Tomas Nosek

Getty

The Buzzer: Samsonov shines in Capitals’ debut; Konecny’s big day

3 Comments

Three Stars

1. Travis Konecny, Philadelphia Flyers. After signing a new six-year contract a couple of weeks ago, Konecny was able to get off to a great start for the season when he scored a pair of goals in the Flyers’ 4-3 win over the Chicago Blackhawks. He opened the scoring early in the first period then added a highlight reel backhander (see below) later in the game to pad the Flyers’ lead. He has scored 24 goals in back-to-back seasons and they are expecting even bigger things from him this season.

2. Ilya Samsonov, Washington Capitals. It was a big night for the Capitals’ rookie goalie as he made his NHL debut and stopped 25 of thee 26 shots he faced in a 2-1 win over the New York Islanders. With Braden Holtby‘s contract situation unsettled beyond this season it is entirely possible that this is the first of many wins for the rookie netminder. He made a couple of highlight reel saves in the win, while the only goal he allowed was a complete fluke of a play.

3. Neal Pionk, Winnipeg Jets. The Jets’ defense is a big point of concern this season and if that unit is going to make a positive impact they are going to need Pionk to have a big season. He had a huge game on Friday with two points, including the game-tying goal in the third period to help complete the Jets’ late rally as they spoiled Jack Hughes‘ NHL debut.

Highlights of the Night

There were a couple of incredible goals on Friday, starting with Travis Konecny’s highlight reel goal against the Blackhawks.

Auston Matthews continued his fast start to the season with this absolute rocket of a shot in the Maple Leafs’ 4-1 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The goal of the night, however, belonged to Devils forward Blake Coleman, scoring his second goal of the game on a completely ridiculous one-handed shot.

Blooper of the Night

The only goal Samsonov surrendered on Friday night was this wild mess of a play that saw the puck bounce off multiple Capitals’ player skates. This goes in the books as a goal for Islanders defender Devon Toews, but he needed a lot of help.

Factoids

  • Vegas Golden Knights goalie Marc-Andre Fleury became the 16th goalie to appear in 800 regular season NHL games. [NHL PR]
  • Friday night was just the second time Jets franchise has overcome a 4-0 deficit to win. [NHL PR]
  • It came in a losing effort, but Columbus Blue Jackets forward Cam Atkinson scored in his sixth consecutive season opening game. [NHL PR]
  • The Golden Knights became just the 14th team in NHL history to record a shorthanded goal in each of their first two games of a season. They scored two shorthanded goals in their rout of the Sharks. Tomas Nosek scored two goals in the win, including one of the shorthanded tallies.  [NHL PR]
  • New York Islanders coach Barry Trotz told Al Arbour for third on the NHL’s all-time games coached list. [NHL PR]

Scores

Philadelphia Flyers 4, Chicago Blackhawks 3

Washington Capitals 2, New York Islanders 1

Winnipeg Jets 5, New Jersey Devils 4 (SO)

Toronto Maple Leafs 4, Columbus Blue Jackets 1

Vegas Golden Knights 5, San Jose Sharks 1

MORE:
• Your 2019-20 NHL on NBC TV schedule

Adam Gretz is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @AGretz.

Sharks’ Thornton drills Golden Knights’ Nosek with nasty headshot

6 Comments

Joe Thornton has done a lot of good in his long National Hockey League career, but a headshot on Vegas Golden Knights forward Tomas Nosek was not his finest moment.

The puck was nowhere near Nosek when Thornton came from behind the Vegas net and uncorked his shoulder into Nosek’s skull, sending the latter to the ice holding his head with 3:06 remaining in the second period.

The Sharks were trailing 4-1 at this point. It will be interesting to see if the NHL’s Department of Player Safety deems this one as a message-sending moment from Thornton, much like they did to Nikita Kucherov when he was handed a one-game ban for boarding a couple days ago.

Thornton’s hit didn’t come near the end of the game, but the score was pretty lopsided and the Golden Knights had just scored a minute earlier, the hit was 100 percent predatory and it was massively late.

[2019 NBC STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS HUB]

There was nothing Nosek could have done to get out of the way of that. He had his head turned the other way after making a pass out of the zone. He only turned in time to take Thornton’s shoulder right to the face.

Jumbo Joe was only given a two-minute minor on the play for an illegal head check. You have to imagine there’s more coming Jumbo’s way.

UPDATE:


Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck

Skate blade grazes Milan Lucic’s neck in scary incident

Twitter
5 Comments

It was a tough night for gruesome injuries on Saturday.

If Phillip Danault‘s puck to the head of a slap shot from Zdeno Chara wasn’t enough, Edmonton Oilers forward Milan Lucic came within millimeters of his life being in severe jeopardy.

Lucic appeared to fall in the neutral zone and when he did, he took Vegas Golden Knights forward Tomas Nosek with him.

In the video below — and in a very serious event that wasn’t all that noticeable during the broadcast — Nosek’s skate grazed Lucic’s neck.

Lucic tweeted a picture of the cut following the Oilers 3-2 overtime win over the Golden Knights. As you can see, s some stitches were required to repair the wound.

In the tweet, he said, “Close call… but ok,” along with the hashtag. “#skategrazedjugular.”

Close call, indeed.


Scott Billeck is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @scottbilleck

Red Wings sign Czech forward Nosek to two-year deal

3 Comments

The Detroit Red Wings are famous for signing players out of Sweden that go on to become stars and now they’ve turned their attention the Czech Republic.

The team announced they’ve signed 21-year-old forward Tomas Nosek to a two-year entry-level deal. He spent the past three seasons playing for HC Pardubice in the Czech Extraliga piling up 24 goals and 62 points in 129 games. This season he had 44 points in 52 games with 19 goals.

Nosek was a member of Pardubice’s Extraliga championship-winning team in 2012 and won the award for most penalized player in the 2013-14 playoffs with 44 penalty minutes in 10 games. Feisty.

As Red Wings development coach Jiri Fischer told Bob Duff of The Windsor Star, they like what he’s got, but he has work to do.

“He’ll have to get stronger, work on his skating,” Fischer said. “He is a hard worker, he is willing. This past year he worked on his finishing and his shot.

“He just gets better every year. He’s signing with us based on how much better he’s gotten the last three years.”

Look for Nosek to challenge for a spot in Detroit but likely start next season in the AHL with Grand Rapids.