The good people at Bovada have posted odds on where Columbus captain Rick Nash will end up after the Feb. 27 trade deadline.
A few thoughts:
—- There are obviously valid reasons to believe the Rangers won’t get Nash prior to the deadline, like how it would affect team chemistry and the fact Glen Sather doesn’t have a blue-chip goalie prospect to offer in return. But who says the Jackets have to get their goalie upgrade through a Nash deal? There are other ways to get that done.
—- The Bruins will have the same chemistry concerns as the Rangers. They also won’t want to deal Tuukka Rask, who’s the future in goal. Nor will they want to deal Dougie Hamilton, the future on the blue line. That said, RW Nathan Horton is out indefinitely with a concussion and Boston has the cap space.
—- The Leafs (11/2) are a potential match given they need size up front, Nash grew up cheering for them, and money is no object. But what could Brian Burke send in return? Nazem Kadri? Luke Schenn? Yes, he could. Easily. You see what I’m getting at.
—- If you believe what Elliott Friedman concluded today – that a Nash trade is more likely to happen over the summer – you should be all over “any other team” (5/1), since that would include Columbus. I’m actually wondering if that was an oversight, unless Bovada knows something we don’t.
There was a time when Anders Nilsson seemed like the best bet in the Oilers’ net this season. This … is not that time.
Less than 12 minutes into Sunday’s game, the New York Islanders roared to a 3-0 lead, and that was enough for Edmonton to give Nilsson the hook.
He allowed those three goals on 10 shots, so to be fair, that’s a pretty impressive chunk of chances (almost a shot on goal per minute).
Still, the Oilers were likely hoping to give Cam Talbot a breather, and instead he was rushed into action. Nilsson hadn’t played since Jan. 19, and he’s only appeared in three games in 2016.
As if this didn’t sting enough for Nilsson, consider the fact that he began his NHL career with the Islanders, who eventually decided he wasn’t worth keeping.
Alex Ovechkin scored to join Wayne Gretzky and Mike Gartner as only players with at least 30 goals in each of their first 11 NHL seasons, and Matt Niskanen netted the game winner as Washington beat the Flyers 3-2 at Verizon on Super Bowl Sunday.
Michael Del Zotto and Nick Schultz replied for the Flyers, who suffered their second straight loss.
The win was the Capitals’ third in a row.
It didn’t always look as though Washington would emerge the victor, however. The Caps were out-shot 35-30 on the day and looked disjointed at times, finishing with 12 giveaways (Philly was credited with just five, for comparison’s sake).
But good teams find ways to win when they’re not playing especially well, and the Caps are a pretty good team — especially when Braden Holtby is on his game.
Holtby, atop many Vezina lists at the moment, had another terrific outing on Sunday, making 33 saves, perhaps none better than this one on Mark Streit in the second period:
Holtby’s counterpart, Steve Mason, had a solid outing as well, finishing with 27 stops.
Looking ahead, the Caps will now head out on a three-game Western Conference swing through Minnesota, Nashville and what promises to be a high-octane game in Dallas on Feb. 13.
The Flyers, meanwhile, will now kick off a three-game homestand against Anaheim, Buffalo and New Jersey.
Winnipeg forward Drew Stafford will meet with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety for his high stick on Colorado’s Nick Holden on Saturday night, the DoPS announced this afternoon.
There was no immediate video of the incident available. Stafford wasn’t penalized on the play, which occurred during the third period; Holden finished the final frame with 10 shifts for 6:46 of ice time.
Stafford, 30, has a clean disciplinary history and hasn’t been fined or suspended during his 10-year NHL career.
Braden Holtby continued his Vezina-worthy campaign on Super Bowl Sunday with an outrageous pad stop on Flyers d-man Mark Streit, midway through the Washington-Flyers game on NBC.
Pretty impressive effort from “Holt-beast,” who currently sits first in the NHL in wins, with 32.