James O'Brien

St. Louis Blues v Los Angeles Kings

WATCH LIVE: Los Angeles Kings at St. Louis Blues

Despite dealing with injuries that might cause other teams to fall apart, the St. Louis Blues keep finding ways to win.

The Los Angeles Kings dealt with their own bumps in the road – albeit maybe more about their own mistakes – with an early slump, but now they’re roaring their way back to relevance.

With that, the stage is set for an interesting test of two of the West’s best teams, even if the Kings own a significant edge in all ways playoffs. You can watch the game on NBCSN and also stream it via the link below.


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    Video: Who did it better — Bishop or Johnson?


    If an earlier debate regarding backhanded passes wasn’t enough for you, PHT’s own Mike Halford and Jason Brough also mixed it up on two jaw-dropping saves.

    In one corner: You have Ben Bishop‘s desperate stick save on a wide-open Matt Duchene, which was captured pretty nicely by the Associated Press photo that is this post’s main image.

    On the other hand: There’s Chad Johnson‘s equally desperate, sprawling stop, which helped the Buffalo Sabres secure an overtime win against the Philadelphia Flyers.

    So, who do you pick?

    Desperately needed: Ducks grab second win of 2015-16

    Chris Stewart

    It wasn’t always pretty, but the Anaheim Ducks will absolutely, positively take it.

    You can pick Sunday’s 4-2 win against the Nashville Predators in a number of ways.

    The Predators were on the back end of a back-to-back set while Anaheim hadn’t played since Thursday.

    Frederik Andersen needed to make 40 saves to secure the win, and Anaheim suffered another curiously quiet third period.

    You know what? Those are all concerns for another night, even if Bruce Boudreau may air a misgiving or two after this game.

    For now, most Ducks fans – and probably plenty members of the organization – will just breathe a sigh of relief.

    This marks the common Stanley Cup favorite’s second win of the season, boosting them to 2-7-2 (while Nashville, in contrast, falls to 7-2-2).

    This also ends a five-game losing streak that began with a 5-1 drubbing at the hands of the Predators.

    More than anything else, we’ll now see if Anaheim’s organizational patience might pay off.

    Tonight’s game began a glorious opportunity, as they’ll play two more home games, skip out to San Jose on Nov. 7 and then play three more in Anaheim.

    That’s six of seven games at home, a stretch that might just help Boudreau & Co. to release some of the tension in the air after a shockingly cold opening.

    If nothing else, they got off to the start they needed, and they’ll get to rest up with their next game coming against the Panthers on Wednesday.

    Note: In less-ideal Ducks news, Jiri Sekac suffered a lower-body injury and did not return.

    Scrappy Sabres earn Bylsma’s praise (and so does Ullmark)

    Dan Bylsma

    A season after “tanking,” the Buffalo Sabres are soldering on.

    They’re not just stacking up moral victories in Dan Bylsma’s first season in Buffalo, either. By beating the John Tavares-less New York Islanders 2-1 on Sunday, they’ve now won two in a row and three of their last four.

    (They also played some excellent hockey in that loss, firing 53 shots against Bylsma’s former team, the Pittsburgh Penguins.)

    Those efforts haven’t slipped by Bylsma, who praised his team for being feisty and his current goalie – Linus Ullmark – for being calm.

    The Buffalo News’ Mike Harrington believes that Ullmark is seizing an opportunity with Robin Lehner on the shelf.

    For the Islanders, it’s a tough weekend – just a single standings point in losses to the Sabres and New Jersey Devils, teams that at least came into this season with low expectations – and a reminder of just how important Tavares can be.

    Then again, the way Buffalo’s been playing, maybe the outcome would have been the same anyway.

    Habs (emphatically) end Hutchinson’s hot streak


    Michael Hutchinson was playing so well early in 2015-16 that many people wondered why the Winnipeg Jets would even go away from him.

    The Montreal Canadiens provided Exhibit A on Sunday.

    Winnipeg Jets head coach Paul Maurice pulled Hutchinson in favor of Ondrej Pavelec after Hutch allowed four goals on just nine shots.

    To give you an idea of how unexpected this poor play was: Hutchinson came into tonight with a 4-0-0 record and .949 save percentage, having allowed just seven goals in four games.

    Tonight’s start lasted barely more than a period, as Hutchinson left the net 23:02 into the contest.

    This is a good time to remember that small sample sizes mislead and only so much can be said after one month of any NHL season.

    (That doesn’t mean Hutchinson cannot be effective, nor does it close the book on this goalie battle altogether.)

    You can see video of the final goal above. Tomas Fleischmann and David Desharnais have had strong nights so far at Hutchinson’s expense.

    Update: Montreal finished with a 5-1 win.