Evgeni Malkin

Malkin, Yakupov win KHL weekly awards


Evgeni Malkin and Nail Yakupov captured one KHL weekly award apiece, according to the league’s release.

Malkin was named the best “attacker” after his red-hot week (three goals and six assists in just three games). Yakupov earned the best rookie nod thanks to some healthy sniping; he had three goals in two contests.

Malkin continues to climb the rankings of KHL top scorers overall this season.

Alex Radulov is currently on top with 28 points, yet Malkin already has 24 despite playing in five fewer games. Malkin’s also building on the aggression he showed in the NHL last season, firing a stunning 90 shots on goal in just 16 contests.

Yakupov doesn’t have the same balance between goals and assists (eight tallies, just three helpers), but the Edmonton Oilers should still be heartened to see early signs of him delivering as a dangerous goal-scorer.

In case you’re wondering, Vitaly Koval took goalie of the week while Alexander Osipov was named the best defenseman to round out last week’s KHL awards.

Other non-NHL weekly awards: Dan Ellis takes AHL’s honors

Measure of revenge? Red Wings bottle Lightning

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In some ways, it really felt like their first-round series.

For all the talent on both ends of the rink with the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning, each squad can really smother opponents defensively when things go that way.

Through two periods, the two teams were very quiet. Things really picked up when Justin Abdelkader unleashed a big hit, a moment that injected enough life into the proceedings for the Red Wings to eventually build a 3-1 win.

Maybe they’re slipping under the radar a bit compared to previous iterations of the team, but it’s interesting that the Red Wings are now undefeated in three games.

They’ve been impressive at times, too, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 11-4.

Call it a refreshing time after Mike Babcock or merely carryover from a subtly solid run last season, but either way, the Red Wings may just be able to keep up their end of a brewing rivalry.

Hands of gold: Connor McDavid scores his first NHL goal


Taking three games to score your first NHL goal isn’t a big deal, unless you’re someone like Connor McDavid.

The mega-hyped wunderkind must feel relieved to finally find the net, as he tied tonight’s Edmonton Oilers – Dallas Stars skirmish with a 2-2 deflection goal, which you can watch above this post’s headline.

To no surprise, there were plenty of reactions, including Pierre LeBrun’s tweet (which inspired part of this headline).

Of course, there were the inevitable Wayne Gretzky comparisons:

Interesting thing you might not consider: Stars fans will have to stomach this one even more frequently than that time Patrik Stefan biffed that empty-netter (also against the Oilers):

McDavid may have also delivered his first questionable check, too: