On a night of firsts, Toronto Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer’s first start and victory of the 2013 season stole the show.
Wednesday marked the Pittsburgh Penguins’ home opener at Consol Energy Center and Sidney Crosby’s and Evgeni Malkin’s first goal of the season, yet the Leafs won comfortably 5-2.
The 24-year-old netminder gave up his other goal when Crosby set up Malkin, 26, for his initial goal of 2013:
Reimer was then put in an unenviable position during Sid the Kid’s tally, as the famous 25-year-old burned the Buds on this semi-breakaway:
Still, from that point on early in the second period, Reimer didn’t allow another goal. Overall, he stopped 28 out of 30 shots for the victory.
It’ll be interesting to see how much of an impact this night makes on his goalie battle with Ben Scrivens. Reimer’s 26-year-old rival has a good chance of playing Toronto’s next game for the simple reason that it’s a quick turnaround as they host the New York Islanders on Thursday.
The real star of the game was James Van Riemsdyk, by the way, as his three-point night propelled the Leafs to a surprise victory. That two-goal, one-assist night fittingly represented his first points of 2013.
So, to be fair to everyone involved, the full highlights are available below:
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Taylor Hall is sick and reportedly “doubtful” for tonight’s game in Dallas.
Hall did not skate with the Oilers this morning. If he can’t play, Edmonton’s top two lines against the Stars could feature Ryan Nugent-Hopkins between wingers Teddy Purcell and Benoit Pouliot, followed by Connor McDavid centering Lauri Korpikoski and Nail Yakupov.
The Oilers — forced to start the season without top-six winger Jordan Eberle — have scored just once in their first two games, losing 3-1 in St. Louis and 2-0 in Nashville.
Edmonton returns home after tonight’s contest to play St. Louis on Thursday. Then it’s back out on the road for games against Calgary and Vancouver.
Buffalo has put blueliner Matt Donovan on waivers, per Sportsnet.
Donovan, 25, signed a one-year deal with the Sabres on the opening day of free agency after spending his entire professional career with the Isles organization.
The fact he’s being waived isn’t a huge shock. Donovan failed to draw into a single Sabres game this year despite a whittled-down blueline; Jake McCabe, recently called up from AHL Rochester, drew into the lineup for Monday’s win over Columbus at the expense of Carlo Colaiacovo, who played the first two games of the year.
The fact both McCabe and Colaiacovo were ahead on the depth chart didn’t bode well for Donovan. Today’s move could also suggest that Zach Bogosian, who hasn’t played this year due to injury, is ready to return.