James O'Brien

I am a contributing editor/writer/troublemaker for NBC's Pro Hockey Talk blog.

Video: Dmitry Orlov flips Matt Duchene with hip check


The temptation is to call any hip check “old school.”

Considering the speed of the game and how easily a player can get out of position attempting such a hit, you don’t see many of them in the modern NHL.

Even so, is it accurate to call the hip check Dmitry Orlov delivered on Matt Duchene “old school?” It feels a bit more out of this world.

The Washington Capitals and Colorado Avalanche provided quite a flurry of activity during the first period of Tuesday’s game, as Francois Beauchemin somehow managed to save this goal with his skate.

Check out that moment in GIF form, via Stephanie Vail:

Update: After the game, it sounds like the hit generated some controversy, as Duchene vaguely noted.

Nonetheless, the Capitals cruised to a 3-0 victory, giving Colorado its first loss of the season.

WATCH LIVE: Philadelphia Flyers at Chicago Blackhawks


The Chicago Blackhawks and Philadelphia Flyers have taken different paths since that 2010 Stanley Cup Final, but now they’re both in a similar spot: battling for playoff contention.

Chicago is a chic pick to miss the playoffs according to some pundits, while many are looking highly on the Flyers’ future … while not being totally sure about 2016-17 one way or another.

Beyond their murky futures, the best part of a game like this is just to bask in the glorious talent on hand.

Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith & Co. vs. Claude Giroux, Jakub Voracek and the Flyers’ bevvy of youngsters. It should be a great time on NBCSN on Tuesday.

Watch online or stream it on the NBC Sports App.

Here’s the stream link, which includes NHL Live with Katheryn Tappen and Jeremy Roenick.

Pastrnak’s hot streak continues in Bruins win


WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) David Pastrnak scored his team-leading fourth goal of the season as the Boston Bruins beat the Winnipeg Jets 4-1 on Monday night.

The 20-year-old Pastrnak extended his point streak to three games while suiting up in his 100th career game.

Winnipeg (1-2-0) captain Blake Wheeler opened the scoring 10 minutes into the game.

Boston (2-1-0) trailed for all of 19 seconds, however, as Dominic Moore tied things up at 10:19 of the first period.

Rookie Brandon Carlo’s first career goal added insurance for the Bruins with 1:59 remaining in the third period and Zdeno Chara scored an empty-netter inside the final minute.

Boston’s Tuukka Rask turned away 34 of 35 shots, while Winnipeg’s Connor Hellebuyck stopped 21 of 24.

Wheeler opened the scoring when he was sprung by Alexander Burmistrov with a breakaway pass as Wheeler stepped out of the penalty box. He deked Rask and slid the puck behind the Bruins goaltender on his forehand for his third goal and fifth point in his third game of the season.

The Bruins responded immediately as Moore scored his first of the season.

Boston took the lead briefly early in the second before the review of a challenge by Jets coach Paul Maurice determined Chara was unable to keep the puck onside before his shot from the blue line deflected off Winnipeg defenseman Ben Chiarot and past a screened Hellebuyck.

The Bruins’ go-ahead goal came inside the final minute of the second as Pastrnak banked a centering pass off Jets defenseman Tobias Enstrom and into the net.

Neither team was able to convert on the power play, with the Bruins going 0 for 4 and the Jets 0 for 5. Winnipeg is just 1 for 13 on the season after finishing last season 30th in the NHL in power-play efficiency.

NOTES: Jets D Dustin Byfuglien continued his heavy log of ice-time this season. The 31-year-old entered Monday leading the NHL in average ice time with 29:38 per game, and kept the pace up with 30:05 Monday night, including 5:20 while anchoring the power play.


BRUINS: Their home opener is Thursday night against New Jersey.

JETS: Round out a three-game home stand as they welcome Toronto on Wednesday.

Red Wings dominate in Joe Louis Arena’s final opener


Oh a night where The Joe was on many minds in Detroit, Mike was the one who took over.

OK, so guys named Thomas and Darren had strong nights too, but the point is that the Red Wings dominated in the final season-opener at Joe Louis Arena, beating the Ottawa Senators by a score of 5-1.

Mike Green has authored many high-scoring nights in his career, particularly back to his Washington Capitals days, yet he generated his first NHL hat trick on Monday.

MORE: Nostalgia abounds at The Joe

It was an evening of turning back the clock, so maybe it’s fitting that it was a special night for Green and Thomas Vanek, two players whose best days might be behind them. Vanek collected three assists to continue his red-hot start with the Red Wings while Darren Helm scored two goals of his own.

Things went exceptionally well for Detroit overall. Petr Mrazek made some strong saves while there were shades of Henrik Zetterberg, who made some nifty plays even if he only ended up with a single assist.

Plenty of people wonder if the Red Wings’ record playoff streak will end during their last season playing in Joe Louis Arena.

If this group plays like this more often than not, we might be talking about one final playoff run at The Joe.

Avs give Penguins their first loss thanks to Landeskog


The Colorado Avalanche haven’t solved all of their problems, but they’re doing enough good things to win games, including Monday’s clash against the defending champs.

Gabriel Landeskog scored the tying and game-winning goals, helping Colorado edge the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3 in overtime.

First, take a look at the Avalanche captain’s authoritative 3-3 goal in the third period:

Next, the clinching goal, which was a little on the strange side:

Yes, it’s not ideal that the Avalanche have allowed eight goals through the first two games of 2016-17. That said, plenty of NHL teams would give up that many against the Penguins and Dallas Stars, but how many would win both games?