morning shot of hockey to go with your coffee
January 29th, 2014
I would love to go through all of last night’s scores, especially because I went 3-0 in picks (!!!), but I want to dive into tonight’s main event deeper than I usually do. Before I do, I’ve GOTTA talk about the Flyers last night.
The Flyers went into last night on their coldest streak since the opening month of the season which can be summarized in one word: abysmal. The injury-ridden Red Wings came into the game having been shutout in their last two road games. This was the third and final matchup between these teams for the regular season with the previous two games both being decided by a three-goal margin. Last night was no different and thankfully for the Flyers, they turned it around. Scott Hartnell returned to the lineup and showed no signs of an ankle injury scoring two goals and assisting Claude Giroux later in the game when Hartsy went for the hat-trick.
Detroit came out controlling the puck extremely well early on, but excellent play from Steve Mason prevented the Red Wings from getting on the board. As the Flyers started scoring, they took control of game, both in terms of possession and the lead itself (obviously). The Red Wings got close in the second period to finding twine but Mason shut them down. One such instance was on the Top 10 last night where Mason sprawled for the save and the Red Wings missed an open top-half of the net nailing the crossbar. Ultimately the Flyers won 5-0 and now the hit hockey’s Bermuda Triangle: California. First up, they visit the Ducks on Thursday night.
Stadium Series: New York Round 2
I used this picture because we’ve seen both Yankee Stadium and the Rangers’ sweaters already. These are sick unis. Much better than the Rangers’. Tonight’s matchup should feature just as much, if not more excitement than Sunday’s game did. Both teams are capable of running up the score, don’t let the Islanders standing fool you to believe otherwise. In fact, the Isles currently lead the season series over their crosstown rivals 2-1 and they’ve scored 18 more goals this season. Granted, the Rangers have let up almost 50 less goals this year.
For the Islanders, watch out for that guy above, John Tavares, as he has recorded at least one point in five of his last six games and three in last Rangers/Islanders game. Kyle Okposo will also be an important key to the Islanders as he has six goals and eight assists in his last nine games.
For the Rangers, Rick Nash and Chris Kreider will be the ones to watch. Nash netted one in the second period on Sunday and both and Kreider scored the Rangers’ three goals against the Islanders last Tuesday. Kreider has been through a cold-streak recently. The game against the Islanders was his only game where he’s gotten on the scoresheet out of his last seven games.
Ultimately, the Islanders will prevail over the Rangers in this one. John Tavares’ playmaking ability will set up Okposo, Frans Nielsen, and Thomas Vanek and he’ll probably find the back of the net as well. It’ll be a high-scoring affair, but the Islanders win 5-4.