It wasn’t Martin Brodeur’s most dramatic win and it’s wasn’t the hardest he’s had to work over 60 minutes to earn a victory. Still, when you’re talking about Brodeur’s best wins, you have a lot to choose from. He has, after all, now won 650 regular season games.
Brodeur only needed to make 18 saves on Sunday to lead the Devils to a 4-1 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers. He has over 300 more victories than the next best active goaltender on the wins list. He’s also won 99 more regular season contests than Patrick Roy, who ranks second in career victories.
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Playing between the pipes for Philadelphia was Sergei Bobrovsky, who was giving Ilya Bryzgalov the night off. Bryzgalov has three shutouts in his last four starts, but after starting in 11 straight games, including Saturday’s contest, coach Peter Laviolette decided to give him a break. Bobrovsky and the Flyers held their own for the first 40 minutes, but he stopped just 10 of 13 shots in the third period. Bobrovsky has an ugly 5.19 GAA and .832 save percentage since the start of February.
This was a key victory for the New Jersey Devils, who are now tied with the Philadelphia Flyers for fifth place in the Eastern Conference. That said, the Flyers have played in one less game, so they still have an edge. Philadelphia will get a chance to bounce back on Tuesday when the teams play in the second half of their home-and-home series.
The Los Angeles Kings may owe Mike Richards money until 2031 (seriously), but in settling his grievance, the team and player more or less get to turn the page.
Not before Kings GM Dean Lombardi shares his sometimes startling perspective, though.
Lombardi has a tendency to be candid, especially in the press release-heavy world of sports management. Even by his standards, his account of Richards’ “destructive sprial” is a staggering read from the Los Angeles Times’ Lisa Dillman.
“Without a doubt, the realization of what happened to Mike Richards is the most traumatic episode of my career,” Lombardi said in a written summation he provided to the Los Angeles Times. “At times, I think that I will never recover from it. It is difficult to trust anyone right now – and you begin to question whether you can trust your own judgment. The only thing I can think of that would be worse would be suspecting your wife of cheating on you for five years and then finding out in fact it was true.”
Lombardi provides plenty of eyebrow-raising statements to Dillman, including:
- He believed he “found his own Derek Jeter” in Richards, a player who “at one time symbolized everything that was special about the sport.”
- Lombardi remarked that “his production dropped 50 percent and the certain ‘it’ factor he had was vaporizing in front of me daily.”
- The Kings GM believes that he was “played” by Richards.
Again, it’s a powerful read that you should soak in yourself, even if you’re unhappy with the way the Kings handled the situation.
Maybe the most pressing of many lingering questions is: will we get to hear Richards’ side of the story?
Despite owning two Stanley Cup rings, there are a healthy number of people who aren’t wild about Jonathan Quick.
Those people might feel validated through the Los Angeles Kings’ first two games, as he followed a rough loss to the San Jose Sharks with a true stinker against the Arizona Coyotes on Friday.
Sometimes a goalie has a bad night stats-wise, yet his team is as much to blame as anything else. You can probably pin this one on Quick, who allowed four goals on just 14 shots through the first two periods.
Things died down in the final frame, but let’s face it; slowing things down is absolutely the Coyotes’ design with a 4-1 lead (which ultimately resulted in a 4-1 win).
A soft 1-0 goal turned out to be a sign of things to come:
Many expected the Kings to roar into this second game after laying an egg in their opener. Instead, the Coyotes exploited Quick’s struggles for a confidence-booster, which included key prospect Max Domi scoring a goal and an assist.
It’s worth mentioning that Mike Smith looked downright fantastic at times, only drawing more attention to Quick’s struggles.
After a troubled summer and a failed 2014-15 season, Los Angeles was likely eager to start things off the right way.
Instead, they instead will likely focus on the fact that they merely dropped two (ugly) games.