Boston Bruins forward Craig Cunningham scored his first NHL goal Saturday afternoon against the Ottawa Senators.
The goal, which came shorthanded, opened the scoring for the Bruins.
The 24-year-old is playing in his seventh career NHL game.
Originally Boston’s fourth-round pick (97th overall) in 2010, Cunningham is playing his fifth game of the season today.
Cory Conacher cleared waivers Saturday and has been loaded to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers the New York Islanders announced.
The 24-year-old’s play has dropped off considerably since he burst on to the scene with the Tampa Bay Lightning during the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season.
After a mid-season trade to the Ottawa Senators, Conacher finished his rookie season with 11 goals and 29 points in 47 games. He finished sixth in Calder Trophy voting that season.
However, Conacher mustered just seven goals and 26 points in 79 games last season split between the Senators and Buffalo Sabres.
He signed a one-year, $600,000 contract with the Islanders in the summer, but had just a goal and two assists in 15 games before New York placed him on waivers Friday.
Conacher last played in the AHL during the 2012-13 season with the Syracuse Crunch scoring 12 goals and 28 points in 36 games.
Chris Phillips will be a healthy scratch Saturday afternoon when the Ottawa Senators visit the Boston Bruins.
According to Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun, Phillips’ scratch is a “coaches decision”.
The 36-year-old has two assists in 23 games this season to go along with a minus-2 rating while averaging over 22 minutes a night in ice time.
Phillips has been a minus in consecutive games and saw his ice time drop below 18 minutes for just the second time this season in Ottawa’s 5-3 loss to the Kings on Thursday night.
Patrick Wiercioch will replace Phillips in the lineup.
Interesting quote here from Kings blueliner Drew Doughty, coming off last night’s win in Ottawa while looking ahead to tonight’s affair in Montreal (from NHL.com):
After facing Senators captain Erik Karlsson on Thursday, Doughty will match up against another of the NHL’s elite defensemen for a second straight night in Montreal’s P.K. Subban.
“I always obviously want to outplay the opposing team’s best defenseman. I think [Thursday] I did it for sure, [Friday is] going to be a tough challenge.
“P.K.’s a good player; I’m going to have to outplay him if we want to win the game.”
Doughty had a huge effort in Thursday’s 5-3 win over the Sens by recording two assists, three hits and playing a team-high 26:56. While Karlsson played more (28:25), he failed to record a single point and finished minus-2.
Tonight, Doughty gets his shot at Subban.
While he didn’t directly come out and say it, one has to think these matchups hold special significance, especially since Karlsson and Subban have won a Norris Trophy — one of the few accolades that’s eluded Doughty over his seven-year career.
The 25-year-old has only been a finalist once, finishing third behind Duncan Keith and Mike Green in 2010; when Subban won in ’13, Doughty got just a single first-place vote and when Karlsson won in ’12, Doughty received just one third-place vote.
This season, Doughty is averaging the most playing time of his career — 28:46 a night — and is on pace to score 42 points, which would be his most since recording a career-high 59 during the 2009-10 campaign (which, as mentioned above, coincided with his first and only Norris nomination.)
Chris Neil suffered a knee injury late in the first period of Ottawa’s 5-3 loss to the L.A. Kings Thursday night.
It’s not apparent when exactly the injury happened, but Neil got run over by Kings’ defenseman Brayden McNabb during his final shift. He also delivered a hit to Dwight King before leaving the ice.
Post-game Senators coach Dave Cameron told reporters Neil suffered a knee injury and is week-to-week.