NHL Rink Wrap: Tkachuk hat trick; Wild streak ends; Tortorella on Zegras

NHL Rink Wrap: Tkachuk hat trick; Wild streak ends; Tortorella on Zegras
André Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images

Top players from Saturday in the NHL

Brady Tkachuk, Senators

With what he’s accomplished (and the money he’s already secured) in his young career, it’s a bit surprising that Brady Tkachuk never generated an NHL hat trick until Saturday.

Granted, you could say he’s earned plenty of Tkachuk Family Hat Tricks. (Scored, annoyed peoplereally annoyed people … to the point that they bite you?)

Anyway, Brady Tkachuk did indeed notch his first career hat trick, and he did so against the Lightning. Drake Batherson was right there with him, collecting three assists. Because it’s Brady Tkachuk, opponents might want a few talking points to try to downgrade the hat trick. They’re reaches, but his third goal was an empty-netter, and his first two came against Brian Elliott instead of Andrei Vasilevskiy.

Anton Forsberg also managed a 25-save shutout in that afternoon upset of the Bolts.

While Forsberg’s overall numbers aren’t special, he’s now on a four-game winning streak. It began with a 47-save upset of the Hurricanes, with wins against the Avalanche and Devils before this latest win. Not bad, especially considering the shaky Senators team in front of Forsberg.

Highlights from NHL games on Saturday

Enjoy footage of that Brady Tkachuk hat trick.

Hope you’ve been readying your puns: Jake Bean scored an overtime game-winner for the Blue Jackets.

Max Domi also scored an impressive goal for Columbus during Saturday’s NHL action.

Remember that big game Karel Vejmelka had? This is, uh, the opposite of that. Good for Patrick Brown, though.

Things weren’t a whole lot better for Mikko Koskinen during a key Sebastian Aho goal. The Oilers are now on a five-game losing streak, and are winless four games into a six-game homestand.

NHL takeaways from Saturday

Bon voyage, Ben Bishop

In case you missed it, the Stars announced that Ben Bishop must end his NHL career. It’s a real bummer.

You can read more about that sad news, but also about his underrated career, in this post.

Wild winning streak ends at eight games thanks to the Kings

While it wasn’t by much, the Wild’s eight-game winning streak is over.

When you look at the 2-1 score, you might picture the sort of buttoned-down game the Kings and Wild usually play. Instead, this was a busy one. The Kings won the high-danger chance battle, but both teams generated plenty of opportunities. (Los Angeles took the 5-on-5 edge 15-10, while it was close in all situations 17-16 for the Kings.)

For the Kings, it’s not just about ending that Wild winning streak. They also were able to hang with one of the hottest offenses in the NHL. It’s unclear if Los Angeles can squeeze into a wild-card spot, but the Kings have to enjoy these moments of promise.

Islanders finally win at home

Credit to Scott Mayfield of the Islanders for going John Cena on CM Punk about those barbs regarding the team losing, particularly at home. (You see, Mayfield said he didn’t see it. Apparently he’s not yet All Elite?)

Instead, the Islanders took care of business. In their eighth game at their new home (UBS Arena), the Islanders finally won, beating the Devils 4-2. (Zach Parise‘s shorthanded tally ended up being the game-winner against his former team.)

If the Islanders want to play their first playoff home game at UBS Arena anytime soon, they’ll really need to pick up more wins. Getting that first W is better than nothing, though.

Canucks owner has some fun with the media

… Interesting.

Tortorella ranting about that Zegras – Milano goal is as boring as that goal was captivating

Truly, the dream is for the NHL to get to the point where amazing goals like Trevor Zegras‘ assist to Sonny Milano happen more often.

OK, even dreaming about a goal like that happening again might be asking for too much, even in the land of slumber. But the larger point remains. Creative moments rock. It rules when players pull off moves they’d be audacious to even consider, and it gets better when those moves work.

But if you’re a special breed of crusty, that amazing Zegras – Milano combination is, uh, bad for hockey?

For some, Tortorella complaining about Zegras – Milano is an outrage. While it’s hard to imagine that many people nodding along with Torts, the Internet teaches us that there are almost alarming quantities of people who spout off bizarre takes. Some even aren’t just trolling.

Personally? I’m wavering somewhere between that GIF of The Rock rolling his eyes and total indifference.

Can’t the cranky, so-played-out-they’re-dusty takes at least be a little more entertaining? This all feels like a broken record of an album that was never much fun to listen to when it was first released. A century ago.

Sunday’s big story

Speaking of dreaming, what if Panthers – Avalanche is a Stanley Cup preview?

Heading into Saturday, the Avalanche easily led the NHL in goals per game (4.38), while the Panthers were tied with the Wild for second-best (3.77). Those three teams are the only squads in the league averaging more than three-and-a-half goals per contest.

(The Oilers [3.48] and a few others are reasonably close. Slightly more than half of the NHL sit below three goals per game.)

With so much time left in a season, a team can play over its head, and mislead with especially hot or cold play. While both the Avalanche and Panthers may slow down a bit — tough to match Colorado’s pace, even with that firepower — these are legitimately impressive offenses. Any night you contain them, or merely slow them down, is one for a defense to be proud of.

