For the second game in a row, the Vancouver Canucks decided to start Cory Schneider instead of Roberto Luongo in a high-profile match. Much like that Jan. 7 contest against the Boston Bruins, that overblown decision paid off as the high-profile backup nabbed a 3-2 overtime win against the Chicago Blackhawks.
If the victory wasn’t a good enough argument for Alain Vigneault’s decision, this save says it all:
Ultimately it came down to a fantastic performance by Schneider (37 out of 39 made) and this great overtime goal by the Sedin twins:
(Interesting note: that tally makes Daniel Sedin the team’s all-time leader in OT goals.)
As far as the Blackhawks went, pot-stirrer Dave Bolland had a rough night with a -1 rating, zero points, and went 6-14 in the faceoff circle. Jonathan Toews (one assist, -1, five shots) and Patrick Sharp (zero points, even rating, three shots) seemed solid enough in their returns from injury as they played about 19:10 each.
Sure, it’s just two points for the Canucks and one charity point for the Blackhawks, but nights as excited as these have a nice way of breaking the monotony of an 82-game season. Did you take anything else away from that contest, though?
It makes sense that a swift bit of history happened in a game in which three goals were scored scored on three shots in about three minutes.
Brad Marchand found the net eight seconds in after an icing call, setting a new record for the Boston Bruins.
(You can see that goal in the video above.)
Watch that three-goal burst in this video:
The two teams weren’t done then. Loui Eriksson made it 3-1 while Pavel Datsyuk scored his 900th point to make it 3-2.
Maybe the best moment wasn’t a goal: Torey Krug was seemingly hurt by a Pavel Datsyuk hit, yet he returned without missing much time.
When the New Jersey Devils shut down a team 1-0, it’s usually with Cory Schneider in net.
Their workhorse got the afternoon off against the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday, yet Keith Kinkaid did his Schneider impression, grabbing his first NHL shutout in the process.
It was a low-event game with just 46 combined shots on goal, but Kinkaid had to work, stopping all 28 shots. To give you an idea of how tight this game was, the only tally was credited to David Schlemko on the power play.
This gives the Devils three straight wins. They managed to climb into third place in the Metropolitan Division, although New Jersey’s edge is a little misleading; the Islanders trail them by one standings point while holding three games in hand.
That leaves the Islanders in the bottom wild card spot, while the Penguins aren’t so far behind either.
Third in Metro: Devils – 65 points with 57 games played
Second wildcard: Islanders – 64 points, 54 GP
First spot outside the East playoffs: Penguins – 63 points, 54 GP
So, the Devils’ hold of a playoff spot is a bit tenuous, yet the bottom line is that they’re staying in the mix.
The Kings, meanwhile, remain comfortably in first in the Pacific.
The Boston Bruins (without Patrice Bergeron) take on the Detroit Red Wings (missing Jonathan Ericsson) on Sunday afternoon.
It’s a matchup between the second-ranked and third-ranked teams in the Atlantic Division, with little separating the two in the standings.
You can watch the game on NBC and also stream it online via the link below.
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As cool as it was at the time for many, Patrice Bergeron‘s fight against Blake Wheeler is … honestly, a good reminder why players like Bergeron rarely drop the gloves.
Multiple outlets including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty report that Bergeron will miss Sunday afternoon’s game against the Detroit Red Wings (which you can watch on NBC).
We don’t know a ton about the injury aside from the fact that the multiple Selke-winner is considered day-to-day.
People don’t seem overly concerned about this issue, but you have to wonder if Bergeron made a bad choice, especially considering his history of concussion issues.
You can watch the bout that may or may not have left him injured in the video above.