Anaheim Ducks v Montreal Canadiens

Bobby Ryan’s shootout goal gives Ducks 4-3 win in Montreal; Koivu named second star by fans

On the unofficial Saku Koivu night in Montreal, it would be another member of the Ducks who came away with his team’s glory tonight. Bobby Ryan scored the game-winner in the shootout for the Ducks as they avoided disaster against the Habs winning 4-3.

Anaheim went into the third period with a 3-1 lead but saw it evaporate as the Habs broke out with a full-on attack in the period putting 23 shots on net. Mathieu Darche and Max Pacioretty each had goals in the period to tie the score. From there, the game headed to overtime setting the stage for the possibility of seeing the homecoming Koivu becoming the hero for Anaheim in the extra period, but it didn’t happen as the teams skated scoreless for the final five minutes.

In the shootout, Ryan ended it scoring the only goal of the skills competition in the third round ending a great game for him as he had a goal during regulation to go with his shootout winner. The real star of the night was once again Jonas Hiller as he stopped 37 shots on the game and allowed no goals in the shootout to earn the win. His 21-save third period was what helped keep the Ducks in the game. Carey Price stopped 23 shots in the loss.

For Montreal, it ends a bittersweet night as the fans were more than welcoming to the return of Saku Koivu but saw the former Habs captain do more to help them out by committing three minor penalties as well as assisting on Corey Perry’s 25th goal of the year.

Video: Rangers shut out red-hot Sidney Crosby and the Penguins

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The New York Rangers are likely too far behind the Washington Capitals to take any legitimate run at the Atlantic Division down the stretch.

But winners now of four straight, the Rangers have opened up a bit of a gap between them and other Eastern Conference teams in the playoff race. New York scored a 3-0 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, winners in six of their last seven games, on Wednesday.

In the process, they held a red-hot Sidney Crosby off the score sheet, which has been a difficult, sometimes impossible task for opposing teams since about the middle of December. He entered this game with a seven-game scoring streak.

(In fact, New York held No. 87 to without a shot on goal in the entire game.)

Henrik Lundqvist stopped all 34 shots he faced for the shutout.

Kevin Hayes gave the Rangers the lead in the first period, before Dominic Moore and Jesper Fast put the game away in the third.

Pittsburgh remains in the second Wild Card spot in the East. The Rangers now move three points clear of the rival Islanders for second in the Metropolitan.

Video: Wideman hearing ‘a tricky case’ as NHLPA hopes to get 20-game suspension reduced

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There is no certain timeline for when NHL commissioner Gary Bettman might rule on Dennis Wideman‘s appeal, according to a report from hockey insider Darren Dreger on NBCSN, as the Calgary Flames defenseman hopes to get his 20-game ban for hitting linesman Don Henderson reduced.

“Now, ultimately what they’re hoping from a Wideman perspective and the Players’ Association is that commissioner Gary Bettman will rule and he will reduce the number of games suspended down from 20,” said Dreger during a segment on NBCSN.

“Is he going to reduce it by three games? Five games seems a bit of a stretch. And when might he do that? There’s no timeline on this.”

Report: Coyotes shut down Vitale (concussion) for the season

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Joe Vitale will not play again this season.

The Arizona Coyotes have shut Vitale down for the remainder of the 2015-16 campaign due to “concussion-related issues,” according to a report from Sarah McLellan of azcentral sports on Wednesday.

Vitale, a 30-year-old veteran center, appeared in only one game for the Coyotes this season. That was back on Oct. 17, when he suffered a concussion and broken orbital bone in a fight with Kevan Miller of the Boston Bruins.

Sens announce Frattin, acquired in Phaneuf deal, will stick with AHL Marlies

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Matt Frattin was traded by the Leafs to Ottawa yesterday as part of the Dion Phaneuf blockbuster.

But for now, he’s staying in Toronto.

On Wednesday, Sens GM Bryan Murray announced that Frattin will remain with the Leafs’ AHL affiliate — the Toronto Marlies — on loan, but will be available for selection should Ottawa require his services down the road.

Frattin, 28, has spent all of this season with the Marlies, scoring nine goals and 22 points in 47 games. His last NHL appearance came during the ’14-15 campaign, with the Leafs.

Prior to that, the former North Dakota standout had spent time in Los Angeles and Columbus.