Going into Sunday’s game, only the 1975-76 Philadelphia Flyers and the 1929-30 Boston Bruins had ever won 20 straight home games. The Flyers had a shot to keep Detroit out of that exclusive club, but they blew it in a 4-3 loss and now whether or not Detroit breaks their record on Tuesday against Dallas is out of their hands.
This was a night when Detroit’s best players proved to be the heroes, with Niklas Kronwall, Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, and Johan Franzen each scoring a goal. Nicklas Lidstrom registered an assist and picked up the first star on a night where he surpassed Alex Delvecchio to become second to only Gordie Howe in terms of games played in a Detroit Red Wings uniform. By contrast, some of the Flyers top players like Claude Giroux and Jaromir Jagr were kept off the scoresheet.
Sergei Bobrovsky also had another night to forget, as he has now allowed 12 goals in just three games while starting goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov has been suffering from the flu.
Brayden Schenn scored twice for the Flyers, but his bad tripping penalty in the first period proved to be costly as it led to one of Detroit’s two power-play goals.
For the Philadelphia Flyers, this is their fifth loss in their last six games. They’re well behind the New York Rangers in the race for the Atlantic Division title and are in danger of coughing up the fourth seed and home ice advantage in the first round. Conversely, the Detroit Red Wings have won 12 of their 15 contests, and while Red Wings coach Mike Babcock might push his squad to do even better, they certainly can’t complain about their current record.
‘John leaves a lasting mark’: NHL announces Collins’ departure as COO
One of the driving forces behind the NHL’s growth over the last decade is moving on.
John Collins, who’s served as the league’s chief operating officer for the last seven years, will be leaving his post to embark on a new business opportunity.
More, from the League:
Collins, who joined the NHL in November 2006, had been COO since August 2008.
“John leaves a lasting mark,” said Commissioner Bettman. “His energy, creativity and skill at building strategic partnerships helped drive significant revenue growth for our League. We are grateful for his many contributions and wish him the best in his new endeavors.”
Said Collins, “I’m grateful to Commissioner Bettman for his leadership and friendship over the past nine years. He had a vision for extending the reach of the NHL and supported us completely as we set out to make the game as big as it deserves to be.
“The NHL’s future is filled with promise and potential and I will admire and cheer the League’s successes to come on the global stage.”
Collins, 53, was regarded as one of main presences behind a number of the NHL’s most successful initiatives, including the Winter Classic and Stadium Series, the HBO 24/7 collaboration, the relaunched World Cup of Hockey, Canadian and American television deals and partnerships with companies like SAP, Adidas, Major League Baseball Advanced Media and GoPro.
During Collins’ tenure, the NHL was twice named “Sports League of the Year” by the SportsBusiness Journal and SportsBusiness Daily — once in 2011, and again in 2014.
Columbus will have some reinforcements up front when it takes on the Devils tomorrow in New Jersey.
Brandon Dubinsky, who’s missed the last six games with an elbow injury, and Alexander Wennberg — who’s also missed the last six games, but with a foot ailment — have both been activated from injured reserve, and should be available for selection on Wednesday.
The Winter Classic Alumni Game is back this year, scheduled for New Year’s Eve at Gillette Stadium between former members of the Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins.
Today, the NHL announced the rosters and coaching staffs.
Famous ex-Habs that will take to the outdoor ice include Larry Robinson, Guy Carbonneau, and Mats Naslund. Behind the bench will be Yvan Cournoyer, Jacques Demers and Guy Lafleur, among others.
The home side will counter with Bruins legends Ray Bourque, Cam Neely, and “Nifty” Rick Middleton, while Don Cherry, Mike Milbury, and Derek Sanderson will be among the coaches. (Quite a trio of personalities right there.)