Dennis Seidenberg, Ryan Kesler

Weekend Watch: Five games you need to see


This is the Weekend Watch. It’s a guide of what to watch this weekend.

Saturday: Vancouver at Boston, 1pm ET

I feel as though PHT’s sufficiently hyped this Stanley Cup rematch…but just in case we haven’t, here’s a series of links to get you amped!

Luongo to sit, Schneider to start versus Bruins

To fight back or turn the other cheek — Sedin says “it’s a no-win situation”

PHT talks Luongo or Schneider vs. Boston

Julien on Stanley Cup rematch: “I ton’t hink it’s as much as people think it is”

Stanley Cup rematch goes Saturday in Boston

Saturday: Tampa Bay at Montreal, 7pm ET

Thanks in part to a Quebecker-laden roster, the Lighting tend to put on a good show in Montreal.

There’s captain Vincent Lecavalier (Ile Blizard), associate captain Martin St. Louis (Laval), defenseman Bruno Gervais (Longueuil) and the guys with direct ties to the organization: former Habs Marc-Andre Bergeron (Saint-Louis-de-Frace) and goalie Mathieu Garon (Chandler) — and, of course, head coach Guy Boucher (Notrea-Dame-du-Lac), former bench boss of Montreal’s AHL affiliate in Hamilton.

Saturday: Washington at San Jose, 10:30pm ET

Fun fact: The Caps haven’t won in San Jose since Oct. 30, 1993.

To give you an idea of how long ago that was…

— The goalies were Rick Tabaracci (Washington) and Arturs Irbe (San Jose). Up until last year, Irbe served as Washington’s goalie coach.

— Washington’s goalscorers: Peter Bondra, Mike Ridley, Craig Berube and NBC Sports Network NHL analyst Keith Jones.

— San Jose goalscorers: Sergei Makarov and Tom Pederson.

— Amazingly, one current NHLer actually participated in that game: Ray Whitney.

Sunday: Philadelphia at Ottawa, 5pm ET

This will be the second game of a home-and-home/back-to-back series (lots of hyphens there), which usually leads to some nastiness. Another fun fact: Did you know the Flyers and Senators are the two most-penalized teams in hockey? It’s true. Philly leads all teams with 231 total penalties, Ottawa’s right behind with 223.

Sunday: Detroit at Chicago, 7:30pm ET

Amazingly, this will only be the second meeting of the season between the two heated division rivals. (Even more amazingly, their first meeting was on Dec. 30.) Be sure to keep an eye on the officiating in this one — last time out, Chicago had five powerplay opportunities to Detroit’s one and was awarded a penalty shot that Jonathan Toews converted to open the ‘Hawks scoring.

Niemi blanks Pens, notches two assists in Stars debut

Antti Niemi, Sidney Crosby, Patric Hornqvist

DALLAS (AP) — Antti Niemi recorded his 33rd career shutout and assisted on two goals in his Dallas debut, as the Stars beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-0 on Thursday night in the season opener for both.

Ales Hemsky had a power-play goal and an assist.

Rookie Matthias Janmark scored on his first shot on his first shift in an NHL game to make it 1-0. The Stars acquired Niemi and Janmark in trades earlier this year.

Dallas scored on two of five power plays. Jamie Benn, the NHL’s leading scorer last season, had a power-play goal in the third period.

Niemi made 37 saves to improve his career record against the Penguins to 5-1-1. He withstood a flurry in the final minute after Pittsburgh pulled goalie Marc-Andre Fleury for an extra skater.

Fleury had 21 saves.

The Stars are 4-0-1 in their last five home games against Pittsburgh, and have won three in a row overall.

Janmark skated down the slot, took a pass from Hemsky and shot between Fleury’s legs at 1:39 of the first.

The Penguins dominated the latter half of the period, but couldn’t score. Niemi’s best stop was a reaching glove save of Rod Scuderi’s drive from the blue line with less than 3 minutes remaining. Pittsburgh outshot the Stars 10-4 in the first.

Hemsky scored at 5:42 of the second on Dallas’ first power play. His shot from the top of the right faceoff circle went in over Fleury’s right shoulder.

The Penguins again had an advantage in shots, 13-11. Pittsburgh had chances in close, but Niemi turned those away. Midway through the second, John Klingberg cleared away a loose puck from in front of the net.

Seven seconds into the Stars’ fourth power play of the third period, Jamie Benn tipped in Jason Spezza‘s shot from the right point.

NOTES: Dallas acquired Janmark as part of a March trade that sent Erik Cole to Detroit. The rookie had been playing in the Swedish Hockey League. . San Jose traded Niemi’s rights to the Stars in June for a seventh-round draft pick. Also making their Dallas debuts were LW Patrick Sharp and D Johnny Oduya, teammates with Chicago’s Stanley Cup champions last season. . In his first game for the Penguins, Phil Kessel played in his 447th straight game. . Pittsburgh was 0 for 3 on the power play.

Fabbri’s first spoils McDavid’s debut as Blues down Oilers

Robby Fabbri, Justin Schultz
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ST. LOUIS (AP) — Rookie Robby Fabbri scored the tiebreaking goal midway through the third period to help the St. Louis Blues beat Edmonton 3-1 Thursday night, spoiling Oilers rookie Connor McDavid‘s NHL debut.

Vladimir Tarasenko had the tying goal for the Blues near the midpoint of the second period, and Troy Brouwer added an empty-netter with 18 seconds remaining in the third. Brian Elliott finished with 23 saves.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored in the first period for Edmonton and Cam Talbot had 28 saves.

McDavid, the No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft, took 22 shifts, played 18:07 and was on the ice for Brouwer’s goal. He had two shots on goal, and struggled on faceoffs – winning only three of 13.

Fabbri, a 19-year-old forward — and McDavid’s childhood friend — was also playing in his first NHL game. The Blues’ first-round pick in 2014 was one of three rookies in the St. Louis lineup, joining defensemen Colton Parayko and Joel Edmundson.

Nugent-Hopkins gave the Oilers a 1-0 lead late in the first period with a fluke power-play goal. He lost a face-off but when Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo tried to clear the puck it bounced off Alexander Steen and past Brian Elliott. Nugent-Hopkins was credited with the unassisted power-play goal with 2:38 remaining in the period.

Tarasenko tied it a 9:10 of the second after getting loose on a breakaway with a stretch pass from Alex Pietrangelo and beating Talbot through his legs.

Tarasenko, who signed an eight-year, $60 million extension in the offseason, was the last Blues player to score in his debut.

NOTES: McDavid and F Anton Slepyshev made their NHL debuts for the Oilers. … St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina dropped the ceremonial first puck. … The attendance was announced as standing room-only 19,327.