NHL Rink Wrap: Another hat trick for Robertson; Shesterkin MVP case; Eichel buzzer beater

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Jeff Bottari, Getty Images

Top player in the NHL on Sunday

Jason Robertson, Dallas Stars

There is no player in the NHL on a bigger roll right now than Dallas Stars forward Jason Robertson. He recorded a hat trick for the second consecutive game in Dallas’ 6-3 win over the Minnesota Wild on Sunday. That gives the second-year standout 29 goals on the season while he also has eight goals over his past five games, including the two hat tricks over the past two games. The Stars are back on a roll and solidifying their spot as a Stanley Cup Playoff team and Robertson and his line have been the one constant for them all season.

Highlights from around the NHL on Sunday

The Vegas Golden Knights get a huge win against the Ottawa Senators on Sunday night, and it is Jack Eichel‘s goal with five seconds to play in regulation that gives them the win.

The Tampa Bay Lightning had a lot of highlights in their 6-3 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Sunday, including three goals in 32 seconds in the third period. Also in the third period is starting goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy making one of the saves of the year on Blackhawks superstar forward Patrick Kane.

All three of Robertson’s goals for his second consecutive hat trick.

Three takeaways from the NHL on Sunday

Another strong MVP statement for Igor Shesterkin

There is no player that has lifted a team this season more than New York Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin, and he was at it again on Sunday in a 4-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets. He stopped 45 out of 46 shots to continue to have a commanding lead in most goaltending categories and further strengthen his MVP argument. No matter what your MVP criteria is Shesterkin has to be at the top of your list. Not only has he helped carry a flawed team to the top of the standings and a guaranteed playoff spot, but he is also one of the absolute best players in the league this season. After Sunday’s game he has a .942 save percentage on the season. St. Louis Blues goalie Ville Husso (.930) is the only other goalie in the league with a save percentage higher than .928 this season. Chris Kreider also scored two goals in the win for the Rangers on Sunday, giving him 38 goals in 56 games this season. That is a 56-goal pace over 82 games, by far the best goal scoring numbers of his NHL career.

Kings maintain second place spot in Pacific Division

The Los Angeles Kings won their second game in a row on Sunday with a 3-0 shutout over the Buffalo Sabres thanks in part to a pair of goals from Andreas Athanasiou. The Kings have been one of the bigger surprises in the NHL this season and maintain their second place spot in the Pacific Division thanks to a recent stretch that has seen them go 11-3-2 over their past 16 games. Goalie Cal Petersen stopped all 19 shots he faced for the shutout. The Kings are back in action on Monday against the Boston Bruins, looking to make up for a 7-0 loss at home to the Bruins this past week.

Hurricanes have 11-game point streak at home

The Carolina Hurricanes have been outstanding all season and still have the best record in the Eastern Conference thanks to a 3-2 win over the Seattle Kraken on Sunday. That gives them an 11-game point streak on home ice. Martin Necas scored the game-winning goal midway through the third period for his ninth goal of the season. Nino Niederreiter and Teuvo Teravainen also scored goals for the Hurricanes on Sunday while Antti Raanta got the win in goal.

Monday’s big story

Calgary and Edmonton renew their long-standing rivalry on Monday night in a fairly big game in the Western Conference playoff race. The Flames look to strengthen their spot on top of the Pacific Division and Western Conference and are coming off of a big win against the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday night. The Oilers, meanwhile, are looking to rebound from an ugly loss to the Montreal Canadiens and keep pace in the Western Conference playoff race. They are still right on the playoff bubble in the Western Conference.

Sunday’s NHL Scores

Los Angeles Kings 3, Buffalo Sabres 0
New Jersey Devils 3, St. Louis Blues 2 (OT)
Dallas Stars 6, Minnesota Wild 3
Tampa Bay Lightning 6, Chicago Blackhawks 3
New York Rangers 4, Winnipeg Jets 1
Carolina Hurricanes 3, Seattle Kraken 2
Vegas Golden Knights 2, Ottawa Senators 1
Anaheim Ducks 3, San Jose Sharks 2 (OT)

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