Note: We’ll get you up to speed on the late Colorado-Vancouver game tomorrow morning or afternoon.
Toronto 3, Florida 1
Colton Orr normally does damage with his hands, but tonight, he scored a game-winner for the Maple Leafs. This was a pretty bland night overall on paper, with J.S. Giguere cruising to his fourth win of the season by making only 21 saves. Phil Kessel and Tyler Bozak also scored for Toronto while defenseman Dennis Wideman scored Florida’s only goal on the power play.
Ottawa 5, Phoenix 2
Don’t expect Ilya Bryzgalov to get much rest for the near future after this game. Backup Jason LaBarbera allowed three goals in one period of duty, including an Ottawa Senators record two goals in nine seconds to Erik Karlsson and Alex Kovalev. Kovalev earned two goals and one assists, helping Sergei Gonchar earn a win in his 1,000th career NHL game.
Philadelphia 6, Buffalo 3
I already discussed some of Ryan Miller’s struggles (and the problems faced by his team in general), so let’s focus on Philadelphia’s side of the story. The Flyers responded after losing four of their last five games by throwing 33 shots on Buffalo’s net and scored three times on the man advantage. Jeff Carter lead the way with one goal and two assists.
Anaheim 5, Dallas 2
Jonas Hiller made the difference in this one, holding the Stars to one goal on 30 shots through the game’s first two periods. The second frame was what killed the Stars, as the Ducks scored three in the middle period to take a convincing 3-1 lead. Bobby Ryan scored twice, both Corey Perry and Teemu Selanne provided a goal and assist each and Anaheim’s talent was just too much for Dallas to deal with.
Calgary 5, Edmonton 4 (SO)
The Brendan Morrison experiment is working out pretty well right now for the Flames. He’s had points in six of nine games in Calgary so far, including two games in tonight’s Battle of Alberta victory. After being out-shot 25-14 through the first two periods, the Oilers put up 17 shots in the second to bring a 4-2 game to a 4-4 tie. Alex Tanguay scored the only shootout goal to win it for the Flames.
As promised, Capitals star Alex Ovechkin rocked a pair of custom skates in honor of Russian Heritage Night on Thursday.
On his right skate, he paid tribute to the United States with a custom design, and paid tribute to his home nation on his left skate while taking the pre-game warm-up prior to facing the Columbus Blue Jackets.
He’ll be auctioning off the skates, as well.
From CSN Mid-Atlantic:
The skates were painted by noted custom shoe artists Nick Avery and Polo Kerber, whom Ovechkin personally selected. The skates feature the U.S. and Russia flags as well as the Capitol Building and Moscow’s St. Basil’s Cathedral.
Sidney Crosby has made news lately for his goal scoring and his use of the stick.
He speared Sabres forward Ryan O’Reilly below the belt the other night, and on Thursday he delivered a slash to Senators defenseman Marc Methot, who has since not returned to the game.
The slash rendered a finger on Methot’s left hand bloodied and injured. It certainly didn’t look good as Method (calmly) skated to the bench.
There was no call on the play.
Updated: Methot won’t return to this game.
Toronto’s talented rookies were back at it again Thursday, as William Nylander and Auston Matthews combined to set up the Maple Leafs’ first goal versus the New Jersey Devils.
Nylander added the second assist on the power play goal, giving him 35 helpers on the season.
That’s significant for a couple of reasons: He extends his point streak to 10 games, which sets a new Leafs rookie record. And the assist reportedly secured him another entry-level bonus:
The Anaheim Ducks have been without goalie John Gibson for almost two full weeks because of injury, but head coach Randy Carlyle provided reason for optimism on Thursday.
Per reports, Gibson took part in practice and Carlyle has said that his No. 1 netminder will play again during the regular season. Anaheim has nine games remaining on its schedule.
That’s good news for Anaheim heading into the post-season.
While Gibson has been out, Jonathan Bernier has stepped beyond his back-up role and provided solid goaltending for the Ducks during the stretch drive — which should also be a bonus for this club with the playoffs quickly approaching.
Bernier has wins in six of his last seven starts. In nine games this month, he has only twice allowed three goals or more.
The Ducks have fought their way back into contention for the Pacific Division with a recent surge that has coincided with San Jose’s current skid — only four wins in their last 10 games and four straight losses.
Related: Career back on track, Bernier hopes he can re-sign in Anaheim