The Chicago Blackhawks ended the Los Angeles Kings’ impressive six-game winning streak on Sunday, beating them 3-1.
All three of Chicago’s goals came in the first period … which is also an impressive feat, as the Kings hadn’t allowed a goal in an opening frame in a stunning 18 consecutive games.
Jonathan Toews collected two assists and fired five shots on goal, Marian Hossa generated a tally of his own and Antti Raanta bounced back from being pulled on Saturday to bump his record to 6-1-1 on the season.
Ben Scrivens shook off that tough first period (three goals allowed on 10 shots), stopping 30 shots in the final two periods. He lost in his first start since Dec. 2, as Martin Jones has begun his NHL career on fire.
Chicago remains atop the West and the NHL with 53 points (24-7-5 in 36 games played) while Los Angeles hovers with 48 points in two fewer contests.
Mike Babcock’s reign with the Detroit Red Wings ended in another first-round defeat, yet it may be lost in time just how close that series was.
Yes, the Tampa Bay Lightning shut down the Red Wings to win Game 7 at home, but Ben Bishop deserves a ton of the credit. The Red Wings snagged the puck for much of the contest, just not enough to beat the big goalie.
While change is in the air in Detroit, the Bolts are largely the same squad that generated a nice showing in the 2015 Stanley Cup Final. We’ll get to see if the Red Wings gain a measure of revenge on NBCSN tonight, with home-ice advantage this time around.
Damon Severson was a healthy scratch on Saturday.
It’s the last game he wants to miss this season.
“I had a good chat with a few people and just pretty much said, ‘I want to be in the next 80 games,’” Severson said, per The Record. “I sat out my game and that’s all I want to be out for for the year.”
Severson is one of the Devils’ most important young players. But this is also the 21-year-old defenseman’s sophomore season, and that’s when slumps can occur.
Hence, the early message he was sent by the coaching staff.
Severson is expected to be back in the lineup tonight when New Jersey hosts Nashville.
“He doesn’t have to be perfect,” coach John Hynes told reporters. “We’d just like to see him have a high compete level. We know he’s ready to go. We had a couple of good meetings with him. He’s in a good spot mentally. I know he’s ready to roll.”