After struggling early in the season and a conditioning stint in the American Hockey League, Jonathan Bernier had successfully pulled together three wins in his last four games for the Toronto Maple Leafs prior to Tuesday.
Then, everything unraveled against the New York Islanders.
Six different Islanders players scored on Bernier, who was pulled after 40 minutes after allowing six goals on just 15 shots faced. New York recorded a 6-3 victory, while James Reimer had to play the final period for Toronto.
The winning goal came off a Bernier blunder when he tried to play the puck behind his own net. Instead, he turned the puck over to Frans Nielsen, who set up Nikolay Kulemin for the easy goal, putting the Islanders up 4-2 at the time.
“I wasn’t good enough,” said Bernier, as per the Toronto Star. “I didn’t think we were ready as a team, but it wasn’t my game, I wasn’t good … I’ve got to be better next game.”
That goal came just 28 seconds after the Maple Leafs cut New York’s lead to one midway through the second period.
Playing for the first time since Dec. 3 due to injury, Reimer stopped all six shots he faced.
Stars’ Hemsky suffers lower-body injury, will not return versus Columbus
Jordan Spieth, No. 1 golfer in the world, drops the puck at the Stars-Blackhawks game in Dallas on Tuesday. (SportsCenter)
Vancouver radio host, spoofing a Vancouver columnist, with a very specific Christmas wish for the Canucks. And no, he wasn’t asking for the No. 1 overall pick — likely Auston Matthews — in the 2016 NHL Draft. (TSN 1040)
Watch the Arizona Coyotes and Toronto Maple Leafs score three goals in 21 seconds. (NHL.com)
Max Domi got in his first NHL fight Tuesday. His father, Tie Domi, a celebrated pugilist in his day, recently told NHL.com that he had 333 career fights. So, Max has a ways to go to catch up to his dad.
No ordinary Joe: Pavelski leads Sharks to comeback victory over rival Kings
For the San Jose Sharks, Tuesday’s game against the L.A. Kings was more about how they finished than how they started.
In fact, it looked early in the first period like the Sharks would be in over their heads against their California rivals. The Kings held a 2-0 lead before the game was even five minutes old, and held a 21-6 advantage in shots on goal after the opening 20 minutes.
But the Sharks turned the momentum in the second and third periods, coming back from two goals down to score four unanswered, earning a 5-3 victory over the host Kings, who were at home for the first time following a six-game road trip. Joe Pavelski scored the tying goal and the eventual winner just 1:32 apart in the third period, stunning the L.A. crowd.
Pavelski didn’t panic at all on the winner, as he accepted a sweet feed from Joe Thornton, calmly pulled the puck in front and beat Jonathan Quick on the glove side.
Pavelski finished the night with two goals and three points. He now has 10 points in his last five games.
What the win does is put San Jose back into second in the Pacific Division.
The Vancouver Canucks, Arizona Coyotes and Calgary Flames were all victorious earlier Tuesday, but the Sharks regain a playoff spot heading into the holiday break.
At 36 points, the Sharks now close to within six points of the division-leading Kings, too.