Vancouver Canucks v Los Angeles Kings

Video: Kings victorious against Canucks in testy affair


The Vancouver Canucks may feel like they proved to the National Hockey League that they won’t be pushed around. But they still lost, missing out on two points against a divisional opponent.

The Canucks lost 1-0 to the L.A. Kings on Monday, in a testy, chippy, sometimes dirty meeting – as someone wise seemed to predict earlier in the day when setting up this match-up – of two Pacific Division rivals that have clearly grown to dislike each other.

The two teams combined for 109 penalty minutes, including a pair of fights, plenty of rough stuff during play and after whistles, too.

And then there were the missed calls, like Dale Weise’s blatant slew foot on Kings’ defenseman Drew Doughty in the neutral zone during the second period. It went undetected by officials. Doughty was slow to get up but remained in the game.

Dustin Brown, the central focus of the Canucks’ hostilities for a collision between him and Vancouver’s No. 1 puck stopper Roberto Luongo nine days ago, fought his U.S. Olympic teammate Ryan Kesler at the drop of the puck in the second period.

Brown scored the lone goal of tonight’s game, 24 seconds into the third period.

Tom Sestito, who had been promoted to Vancouver’s third line as he worked to improve his game over the course of the season, was ejected less than three minutes into the first period, after just one second of ice time.

The angst began immediately as soon as the puck was dropped, when Canucks’ forward Zack Kassian began jousting with Brown, eventually taking a penalty for hooking the Kings’ captain to the ice.

Video: Dylan Larkin adds to his rookie goals lead

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So far, the 2015-16 crop of rookies is living up to the hype, if not exceeding it. Connor McDavid‘s unfortunate injury hasn’t even derailed this year’s crop.

The Detroit Red Wings are watching their own blue chip blossom, as Dylan Larkin is making an instant impact.

No. 71 scored his 10th goal of the season against the Florida Panthers on Sunday, fattening his rookie goals lead.

He still needs five points to match rookie points leader Artemi Panarin, though.

Latest report leaves Carey Price’s injury timeline fuzzy

Carey Price
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There’s one thing we seem to know about Carey Price‘s injury situation: he first got hurt stepping on a puck on Oct. 29, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

Contrary to earlier reports about him missing about a month, it sounds like his window of recovery is still up in the air (which, to be fair, could mean that he’ll still miss about a month when it’s all said and done).

ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun reports that Price underwent testing with Montreal’s team doctor on Saturday and is expected to go through more; we may not know more about his expected injury timeline until early this coming week.

So, basically, Price’s situation is fuzzier than his mustache right now.

Leg injuries can be tricky anyway, so we shouldn’t be too surprised that there are mixed signals regarding Price, and this may remain a fluid situation for some time.

(But we’ll hopefully know more soon enough.)

Lightning lament life as a .500 team

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The Tampa Bay Lightning have plenty of time to rise above mediocrity, yet it still must be deserving to finish at .500 for two straight months.

After last night’s 3-2 loss to the New York Islanders, that’s exactly where they find themselves:

Record at the end of October: 5-5-2

Record at the end of November: 11-11-3

As of this writing, the Lightning found themselves on the outside looking in at the playoff picture. It all stands as a pretty tough thing for the reigning Eastern Conference champs to swallow.

The uncomfortable-yet-vital question is: can the Lightning break out of this funk?

Looking at their schedule, it won’t be easy, at least not right away.

They crawl through California during a three-game road trip to start December, and they also face six of eight on the road from Dec. 2 – 18.

The Lightning soak up home dates to finish 2015 after that, but what damage will be done by then?

Frankly, the Bolts will need to dig deep to break this pattern. If nothing else, they’ve fought with their backs against the wall before.

Dubinsky won’t change, and he won’t go easy on Crosby


Sometimes a suspension will shame a player, or at least inspire him to change the way he plays.

That apparently won’t happen regarding Brandon Dubinsky‘s one-game timeout session for cross-checking Sidney Crosby.

Dubinsky told Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch that he won’t alter his style, whether it’s against Crosby or someone else.

“Nope,” Dubinsky said. “You know, I’ve played the same way my whole career and I’m not going to change. The next time I have an opportunity to play (Crosby), I’m going to play him hard.”

In case you’re wondering, that next opportunity comes on Dec. 21 in Pittsburgh, assuming that both players are healthy and not suspended.

One can understand Dubinsky’s perspective, although such honesty would be that much more interesting if there’s another incident with Crosby. His initial reaction to the hit was interestingly candid, admitting that his “stick rode up” on his adversary.

Would that stance – which, from a harsher view, might seem flippant to Dubinsky’s critics – open the door for a bigger future bit of a discipline?

Maybe, maybe not … but at least his comments aren’t as inflammatory as what John Tortorella said (at least on the record).