There is good news for the Washington Capitals. Nicklas Backstrom is expected to return to action on Monday after missing eight games with an upper-body injury. Don’t forget to get him in your lineup for the week.
Nick Ritchie suffered a sprained MCL Friday against the Capitals and the Anaheim forward is expected to miss the next six-10 weeks.
There is no way that Jack Hughes will play for the USA Under-20 team at the World Championships in the Czech Republic starting December 26. "That (idea) was shut down right away," Devils coach Alain Nasreddine said Friday, responding to questions about a report that said the Devils should consider letting Hughes play in the tournament. "We have no intention of sending him there. He's on our team and he's a big part of this team, so it's not something we want to lose him for three weeks." He is someone to target in trades or off the waiver wire as he is talented and just getting used to life in the NHL.
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WINNIPEG 3 ANAHEIM 2
Mark Scheifele scored twice to lead the Jets to a 3-2 win over Anaheim.
Adam Lowry, who leads the Jets in fights with two, also scored for Winnipeg.
The Jets received stellar goaltending from Connor Hellebuyck as he stopped 31 shots for the win. He is 15-7-2 with a 2.19 and a .934 save percentage. He is back to his form of 2017-18 when he was 44-11-9 with a 2.36 GAA and a .924 save percentage.
John Gibson gave up three goals on 33 shots to take the loss. He is 8-12-2 with a 2.86 GAA and a .909 save percentage.
FLORIDA 5 SAN JOSE 1
Kevin Labanc on the power play, scored the lone goal for San Jose.
The Sharks scored on their first power play of the game. They had been 0-22 with the man-advantage, heading into the Florida contest.
Sergei Bobrovsky had a rare good game Sunday as he turned aside 30 shots. The Panthers played him in back-to-back games this weekend and were rewarded twice as he gave up only two goals on 65 shots. Bobrovsky is 11-6-4 with a 3.24 GAA and a .893 save percentage.
Martin Jones gave up four goals on 32 shots in taking the loss. The netminder is 12-11-1 with a 3.28 GAA and a .889 save percentage this season. If you are playing with peripheral stats like goals-against-average and/or save percentage, both goaltenders have not been your friends this season.
Evander Kane added 17 penalty minutes to his total to give him 56 this season including 32 in his last four games. He fought MacKenzie Weeger in the second period and also got two for instigating and a 10-minute misconduct in addition to the fighting major.
Tim Heed blocked five shots for the Sharks.
NEW YORK RANGERS 5 VEGAS 0
Alexandar Georgiev was sensational in net for the Rangers as he stopped all 38 Vegas shots to pick up his second shutout of the season in a 5-0 New York win over the Golden Knights.
It was Georgiev’s eighth win of the season and he has won three of his last four with both shutouts in the same time frame, giving up four goals on 147 shots.
The Rangers have Igor Shesterkin waiting in the minors as the Russian goalkeeper is 9-3-3 with a 1.98 GAA (that leads the AHL) and a .930 save percentage. Georgiev could eventually be traded elsewhere as Henrik Lundqvist is going nowhere and the Rangers really like Shesterkin. However, Georgiev is making it very difficult for the Rangers who will likely ask a lot for the netminder.
Artemi Panarin and Jacob Trouba each had a goal and an assist for the Rangers while Jesper Fast, Chris Kreider and Mika Zibanejad also lit the lamp. Panarin has 14 goals and 36 points in 29 games for New York.
Trouba is starting to finally settle in with the Rangers as he has two goals and five assists in his last six games.
Malcolm Subban started yet again for Vegas as Marc-Andre Fleury is still settling in after the passing of his father last week. Subban gave up all five goals on 25 shots as he made his seventh straight start. Look for Fleury to get the start against Chicago at home Tuesday.
Ryan Strome had a pair of assists for New York.
Max Pacioretty had nine shots on goal for Vegas.
ARIZONA 4 CHICAGO 3 (Shootout)
Garland and Carl Soderberg scored second period power play goals to even the score as the Coyotes remained tied for first place in the Pacific with Edmonton at 40 points apiece.
Christian Fischer with his fifth of the season, also scored for Edmonton.
Jonathan Toews had a goal and two assists to lead Chicago, while Alex DeBrincat on the power play and Dominik Kubalik with his seventh of the season scored. Chicago scored all three goals in the first period before the Coyotes were able to shut them down.
Darcy Kuemper made 26 saves in goal for Arizona as he won his third game in a row in December to go to 13-6-2. He has a 1.96 GAA and a .935 save percentage.
Robin Lehner stood on his head as he made 44 saves in regulation and the overtime. He is 6-5-4 with a 2.71 GAA and a sparkling .929 save percentage.
In a fight-filled night (check out the other games) Dennis Gilbert and Jason Demers fought with Gilbert picking up an extra two for instigating as well as a 10-minute misconduct. Demers, who had an earlier penalty for tripping, ended up with seven minutes in the sin bin.
Schmaltz had a pair of assists for the winners.
Ilya Lyubushkin had seven hits on the night.
BUFFALO 3 EDMONTON 2 (Overtime)
Colin Miller’s first goal of the season was the overtime winner as the Buffalo Sabres beat the Edmonton Oilers 3-2.
The Sabres top scorer, Jack Eichel, assisted on the overtime winner and extended his scoring streak to 13 games. The center has 18 goals and 42 points in 31 games and has 10 goals and 23 points during the streak.
Linus Ullmark made 26 saves for the win as he is 8-6-2 with a 2.88 GAA as well as a .914 save percentage. He has won three of his last four starts.
Mike Smith gave up three goals on only 22 saves to take the overtime loss.
Darnell Nurse assisted on both Edmonton goals.
Mark Scheifele – 2
Aaron Ekblad – 2
Ryan Strome – 2
Nick Schmaltz – 2
Jonathan Toews – 2
Darnell Nurse - 2
Shots on Goal
Max Pacioretty – 9
Shea Theodore - 6
Ilya Lyubushkin - 7
Ryan Lindgren – 5
Brayden McNabb – 5
Brendan Lemieux – 5
Zack Smith – 5
Dennis Gilbert – 5
Calvin de Haan – 5
Evander Kane – 17
Dennis Gilbert - 17
Ryan Getzlaf – 7
Jason Demers - 7
Nikolaj Ehlers – 5
MacKenzie Weeger – 5
William Carrier – 5
Brendan Lemieux – 5