Nikita Filatov

Nikita Filatov might be taking his puck and going home again


The Ottawa Senators’ experiment in bringing Nikita Filatov is looking like it’s coming to an end.

Yahoo and TSN’s Dmitry Chesnokov tweeted that Filatov is deciding between going to Russia or sticking it out in the AHL after being sent down by the Senators. Chesnokov reports that it’s up to the Sens if they want to let him go or not.

This time around, it might be best to just let the former Blue Jackets first-round pick to walk away and figure out if he wants to make it work in North America or not. Filatov has struggled against advanced competition in the NHL while doing ridiculous things to make AHL players look foolish when he’s had the motivation to do so. For Filatov, going back home might just be the best thing for him.

You never want to prematurely label a guy a “bust” but since being drafted in 2008 (sixth overall) Filatov’s attempts at establishing himself in the NHL have turned out to be both disappointing and frustrating all the same. The kid has a world of talent but either gets too frustrated with how the NHL plays or he had his development fully stunted by being rushed into the pros.

Either way, this might be the last we hear of Filatov for some time in North America.

Kane scores OT-winner, caps Islanders’ bumpy start in Brooklyn

Patrick Kane
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On paper, it’s the perfect way to kick off meaningful hockey in Brooklyn, as the New York Islanders faced the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks on Friday.

In reality, there were some highs and lows, culminating with Patrick Kane scoring a power-play overtime-winner to give Chicago a 3-2 (OT) win.

The Barclays Center crowd was going to be a big part of the story one way or another, but even by building-opening standards, the audience made some waves.

Indeed, Kane was greeted with some jeers during his first road appearance of the 2015-16 season, though he didn’t sound surprised.

(There were other controversial chants, apparently.)

Speaking of the crowd, it may not have been the greatest turnout:

ESPN goes way, way in depth on how the change of locale was received, by the way.

It wasn’t a perfect night inside the rink, either, as there weren’t exactly rave reviews about ice quality. New York Newsday’s Arthur Staple compared the ice to a “slushy” and “soup,” with an anonymous Islander (or Islanders) describing the conditions as “awful.”

Kane was pretty diplomatic about it, for what it’s worth.


So, no, it was not a perfect night for the Islanders.

They probably envisioned a teeming, perfectly mannered crowd. Management likely expected Jaroslav Halak to be in net, too.

Sometimes breaking ground is often about overcoming those early stumbles, though, and maybe the best review is to parallel the on-ice results: the Isles at least got a point out of it.

Let’s not forget that there are some cool perks that come with this situation, even if the specifics may vary.

If you want even more information/photos/etc., you’d probably do well to check out #IslesOpeningNight.

Columbus collapse: Rangers spoil Blue Jackets’ opener

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For a little more than a minute, Brandon Saad was going to be the story of the Columbus Blue Jackets’ opener. Instead, his power-play goal merely got the ball rolling on a flabbergasting finish.

The New York Rangers scored three goals in 1:17 of game time to manage a 4-2 win.

They’ve now spoiled home openers for the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets to begin their 2015-16 season.

It might be easiest just to show you when the goals were scored, noting that the third period began with a 1-1 tie.

Brandon Saad power-play goal: 16:10 into third period (2-1 Columbus)
Oscar Lindberg: 17:24 (2-2 tie)
Kevin Hayes: 17:41 (3-2 Rangers)
Mats Zuccarello: 18:41 (4-2 Rangers)

Yikes. Zuccarello scored two of the Rangers’ goals, while a beauty by Cam Atkinson is likely long forgotten.