When Sidney Crosby went down with a concussion, Steve Stamkos rose to the top of the goal scoring ladder where he’s stayed for most of the season. That is until tonight when Corey Perry willed the Ducks to victory with a pair of third period goals giving him 44 goals on the season and taking the NHL goal scoring lead.
Perry’s two-goal game was supported with assists from Ryan Getzlaf and Bobby Ryan on both goals while Ray Emery stopped 27 shots to get Anaheim into seventh place in the West while forcing Chicago into eighth. Marian Hossa was the lone goal scorer for Chicago as they couldn’t find a way to crack through on Emery who gave Jonas Hiller a break tonight as he slowly gets back into game shape from being sat down with vertigo.
While Getzlaf is the captain of the Ducks, it’s Perry that’s forcing people to take notice of him as a potential Hart Trophy candidate with his ability to carry the team both in Getzlaf’s absence from injury earlier this year but for also picking up his play with the team back to full health. Over the last nine games, Perry has 11 goals and four assists. The Ducks are 7-2-0 in those games.
All right Ducks fans, feel free to start the “MVP” chants, they’re more than warranted right now. If Perry gets the Ducks into the playoffs, chances are Vancouver, Detroit, and whoever wins the Pacific won’t want any part of them in the first round. Anaheim is a very dangerous team.
GM says Blue Jackets are ‘off the rails’ right now
Apparently Blue Jackets management is a little shaken by the second 0-3-0 start in franchise history, however.
Columbus GM Jarmo Kekalainen shared his shock and dismay with the Columbus Post-Dispatch on Tuesday.
“I’m surprised how, in just five days, we’ve gone from a very confident group to something that’s the opposite of that,” Kekalainen told The Dispatch on Tuesday. “Our confidence, our game … it’s off the rails right now.
Maybe losing to the Buffalo Sabres stings a little bit extra?
Kekalainen said “there’s no excuse for how we played in Buffalo,” pointing out that every team in the NHL is a “good team.”
Indeed, just about every squad boasts some dangerous weapons if they catch an opponent sleeping.
The Post-Dispatch goes deeper on Columbus’ recent history of stumbling out of the gate, but consider the foreboding stretch coming up.
Next four games: Three out of four at home Eight games following that: Seven out of eight on the road.
As you can see, winter is coming for Columbus, so they best get things together. All things considered, this is the right time for a wake-up call.
For bonus chuckles, here’s a photo of Kekalainen on a railing.
He entered the building considerably later than usual, but his presence at least opened the door for the possibility of No. 8 suiting up against the San Jose Sharks.
Instead, the Capitals will face the hot-starting Sharks without Ovechkin (personal reasons) and Nicklas Backstrom (injury).
That’s a tall order, yet it’s also an opportunity for Barry Trotz to prove his system is a difference-maker … and that the Capitals have the young players to take up the mantle when the big stars are out
This is how Washington’s forward lines may look tonight:
With Ovechkin out, Caps lines look like this: