Well, that wasn’t pretty … unless you’re Tuukka Rask and his agent, that is.
The Boston Bruins beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-0 in a game that was skin-tight for two periods before things spiraled out of control in the third period. Boston took a 1-0 series lead in Pittsburgh’s building on Saturday.
The Penguins have had moments when they lose their cool, with a few meltdowns in their last series against the Philadelphia Flyers being a prominent example. Does head coach Dan Bylsma need to rein everyone in more often? Is it on Sidney Crosby instead? Or is it, dare we ask, a good thing for them to blow off steam?
Rask got the shutout in Game 1. In related news, he’s a free agent. How much is he worth to Boston?
Speaking of Bruins free agents, Nathan Horton had a goal and two assists. If he leaves Boston, which team would be wisest to snatch the power forward up?
Is Mike Milbury right in doubting Tomas Vokoun or does he deserve a longer leash with Marc-Andre Fleury waiting in the wings?
David Krejci improved his league-leading playoff points total to 19 tonight. Does he deserve more consideration as an elite player?
This game was wide open at times, yet it didn’t necessarily benefit Pittsburgh – at least on the scoreboard. What kind of adjustments do the Penguins need to make? Is it just a matter of getting a few more bounces?
Are people underestimating the Bruins once more? Who takes this series in the long run?
Get set for the Heritage Classic with hot dog facts and more
The Winnipeg Jets host the Edmonton Oilers at the 2016 Heritage Classic at Investors Group Field this afternoon. You can watch it on NHL Network, Sportsnet, TVA Sports 2 or NHL.tv at 3 p.m. ET.
With that in mind, let’s get prepped with super-important stats about unhealthy food, interesting photos and fun facts.
Want to get an in-depth look at the rivalry between the Jets and the Oilers? NHL.com and Sportsnet both have some great retrospectives.
The CBC notes that there was rain ending in the morning but it’s expected to be cloudy. Overall, sounds like a nice climate for an outdoor hockey game. NHL.com’s Nick Cotsonika wonders if the sun’s glare might cause some issues.
The Arizona Coyotes received (mostly) good news on Sunday: Mike Smith‘s injury isn’t believed to be “severe,” even if he’s considered week-to-week, according to reporters including TSN’s Darren Dreger.
While Louis Domingue and Justin Peters isn’t the sort of goalie duo that will make shooters think twice about firing the puck, they’re both at least fairly experienced netminders.
(Considering Smith’s struggles with injuries and inconsistency, it’s not surprising that Arizona invested in a little insurance in Peters.)
Domingue is slated to start in net for the Coyotes against the New York Rangers on Sunday. It’s been a bumpy start for him so far, but Arizona has at least a theoretical advantage in that the Rangers played on Saturday.
As far as when Smith will be back? Well here’s a slight idea.
Dave Tippett does not think Mike Smith will be ready for home game vs. Colorado on Oct. 29, but he is not far from getting back on the ice.
Chances are, plenty of hockey fans – and maybe some members of the Colorado Avalanche – were uttering that question after Saturday night.
Well, we know this about Shane Harper: he scored his first two NHL goals at age 27, helping the Florida Panthers beat the Colorado Avalanche 5-2.
You can watch both of Harper’s goals in the recap video:
Harper also drew enough ire from the Avalanche to get into a bit of a skirmish following a hit.
So, who is Shane Harper?
For one thing, he’s from Valencia, California and did not go drafted.
His best junior season came in 2009-10, when he scored 42 goals and 80 points for the Everett Silvertips. He’s become quite the seasoned AHL veteran since then, and while his numbers won’t wow you, he did do enough in 2014-15 to maybe turn a head or two. Harper scored 32 goals and 50 points for the Chicago Wolves that season.
You can tell his teammates were happy for him – gentle ribbing and all – when the media asked about his career milestone: