The Buzzer: Milestones for Malkin, Ovechkin, Kane (Monday in NHL)

The Buzzer: Milestones for Malkin, Ovechkin, Kane (Monday in NHL)
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NHL Three Stars from Monday

1. Calle Jarnkrok, Nashville Predators

Plenty of teams have made life tougher for the Predators lately, but the Lightning seemed to dig those knives in the deepest. In an oddly timed Monday game, the Predators gained a measure of revenge.

Two Predators led the charge most of all. Calle Jarnkrok was one of them, generating a goal and three assists for a four-point outburst, standing out as the top star of Monday in the NHL.

Jarnkrok has five of his 13 points this season over the last two games, and six in his past five. Nashville would probably prefer to spread out such production to help spell the likes of Roman Josi, Ryan Ellis, Matt Duchene, and Filip Forsberg. At this point, they’ll take it, though.

Other Predators chipped in, including recent trade rumor magnet Mattias Ekholm, who scored an empty-netter and also provided an assist.

Ultimately, Pekka Rinne‘s the other Predators player who could take this spot from Jarnkrok. The veteran stopped 38 out of 39 shots. If Rinne wasn’t so sharp, this could’ve been close, if not a win for the Lightning.

(Honestly, it’s a little surprising that Rinne might not be trade fodder. If he’d absolutely not want one, fair enough. Yet, if he’d have some interest in chasing a Stanley Cup, shouldn’t he get the Ray Bourque treatment, including Predators fans cheering him on in another uniform? Going to bang this drum until mid-April, even if most put me on mute.)

2. Tristan Jarry, Pittsburgh Penguins

As strong a Monday performance as Rinne produced, Tristan Jarry takes the cake for goalies across the NHL. Jarry stopped 42 out of 43 shots to frustrate the Bruins in the Penguins’ latest win.

While other pieces of the Penguins draw understandable attention, Jarry’s bounce-back should receive some spotlight. He’s now on a four-game winning streak where he’s allowed three goals once, two goals twice, and one goal in this last performance.

Jarry’s on an upward trend when you zoom out, too, although his .906 save percentage this season still remains mediocre. Jarry’s won six of seven, and nine of his last 11 games.

When Jarry was struggling, it was easy to question the Penguins’ decisions. But this is a goalie who put up a strong .921 save percentage over 33 games (20-12-1) last season. There was some reason to believe in him, and he’s showing why lately.

Jarry and Rinne weren’t the only standouts among NHL goalies on Monday. Thatcher Demko (44 saves) and Carey Price (34) were also strong in winning efforts. (They either allowed more goals and stopped more shots, thus just falling short.)

3. Tyler Toffoli, Montreal Canadiens

Sheesh, remember when Tyler Toffoli was a valuable forward who couldn’t seem to finish the many chances he created? Now he’s just … finishing them. If he keeps this up, he might get some kind of “Mortal Kombat”-themed nickname.

With two goals and one assist in the Habs’ win against the Jets, Toffoli earns another spot on the three stars of the night.

The shrewd forward bumped his season totals to 17 goals and 26 points in 28 games.

To put that in perspective, Toffoli’s career-high is 31 goals, the only time he reached the 30-goal level. During that same 2015-16 season, he scored a career-high 58 points with the Kings. (His second-highest total is 49 points.)

Over an 82-game season, Toffoli would be on pace for almost 50 goals and about 76 points.

So, this is new territory for Tyler Toffoli. Still, for those of us that noticed that he was a better player than his goals and assists indicated, it’s nice to see him just kick down the door, and make it all so clear. He’s really good.

(Probably not explosive enough to flirt with a point-per-game each season good … but very good.)

Honorable mentions

  • Jakub Voracek generated his own three-point night, scoring an overtime winner where he seemed to have endless time. In that same Flyers win, Artemi Panarin scored three points during the second period. If his Rangers teammates completed on another Panarin-produced-point-opportunity, Panarin might have been in the three stars for Monday in the NHL.
  • Like Panarin and Voracek, Aleksander Barkov scored three points (also 1G, 2A). Barkov’s Panthers stayed hot to beat the Blackhawks 6-3.

Highlights from Monday in NHL:

Perhaps Kevin Lankinen‘s Calder Trophy buzz is cooling off. He’s still making sweet saves like these, nevertheless:

Flyers – Rangers supplied plenty of highlights, including a nice Carter Hart save. Check them out in these extended clips:

Sutter’s Flames stay hot vs. Oilers, Battle of Alberta nastiness

It’s early, but the Flames have won all three games under Darryl Sutter. This is probably not like he drew it up, though, as there were stretches of explosive scoring.

And there were also stretches of explosive violence.

Brett Ritchie won a one-sided fight with Jujhar Khaira. As you can see toward the end of that video, the Ritchie – Khaira fight followed a very bad hit by Khaira.

The Flames and Oilers face off again on Wednesday. As much as the NHL loves rivalries, and the Battle of Alberta is alive and well, they might want to keep an extra eye on that action. It’s fair to wonder if Khaira might miss that one — whether it be for supplemental discipline, or an injury.

Milestones for Ovechkin, Malkin, and Kane

  • As you can see in this post, Alex Ovechkin scored the 717th goal of his career, thus tying Phil Esposito for sixth all-time in NHL history. He also contributed to dark times for the Sabres.
  • Speaking of Ovechkin (and Sidney Crosby), here’s some interesting perspective on Evgeni Malkin reaching the impressive 1,100 point mark.

Imagine if Malkin (and Crosby, for that matter) were able to stay healthy like Ovechkin and other especially durable NHL stars? As is, still … extremely impressive.

  • Patrick Kane reached 1,064 points, moving to fifth all-time among U.S.-born NHL players. Keith Tkachuk (1,065) is right around the corner, while it could take a while to catch Jeremy Roenick (1,216) for third place.

Monday’s NHL scores

Predators 4, Lightning 1
Flyers 5, Rangers 4 (OT)
Penguins 4, Bruins 1
Panthers 6, Blackhawks 3
Canucks 3, Senators 2 (OT)
Capitals 6, Sabres 0
Canadiens 4, Jets 2
Flames 4, Oilers 3
Golden Knights 2, Sharks 1

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

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    Predators-Avalanche postponed due to water main break

    Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Friday’s game between the Nashville Predators and the Colorado Avalanche has been postponed because of a water main break that has soaked the downtown arena.

    The NHL said the water main break has “significantly impacted the event level” of Bridgestone Arena. Team locker rooms and the ice surface are on the event level.

    Predators President and CEO Sean Henry told reporters that the water in the event level ranged from 3 inches to 3 feet.

    “We’re assessing it right now. We’re remediating it,” Henry said. “The good thing is, the water got shut off, the city responded in a pretty fast manner. I don’t think anyone is ready for things like this the Friday after Thanksgiving.”

    Video posted by a WTVF-TV reporter shows the water puddled up on the main floor’s concourse area and the team store.

    The team was forced to close the store until further notice, pointing shoppers online for Black Friday specials.

    A makeup date for the  game will be announced later.

    Also, a decision on whether to postpone the Predators’ home game against the Columbus Blue Jackets will be made later.

    The water issue also resulted in a switch to a different venue in Nashville for a college hockey game between Northeastern and Western Michigan. They had been scheduled to play at Bridgestone Arena, a game that was moved to Ford Ice Center Bellevue.

    Rangers trade Ryan Reaves to Wild for 5th-round pick in 2025

    Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

    ST. PAUL, Minn. — The New York Rangers traded enforcer Ryan Reaves to the Minnesota Wild for a 2025 fifth-round pick.

    Reaves had been a healthy scratch for eight of the past 12 games for the Rangers. He gives struggling Minnesota some extra muscle and a veteran presence.

    The 35-year-old is signed through only the rest of this season at a $1.75 million salary cap hit. He has no points and 12 penalty minutes in 12 games of his second season with New York.

    Reaves has played in 869 NHL regular-season and playoff games for the St. Louis Blues, Pittsburgh Penguins, Vegas Golden Knights and Rangers. He was with the Golden Knights during their inaugural season in 2017-18 when the reached the Stanley Cup Final.

    Toronto’s Morgan Rielly placed on long-term injured reserve

    Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

    TORONTO — The Toronto Maple Leafs placed defenseman Morgan Rielly on long-term injured reserve with a knee injury.

