.
7:30 PM ET game
Boston @ Washington
Likely Boston starter: Tim Thomas – It’s been a solid start to the season for Thomas and considering the fact that they can earn wins and drive up his trade value at the same time. Considering it a win-win situation … until he starts losing. (Source: Fluto Shinzawa.)
Likely Washington starter: Michal Neuvirth – Semyon Varlamov seems like he’s on the verge of getting back to 100 percent, but why not reward Neuvirth for stacking up wins and give Varlamov adequate time to heal too? Seems pretty logical to me. (Source: Katie Carrera.)
8:00 PM ET game
Likely Calgary starter: Miikka Kiprusoff – When doesn’t he start? (Source: Calgary Herald.)
Likely Nashville starter: Pekka Rinne – He’s not a sure thing in net tonight, but it seems likely that he’ll return after a nice run by rookie Anders Lindback. (Source: Josh Cooper.)
9:oo PM ET game
Likely Vancouver starter: Roberto Luongo – Corey Schneider started on Sunday, so chances are pretty high that Luongo will get the nod tonight. You know, since the franchise tied their fate to his for next 10 years or so. (Source: Vancouver Sun.)
Likely Minnesota starter: Niklas Backstrom – I couldn’t find confirmation on this one, but when in doubt, go with the guy who makes $6 million.
10:30 PM ET game
Carolina @ San Jose
Likely Carolina starter: Cam Ward – My best guess is that Ward will start tonight for the Hurricanes. (Source: AP preview.)
Likely San Jose starter: Antti Niemi – It looks like Niemi will get another start. The Sharks need to score more goals to help him out, but it would be nice if he could steal a game for San Jose. That would justify the whole “letting Evgeni Nabokov walk” thing. (Source: David Pollak.)
Buffalo Sabres defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo has experienced plenty of bad injury luck in his winding career, but Saturday presented one of his worst scares.
As you can see from the video above, Colaiacovo received a scary cross-check from Viktor Arvidsson of the Nashville Predators, who received a major penalty and game misconduct.
Sabres head coach Dan Bylsma said that Colaiacovo was hospitalized with a “dented trachea” yet is OK, the Buffalo News’ John Vogl reports.
Frightening stuff from an eventual 4-1 Sabres win.
PHT will keep an eye out for additional updates regarding Colaiacovo’s health (and a possible suspension for Arvidsson).
Patrick Kane set an American scoring record, and added another assist to make it more impressive, but the Los Angeles Kings just wouldn’t be denied.
In the end, Marian Gaborik‘s big night meant more than Kane’s; he scored the tying and then overtime game-winner, both assisted by Anze Kopitar, for a rousing 4-3 overtime Kings win.
Gaborik’s first goal:
And here’s video of the OT-GWG:
Noticing a theme tonight? Yeah, it’s been an evening in which it’s dangerous to assume a lead would stand.
With that, the Kings stick to the No. 1 spot in the Pacific Division, but Chicago shouldn’t feel all bad. The Blackhawks were able to piece together a decent run during their dreaded “circus trip.”
When it comes to point streaks for U.S.-born NHL players, Patrick Kane now stands alone.
With a power-play goal early in Saturday’s Blackhawks – Kings game, Kane extended his streak to 19 games, breaking a tie with Phil Kessel and Eddie Olczyk (who finished with at least a point in 18 straight).
As of this writing, Kane has 11 goals and 19 assists during this 19-game streak. He also leads the NHL in scoring.
Bobby Hull’s 21-game point streak stands as the Chicago Blackhawks’ overall team record, by the way.
You know what they say: it’s easy to bash a strategy in hindsight.
Slam that NFL head coach for going for it on fourth down … or settling for the field goal. Bury that MLB manager because he kept a pitcher in too long. And so on.
“Score effects” settle in during almost any lopsided hockey game, yet the Dallas Stars present quite a conundrum: what’s the best way to put a way a team with this much firepower?
Tonight may have presented the greatest evidence that this team won’t go away easy, as it seemed like the Minnesota Wild had the best of a tired Stars team* when they built a 3-0 lead.
Instead, the Stars scored three third-period goals while Tyler Seguin capped the comeback with an overtime-winner.
It was one of those bend-and-then-break moments for Minnesota. Dallas generated a 44-26 shot advantage, including a ridiculous 35-15 edge in the final two periods.
Does that mean that Mike Yeo may have tried to play too conservatively with a healthy lead? It’s a possibility.
On the other hand, would the Wild be wiser to try to run-and-gun with one of the most dangerous offenses in the NHL?
It sure seems like a pick-your-poison situation. Which way would you lean, though?
* – To be fair to Minnesota, each team was on back-to-backs.