Lines of the Night: With combinations of forwards running wild in many cases, it might be best to break things down by the lines that dominated Thursday.
Let’s start with the painfully obvious one.
Vladislav Namestnikov – Steven Stamkos – Nikita Kucherov
Will the Lightning’s top line ever cool down? Probably, but right now they’re basically unstoppable; they didn’t even take it easy on Ben Bishop as he made his return to Tampa Bay. Instead, the Lightning beat the Stars 6-1 thanks to that top trio.
Stamkos scored two goals and two assists to boost his points total to 35 (!) in 19 games, while Nikita Kucherov scored his league-leading 17th tally and also produced two assists. Names grabbed an assist and apparently fought Dan Hamhuis.
Gabriel Landeskog – Nathan MacKinnon – Mikko Rantanen
Some Colorado fans might have uttered “Matt WHO-chene?” for at least one night, as this top trio was ridiculous. Landeskog recorded his first career hat trick, Rantanen collected four points (1G, 3A), and MacKinnon generated one goal and four helpers.
This might just be the breakout season people were hoping to see with MacKinnon, as he has 20 points in 17 games.
It was a landslide from Avalanche captain Landeskog, if you will.
Brayden Schenn continues to ride high for the Blues, as he collected two goals and an assist. His point streak is honestly a little ridiculous:
Eric Staal (1G, 2A) had the better night, but his linemate Jason Zucker is on a tear of his own:
To keep this from getting unwieldy, we’ll leave it at that, but there are worth honorable mentions, such as top scorers for the Golden Knights (who just keep winning).
Highlight of the night: Matt Murray‘s save
There were some other great stops, goals, and hard hits on Thursday, but wow, Murray.
The Maple Leafs make a little history in their 1-0 OT win, which was their fifth straight W.
Roberto Luongo shuts out the Sharks for the first time in his career. You’d think San Jose would have been a victim of one of the previous 73 goose eggs …
And some relief:
More on that Coyotes win here and the Habs’ angry reactions here.
Leafs 1, Devils 0 (OT)
Islanders 6, Hurricanes 4
Coyotes 5, Canadiens 4
Penguins 3, Senators 1
Lightning 6, Stars 1
Wild 6, Predators 4
Jets 3, Flyers 2 (SO)
Avalanche 6, Capitals 2
Golden Knights 5, Canucks 2
Blues 4, Oilers 1
Bruins 2, Kings 1
Panthers 2, Sharks 0
James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.