Evgeni Malkin recorded his fourth five-point game of the season with two goals and three assists in the Penguins’ 8-4 win against the Jets.
Malkin, who had three five-point games in his career entering this season, is the first NHL player to score five or more points in a game four times in one season since 1995-96, when the man who now signs Malkin’s paychecks, Mario Lemieux, had six such games for Pittsburgh, and Peter Forsberg did it four times for Colorado.
This has been a pretty remarkable year for single-game efforts:
— Back in November, Edmonton’s Ryan Nugent-Hopkins became the first 18-year-old in NHL history with five assists in a game and just the fourth to get five points in a single outing.
— In February, Nugent-Hopkins’ teammate, Sam Gagner, became the 13th player ever to score eight or more points in a game, scoring 4G-4A against Chicago.
— Philly’s Claude Giroux had a five-assist night in a 7-2 romp over Buffalo on Feb. 16.
— On Feb 18., Vancouver’s Daniel and Henrik Sedin combined for eight points in a 6-2 romp over Toronto.
That said, this really is the year of Malkin (yes, even with Steven Stamkos scoring 50.) He’s the only player with a realistic shot of cracking 100 points, which would earn him his second Art Ross Trophy in four years — putting him alongside Lemieux, Wayne Gretzky and Jaromir Jagr as the only multiple winners since 1980.
Flames keep showing life, Stars stumble once again
If you think the Dallas Stars are struggling because of defense more than anything else, then you’ll make sure to keep the video above “on file.”
There Kari Lehtonen was, helpless on a 2-on-0 rush for the Calgary Flames, which Johnny Gaudreau finished with calm and ease. For some, that goal is the symbol of the Stars’ season.
Either way, it was a painful goal in the Flames’ 2-1 win against the Stars. Calgary won despite Dallas firing 30 shots on goal versus the Flames’ 20.
One team climbing, the other stumbling
With that, the Flames are now on a four-game winning streak. Since falling to 5-10-1 on Nov. 12, the Flames have gone 9-3-1 in their last 13 games, pushing them to 14-13-2 overall. Gaudreau coming back is the icing on the cake after Chad Johnson really took charge of the Flames’ top job.
During a similar span, the Stars can’t seem to get it together. Dallas stood at 6-6-3 after beating the Oilers 3-2 on Nov. 11. They’re now 10-11-6, essentially standing in place as a .500 team.
Dallas can’t seem to get momentum going, a thought that might have left them envious of the team on the other end of the ice on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, it wasn’t just about Jack Eichel vs. Connor McDavid. Instead, it was a clash between a fleet of young scorers who were in their prime, with the Buffalo Sabres coming up on top against the Edmonton Oilers.