Calgary Flames v Los Angeles Kings

Flames look to keep pending RFA’s Backlund, Brodie

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The Calgary Flames will look to keep a quartet of pending restricted free agents, and, as Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun reports, the paper work had to be filed by Tuesday.

Here is a snippet of what Sportak wrote on Monday. Read the full version here.

The first order of business is the offer sheets to the RFA class which consists of centre Mikael Backlund and defencemen T.J. Brodie, Chris Butler and Mark Cundari from the NHL roster. (That said, all of that paperwork is likely already filed.)

All four of those players are seen as key parts going forward for the rebuilding club. In fact, all four will be expected to take a bigger role with the Flames next season.

Backlund and Brodie are two players the Flames would be smart to bring back, especially at this stage in the franchise.

Both are original draft picks of the Flames, having worked their way up through the American Hockey League ranks with the Abbotsford Heat, and are still in the early stages of their NHL careers.

Last season, Backlund, a 24-year-old center, contributed 16 points in 32 regular season games for Calgary. Brodie, a 23-year-old smooth-skating defenseman with huge offensive upside, had 14 points in 47 games.

The Flames had been busy in the days leading up to the NHL Draft.

Last week, the Flames picked up right winger David Jones and defenseman Shane O’Brien from the Colorado Avalanche in exchange for Alex Tanguay and defenceman Cory Sarich.

It has also become evident that general manager Jay Feaster is trying desperately to trade forward Mike Cammalleri.

Brad Marchand wins it … on a penalty shot … in overtime

Boston Bruins' Brad Marchand celebrates after scoring on a penalty shot during the overtime period of the Boston Bruins 2-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres in an NHL hockey game in Boston Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
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Looking at the standings, beating the Buffalo Sabres was pretty important for the Boston Bruins. The Atlantic Division’s run for spots appears particularly congested out East.

Of all the Bruins to get a chance to win it all, the team might have wanted Brad Marchand to have that opportunity. He’s on pace to destroy his previous career-highs for scoring, and Marchand’s been particularly hot lately.

Either way, Marchand came up big indeed, scoring the rare overtime game-winner on a penalty shot. Check out the drama below:

That can be a big extra point and ROW (regulation/overtime win) when the regular season is finished.

Note: Many believe that Marchand should not have received a penalty shot on the play.

Crosby kills the Cats: Penguins end Panthers’ winning streak

Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby (87) collides with Florida Panthers' Connor Brickley (86) during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Pittsburgh, Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
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For quite some time, it looked like the Florida Panthers would keep the Pittsburgh Penguins under wraps.

Florida nursed a 1-0 lead into a 2-0 margin almost halfway through the third period, looking to win its sixth consecutive game. That looked great … and then Sidney Crosby + Kris Letang happened.

Let’s put it this way: this GIF of Crosby being frustrated is amusing, yet it doesn’t exactly tell the story of Saturday’s 3-2 overtime win for the Penguins:

Instead, Crosby grabbed his 900th point assisting on a Letang goal, and finished the night with 902 by collecting the game-tying goal and grabbing a helper on Letang’s overtime game-winner.

Crosby crossing that barrier is indeed special, even if it prompts “What if?” questions about No. 87’s health.

The resurgence of Crosby and Letang already played a big role in the Penguins going from disjointed and frustrating to sneaky and scary, so it  shouldn’t be that surprising to see them play so well. Doing so in such brisk order is a little bewildering, however.

Video: Mika Zibanejad’s check to Tyler Bozak’s head

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Saturday’s been unkind to the Toronto Maple Leafs, and not just on the scoreboard (where it’s 3-0 early on against the Ottawa Senators).

The Maple Leafs lost Tyler Bozak to an apparent upper-body injury thanks to a questionable hit by Sens forward Mika Zibanejad.

You can judge that check (which drew a minor penalty for illegal check to the head) in the video above. Again, Bozak will not return to tonight’s game.

It’s unclear if Bozak will miss time beyond this contest.

Update: It didn’t get much better going forward; the Senators beat the Maple Leafs 6-1.

Malcolm Subban hospitalized after taking puck to throat

Malcolm Subban
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Scary stuff on Saturday: multiple reporters (including the Maine Hockey Journal’s Chris Roy) note that Malcolm Subban was taken to a hospital after a puck struck his throat during warm-ups.

There’s no word yet on Subban’s condition beyond that he was taken away in an ambulance.

The AHL’s Providence Bruins seem like they’ve been left scrambling for a backup goalie in Subban’s absence.

Subban stated days ago that he’s taken some significant steps forward during the 2015-16 season.

Update: This seems fairly positive.