Let’s look back at Friday night’s games, starting with the marquee match of Pittsburgh vs. New Jersey.
New Jersey continues to dominate the defending Stanley Cup champions this season. Ilya Kovalchuk was “struggling” with eight points in first 10 games as a Devil, but last night he made his presence felt with one goal, two assists and a failed penalty shot. (Remember: Kovy and Crosby don’t exactly love each other.)
Neither Steven Stamkos nor Alex Ovechkin improved their chances in Richard race in this game, allowing Sidney Crosby to regain a temporary lead with his 45th goal. Perhaps Scott Walker should keep getting lost in DC’s metro system out of sheer superstition because he has two goals in three games after only scoring two in the previous 291 of his career games!
Jump for the other four game recaps.
Someone had to win this game of two slumping teams and the Rangers did so handily. Lundqvist and Gaborik both were big in the win for New York. Friday marked the home debut for “new” Thrashers defenseman Chris Chelios who blocked two shots in his second game back.
In this battle of backups, one of the best (Minnesota’s Josh Harding) beat one of the worst (Buffalo’s Patrick Lalime). While Harding made 43 saves to lead the Wild to a rare road win, Lalime was jeered by Buffalo fans after two early goals. Look, I get that he’s not Ryan Miller, but why shake the confidence of your own goalie?
Jonathan Quick might want to get back to being the Kings’ starter because the other Jonathan (Bernier) had a great win in his first game of the year. One weird thing from this game: one assistant coach from each team was hit by a puck.
Jonas Hiller had a nice game, but Pekka Rinne was even better for Nashville. Rinne earned his 11th career shutout in only 100 games played.