Another day, another Penguin undergoing major offseason surgery.
This time, it’s sophomore forward Beau Bennett, who following the team’s playoff exit told reporters he’d be undergoing surgery on a bothersome wrist injury — per the Post-Gazette, that procedure happened today and will sideline Bennett for the next four months.
Bennett missed 61 games this year with the injury — that never fully healed — and, last week, acknowledged the ailment rendered him ineffective in the Pens’ second-round loss to New York.
“I don’t want to make any excuses,” he said, per NHL.com. “The wrist thing, it is what it is. I tried to play as hard as I could and the Ranger games, I was useless out there, to be honest.
“I was just trying to get the puck deep. I couldn’t make plays, couldn’t push on guys.’”
Bennett, the 20th overall pick at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, has shown flashes of good scoring ability during his first two years in the league (21 points in 47 games), and Pittsburgh certainly could’ve used his offense against the Rangers. The Pens finished series by scoring just three goals on Henrik Lundqvist in the final three games and only 14 goals over the course of the full seven.
Bennett finished with no goals and one assist against the Blueshirts.
As mentioned above, Bennett is just the latest Penguin to go under the knife. Prospect Derrick Pouliot had shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum on Wednesday and, earlier today, blueliner Olli Maatta underwent the same procedure on his shoulder. Both are expected to miss the next 4-6 months rehabbing.
Ducks take control of second in Pacific after edging Oilers
McDavid scored a goal and two assists, yet Ryan Getzlaf was right there with him with three assists, helping the Ducks win 4-3.
With that, Anaheim is clearly ahead of Edmonton for second in the Pacific. The Ducks would hold home-ice over the Oilers if the playoffs began today, and better yet for them, a division title isn’t out of the question:
1. Sharks – 91 points in 73 games played
2. Ducks – 89 points in 73 GP
3. Oilers – 87 points in 73 GP
4. Flames – 86 points in 73 GP
As you can see, the Oilers aren’t exactly far ahead of the Flames for third, either.
Going forward, the Oilers have an interesting schedule: a mix of games against cellar dwellers (two apiece against the Canucks and Avalanche) plus two games apiece versus the Kings and Sharks.
The Ducks’ schedule includes two matches against the Flames, one against the Kings and one more match at Edmonton on April 1.
Long story short, the jockeying for position is far from over, but this was a pretty significant win for the Ducks.
Video: Connor McDavid shows off speed and skill (again)
Connor McDavid‘s 26th goal of 2016-17 was a lot like many others: an impressive display of skill and speed. He didn’t blaze past the Anaheim Ducks like has against opponents on other occasions, but his rare wheels still came in handy.
Maybe more than sheer speed, this tally is a reminder that McDavid could do impressive things while losing little or no momentum. It’s one thing to have straight-line speed, but he has the hands and hockey IQ to take advantage of his swift skating.
McDavid already has two points in this one, pushing him to 84 points. He also extended his point streak to five games (three goals, six assists if he stays at one of each on Wednesday).
The goal posts might move from time to time – now they’re chasing the Boston Bruins more than the Toronto Maple Leafs – but the bottom line is that the New York Islanders need to get it done to make the playoffs.
They still have some climbing to do, but Wednesday represented a step in the right direction with a tough 3-2 win against the New York Rangers.
The Rangers built 1-0 and 2-1 leads in the second period as John Tavares struggled with a “hat trick” of penalties, but Tavares & Co. wouldn’t give up. They managed two power-play goals in the third (one by Nikolay Kulemin, the winner by Andrew Ladd) to turn things around for a significant win.
Anders Lee was also a big part of the win, grabbing a goal and an assist. The biggest difference-maker may very well have been Thomas Greiss, who stopped 34 of 36 shots (including all 11 in the third) as the Rangers created a lot of offense.
The Islanders now have 80 standings points, placing them two behind the Bruins for the East’s final wild card spot.
The Rangers’ hold over the first wild card seems quite secure, but they do have to worry ever so slightly about their play at home. With this defeat, they’ve now lost seven straight (0-5-2) at Madison Square Garden.
Video: Rick Nash scores 20th goal in sprawling style