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Hockey Daily Dose

Dose: Hawks and Hats

by James O'Brien
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Your third favorite Dose columnist has some traveling to do on Wednesday, so let’s jump right into the eight recaps.


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BLACKHAWKS 3, PREDATORS 2


-- Joel Quenneville tied Al Arbour for second all-time in regular season coaching wins with his 782nd victory. The way Chicago’s going, this era of the Blackhawks may also tie the Arbour-era Islanders’ four Stanley Cups, albeit not in a row.


-- This is also eight straight wins for the Blackhawks, who move within two standings points of the Dallas Stars for the top spot in the Central Division. The Stars do hold a game in hand on Chicago, but all of a sudden, that looks like it will be quite the race to the finish line.


-- Pekka Rinne slips to 16-14-6, that much closer to a .500 record to go with his crummy individual stats. Are the Predators that delusional that they won't shop for at least the equivalent of a 1B?


Echo? ECHO?


-- Strong showing from Andrew Shaw, who scored two goals.


-- Artem Anisimov was a surprise late scratch. It sounds like he was dealing with some sort of illness.


HURRICANES 3, PENGUINS 2 (OT)


-- Jeff Skinner scored the OT GWG, giving him 16 goals on what's been a solid rebound season for the forward.


I'd be a little more laudatory if his all-around game was more impressive, but he only has seven assists, so 23 points in 44 games won't set the world on fire.


Hard to believe he's still just 23, though.


-- To Kris whose names I sometimes accidentally mix up scored goals in this one, as Kris Versteeg found the net (and added an assist) while Kris Letang also got a G. Admit it, you mixed them up in your head for at least a half-second there.


-- After going two games without a point, Sidney Crosby collected a pair of helpers in this one. Things generally look up for Crosby, who has 14 points in his past 11 games. He only had 19 in his previous 30, so yeah, things are definitely looking up.


-- With a goal and an assist of his own, Eric Staal now has 28 points ... just one more than Versteeg. Again, he's not exactly killing it during his contract year, and I'm wondering why another team would give up all that much to "rent" (or if they'd ponder an extension, "preview") him.


ISLANDERS 5, BLUE JACKETS 2


-- Jack Capuano did the old "call people out in the media" bit last weekend, so attribute this to that ... or just a good team facing a bad one. The SOG totals (33 for Islanders, 20 for Blue Jackets) give the latter a little more clout.


-- Brock Nelson grabbed a hat trick to push his season goals total to 17. He also had an assist, so that four-point night gives him 27 points in 43 games this season.


Nelson's shooting percentage is a touch high (18.1 percent), but he seems like he's in a solid situation to succeed going forward. This marks the first hat trick of his career.


-- Two defensemen scored their first goals of the season: David Savard for Columbus, Brian Strait for the Islanders. Savard is weirdly good in NHL 16.


-- In three games with the Blue Jackets, Seth Jones hasn't scored a point. He has three SOG and a -3 rating, but he's getting solid ice time (no less than 22:31, with 23:44 TOI on Tuesday).


The most promising number? Jones received 7:20 PP TOI as the Blue Jackets went 0-for-6 on the man advantage.


(It was a testy one, as the Islanders went 1-for-8.)


COYOTES 4, OILERS 3 (OT)


-- Speaking of first career hat tricks, Max Domi also accomplished that feat, including the final two goals of regulation to help Arizona get into overtime. Domi now has 13 goals on the season and continues to look like the real deal, even if there are growing pains here and there.


-- Leon Draisaitl, Justin Schultz and Jordan Eberle had nice nights in defeat. Draisaitl got a goal and an assist, Eberle grabbed three helpers and Schultz had a goal and an assist as well. Just three goals so far this season for Schultz.


-- Oliver Ekman-Larsson collected the OT GWG, his 12th goal of 2015-16. The Coyotes scored the last three goals of the game, all on the PP.


-- Louis Domingue is now on a four-game winning streak. This wasn't the best performance of his run, but his overall numbers are gorgeous: 7-2-2 with a sparkling .932 save percentage and two shutouts.


