1) Anthony Cirelli, Tampa Bay Lightning
Cirelli recorded his first NHL hat trick as the Lightning steamrolled the Winnipeg Jets Friday evening. The 22-year-old scored twice in the opening period as the Bolts jumped out to a 3-0 lead and never looked back. Cirelli hammered a feed from Ondrej Palat 9:27 into the game and then converted a nifty forehand-backhand maneuver to close out the first 20 minutes. Cirelli would complete the hat trick midway through the third period.
2) Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins
Malkin recorded two power-play assists to set up Pittsburgh’s two goals in its 2-1 win against the Detroit Red Wings. Sidney Crosby has received a lot of attention since returning from a 28-game absence earlier this week and added the game-winning goal Friday. However, it was Malkin who looked off the defender and delivered a perfect pass to set up the Penguins captain. Malkin has recorded 10 points in the previous six games.
3) Nikita Kucherov, Tampa Bay Lightning
The 26-year-old winger scored twice in Tampa Bay’s 7-1 win. Cirelli and Kucherov alternated goals as Tampa Bay jumped out to a 4-0 lead, including three in the opening period. Kucherov buried two tap-in opportunities to record goals 21 and 22 on the season. The Russian winger has five goals in his previous three games and the Lightning improved to 12-2-0 in the previous 14 games.
Highlights of the Night
Crosby extended his goal-scoring streak to three games when he buried a pretty feed from Malkin to propel the Penguins in overtime.
Stats of the Night
Andrei Vasilevskiy of the @TBLightning improved to 10-0-0 in his last 10 appearances and matched his career high for longest win streak, a mark set from Feb. 9 – March 5, 2019. #NHLStats pic.twitter.com/SDztL5d5m0
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) January 18, 2020
With his goal tonight, the @penguins' Sidney Crosby has now scored an OT goal in each of the last 7 seasons.
Since regular-season OT was re-instituted in 1983-84, only 2 others have scored an OT goal in 7+ straight seasons: Mats Sundin (8) & Brendan Morrison (7).#LetsGoPens
— Stats By STATS (@StatsBySTATS) January 18, 2020
Pittsburgh Penguins 2, Detroit Red Wings 1 (OT)
Anaheim Ducks 2, Carolina Hurricanes 1 (OT)
Tampa Bay Lightning 7, Winnipeg Jets 1
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Scott Charles is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @ScottMCharles.