Canadian Olympic women's team goalie Shannon Szabados practices with the Edmonton Oilers NHL hockey team in Edmonton, Alberta, Wednesday, March 5, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jason Franson)

Gold medal goalie Shannon Szabados signs with men’s pro team


After leading Team Canada to a gold medal in the 2014 Winter Olympics, goalie Shannon Szabados is looking to continue her hockey career with the Columbus Cottonmouths of the Southern Professional Hockey League.

Szabados, who will become the first woman to play in the league, had a 0.96 GAA and .954 save percentage for Canada in the Olympics and played in the gold medal game against the United States.

“I am very excited to get a world-class athlete that has competed and has faced high-pressured situations,” Columbus coach Jerome Bechard said, per the “Shannon has won at every level she has played, in women’s hockey or men’s hockey.”

Szabados, 27, has excelled in other men’s leagues and actually played with three members of the Cottonmouths last season when she led the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology to a championship. She was also the first woman to play in the Western Hockey League when she appeared in a game with the Tri-City Americans in 2002-03.

When the Edmonton Oilers were recently short a goaltender because they had traded away Ilya Bryzgalov and Viktor Fasth hadn’t arrived, they asked Szabados to practice with them.

“Maybe (we took it easy) the first couple of shots, then you find out that she’s good enough to handle it,” Oilers forward Taylor Hall told the Edmonton Sun. “She was good. She’s obviously not as big as some of the NHL goalies are now, but she can move around the net really well.

“She surprised me with a few of the saves she made. She easily held her own, it was fun to watch.”

Of course: Ryan Suter wins it for Wild vs. ‘Hawks after those wild quotes

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You know what they say: “What a difference a game makes.”

Even in the 82-game marathon that an NHL regular season is, that can be true.

Ryan Suter admitted he went too far with comments during tough times, yet there he was on Tuesday night, grinning ear-to-ear after scoring the 2-1 goal that ended up being the game-winner.

Heck, people were even joking about things. The healing powers of winning, right?

As of this writing, this win places Minnesota in the last wild card spot, and they’re close to elbowing in on the Chicago Blackhawks (who own a standings point advantage, but have played two more games so far in 2015-16).

Jeremy Roenick labels this 2-1 win as a “team win” for Minnesota, and it showed on that 2-1 goal, as the Wild showed off some picture-perfect passing and a willingness to crash the net for rebounds.

Let’s face it, though; Devan Dubnyk deserves plenty of credit, too.

It won’t be easy in the Central Division, and things may get heated again. Still, this is the sort of win that may just help Minnesota build up some confidence.

Hey look: Flyers reel off three straight wins for first time in 2015-16

Sean Couturier
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When you’re talking about bright sides, most people believe that they boil down to the light at the end of the tunnel for the Philadelphia Flyers.

Sometimes it’s nice to enjoy a little success in the present while waiting for that bright future, though.

The Flyers are providing at least a burst of sunshine lately, as Tuesday’s 4-2 win against the Ottawa Senators gives them … (drum roll) their first three-game winning streak of this season.

Joy abounded.

Even in recent darker moments, Philly’s been pretty impressive on offense, so Flyers fans are likely relieved to see a relative offensive outburst.

Sure, it wasn’t all rainbows and unicorns – Radko Gudas might have gotten himself into some trouble, for instance – yet this is still a nice sign of life for a team expected to finish in the draft lottery.

If that fails … hey, the future may require shades.

This own-goal captures the start of Dougie Hamilton’s Flames career

Dougie Hamilton
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Here’s an understatement: things haven’t gone very well for Dougie Hamilton early in his first season with the Calgary Flames.

(It must feel like the opposite of Tyler Seguin in Dallas for Boston Bruins fans, but feel free to disagree in the comments.)

You could look at Hamilton’s meager offensive stats and break down his disappointing work through a very of “fancy” and traditional metrics …

… Or you could just fire up a projector and show this own-goal on a loop.

Senators lose Michalek, Zibanejad to injuries vs. Flyers

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It remains to be seen if the Ottawa Senators can avoid losing against the Philadelphia Flyers tonight, but either way, it’s been a costly night.

The Senators saw two forwards leave the game with injuries, as Milan Michalek and Mika Zibanejad were banged up on Tuesday.

Michalek may have gotten hurt blocking a shot while a Radko Gudas hit on Zibanejad left the Senators forward with an upper-body injury.

Gudas may get a call from the league for his infractions.

Update: Michalek’s issue could be significant.

The Flyers ended up beating the Senators 4-2, so a tough night for Ottawa.