So, it’s not just that the Panthers and Avalanche are successful. They’re also just a lot of fun, and that’s why it would be wonderful if these two ended up battling in the 2022 Stanley Cup Final. Or at least a championship round while they’re still this fun?

(Note: John Tortorella might find all of that Panthers and Avalanche offense to be bad for hockey, though. So maybe your mileage varies on fun/entertainment/high-level skill, too.)

Saturday’s NHL scores

Senators 4, Lightning 0
Capitals 3, Sabres 2 (SO)
Maple Leafs 5, Blackhawks 4
Penguins 1, Ducks 0
Blues 4, Canadiens 1
Islanders 4, Devils 2
Flyers 5, Coyotes 3
Bruins 4, Flames 2
Hurricanes 3, Oilers 1
Blue Jackets 5, Kraken 4 (OT)
Kings 2, Wild 1
Sharks 2, Stars 1

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

Scroll Down For:

    Coyotes minority owner suspended by NHL following arrest

    coyotes suspension
    Donald Page/Getty Images
    1 Comment

    NEW YORK — Arizona Coyotes minority owner Andrew Barroway was suspended indefinitely by the NHL on Friday following his arrest for domestic violence in Colorado.

    Online court records show Barroway was arrested on Thursday on suspicion of second-degree assault strangulation, a felony, and third-degree assault, a misdemeanor. He appeared in court Friday to be advised of the possible charges he is facing and is scheduled to back in court on April 3.

    Barroway spent Thursday night in Pitkin County Jail after police arrested him at an Aspen hotel, according to a police report obtained by the Aspen Daily News.

    “The National Hockey League is aware of the arrest of Arizona Coyotes’ minority owner Andrew Barroway,” the NHL said in a statement. “Pending further information, he has been suspended indefinitely.”

    The 57-year-old Barroway was arrested after a verbal altercation with his wife turned physical, according to the police report. He is prohibited from having contact with his wife, except when it involves their children, and can’t consume alcohol under a court order.

    A prominent hedge fund manager, Barroway owns 5% of the Coyotes.

    “We are aware of the allegation regarding Mr. Barroway and we are working with the League to gather more information,” the Coyotes said in a statement. “When we have enough information, we will have an appropriate response. Until the investigation is complete, we will have no further comment.”

    Blue Jackets’ Patrik Laine out 2-4 weeks with triceps injury

    Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
    1 Comment

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Columbus Blue Jackets forward Patrik Laine is out 2-4 weeks after straining a triceps muscle in practice, yet another blow to the last-place team in the NHL that has been hampered by injuries all season.

    The Blue Jackets announced Laine’s absence before their home game against the New York Islanders.

    They already have 454 man-games lost to injury, one of the highest numbers in the league, and have a record of 22-41-7.

    Laine missed two separate stints with elbow and ankle injuries in the fall. The 24-year-old Finn is the team’s second-leading scorer with 52 points in 55 games.

    Columbus has been top defenseman Zach Werenski since November because of a torn labrum and separated shoulder. Forward Sean Kuraly recently went on injured reserve with a strained left oblique muscle but is set to return Friday.

    Tortorella earns 700th career win, Flyers top Wild 5-4

    flyers wild
    Len Redkoles/Getty Images
    1 Comment

    PHILADELPHIA — John Tortorella needed one word to sum up if 700 career wins meant anything to the Flyers coach.


    OK, then. Good thing the brusque Stanley Cup winner isn’t paid by the word.

    James van Riemsdyk scored the only goal in a shootout, and Philadelphia beat the Minnesota Wild 5-4 on Thursday night for Tortorella’s 700th victory.

    Tortorella is 700-573-181 in 1,454 games as an NHL head coach. His 700 wins rank 12th in NHL history and his career games rank ninth in NHL history. He led Tampa Bay to the Stanley Cup in 2004. In his first season coaching the Flyers, Tortorella joined Peter Laviolette as the second American-born coach to win 700 games.

    “I think the culture’s kind of changed around here,” Flyers forward Joel Farabee said. “I think he’s done a really good job of keeping the group together.”

    Farabee, Scott Laughton, Rasmus Ristolainen and Tyson Foerster scored for Philadelphia. The Flyers have two straight games for the first time since Jan. 9-14 when they won three straight. Yeah, it’s been that kind of season.

    “Farabee’s starting to pop, he’s looking real good. Tyson is looking real good,” Flyers defenseman Tony DeAngelo said. “This is all about laying the foundation for next year but we get a lot of money to do this job. It’s something we love, so we’re gonna go out and give it our best every night.”

    Matt Boldy had two goals for the Wild, and Oskar Sundqvist and Marcus Foligno also scored.

    “We weren’t very good. They were good,” Wild coach Dean Evason said. “We knew they were playing well, they played well tonight. We were loose. We were not firm, turnovers, it didn’t look like our hockey club.”

    The Flyers and Wild were tied 1-all at the end of the first period, 3-3 at the end of the second and 4-4 headed into OT.

    The rebuilding Flyers have been plucky of late. They had won two of three coming into the game, with the lone loss in overtime. They showed some of that grit in the final two periods, scoring late tying goals.

