The Calgary Flames stopped their losing skid at six games on Monday, beating the Winnipeg Jets 5-4 via Sean Monahan’s shootout winner.
Winnipeg already saw its four-game winning streak end against the Minnesota Wild on Sunday, but they saw their simmering shootout work conclude as well (the last three wins in that four-game run came from skills competition triumphs).
The Flames can feel a little better about their paltry goaltending for at least one night, as Reto Berra stopped 40 out of 44 shots to gain his second NHL win. Mike Cammalleri and TJ Brodie has a goal and an assist apiece tonight.
There are a couple pros among the cons for the Jets, too. The Jets dissolved four one-goal Flames leads to send this game beyond regulation, including Bryan Little’s game-tying goal with just six seconds remaining. Dustin Byfuglien also remains red-hot lately, as his goal and assist give him 17 points in 23 games (including three goals and one assist in his last four contests).
Both of these teams might find themselves grasping at moral victories a little more often than they’d like, but at least they have that much. They can’t all be world-beaters, after all.
For the second time in his career, Ryan Kesler is wearing an “A.”
On Thursday, the Anaheim Ducks announced that Kesler would serve as one of the club’s alternate captains this season, taking over for Francois Beauchemin, who signed in Colorado this summer.
With the move, Kesler joins Anaheim’s existing leadership group of captain Ryan Getzlaf, and alternate Corey Perry.
“It’s an honor,” Kesler said, per the Ducks. “It’s special. I’m going to wear it with pride and lead by example.”
As mentioned earlier, Kesler has some experience as an alternate — he wore an “A” in Vancouver from 2008-13, but had it removed prior to the start of the ’13-14 campaign.
It’s not surprising Anaheim went in this direction. GM Bob Murray made a huge investment in Kesler this summer by inking the 31-year-old to a six-year, $41.25M extension.
Could Raphael Diaz be on his way back to Switzerland?
We’ll know in a month.
Diaz, who lost out on the Rangers’ final blueline spot in training camp, has reported to the club’s AHL affiliate in Hartford but doesn’t seem pleased with his current situation, per the Post:
The 29-year-old Diaz, who cleared waivers last Saturday after the Blueshirts opted to keep rookie Dylan McIlrath as the club’s seventh on the blue line, is interested in the European option if he is not in the NHL.
The Blueshirts have told Diaz they will revisit the situation at the end of October, but have not promised to release him or assign him to a European team at that point.
If Diaz, a Swiss native who represented Switzerland in the 2014 Olympics, does play in Europe during the season, he would have to go through waivers in order to return to the NHL.
Diaz’s agent, Ritch Winter, told the Post that Diaz signed a one-year, $700,000 deal with the Rangers “to play with the Rangers.”
And it’s understandable if Diaz — a journeyman offensive defenseman — isn’t happy with this situation.
While some believe McIlrath earned his roster spot on merit, some think it’s because of his contract status. McIlrath, who’s only 23 and a former first-round pick, would’ve needed to clear waivers to go back to Hartford, and it’s believed he would’ve been claimed by another club.