Preseason quick recaps: September 23rd

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Earlier tonight, we touched on the Edmonton Oilers 5-2 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. If you need a Cliff’s Notes version of that recap, here it is: Taylor Hall was good, Magnus Paajarvi was even better and the Lightning … well, they had some Dan Ellis Problems.

Anyway, in case you want to know about the six other games that took place tonight, you’ve come to the right place. Keep in mind that it’s foolish to put too much stock into any preseason results.

Florida Panthers 3, Boston Bruins 2

Plus: David Booth scored two goals and Michael Frolik notched two assists while Tomas Vokoun and Tyler Plante only allowed one goal each for the Florida Panthers tonight. It’s great to see Booth back after some serious concussion problems last season.

Minus: The Florida Panthers won’t be able to carry this win over to the regular season, something they never seem to begin with much gusto lately. Then again, the Panthers don’t often dominate the “with much gusto” category, anyway.

New York Rangers 4, New Jersey Devils 3 (OT)

Plus: It was a star-driven game tonight. Marian Gaborik scored two goals including the overtime-winner while this year’s big Rangers addition Alex Frolov earned the No. 1 star with a one-goal, two-assist performance. All three Devils goals were scored by their probable first line, as Ilya Kovalchuk, Zach Parise and Travis Zajac scored one goal each.

Minus: The Rangers are still crazy to pin their offensive hopes on Gaborik, a player so injury-prone he might as well be called the Slovakian Forsberg. The Devils no-longer-vaunted defense allowed 37 shots on goal in this one.

Toronto Maple Leafs 3, Philadelphia Flyers 2 (OT)

Plus: Colby Armstrong can briefly forget about the completely wooden acting performance he made in local Pittsburgh commercials a few years ago with a shootout winner. Both teams enjoyed some good goaltending, all things considered.

Minus: They might not have the same tie-breaking power, but 10-plus round shootouts clearly aren’t going extinct this season. Blimey.

Carolina Hurricanes 3, Nashville Predators 1

Plus: For at least one night, Patrick O’Sullivan justified his existence with a goal. He could be an underrated steal for Carolina – a noted place for cast-offs such as Jussi Jokinen and Sergei Samsonov (who also scored tonight) – if he can put it together this season. Eric Staal produced two assists.

Minus: This game is too unremarkable for their to being any true blemishes. It’s the nougat of hockey games.

Phoenix vs. LA part 1: Phoenix wins 2-1 in OT

Plus: Any sign of a pulse from Alex Ponikarovsky (one goal) must be a promising sign for the forward-poor Kings. Kyle Wellwood scored to the delight of anyone clamoring to make fat jokes. Solid human Shane Doan scored the OT GWG and assisted on Wellwood’s tally, both on the PP.

Minus: The Kings were out-shot 16-7 in the third period and 4-0 in overtime. Less than 6,000 people attended this game.

Phoenix vs. LA part 2:  Phoenix wins 3-1

Plus: The Coyotes took both of these split-team games, but I’m pretty sure neither contest including a matchup of “shirts and skins.” The attendance numbers of this one was quite a bit better, with 10,000+ in attendance (allegedly).

Minus: These split-team scrimmages are kind of obnoxious.

Canucks’ Ilya Mikheyev to have season-ending knee surgery

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VANCOUVER, British Columbia — Vancouver Canucks right wing Ilya Mikheyev is set to have season-ending surgery on his left knee.

Canucks general manager Patrik Allvin said Friday night the 28-year-old Russian forward tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the team’s first preseason game Sept. 25. Mikheyev will undergo surgery next week and is expected to be ready for training camp in the fall.

Mikheyev was originally listed as week-to-week with the injury and played 45 regular-season games, finishing with 13 goals and 15 assists. He scored in his final appearance Friday night, a 5-2 home victory over Columbus.

Mikheyev signed a four-year, $19 million contract as a free agent last summer.

Maple Leafs’ Matthews out at least 3 weeks with knee injury

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Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews will miss at least three weeks with a sprained knee.

The team announced the reigning MVP’s anticipated absence Friday, two days after Matthews was injured in Toronto’s victory against the New York Rangers.

Matthews is expected to miss at least six games and could be out for a few more. The timing of the injury coinciding with the NHL All-Star break and the Maple Leafs bye week prevents this from costing Matthews more time out of the lineup.

After being voted an All-Star by fans, Matthews is now out of the event scheduled for Feb. 3-4 in Sunrise, Florida. The league announced Aleskander Barkov from the host Florida Panthers will take Matthews’ place on the Atlantic Division All-Star roster.

Matthews, who won the Hart Trophy last season after leading the NHL with 60 goals, has 53 points in 47 games this season.

Caufield opted for surgery with Habs out of playoff race

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MONTREAL — Montreal Canadiens winger Cole Caufield said Friday he wouldn’t be having season-ending surgery on his right shoulder if the team were in playoff contention.

But with the Canadiens near the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings, the 22-year-old Caufield said he decided to have the surgery to protect his long-term health. The procedure is scheduled to be performed by Dr. Peter Millett on Wednesday.

“I didn’t want to stop playing,” Caufield said. “I had a couple tests done to look at it more clearly but, in the end, like it could’ve been one more fall and it could have been even worse.”

Caufield, who leads the Canadiens with 26 goals in 46 games, had three different medical opinions on his shoulder before concluding that his season was over.

“I think they’ve seen a lot more than I have and they know the differences and what they like or don’t like about it,” he said about the medical opinions. “Long term, I think this is what’s best but for sure it was tough to sit out that game against Toronto on Saturday night.”

Caufield initially felt the injury in an awkward fall during Montreal’s 4-2 loss at Dallas on Dec. 23. He said his right shoulder popped, and he replaced it himself.

Caufield felt it again in the Habs’ 4-3 loss at Nashville on Jan. 12. The club announced on Jan. 21 that Caufield would miss the rest of the season.

Caufield is nearing the end of his three-year, entry-level contract and will be a restricted free agent this summer.

All-Star Matty Beniers to miss next 2 games for Kraken

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SEATTLE — Seattle Kraken rookie All-Star Matty Beniers will miss the team’s final two games before the All-Star break after taking a big hit from Vancouver’s Tyler Myers earlier this week.

Seattle coach Dave Hakstol said after morning skate Friday that Beniers would not play Friday night against Calgary or Saturday against Columbus. Hakstol did not speculate on Beniers’ availability for next weekend’s All-Star Game in Florida.

The team has not specified what kind of injury Beniers sustained from the hit. He was barreled over by Myers away from the play early in the second period in Wednesday’s 6-1 victory over Vancouver. Myers was penalized for interference on the play. Beniers returned briefly for one shift later in the period but did not play in the third period.

Beniers is Seattle’s lone All-Star selection this season. He leads all rookies in goals (17) and points (36), and is fifth in total ice time for rookies.

Seattle also placed defenseman Justin Schultz on injured reserve and recalled forward Max McCormick from Coachella Valley of the AHL. Hakstol said Schultz is improving but there’s no timeline on his return.