SHARKS 4, JETS 1


-- Brent Burns didn't get a goal this time around, but he did grab an assist, giving him 40 points in 41 games. At the moment, it truly seems like it's Burns, Erik Karlsson and everyone else as far as fantasy defensemen go.


-- Nikolaj Ehlers has been disappointing after showing signs of that first-round draft pick (ninth choice in 2014) brilliance. He scored Winnipeg's only goal in this loss.


-- Tyler Myers received a cross-checking major and game misconduct for a foolish hit on Tommy Wingels. I'd be surprised if there's any supplemental discipline with this one, but it's probably wise to at least keep an eye out.


-- Alex Stalock grabbed his third win of the season, and his first victory since Nov. 22. He hadn't seen much time lately, as this was his third full appearance since that Nov. 22 victory.


Remember when people thought Stalock should be the Sharks' top goalie? Most of those people probably do not.


SABRES 3, WILD 2


-- All three of Buffalo's goals came in the first period. Jamie McGinn got things started, Rasmus Ristolainen already has his eighth tally of 2015-16 and Brian Gionta grabbed the GWG (not to mention an assist).


Buffalo had almost as many SOG in the first period (11) as it produced during the rest of the game (12), but they managed to hold on and win.


-- Thomas Vanek scored a goal against his former team, giving him 14 on the season. He only managed one point (a goal) in his previous six games, so Minnesota must hope that this is a sign of better things to come.


-- Ryan Suter grabbed a goal and an assist, pushing him to 30 points in 43 games. He's in position to obliterate his career-high of 46 points, and almost has as many points as generated all of last season (38).


-- Two straight wins for Linus Ullmark, who's trying to hold off a soon-to-return Robin Lehner for at least some reps.


BLUES 5, DEVILS 2


-- I wouldn't be surprised if Bobby Farnham received more than just the misconduct and interference major on Dmitrij Jaskin, as that was such a blatantly dangerous and dirty hit, as it was clearly not a "hockey play."


I mean, if the league doesn't try to dissuade guys like Farnham from delivering hits like that, then what kind of hits are even a problem?


Well, maybe if someone does a spin-o-rama first or tucks their jersey the wrong way ...


-- Lee Stempniak scored his 10th goal of the season, giving him 30 points in 44 games. I expect Stempniak and the other Devils who surprised us to slow down a bit in the second half of the season, but we shall see.


-- Patrik Berglund is one of those guys who occasionally teases you with the possibility that he might be more than just a solid player. This was one of those times, as Berglund scored two goals, pushing his season total to three. That's not so bad when you realize that this was just his sixth goal of the season.


With St. Louis needing a jolt, he's worth at least monitoring.


-- Two straight wins for Brian Elliott, who also hasn't lost in regulation since Dec. 27 (going 2-0-2 in his past four appearances). He's not spectacular, yet I sometimes wonder if he's deserving of a REAL chance to be the guy for the Blues, as most of his opportunities have seemed pretty reluctantly shared over the years.


LIGHTNING 4, AVALANCHE 0


-- The score was honestly pretty fair here, as the Lightning managed a 38-21 SOG advantage even though they had a lead for a long time in this one.


-- Ondrej Palat opened the scoring and added two assists for a strong three-point night. The chemistry seems to be there with Steven Stamkos (two goals) and Vladislav Namestnikov (two assists), if I do say so myself.


-- Tyler Johnson scored his first goal since Nov. 25. Even with injuries taken into account, that's a haunting cold streak.


-- Victor Hedman? Not cold. He now has five points in his past three games after Tuesday's two assists. His overall numbers are disappointing (23 points in 42 games), but maybe this is a sign of a breakthrough.


-- Ben Bishop's 17-13-3 record might be a little disappointing, but I wouldn't blame him, especially considering his nice .926 save percentage. This 21-save shutout represents his second goose egg of the season.

James O'Brien
James O'Brien is the Hockey Daily Dose's author and has been a contributor to NBC's Pro Hockey Talk for more than four years. Follow him on Twitter.