The Buzzer: Kopitar keeps Kings rolling; O’Reilly gives Sabres OT win
Player of the night: Anze Kopitar, Los Angeles Kings. The Los Angeles Kings continued their impressive start on Saturday night with a 6-4 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets, improving their record to a league-best 6-0-1 through their first seven games.
Anze Kopitar was the star of the night as he finished with two goals, an assist, three shots on goal, a plus-five rating while also winning 68 percent of his faceoffs.
His second goal of the game, which came with less than three minutes to play in regulation, proved to be the game-winner for the Kings.
Dustin Brown added an empty net goal (he finished with four points in the win) a minute later.
Kopitar is coming off of a down year offensively in 2016-17 but already has 11 points (six goals, five assists) so far this season for a Kings team that looks to be vastly improved under new coach John Stevens.
Highlight of the night.
For most of Saturday night it looked like the Buffalo Sabres were on their way to another ugly loss, continuing what has been a miserable start to the season. At one point in the second period they found themselves trailing by a 4-1 margin. But they slowly started to chip away then after Evander Kane scored a late third period goal to tie the game, Ryan O’Reilly ended up winning it in overtime on this beauty of a play to give the Sabres their second win of the season.
Factoid of the Night.
The Tampa Bay Lightning have two superstars at forward. They are playing like it. Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov are the first pair of teammates in more than 15 years to start a season with matching nine-game point streaks. [NHL]
-- Three more assists for Erik Karlsson on Saturday night giving him six on the season. He has played in two games. After major ankle surgery. He is not human.
-- Clayton Keller added to his rookie leading goal total with his sixth of the season. He is the one bright spot for the Arizona Coyotes this season as they remain winless after their 4-2 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.
-- With the first two-goal game of his NHL career Tyler Pitlick was the difference for the Dallas Stars in their 4-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.
-- Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak are both off to tremendous starts for the Boston Bruins. Both players scored a pair of goals for the Bruins on Saturday night in their 5-4 overtime loss to the Buffalo Sabres. Both players already have six goals on the season.
-- James Reimer was great for the Florida Panthers, stopping 41 shots in their 4-1 win over the Washington Capitals. With Roberto Luongo on injured reserve the Panthers are going to need a couple of big games from Reimer over the next week.
-- Mikhail Sergachev looks fantastic for the Tampa Bay Lightning. He is now up to eight points on the season.
-- Wayne Simmonds was the hero for the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday with a late goal to help lift them to a 2-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers. He is now up to six goals on the season. Claude Giroux scored his fifth goal in the win.
-- Logan Couture’s hat trick was not enough to help the San Jose Sharks in New York on Saturday night against the Islanders. John Tavares had a goal, two assists in the win.
Scores and recaps
New York Rangers 4, Nashville Predators 2
Philadelphia Flyers 2, Edmonton Oilers 1
Buffalo Sabres 5, Boston Bruins 4
Tampa Bay Lightning 7, Pittsburgh Penguins 1
Ottawa Senators 6, Toronto Maple Leafs 3
New York Islanders 5, San Jose Sharks 3
Los Angeles Kings 6, Columbus Blue Jackest 4
Florida Panthers 4, Washington Capitals 1
Dallas Stars 4, Carolina Hurricanes 3
Chicago Blackhawks 4, Arizona Coyotes 2
Minnesota Wild 4, Calgary Flames 2
Vegas Golden Knights 3, St. Louis Blues 2