Riding the Zamboni – Monday, January 3rd

It was the first Monday of 2011, which means someone somewhere might have made a “case of the Mondays” quip for the first time this year. Let’s hope our culture progressed beyond that point, though.

For a recap of the Chicago Blackhawks-Los Angeles Kings game, click here. Now let’s take a look at the night’s other four games.

Boston 2, Toronto 1

Maybe the Maple Leafs should stop trading with the Bruins altogether. After all, Tuukka Rask keeps coming back to haunt them (36 out of 37 saves) while the Phil Kessel trade keeps looking less lucrative for the Leafs. It’s a godsend that they didn’t end up trading for Marc Savard, considering the fact that he is struggling greatly coming back from concussion issues.

Then again, he scored Monday’s game winner, so maybe Toronto just can’t catch a break.

Florida 4, Carolina 3 (OT)

The Panthers have been toothless in Carolina (now 6-25-2) in their history and it looked like that trend would continue when they coughed up a 3-1 lead. Yet a Bryan Allen slap shot beat Cam Ward in overtime won them the game, giving the team a rare bit of optimism.

NY Islanders 5, Calgary 2

It wasn’t a great night in every way for the Islanders, as they saw Rick DiPietro leave the game with an “abductor strain.” Yet in the short term, the Isles at least had one good night. John Tavares scored two goals and one assist and his partner in crime Matt Moulson scored two goals to beat the Flames pretty handily. David Moss scored two goals for Calgary.

After DiPietro left the game a few minutes into the second period, Nathan Lawson stopped 28 out of 29 shots. This might be a bad night in the big picture, but things looked solid on Monday.

Vancouver 4, San Jose 3

Much like the Panthers’ struggles in Carolina, the Canucks haven’t had much luck in San Jose. They earned their first win in the California city since April 7, 2007. They overcame a nice performance from Antti Niemi (43 saves) while earning a win for Cory Schneider, who made 32 out of 35 saves.

Alexander Burrows scored the game winner and also set a beautiful Sedin twins goal in motion in the first. They came back from a 3-2 deficit to finally win in San Jose.

Glencross released from another PTO, this time by Avs

Washington Capitals v Ottawa Senators
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Curtis Glencross’ hard-luck preseason continued on Monday, as the Avalanche announced they released him from his training camp tryout.

Glencross had previously been cut from Toronto’s camp, which he described as “kind of a shock” move. Following that release, the 32-year-old quickly shifted to Colorado but arrived fairly late in the overall process, and only got a bit of exposure before being let go.

While some thought yesterday’s trade of Freddie Hamilton to Calgary may have opened up a spot for Glencross, the Avs now appear to be going in a different direction.

A two-time 20-goal scorer that netted 13 in 71 games last year, it’s unclear what lies ahead for Glencross.

Slepyshev earns final Oilers roster spot; Draisaitl to AHL

Anton Slepyshev, Anton Lander
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The Edmonton Oilers have assigned center Leon Draisaitl to AHL Bakersfield.

The demotion of Draisaitl, 19, means 21-year-old rookie Anton Slepyshev has made the opening-day roster after scoring twice and adding two assists in exhibition action.

The Oilers experimented during the preseason with Draisaitl, a natural center, on the wing. He didn’t have a particularly poor camp, finishing with one goal and three assists in six games.

But Slepyshev apparently impressed more.

“He’s a young player but he’s played pro hockey before,” coach Todd McLellan told the Edmonton Journal. “You can see it.”

Slepyshev played 58 games in the KHL last season, scoring 15 goals for Salavat Yulaev Ufa.