Hockey Roundup: Stamkos Returns and Lidstrom Immortalized

Your daily shot of hockey to go with your coffee
March 7th, 2014

LAST NIGHT’S SCORES:

Here are yesterday’s picks, in case you missed them. The asterisk indicates who I picked.

Bruins* blank Capitals 3-0 The Capitals only took 16 shots in this game compared to Boston’s 43. Major props to Braden Holtby for making 40 saves but as a team you need to put more than 16 shots on Tuukka Rask, that’s just not showing up. In an offense dependent on Ovechkin, he needs to take more than 1 shot himself. That was Rask’s 6th shutout of the season.

Kings down Jets 3-1 That’s six-straight for LA. Jonathan Quick is 4-0 with a 1.50 GAA since Sochi. Quick wasn’t the reason for the win last night. He was only needed to stop 17 shots while letting in the 18th. This reason for LA winning is as simple as the fact that the Kings are just better than the Jets. Winnipeg’s Ondrej Pavalec made 38 saves while the Jets blocked 23 shots themselves; that’s 64 total shots from LA. The Jets fired 34 themselves (18 on goal, 16 blocked), LA’s offense and defense are just plain better.

1801313_10151930471857466_884913645_oStamkos Returns; TB falls to Sabres 3-1 If the picture didn’t indicate, Steven Stamkos is your new captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning after returning from a broken leg. The return was ruined by poor play from the Lighting; mainly goaltender Anders Lindback (18 of 21 saves). The Lightning’s offense put 44 shots on the Sabres, including 4 from Ryan Callahan. Tampa Bay will need to tighten their defense if they want to even make the playoffs. They currently hold the first EC Wild Card.

Blackhawks blast Blue Jackets 6-1 – This was expected. I think the only thing the Blackhawks didn’t do well was that they only converted 1 of 4 power play opportunities. Other than that, the Blackhawks straight dominated this game. Four 20-goal scorers already with five 50-pointers and ten 20-assisters on their lineup, that is a dominate team not just a single player.

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Avalanche edge Red Wings 3-2 in OT on Lindstrom Night One of the greatest defensemen of this era (my entire lifespan essentially) had his number immortalized at Joe Louis Arena last night: Nicklas Lidstrom. The festivities were ruined by a Colorado rally though. The Av’s scored in the third and then again in OT. On the overtime goal, Nathan MacKinnon broke an NHL record. By assisting Andre Benoit’s game-winner, the 18-year-old scored a point his 13th straight game breaking Wayne Gretzky’s record set back in the 1979-80 season.

Blues* drop Predators 2-1 What did I say yesterday? Nashville made this a low-scoring affair but Ryan Miller prevailed. Miller improves to 3-0 with St. Louis while Steve Ott assisted Ian Cole’s opening goal. Pekka Rinne looked sharp in his second game back with Nashville.

Stars blow out Canucks 6-1 Really, Tyler Seguin blew out the Cancuks. Seguin netted a hat trick and assisted two goals to bring his total up to 63 points on the season. Kari Kehtonen has been outstanding this year for Dallas saving 32 of 33 last night. On the other side, Vancouver continues to tailspin as they fall to 1-9 in their last 10 games; four points out of the second wild card spot but fading quickly.

Coyotes down Canadiens 5-2 The Coyotes had a 3-1 lead after one and after the Habs cut it to 3-2 through two periods, it seemed as if Montreal had a chance. Phoneix bounced back in the third for the two goals and the victory. Thomas Vanek was -1 with a shot.

Oilers edge Islanders 3-2 in OT The Islanders had a 2-0 lead through one period, but Ben Scrivens came up big again for Edmonton stopping the final 21 shots that came his way. Really, the Islanders are depleted with Vanek gone and Tavares injured.

Sharks* CHOMP Penguins 5-3 – The Pens had a 2-0 lead, then a 3-2 lead; San Jose rallied out of both deficits. You know was the only player -5? Sidney Crosby. Crosby has been off and on since Sochi. While he does have 5 points (1G, 4A) in the four games since the break, those five points have come in two of those four; he is -7 in the other two games. Granted this is his first full season since 2010 as his stats show by having the most points since that season. On the San Jose side, Joe Pavelski had three assists; he has been hot since Sochi. CHOMP, CHOMP!

3-0 (!!!) last night; 80-67 on the season

No picks for this weekend but it should be a great weekend for hockey. Have a good one!

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