The Carolina Hurricanes have bedeviled the New Jersey Devils in two fairly recent playoff series, so they served as a solid team for New Jersey to clinch a berth against. The Devils beat the Hurricanes 5-0 to reach that mark – and help Martin Brodeur earn the 119th shutout of his future Hall of Fame career.
As he has done for much of this season, Ilya Kovalchuk lead the Devils. He scored his 34th goal of the season and added two assists, including a helper on David Clarkson’s game-winner.
The Devils are just about certain to fall into the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference, thus making them the foil for whoever wins the Southeast Division. That could be a friendly matchup for New Jersey since the “third seed” isn’t likely to be stronger than them – at least on paper.
Making the playoffs is a big step after failing to do so this season, but they might need a deep run to continue to stride in the right direction – and perhaps keep Zach Parise from leaving.
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger