While Erik Johnson earlier today vowed to haunt the Blues, he did his part tonight in helping the Avalanche beat the Blues and perhaps finally put a bullet in their playoff hopes. The Avalanche earned a 4-3 win over St. Louis and ended their nine game losing streak in the process. Erik Johnson scored in the third to give St. Louis a 3-2 lead but St. Louis’ Chris Stewart’s late goal wouldn’t allow it to end up being the game winner. Stewart finished the game with two goals.
The setting managed to make things a lot more interesting considering where both teams are in the Western Conference. With both teams basically being out of the mix for the playoffs in the crowded West, bringing a little bit of zest to this game was welcomed and both teams made it pay off. Fast action, plenty of goals, and former teammates burning each other all over the place.
After it was all said and done, Peter Budaj stood tall and played his best game in a long time stopping 42 shots to get the Avs the win. Ty Conklin had yet another tough outing and made Blues fans long for the return of Jaroslav Halak stopping 23 shots in the loss. Paul Stastny had a goal and two assists as he too deals with trade rumors in Denver while fellow trade target John-Michael Liles had two assists for Colorado.
Saturday’s been unkind to the Toronto Maple Leafs, and not just on the scoreboard (where it’s 3-0 early on against the Ottawa Senators).
The Maple Leafs lost Tyler Bozak to an apparent upper-body injury thanks to a questionable hit by Sens forward Mika Zibanejad.
You can judge that check (which drew a minor penalty for illegal check to the head) in the video above. Again, Bozak will not return to tonight’s game.
It’s unclear if Bozak will miss time beyond this contest.
Scary stuff on Saturday: multiple reporters (including the Maine Hockey Journal’s Chris Roy) note that Malcolm Subban was taken to a hospital after a puck struck his throat during warm-ups.
There’s no word yet on Subban’s condition beyond that he was taken away in an ambulance.
The AHL’s Providence Bruins seem like they’ve been left scrambling for a backup goalie in Subban’s absence.
Subban stated days ago that he’s taken some significant steps forward during the 2015-16 season.
The Ottawa Senators cannot pin all of their troubles on missing their No. 1 center, yet it probably feels like a huge relief to get him back.
After missing six games with his latest injury, Kyle Turris is in the lineup as the Senators take on the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Again, it’s not all a matter of missing Turris, but the Senators went 1-5-0 during his six-game absence. They’ve really been falling since late December, to be honest.
Will Turris be enough to stop the bleeding? Perhaps to an extent, but the Senators are in for a serious battle if they hope to fight through the East bubble.
Times have been tough for Montreal Canadiens and Edmonton Oilers fans lately, even if they’ve been frustrating in different ways.
Saturday’s 5-1 Habs win highlights a few things, but the most tantalizing thought for those fans is that it’s likely that we’ll see more great things from P.K. Subban and Connor McDavid … sometimes against each other.
Perhaps this will be a confidence booster for Montreal. More than anything else, it directed attention to Subban, who’s quietly been absolutely fantastic for the floundering Canadiens.
Consider how much of an offensive burden he’s currently carrying:
From one current All-Star to someone who could be a perennial one: McDavid certainly seemed to grab Subban’s attention.
Then again, when you make moves like these, who won’t notice?
The Oilers did lose, mind you, so it’s not surprising that Todd McLellan mentioned that the team can’t depend upon McDavid for everything.
That said, the funny thing about that quote is that McDavid might just carry the Oilers for two decades, at least if health and other factors go the right way.
If that’s true, Subban vs. McDavid could be a fun matchup to watch a few times per season for a long, long time.