    “It’s a credit to their group, to their coaching staff, that they’ve got them playing the right way,” Evason said.

    Boldy poked a backhander past Carter Hart with 6:28 left for a 4-3 lead. The Flyers, playing more for the No. 1 pick and for pride, tied the game on Foerster’s second goal of the season.

    Farabee tipped in Cam York’s shot early in the second for a 2-1 lead.

    The Wild got going when Boldy ripped one top shelf past Hart for his 24th goal of the season that tied the game 2-all. Foligno scored his seventh goal for the 3-2 lead.

    Ristolainen buried a hard slapper from the blue line on the power play for the tying goal with 23 seconds left in the second.

    “I think it’s good to try to lay this foundation, kind of get ready for next year. You see guys getting confidence,” DeAngelo said.

    The Flyers only played ahead in the first period.

    Laughton scored off the rush for his 17th goal of the season and a 1-0 lead. Sundqvist celebrated his birthday with a deflection for the tying goal with 3:24 left in the period.

    The Flyers had been one of the lowest-scoring teams in the NHL until the start of this seven-game homestand (3-2 so far). They have scored at least three goals in every game and at least four in the last four.

    “We have definitely gotten to the net better,” Tortorella said. “We have spent a lot of time on the ice and with tape as far as getting to that area.”


    Wild: Host Chicago on Saturday.

    Flyers: Host Detroit on Saturday.

    Crosby reaches 30-goal mark, Penguins knock off Avalanche 5-2

    Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

    DENVER – Sidney Crosby wasn’t even aware of reaching yet another milestone. He’s simply locked in on helping the Pittsburgh Penguins make a 17th straight postseason appearance.

    Jeff Carter had a pair of goals, Crosby scored on a nifty backhand shot in the second period to reach the 30-goal mark for an 11th season and the Penguins beat the Colorado Avalanche 5-2.

    Crosby moved into a tie with Hall-of-Fame center Mario Lemieux for the most 30-goal seasons in Penguins history. Another milestone reached – it came as news to him.

    “I think the most important thing for me is just try to be consistent and if that reflects that great,” said Crosby, who turns 36 in August.

    Even more, Crosby’s the first player in league history to post a 30-goal campaign at 18 years old and again when he was 35-plus, according to NHL Stats.

    “It means I’ve been in the league for a while,” Crosby cracked. “That’s been the thing that’s driven me since since I got into the league – in your first year, you want to prove that you belong. Even at 35, I still think you want to prove you belong, because it is a younger league.”

    Jake Guentzel also scored and Bryan Rust added an empty-net goal for the Penguins, who snapped a four-game slide and moved back into a wild-card spot in the East.

    “It’s definitely a big one for us, for sure,” Guentzel said. “Defending champs, coming to their building, you know how good they are. Top to bottom, we defended hard and that’s what we have to do at this time of the year.”

    Pittsburgh goaltender Tristan Jarry stopped 28 shots in improving to 11-4 this season against teams from the Western Conference.

    J.T. Compher and Devon Toews had goals for the Avalanche, whose six-game winning streak was halted. Nathan MacKinnon had an assist to extend his home points streak to 18 games.

    It was a missed opportunity for Colorado, which could’ve pulled into a three-way tie with Dallas and Minnesota in the Central Division with a victory.

    “We knew they were going to play with urgency,” Colorado coach Jared Bednar said. “But I didn’t feel like there was any reason why we couldn’t, either. … We didn’t get it done. Hopefully we get another one.”

    Alexandar Georgiev made 40 saves, including several critical ones in a second period controlled by the Penguins, who outshot the Avalanche by a 21-9 margin. It could’ve been more than a 3-1 deficit heading into the third period.

    Toews’ power-play goal made it 3-2 with 9:32 remaining. But Carter wrapped up the win with his first multigoal game in the regular season since Jan. 11, 2022.

    “I’m thrilled for him. We’re all thrilled,” Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said of Carter. “He cares about the Penguins. He wants to win, and he wants to contribute in helping us win so we couldn’t be happier for him.”


    Bednar was appreciative of the three-year extension he signed Tuesday that goes through the 2026-27 season. In his seventh season, he’s the third-longest tenured coach in the NHL behind Tampa Bay’s Jon Cooper (March 2013) and Sullivan (December 2015).

    “It’s not a forgiving league or sport, for the most part, but obviously that’s part of the reason why I’m so grateful and thankful,” Bednar said. “Because there were times over my tenure that got a little hairy and management could have made another decision. But obviously they didn’t.”


    Avalanche D Cale Makar missed a second straight game with a lower body injury. “I still have him as day-to-day,” Bednar said. … F Darren Helm returned after missing 64 of 69 games this season with a lower-body injury. … Penguins D Jeff Petry (upper body) skated in the morning but sat out his third straight game. … The Penguins are 11-1 against the Central Division this season. … Penguins standout Evgeni Malkin assisted on Guentzel’s goal to reach the 50-assist mark for a seventh time in his career.


    Penguins: At Dallas on Thursday night.

    Avalanche: Host Arizona on Friday night.