Seven games on a Sunday? I’d trash the NHL for being harsh but they’re too busy stomping John Scott’s soul sooooo ...
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BLACKHAWKS 5, CANADIENS 2
-- The Panthers still have at least the scent of Chicago-lite, so it almost fits that the Blackhawks are taking some of the steam out of Florida's winning streak.
Granted, Chicago's isn't as long (yet?), but it's been at times more impressive because the 'Hawks have been more dominant at times.
Either way, 11 straight wins is impressive, as Chicago's somewhat comfortably in first in the Central.
-- Rough stretch for Alex Galchenyuk. He doesn't have a single point in his last five games, with a -7 rating to rub some dirt in the wounds (especially since he's at least active with 17 SOG during that span).
KINGS 3, DUCKS 2
-- David Perron scored a goal in his Ducks debut. That tally came via Ryan Getzlaf, yet it seems like he's also getting some time with Ryan Kesler. Early combos can be fluid after trades, so I'd recommend a patient approach here.
-- Anze Kopitar scored two points following his big eight-year, $80M contract extension. Clearly it's all worth it after days!
-- Well, holy smokes, Vincent Lecavalier is on a two-game goal streak. In 2016! Not in a Gamecube game you dusted off for giggles with your buddies.
He now has three points in five games with the Kings. While this isn't the sort of work that should get you running to Yahoo (the 25 shooting percentage should tell you that he's been quite lucky), it's nice to see a once-great player show glimpses of that greatness, even if they're fleeting ones.
PENGUINS 5, HURRICANES 0
-- I wanted to say that the Penguins are on a hot streak, but really, they're more showing signs of life than taking over. The bright side is that they've only failed to score a standings point in one game in 2016 so far; the less-bright side is that they still have more losses than wins in that span (3-1-3).
Hagelin took a penalty and fired four SOG in 13:15 TOI.
-- Sidney Crosby kept his torrid run going on Sunday. He scored two goals to extend his three-game point streak (two goals, three assists). Going a little deeper, Crosby now has 21 points in his last 20 games.
-- This marks the third shutout of a very solid season for Marc-Andre Fleury. His 16-11-5 record isn't so hot, but his .925 save percentage is pretty nice.
CANUCKS 2, ISLANDERS 1 (SO)
-- Ryan Miller really stole one for Vancouver, stopping 47 out of 48 shots. He'll be busy, as he faced 39 shots in his return on Jan. 14.
Miller is close to hitting .500, as his record is now 11-12-6 with a mediocre (but not quite terrible) .913 save percentage.
In other words he's basically Ryan Miller.
-- Ben Hutton scored his first career NHL goal in his 39th regular season. It makes it a little easier to stomach that he also has 10 assists.
-- Ryan Strome was the game's other goal scorer. He now has four points in his past six games, which is certainly a step up from being demoted to the AHL.
LIGHTNING 3, PANTHERS 1
-- Florida dropped its third straight loss while Tampa Bay generated its fifth consecutive win.
-- With all the talk about contracts, a lot of those deals (beyond that obscure Stamkos fella) actually last through 2016-17. Victor Hedman, Tyler Johnson, Ondrej Palat and Ben Bishop all COULD be re-signed next summer, but they don't HAVE to.
Stamkos is THE OBVIOUS EXAMPLE of a big contract year, but Nikita Kucherov has a raise coming himself, and he might cost a pretty penny at this pace.
Kucherov extended his point streak to five games: four goals (including two on Sunday) and three assists.
With three straight wins, Bishop is now 18-13-3 with a .927 save percentage and two shutouts.
Luongo lost his third in a row, dropping to 19-13-4 with a .927 save percentage and three shutouts.
CAPITALS 5, RANGERS 2
-- Justin Williams produced a hat trick, including the GWG, with one of the tallies being an ENG.
Williams now has 31 points in 45 games, and he has the suitably solid peripherals: +14 rating, 12 PIM and 115 SOG.
-- Evgeny Kuznetsov had a nice night of his own with three assists.
Kuznetsov has seven points in his past four contests. The Russian forward almost has 44 points in 45 games with the bonus of a +23 rating.
-- This has been a nightmare season for Chris Kreider, but maybe he's turning things around. He scored two goals on Sunday, giving him three tallies and an assist for four points in three games.
-- Alex Ovechkin scored his 27th goal of the season. He already has 222 SOG in 44 games.
FLYERS 2, RED WINGS 1 (SO)
-- Michal Neuvirth continues to do what he's supposed to do, even if he only gets sporadic chances. Sure, he's won three of his last four games, but that spans back to Dec. 15.
Can't say I expected Neuvirth to manage a .936 save percentage, even under the edict of goalies make no sense.
-- The Flyers are hot in general, with wins in five of six games. They even grabbed a shootout point on Saturday. This situation just maintains the insanity of the East bubble.