We’ll recap the desperate late game between the ailing New Jersey Devils and the struggling Anaheim Ducks tomorrow morning or afternoon. In the mean time, here’s a summary of the five other games on the NHL slate tonight.
Montreal 3, NY Islanders 1
Alex Auld proved that he’s one of the better backups in the NHL, stopping 30 shots to win in his first start of the season. Matt Martin scored the Isles’ only goal while the Habs received tallies from red-hot Tomas Plekanec, Benoit Pouliot and Travis Moen.
Carolina 4, NY Rangers 3
Jeff Skinner made a strong case for the Canes to keep him at the NHL level, putting together two goals and one assist in what probably won’t be his last game with the team this season. Cam Ward continues to look strong this season, stopping 40 out of 43 shots for a narrow win.
Philadelphia 3, Pittsburgh 2
This game started off with plenty of scraps, as 11 penalties were handed out in a mess of a first period. Claude Giroux killed the Penguins on special teams, scoring a power-play goal and a shorthanded goal in this one. The Pittsburgh goalie controversy talk keeps building (I’ll admit to fanning those flames myself).
Atlanta 4, Buffalo 3 (OT)
You can really summarize this game with two recent posts from PHT and the sequence that produced the overtime game-winner: Dustin Byfuglien won it for Atlanta thanks to his strong play while Buffalo’s defense left Ryan Miller out to dry.
Edmonton 7, Chicago 4
Wow, I can’t say that I saw this one coming. After taking eight games to score his first NHL goal, Taylor Hall now has a two-game goal scoring streak (he also added an assist). The Oilers did most of their damage in the first period, gaining a 4-2 lead thanks to a three goal outburst in 1:09 of game time.
(Hope Oilers fans didn’t take a poorly planned restroom break while watching this game on TV.)
It seems there will be no NHL comeback attempt by Alex Semin. At least not in 2016-17.
Instead, Semin has inked a one-year extension with Magnitogorsk Metallurg, according to Sport-Express writer Igor Eronko.
At 32 years old, Semin still could have a lot of years left in him as a professional hockey player, but at this point it wouldn’t be surprising if he has played in his last NHL game. Early in his career his talent was clear and demonstrated by some great showings offensively, but he was plagued by inconsistency. In recent years though, he wasn’t so much inconsistent as he was underwhelming.
After being limited to six goals and 19 points in 57 games with Carolina in 2014-15, the one-time 40-goal scorer was bought out of his five-year, $35 million contract just two seasons into it. Montreal took a chance on him for 2015-16, but he only appeared in 15 games with the Canadiens before they put him on unconditional waivers on Dec. 9.
He’s fared better in the KHL though, with five goals and 14 points in 20 regular season games followed by another seven markers and 15 points in 23 playoff contests.
PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
Among the 21 NHL.com and NHL Network experts offering their prediction for the Stanley Cup Final, 17 of them are choosing the San Jose Sharks. (NHL.com)
The majority of ESPN’s experts are also picking the Sharks. (ESPN.com)
For CBS Sports, Adam Gretz and Chris Peters are split on the outcome. (CBS Sports)
Tickets for the first Stanley Cup Final in San Jose appear to be going for significantly more than their Pittsburgh Penguins counterparts. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
Inspired by John Scott‘s comments, here’s the start of a World Cup All-Snubs’ team. (TSN)
Peter DeBoer said that then New Jersey Devils GM Lou Lamoriello fired him from the Devils’ head coaching job late at night on Christmas. The news then broke on Dec. 26. (Tom Gulitti)
The Pittsburgh Penguins are Vegas favorites to win the 2016 Stanley Cup, but the odds lean toward a San Jose Sharks player capturing the Conn Smythe.
Bovada released a variety of odds on Sunday after others surfaced on Friday.
Joe Pavelski is pegged as a +400 favorite as a winner, edging some other top candidates such as Sidney Crosby, Phil Kessel and Matt Murray.
Here’s the full list:
Logan Couture +500
Martin Jones +600
Brent Burns +700
Joe Thornton +900
Evgeni Malkin +900
Kris Letang +1400
Bovada also released prop bets, including how long the series might last. Check that out here.