Top player in the NHL on Wednesday
Barrett Hayton, Arizona Coyotes
The Arizona Coyotes had nothing to play for on Wednesday night except for potentially playing the role of spoiler. They erased a three-goal deficit in the third period to rally for a 4-3 overtime win against the Dallas Stars that was led by Hayton’s game-tying goal and two assists. The No. 5 overall pick from 2018 has 10 goals, 14 assists, and 24 total points on the season.
Highlights from around the NHL on Wednesday
Jeff Petry scored two goals for the Montreal Canadiens in their 4-3 win over the New York Rangers, including this game-winning goal in the closing seconds.
Looking at Arizona’s third period rally.
Tyler Johnson scores the game-winning goal for the Chicago Blackhawks in the shootout against the Vegas Golden Knights.
Three takeaways from the NHL on Wednesday
Dallas clinches playoff spot
The NHL’s 16-team Stanley Cup Playoff field is now set thanks to the Stars getting a point on Wednesday night against the Arizona Coyotes. The game result may not have been what Dallas wanted, letting a 3-0 third period lead slip away in a 4-3 overtime loss, but it was still enough to clinch a playoff spot. That means the Vegas Golden Knights are not going to the playoffs in what is an incredibly disappointing season for a preseason Stanley Cup favorite.
Montreal secures worst record
What a wild year it has been for the Montreal Canadiens. They went from a shocking Stanley Cup Final appearance to literally owning the worst record in the NHL. They clinched that on Wednesday night (even though they won) thanks to the Coyotes’ come-from-behind win in Dallas. That means the Canadiens will now have the best odds to have the first overall pick in the 2022 NHL draft.
Penguins team CEO resigns
There are going to be some major changes in Pittsburgh in the near future, and they are already beginning. Following the ownership change earlier this season, the Penguins announced on Wednesday that team president and CEO David Morehouse has resigned. Over the past year the Penguins have changed general managers, been sold, had their president and CEO resign, and have three major unrestricted free agents following this season when Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang, and Bryan Rust all have their contracts expire.
Thursday’s big story
Playoff seeding and the race for the Presidents’ Trophy are the big stories here. The Washington Capitals get another chance against the New York Islanders to climb out of a Wild Card spot and into the third seed in the Metropolitan Division, something that they would probably like to do to avoid a First Round meeting with the Florida Panthers. Speaking of the Panthers, they play the Ottawa Senators as they look to continue their push for the league’s best record, entering the day with a two-point lead over the Colorado Avalanche. Colorado plays Nashville on Thursday, while both teams will have one game remaining on their schedule after Thursday.
Wednesday’s NHL Scores
Winnipeg Jets 4, Philadelphia Flyers 0
Montreal Canadiens 4, New York Rangers 3
Chicago Blackhawks 4, Vegas Golden Knights 3 (SO)
Arizona Coyotes 4, Dallas Stars 3 (OT)
Los Angeles Kings 5, Seattle Kraken 3
Adam Gretz is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @AGretz.