NY Islanders @ Atlanta
Oh, the Islanders. They dropped their 12th straight game last night to the Panthers and they’re going to try to snap the skid against a rested Thrashers team who’s looking to redeem themselves after losing in gut-wrenching style to the Capitals on Friday night. One thing working in the Isles favor is that Atlanta can’t seem to keep opponents off the board. The Isles offense is in rough shape but not without trying as they managed to put up 40 shots on Tomas Vokoun last night while scoring just once. Will we get to see Rick DiPietro for the Islanders? If for just rest purposes it might not be a bad idea.
Calgary @ Detroit
Calgary comes in riding high after a 7-2 thrashing of the Blackhawks on Friday night while the Wings are hoping to put their stomach-punching overtime loss to the Wild behind them. The Flames will again be without Olli Jokinen but if Jarome Iginla can keep having games like he had the other night, Calgary might be able to get things back together quickly. Iginla’s hat trick against Chicago doubled his goal total for the season. Suffice it to say, they need him to continue stepping up. For Calgary, this is the first game of a five-game road trip out east.
Edmonton @ Anaheim
Don’t look now, but the Ducks are sneaking up on the top spot in the Pacific Division. They’re three points behind the Kings in the division and with the Sharks still being a bit out of whack, the Ducks are hoping to keep things going. A tough loss to Columbus on Friday night helped keep them off the pace, but the Ducks at home are tough. Playing against an Edmonton team playing poorly and without Nikolai Khabibulin helps make things look good for them heading into the game. The Oilers, meanwhile, will be hoping to avoid a seventh straight loss. They’ve given up the most goals in the league and now they’re not getting the scoring to keep up. And you wonder why they’ve lost so many in a row. Youth will someday be served in Edmonton but so far this year it’s been almost exclusively growing pains.
Phoenix @ Vancouver
Phoenix is red hot having won five in a row and squaring off with a frustrated Roberto Luongo and the Canucks should provide them with a daunting test in Vancouver. The Canucks were torched for seven goals against the Blackhawks last night leading to post game complaints from head coach Alain Vigneault about Chicago running up the score. Boo hoo. Instead of getting angry with their words, the Canucks will look to take out their frustrations on a hot team. That doesn’t quite sound like a recipe for success. Then again, that’s why they play the games too. Vancouver will be looking to avoid a three-game losing streak.
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.