Player of the Night: Clayton Keller, Arizona Coyotes
You know how the Flyers sunk to the bottom of the Metropolitan Division – at least for a limited time – thanks to their loss? Well, the Capitals “backed into” first in that same division – probably for a limited time, considering games played versus games in hand – after squandering a lead against the Coyotes.
Coyotes super-rookie Keller was in the middle of some of the most crucial activity. Keller generated a primary assist on the goal that sent the game to overtime and then ended it in OT with about 37 seconds remaining in extra time.
Keller now has 13 goals and 15 assists for 28 points as he continues to strive for the Calder Trophy.
He also cemented the theme of the night: upsets. The Flyers fell short against the Sabres, the Capitals squandered that lead to the lowly Coyotes, and on smaller scales, lower-ranked Canadiens beat the Flames and Panthers topped the Wild, respectively.
Highlights of the Night
Near-player-of-the-night Jonathan Huberdeau settles for the highlight of the night. While one of his goals was an empty-netter, the other was a thing of beauty in Florida’s victory:
Honorable mention goes to this Capitals goal. Washington took it pretty easy tonight against Arizona, but they also made it look easy on this one:
And another honorable mention goes to Nicolas Deslauriers of the Canadiens for this nice finish on a great effort from Byron Froese:
(Bonus factoid, too: the Canadiens have disproportionately strong luck with “Byrons.”)
That’s a lot of Matt Cullen.
Maybe the Capitals losing wasn’t an upset?
Sabres 4, Flyers 2
Panthers 4, Wild 2
Coyotes 3, Capitals 2 (OT)
Canadiens 3, Flames 2
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.