Boston, Vancouver, Columbus… Did any struggling team get a win last night?
Florida Panthers 0 @ Washington Capitals 3 – You know, the worst thing about traveling is that you sometimes forget things at home, such as toothbrush, clothes, or, in the Panther’s case, offense. Florida scored seven goals on Monday night, but in Washington they were Capped out (yeah MNA comment/dentist depending on where you want to take it). Marcus Johansson opened the scoring with a power play goal–I assume a mean wrister. The second period wasn’t played, (ok, it was just an uneventful 20 minutes) so fast-forward to the third were Alexander Semin also put in a goal via the wrist shot. Jason Chimera put one in for good measure, reminding the Panthers who owns the Southeast division.
Carolina Hurricanes 4 @ Boston Bruins 1 – There are hangovers, and then there are Stanley Cup hangovers. Sure, the one involved drinking out of the giant trophy is cool, but it’s not good for repeating past successes. The ‘Canes scored first on Anthony Stewart first period goal and Joni Pitkanen scored in the second putting the visitors up 2-0. Boston scored cutting the deficit to 2-1 on Rich Peverley power play goal. Not be outdone, the Hurricanes scored two third period power play goals of their own (Eric Staal and Tuomo Ruutu) after starting 0-for-9 with the advantage, resulting in the final 4-1 score.
Dallas Stars 3 @ Columbus Blue Jackets 2 – What the Hell is Icing’s favorite whipping boys fail to win again. On this night it was to the Stars (guess that wish didn’t come true–old school Disney, what, what!). Steve Ott opened the scoring two minutes into the second period; Jamie Benn and Michael Ryder scored in the third for Dallas. It wasn’t all bad for Columbus, who did score two goals in the third period, Derick Brassard scored on the power play and Kris Russell scored in the last three minutes.
Pittsburgh Penguins 4 @ Minnesota Wild 2 – Pittsburgh, playing the second of back-to-back road games, scored two goals in the second and third period to set themselves up for the win. Chris Kunitz and Jordan Staal put the ‘Pens up 2-0, but silent film villain Cal Clutterbuck (stolen from Liam McHugh twitter post @Liam_McHugh) got one back for Minnesota. James Neal scored, making it 3-1 Pittsburgh, and Pascal Dupuis added a shorthanded goal. Guillaume Latendresse narrowed the deficit to 4-2 a minute later, but the Wild could do no more.
Buffalo Sabres 3 @ Montreal Canadians 1 – After a scoreless first period, Montreal struck first Tuesday night at the Bell Centre. Raphael Diaz lit the lamp for the home team. But the Sabres put in the next three goals en route to picking up points on the road. Buffalo scored twice in the second (Jordan Leopold and Thomas Vanek), and Christian Eurhoff put a nice navy and gold bow on the game, scoring an empty netter in the games closing minute. Oh, Ryan Miller saved 40-of-41 shots, you know, an average night.
Philadelphia Flyers 7 @ Ottawa Senators 2 – Ottawa was out of this game before they knew what hit them. Let me give you four reasons to why: in the first period, Matt Read, Wayne Simmonds (PPG-power play goal FYI), Claude Giroux (PPG), and Maxime Talbot. All Flyers. Jason Spezza got the ‘Sens on the board in the second, scoring the period’s only goal. Philadelphia knocked in three more goals in the final period with James Van Riemsdyk (PPG) , Sean Couturier and Harrison Zolnierczyk (both scored their first career NHL goals), but for good measure Ottawa got a goal from Erik Karlsson to conclude the evening in Canada’s capital.
Edmonton Oilers 1 @ Calgary Flames 2 – Tuesday night the first Battle of Alberta took place at the (I’m-still-calling-it-the) SaddleDome in Calgary. Edmonton had everything on cruise control, having scored a Tom Gilbert first period power play goal. Speaking from experience, you can get sleepy being on cruise control, which is what happened to the Oilers, who gave up two goals in the final six minutes. Jay Bouwmeester tied it for the Flames, and Alex Tanguay scored the game winner for the home team.
Chicago Blackhawks 5 @ Phoenix Coyotes 2 – Marian Hossa opened the scoring with a PP goal giving Chicago a 1-0 lead. Taylor Pyatt scored on a backhanded shot that beat Corey Crawford to tie the contest at 1-1. Jonathan Toews and Jamal Mayers, with a Ray Whitney
New York Rangers 4 @ Vancouver Canucks 0 – This match-up was a defensive struggle for the first 40 minutes, until the blue shirts offense came ALIVE! Two minutes into the final period Mike Rupp scored his first goal of the season for the Rangers, nearly seven minutes later Ryan McDonagh made it 2-0 New York. Brian Boyle scored two minutes later, beating Bobby Lou, and finishing off the scoring was Marian Gaborik with a short-handed goal and capping of the 4-0 win. This was also the Rangers first victory in Vancouver since 6-3 win on Oct. 11, 1997 when Wayne Gretzky had a hat trick. Not a bad way to start a road trip.
– Hey Los Angeles, your hockey team is finally home (look away Anaheim this doesn’t concern you). The Kings they took St. Louis out behind the Staples Center, and yeah…not pretty. Simon Gagne gave the kingdom something to cheer for, putting in his second goal of the year. In the second period, Jarret Stoll scored on a Kings power play, and Dustin Brown scored in the second period making it 3-0 LA. Los Angeles kept the offense churning in the third with Anze Kopitar and Gagne (again) making it 5-0 in the Kings long awaited home opener. Jonathan Quick posted the shutout win.