Joe Sakic

19 impressive facts about Joe Sakic

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In anticipation of Monday’s Hockey Hall of Fame induction ceremonies, PHT is taking an in-depth look at each of the four main entrants.

Joe Sakic might not have provided explosive quotes, but his staggering numbers and all-time-great wrist shot were memorable enough. Here are 19 facts/milestones from his incredible career:

1. Sakic scored a point (an assist) in his first career game in 1988-89 and found the net for the first time in his second – against Sean Burke.

2. Even better, he began his career on a 12-game point streak, according to Hockey Reference.

3. Sakic made his first of 12 All-Star appearances in 1990, collecting two assists in Pittsburgh.

4. He scored 100 points for the first time in his second campaign.

5. Later on, he’d become the second-oldest player to hit the 100-point plateau. Sakic did at 37, behind only Gordie Howe.

6. He won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 1995-96, scoring 18 goals and 34 points in 22 postseason games.

7. Not surprisingly, that’s when he won the first of two Stanley Cups.

8. Sakic’s eight playoff overtime goals is an NHL record.

9. His 1,641 career points places him ninth all-time.

10. He collected his 1,000th career point on Dec. 27, 1999:

11. Sakic became the 11th player to collect 1,000 assists on  March 22, 2008.

12. His 625 goals ranks 15th all-time. Here’s No. 600:

13. Sakic is a member of the “Triple Gold Club,” having won a Stanley Cup, World Hockey Championship and Olympic gold medal.

14. Speaking of that Olympic gold medal, Sakic took home the MVP award of that 2002 tournament.

15. Sakic was drafted 15th overall in 1987, going behind some greats (Brendan Shanahan, Curtis Joseph) and some not-so-greats (Bryan Fogarty, Keith Osborne).

16. He basically owns the Colorado Avalanche/Quebec Nordiques record books, claiming the all-time lead in: goals, assists, points, power-play goals, short-handed goals and game-winning goals. (That also goes for many of the team’s playoff records.)

17. He was the second-longest serving captain in NHL history, according to the Avs.

18. The 2000-01 season was special for Joe. He won his second Cup and took home the Hart Trophy, Lady Byng and Ted Lindsay awards.

19. For all his accolades – these are just the highlights of his astounding career – many will remember what No. 19 did for No. 77 more than anything else:

Hitch’s recipe for more goals is a pretty simple one

Ken Hitchcock, David Backes, Dmitrij Jaskin, Paul Stastny, Patrik Berglund
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Ken Hitchcock wants the Blues to spend more time attacking and less time defending.

Because hockey isn’t rocket science, that’s why.

“To score and win games in the National Hockey League…you have to spend as much time in the offensive zone as you can,” Hitchcock told the Post-Dispatch.

“When you’re occupying the offensive zone more, you’re forechecking more. When you’re occupying the offensive zone more, the goalie has to make saves. They’re having to defend more. And the opposing team takes penalties on you. So they’re all connected. … What I want to see from us is staying on the puck for longer stretches.”

According to the stats, the Blues have not been spending as much time in the offensive zone as we’re used to seeing from them. In fact, in their last 20 games, they rank in the bottom third of the league in score-adjusted Corsi. That compares to their first 20 games when they were in the top third.

The result is fewer shots, and more importantly, fewer goals. The Blues have fallen all the way to 25th in offense, averaging just 2.37 goals per game. Last year, they finished fifth (2.91).

Yes, some of that may be due to the absence of Jaden Schwartz, and he should be back soon. But there’s a reason people are watching GM Doug Armstrong as the Feb. 29 trade deadline approaches. This team could probably use another piece up front.

The Blues host Minnesota Saturday.

St. Louis has scored just five goals in its last five games.

Goalie nods: Lindback ‘really excited’ for first start in almost three weeks

Anders Lindback
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Tonight in Anaheim, Anders Lindback will make his first start for the Arizona Coyotes since Jan. 16.

The Coyotes have been riding rookie Louis Domingue since just before Christmas, but Domingue has allowed five goals in each of his last three starts, including last night’s 5-4 loss to Chicago.

Lindback’s last appearance came Tuesday in relief, when he allowed one goal on 10 shots in a 6-2 loss to the Kings.

Lindback was in goal for one of Arizona’s three victories this season over Anaheim, stopping 33 of 36 shots in a 4-3 overtime win on Nov. 9. However, his .896 save percentage ranks among the lowest in the league.

Frederik Andersen is expected to start for the Ducks.

Elsewhere…

— No word yet on a Penguins starter in Tampa, but Ben Bishop will go for the Bolts.

Cam Ward will start for the Hurricanes in Winnipeg, where Connor Hellebuyck is expected for the increasingly desperate Jets.

— Joonas Korpisalo was solid last night in Vancouver, but the Blue Jackets have not announced their starter for tonight’s game in Calgary. Karri Ramo will be in goal for the Flames.

A ‘pretty solid two-way player,’ Sundqvist to make NHL debut for Penguins

Pittsburgh Penguins' Oskar Sundqvist (49) collides with Minnesota Wild's Jason Zucker (16) in the first period of a NHL preseason hockey game in Pittsburgh, Thursday, Sept. 25, 2014. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
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The latest Penguins injuries, these ones to Evgeni Malkin and Eric Fehr, have led to an opportunity for Oskar Sundqvist.

Sundqvist will make his NHL debut for the Penguins tonight in Tampa. The 21-year-old center has five goals and 11 assists in 39 AHL games this season.

“Sunny’s a pretty solid two-way player,” coach Mike Sullivan said, per the Tribune-Review.

“I don’t think he’s going to dazzle you with flashy plays, but I think he’s a guy who plays the game the right way. He’s hard to play against because of his size. He’s got a long reach, and he’s got a good stick.”

Sundqvist was selected 81st overall by the Pens in 2012. He’ll become the fourth player out of that Pittsburgh draft class to make his NHL debut, after Olli Maatta, Derrick Pouliot, and Matt Murray.

Veteran Matt Cullen will replace Malkin on the second line, skating with wingers Carl Hagelin and Phil Kessel.

Related: Nick Bonino out ‘at least a month’ with hand injury

John Scott’s wife gives birth to twin girls

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As if John Scott wasn’t already having a great week, now he’s the proud father of twin girls.

The Montreal Canadiens shared the good news via their Twitter account today.

Scott, the unlikely 2016 All-Star Game MVP, is currently back home in Michigan; however, he’s expected to resume his career at some point with Montreal’s AHL affiliate in St. John’s, Newfoundland.

When, exactly, he suits up for the IceCaps remains to be seen, but it won’t be tonight or tomorrow.

Related: Therrien on Canadiens possibly recalling John Scott: ‘You never know’