NHL Rink Wrap: Hats off to Atkinson; Pacioretty goal streak at 7; Senators keep rolling

NHL Scores
Tim Nwachukwu, Getty Images

Top player from Tuesday in the NHL

Cam Atkinson, Philadelphia Flyers

The Philadelphia Flyers are always a team of streaks. After their 10-game losing streak ended over the weekend they are now on a three-game winning streak thanks to their dominating 6-1 win over the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night. Leading the way was a spectacular game from forward Cam Atkinson as he recorded his first hat trick as a member of the Flyers and finished with four points (three goals, one assist), was a plus-five, and had seven shots on goal. Atkinson now has 12 goals in his first 27 games with the Flyers after being acquired in an offseason trade with the Columbus Blue Jackets for Jakub Voracek.

Highlights from Tuesday in the NHL

Kasperi Kapanen started the scoring for the Pittsburgh Penguins in their 5-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens by bunting in a goal for his seventh goal of the season.

The Vancouver Canucks improved to 5-0-0 under new coach Bruce Boudreau by completing an incredible comeback against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Bo Horvat tied the game thanks to this incredible pass by Quinn Hughes.

Auston Matthews and the Toronto Maple Leafs handed the Edmonton Oilers their sixth consecutive defeat, with Matthews scoring a pair of goals in the 5-1 win to give him 20 goals on the season.

Three Takeaways from Tuesday in the NHL

Max Pacioretty has scored a goal in seven consecutive games

As soon as the Vegas Golden Knights started to get their top players back they all of a sudden started winning a bunch of games. Max Pacioretty’s return has been one of the big additions to the lineup as he continues his incredible start to the season. He now has 12 goals in his first 11 games and is currently riding a seven-game goal-scoring streak after adding to it with a pair of goals in their 4-1 win over the Boston Bruins on Tuesday night. It is already his fourth multi-goal game of the season and his third during his current goal-scoring streak. He also has 19 total points on the season. Pacioretty has always been one of the games best goal scorers and he is playing some of the best hockey of his career right now.

The Ottawa Senators are playing some fantastic hockey right now

That is no joke, either. They are on a roll and against some of the best teams in the league. Thanks to their 8-2 win over the Florida Panthers on Tuesday the Senators are now 5-1-0 in their past six games, outscoring their opponents by a 27-16 margin. Their opponents during that stretch: Carolina Hurricanes (win), Colorado Avalanche (win), New Jersey Devils (win), New York Islanders (the one loss), Tampa Bay Lightning (win), and Florida Panthers (win). That list includes four of the best teams in the league. Just prior to this stretch they had lost 15 out of 17 games, so this is quite the unexpected turnaround.

Vladimir Tarasenko keeps rolling

Vladimir Tarasenko wanted out of St. Louis during the offseason and the St. Louis Blues were willing to move him. They were willing to lose him for nothing in the Seattle Kraken expansion draft. Nobody went for it, and the Blues are benefitting from that. Tarasenko had three more points in the Blues’ 4-1 win over the Dallas Stars on Tuesday night, giving him nine goals, 17 assists, and 26 total points this season. After two consecutive seasons where he dealt with major injuries and a lack of production when he was on the ice, Tarasenko is clearly back to being an impact player and probably making a lot of teams second guess their offseason approach.

Wednesday’s big story

On the ice we are going to go with Alex Ovechkin looking to continue his unbelievable season as the Washington Capitals visit the Chicago Blackhawks. Ovechkin is third in the NHL in scoring this season and having one of the best offensive seasons of his career, which is absolutely insane given that he is in his mid-30s and should be at an age where he should be slowing down offensively. It is not happening. Off the ice all eyes and attention will be on what happens with the league’s COVID situation after several players and coaches entered the protocol on Tuesday.

Tuesday’s NHL Scores

Vegas Golden Knights 4, Boston Bruins 1
Tampa Bay Lightning 3, Los Angeles Kings 2 (OT)
Ottawa Senators 8, Florida Panthers 2
Philadelphia Flyers 6, New Jersey Devils 1
Pittsburgh Penguins 5, Montreal Canadiens 2
Detroit Red Wings 2, New York Islanders 1
Buffalo Sabres 4, Winnipeg Jets 2
St. Louis Blues 4, Dallas Stars 1
Colorado Avalanche 4, New York Rangers 2
Toronto Maple Leafs 5, Edmonton Oilers 1
Vancouver Canucks 4, Columbus Blue Jackets 3
Seattle Kraken 3, San Jose Sharks 1
Calgary Flames vs. Nashville Predators (Postponed)
Carolina Hurricanes vs. Minnesota Wild (Postponed)

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