The Arizona Coyotes and Chicago Blackhawks made a trade on Sunday as the Coyotes gave up on the third overall pick in 2015, Dylan Strome and threw in Brendan Perlini as well and received Nick Schmaltz in return.
All three were former first round picks with Schmaltz going 20th in 2014. He has two goals and 11 points in 23 games this season while Strome had three goals and three helpers this season. Perlini was taken 12th overall in 2014, eight spots ahead of Schmaltz. He has two goals and four assists this season.
I think the Blackhawks did well in this deal, as I for one have not given up on Strome. He is a big center and can score. He will eventually get it together and that will help the Blackhawks in the future. Either way, Arizona really blew it as some players taken after Strome include Mitch Marner, Noah Hanifin, Ivan Provorov, Zach Werenski, Timo Meier and Mikko Rantanen. The draft was deep and the aforementioned players were all taken in the top-ten and after Strome. Add in Jake DeBrusk (14), Mathew Barzal (16), Kyle Connor (17) and Thomas Chabot (18) and you see why the draft was so deep with future stars and why the Coyotes are not succeeding. Still, I think that Strome will become a good NHLer and give the Blackhawks extra strength down the middle.
Either way, whether Arizona is just cutting its losses or Strome turns out to be close to the player every scout thought he was, it will go down as a big loss for the Coyotes.
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CALGARY 6 ARIZONA 1
Defenseman Noah Hanifin scored his first two goals as a member of the Calgary Flames and led them to a 6-1 win over Arizona. Hanifin was dealt from the Hurricanes to Calgary in the off-season along with Elias Lindholm in a trade that has worked out well for both teams.
Hanifin scored both shorthanded as well as on the power play as the Flames scored three times while shorthanded to be the Coyotes.
Mark Jankowski also scored twice for Calgary with one at regular strength and one shorthanded. He has four goals this season.
T.J. Brodie scored shorthanded as well and added an assist. The Coyotes have now allowed five shorthanded goals this season, all in the last two games. They are quite the adventurous team on specialty squads as they have scored an NHL high 10 shorthanded goals themselves.
Sean Monahan completed the goal scoring for the Flames as Clayton Keller scored the lone goal for Arizona to break up the shutout bid of former Coyote Mike Smith who played in Phoenix for six seasons before making his debut for Calgary in the 2017-18 season.
Smith ran his record to 6-7-1 with the 28 save effort. He has a 3.29 GAA and a .883 save percentage and it was his first win after losing his last three starts.
Antti Raanta stopped 20-of-26 shots before he was pulled after Jankowski’s goal. The Flames scored two shorthanded goals on Garnet Hathaway’s tripping penalty. Adin Hill took over and stopped the only shot he faced in the final 15:54.
Brodie was a plus-four while Giordano was a plus-three.
TAMPA BAY 5 NEW JERSEY 2
Who would have thought that Brayden Point would be the Lightning’s top goal-scorer 24 games into the season. Point scored twice to give him 17 goals, tops on Tampa Bay and tied for third in the NHL with Alex Ovechkin and David Pastrnak, two behind Patrik Laine and one in arrears of Jeff Skinner. Point also picked up an assist to give him 31 points this season, fifth in the NHL.
The Lightning scored four times in the first to put the game away as Cory Schneider lost yet again. He has not won a regular season game in the 2018 calendar year, as his last win was December 27, a span of 17 games. He is 0-5-0 this season with a horrible 4.27 GAA and a .863 save percentage.
Louis Domingue was strong in the Tampa Bay net as he stopped 33 shots for his third straight win. He is 8-3-0 this season with a 3.19 GAA and a .905 save percentage.
Nikita Kucherov had two assists and has a six-game scoring streak going. He has two goals and 12 points in the six games to give him 32 points this season.
Taylor Hall led both teams with five shots on goal.
NASHVILLE 5 ANAHEIM 2
Austin Watson had the hat trick to lead the Nashville Predators to a 5-2 win over Anaheim. It was Watson’s sixth game this season as he was suspended for the first 18 games due to a domestic violence incident with his girlfriend.
Watson has four goals and six points in the six games and he is worth grabbing in deeper leagues as he can score and pick up penalty minutes as well.
John Gibson made 28 saves on 32 shots in taking the loss. He also has been terrific this season, holding the Ducks in games they did not deserve to be in.
LOS ANGELES 5 EDMONTON 2
Kopitar is having a tough season and while he also added a pair of assists tonight, he has only seven goals and 13 points in 22 games, a far cry from the 92 points he had last season.
Cal Petersen picked up the win as he turned aside 32 shots. He is 3-3 this season, his first in the NHL.
Cam Talbot took the loss as he made 27 saves to go to 5-9-1 this season. After struggling for most of last season, Talbot has been just as mediocre in this campaign and the Oilers have to wonder if he is capable of handling the load the rest of the way.
Alex Chiasson had both Edmonton goals to give him 10 this season. He is one of the few pleasant surprises on a less-than-stellar Oiler team.
Matt Luff scored his fourth of the season into the empty net. He has goals in four straight games and could be considered in deeper pools.
Oscar Klefbom had eight shots on goal and had five blocked shots in the loss.
Derek Forbort had two assists on the night to give him five this season in 22 games.