Kyle Brodziak shakes off skate to the face


After a surprising start, the Minnesota Wild have had some bad times in their considerable fall back to Earth. Kyle Brodziak’s 22-goal season has been one of the best bright spots, but he convincingly showed that he’s more than just a nice goal scorer on Tuesday.

Brodziak took a skate to the face from his own teammate Darroll Powe – Michael Russo passes along video that indicates it landed somewhere around his left cheek or nose – yet he returned in the same first period with a visor, according to the Minnesota Wild.

Sure, true hardcores might penalize Brodziak for what Russo calls a “[Dany] Heatley visor,” but it’s still a testament to true hockey toughness that he barely missed a beat in a game that’s meaningless for the Wild. (In fact, the heating-up Minnesota team is only hurting its chances of getting a better draft pick with each win.)

Columbus collapse: Rangers spoil Blue Jackets’ opener

Jarret Stoll, Mats Zuccarello
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For a little more than a minute, Brandon Saad was going to be the story of the Columbus Blue Jackets’ opener. Instead, his power-play goal merely got the ball rolling on a flabbergasting finish.

The New York Rangers scored three goals in 1:17 of game time to manage a 4-2 win.

They’ve now spoiled home openers for the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets to begin their 2015-16 season.

It might be easiest just to show you when the goals were scored, noting that the third period began with a 1-1 tie.

Brandon Saad power-play goal: 16:10 into third period (2-1 Columbus)
Oscar Lindberg: 17:24 (2-2 tie)
Kevin Hayes: 17:41 (3-2 Rangers)
Mats Zuccarello: 18:41 (4-2 Rangers)

Yikes. Zuccarello scored two of the Rangers’ goals, while a beauty by Cam Atkinson is likely long forgotten.

This post will be updated if there’s video of that staggering sequence.

Welcome back, Babs: Red Wings chase Bernier

Mike Babcock
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Mike Babcock admitted that there might be a painful transformation as he tries to fix the Toronto Maple Leafs.

His old friends made that abundantly, painfully clear on Friday.

As of this writing, the Detroit Red Wings are up 4-0 on the Buds. Justin Abdelkader just completed a hat trick with James Reimer in net, so the subplot isn’t just about Jonathan Bernier having another tough start.

The big story might just be Detroit’s varied new line of Abdelkader, Dylan Larkin (who scored his first career goal) and Henrik Zetterberg. At the moment, they’ve combined for seven points.

This post will be updated if Detroit’s tribute video to Babcock surfaces.

Really, though, this beating has been about as ugly as this blanket so far.