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.)
The Buzzer: Kempe, Schwartz record hat tricks; Leafs honor Gord Downie
The Blues forward tallied his third career hat trick during a 5-2 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. Schwartz scored the game’s first two goals before completing his hat trick with a late empty-net goal to stave off a Chicago comeback.
Wednesday’s feat for Schwartz came three years to the day of his first career three-goal game.
Kempe, meanwhile, tallied his first NHL hat trick and finished with four points during LA’s 5-1 rout of the Montreal Canadiens. Two of his three goals were assisted by Mike Cammalleri, who also finished the night with four points.
Highlight of the night:
Eddie Olczyk returned to the NBC broadcast booth as he continues his battle against colon cancer. Olczyk, along with Doc Emrick, called the Blues-Blackhawks game from Scottrade Center Wednesday night.
–Auston Matthews recorded the 20th multi-point game of his career. He now has six goals and 10 points on the season.
Adrian Kempe recorded his first career NHL hat trick and Mike Cammalleri added two goals as the Los Angeles Kings beat the Montreal Canadiens 5-1.
After Paul Byron opened the scoring for Montreal midway through the first period, the Kings responded with five unanswered goals to hand the Habs their sixth straight defeat.
Cammalleri, who inked a one-year deal over the summer to return to the Kings, had a hand in four of LA’s five goals. He started the scoring for the Kings in the first period by celebrating the Dodgers’ playoff run with his own special kind of baseball swing.
Kempe, who finished with four points as well, scored his three goals over a span of 10:50 in the third period to help the Kings to their best start in franchise history (5-0-1).
LA remains the only NHL team yet to lose in regulation this season.
Jaden Schwartz‘s third career hat trick helped power the St. Louis Blues over the Chicago Blackhawks 5-2 in a Central Division clash Wednesday night at Scottrade Center.
Schwartz’s eventful evening began with a goal 4:46 into the first period. It was nearly ended minutes later after a scary crash into the end boards following a scoring chance.
After missing some time, Schwartz returned in the second period and doubled the Blues’ lead with his fourth of a season, thanks to a great outlet pass from Allen.
As the Blues built up a 4-0 lead, the Blackhawks spoiled Allen’s shutout bid with a pair of late power play goals 80 seconds apart. The furious rally was stopped, however, and Schwartz capped off his hat trick with an empty netter to put the game out of reach.
St. Louis dominated the first two periods, outshooting the Blackhawks 26-8 as they built up their 2-0 lead. The Blackhawks’ power play failed them early in the game, missing out on five chances to capitalize with the extra man through 40 minutes.
The Montreal Canadiens play their second game of a three-game west coast trip Wednesday night against the Los Angeles Kings.
It hasn’t been the best start for the Habs, who sit tied for last in the Eastern Conference with a 1-4-1 record. They’re winless since an opening night win over the Buffalo Sabres. On the other side of things, the Kings are the only NHL team that has yet to lose in regulation. Their 4-0-1 start puts them a point behind the Vegas Golden Knights, and their game in-hand gives them the opportunity to leap into first place in the Pacific Division with a victory.
You can check out tonight’s game on NBCSN (10:30 p.m. ET) or online via the live stream.