    Rielly was hurt in a collision with with New York forward Kyle Palmieri early in the third period of Toronto’s 3-2 overtime loss to the Islanders at home.

    Rielly has no goals and 16 assists in 20 games this season and is averaging 23 minutes of ice time.

    Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said following practice that the 28-year-old Rielly doesn’t need surgery, adding there’s no firm timeline for his return beyond the minimum 24 days and 10 games required for going on long-term injured reserve.

    Toronto’s defense is also missing Jake Muzzin with a neck injury and T.J. Brodie with an injured oblique.

    Carrier, Pietrangelo rally Golden Knights past Canucks 5-4

    Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports

    VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Alex Pietrangelo scored the tiebreaking goal in the third period and had two assists as the Vegas Golden Knights rallied past the Vancouver Canucks 5-4 on Monday night.

    William Carrier scored twice and Mark Stone had a goal and an assist for the Golden Knights (15-4-1), who overcame a 4-2 deficit in the third. Reilly Smith also scored, while Jack Eichel and Alec Martinez each had two assists.

    Logan Thompson made 25 saves for Vegas, which had a go-ahead goal wiped out in the third but still kept pushing.

    “I don’t think that’s really how we drew it up,” Pietrangelo said. “A lot of emotions. Obviously we score and then it gets taken back. But I’ll tell you what, it’s not easy to win on the road and you’ve got to give credit to our group – we were resilient no matter what happened.”

    Vancouver (6-10-3) got a goal and an assist from Andrei Kuzmenko. Bo Horvat, Luke Schenn and Elias Pettersson also scored, and Quinn Hughes had two assists.

    Thatcher Demko stopped 33 shots for the Canucks, who gave up a multi-goal lead in a loss for the seventh time this season.

    “Inexcusable,” defenseman Luke Schenn said.

    “That’s nothing to do with systems or what the coaches are telling us. That comes down to battle and compete and, we’re getting outmuscled and outbattled in front of the net and in the blue paint,” he added. “Everyone just needs to be better in front of (Demko) there and that’s where games are won and lost.”

    Vegas appeared to take the lead midway through the third period, but the goal was disallowed because of a bizarre bounce.

    A clearing attempt by the Canucks hit the lens of a camera sticking through one of the media holes in the glass, knocking a piece of it onto the ice. Play continued at that end and Stone put the puck in the net. But after a video review, the goal was overturned and an official said the whistle should have been blown to stop play.

    About four minutes later, Pietrangelo did give the Golden Knights a 5-4 advantage when he collected a puck from Stone and sent a backhand past Demko from the low slot at 14:14.

    Vancouver scored three straight goals early in the third to go up 4-2 before Vegas roared back.

    “We let them score one, kind of changed the momentum quick and then they scored another one. So I don’t know,” Pettersson said. “We just can’t let that happen. It’s been happening way too many times this season.”

    Carrier made it 4-3 with his second of the night at 6:54, sending in a rebound from the top of the crease for his sixth of the season.

    “Once they scored one it was like, `Uh oh, here we go again.’ And we’re back on our heels and they came at us, and then they got three,” Canucks coach Bruce Boudreau said.

    Smith shoveled a puck into the Vancouver net at 8:57 to tie it.

    “We just win some pucks below their goal line and get it to the front of the net and force them to defend an area they haven’t done as good a job as they’d probably like this year there,” Vegas coach Bruce Cassidy said. “We didn’t do a very good job to start a third there, and then it snowballs a little bit. You have a little life and you get a couple more pucks to the net and a second chance.”


    Horvat drew the Canucks even 1:47 into the third with a wrist shot from the hash marks. Vancouver’s captain has 15 goals, second-most in the NHL behind Connor McDavid (16). … Brock Boeser‘s assist on the first goal of the game extended his point streak to seven games (two goals, six assists).


    Golden Knights forward Jonathan Marchessault played his 500th regular-season NHL game. Now in his 10th season, the 31-year-old center suited up for Columbus, Tampa Bay and Florida before Vegas selected him in the 2017 expansion draft. … Vancouver defenseman Ethan Bear made his 200th regular-season appearance.


    Golden Knights: Host the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday in the opener of a three-game homestand.

    Canucks: Begin a three-game trip Wednesday at Colorado.