- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy59 mins ago
No. 1 Star: Jeff Skinner, Carolina Hurricanes
Skinner tallied a hat trick for the Hurricanes in their 5-2 victory over the Nashville Predators, giving him five goals in his last two games. Justin Faulk also had three points.
No. 2 Star: Jonathan Bernier, Toronto Maple Leafs
Trevor Smith’s tip of a Jake Gardiner shot in front of the Dallas Stars’ goal gave the Leafs a 3-2 victory, despite being outshot 50-24. So the star goes to Bernier for his 48-save performance which ended an 0-3-2 skid for Toronto. Here’s the game-winner; Nazem Kadri had two goals in the win:
No. 3 Star: Taylor Hall, Edmonton Oilers
Taylor Hall had a hat trick and an assist in the Edmonton Oilers’ 8-2 rout of the Colorado Avalanche. Ryan Smyth had three assists, while Mark Arcobello, David Perron and Ales Hemsky had two-point nights.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy2 hrs ago
Nick Holden is a defenseman for the Colorado Avalanche and a native of St. Albert, Alberta. On Thursday, he played his first ever NHL game in Edmonton, bringing out friends and family to the Oilers’ arena.
And where friends and family go, embarrassing childhood memories are sure to follow. With that, we present this sign:
The neon pink might obscure it a little, but the message reads:
“I BATHED WITH NICK HOLDEN, TAUGHT HIM EVERYTHING HE KNOWS DURING TUB TIME.”
Well, that’s a little T.M.I. right there …
Holden was asked about the unavoidable sign during a between periods interview on Altitude.
“That’s my cousin,” he said. “My mom told me she was going to have that sign up. Kinda embarrassing.”
Hey, he should feel lucky: This could have been a giant sign featuring a future NHL defenseman in his birthday suit, surrounded by bubbles and rubber duckie.
As it stands, he’ll just have to explain to his teammates what he learned during tub time, exactly.
Here are the signs in the crowd during Holden's game against the Edmonton Oilers:
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- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy5 hrs ago
We've seen a lot of stretchers during the first two months of the NHL season. (I'm going go out on a limb and say too many , since my ideal number of players helped off the ice by medical personnel is, on average, roughly zero .)
On Thursday, in yet another scary scene, Boston Bruins' defender Johnny Boychuk became the latest NHLer to be helped off the ice after a nasty hit. Checked from behind by Max Pacioretty of the rival Montreal Canadiens, Boychuk went into the wall awkwardly, and left the game on his back:
Of course, the question, as with just about any hit involving a stretcher, is whether the hitter deserves any supplemental discipline. Pacioretty was given a two-minute minor for boarding. Will that be all?
I believe so. The optics aren't good here, but I'm not sure Pacioretty did anything suspendable. Heck, I'm not sure he even deserved a penalty. It's an unfortunate hit, to be certain, but it doesn't look like the result of a reckless play -- it looks like the result of an awkward play.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy9 hrs ago
Here is the Puck Daddy Viewing Guide: Spotlighting five things to watch for during tonight's slate of games. Make sure to stop back here for the nightly Three Stars when the games are finished.
Create-a-Caption : "A fan of the Calgary Flames celebrates after a goal against the Phoenix Coyotes during an NHL game at Scotiabank Saddledome on December 4, 2013 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada"
• • •
Preview: San Jose Sharks at Pittsburgh Penguins, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: New York Rangers at Buffalo Sabres, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Dallas Stars at Toronto Maple Leafs, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Winnipeg Jets at Florida Panthers, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview: Boston Bruins at Montreal Canadiens, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview: Ottawa Senators at Tampa Bay Lightning, 7:30 p.m. ET
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy10 hrs ago
The Philadelphia Flyers’ turnaround from coach canning basement dwellers to playoff contenders has been well documented, from Steve Mason’s performance as an actual NHL goaltender to Craig Berube’s ability to get these guys competing on every shift.
But one line has come into focus as the heart and soul of this team, at least for the moment: Sean Couturier, Matt Read and Steve Downie.
The trio combined for 9 points in Wednesday’s furious comeback against the Red Wings in front of a national television audience: a career-high 4 for Couturier, 3 for Read and 2 from Downie.
Over their last 10 games, they’ve combined for 26 points: Couturier (5-5-10), Read (5-4-9), Downie (1-6-7).
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy11 hrs ago
Here are your Puck Headlines: a glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.
• Don't let the keytar fool you, Canadians, David Backes is still coming your way. [YouTube]
• A week after the new Canadian NHL TV deal raised questions as to the futures of some TSN talent comes word that Bob McKenzie, James Duthie and Darren Dreger have inked long-term extensions with the network. [Toronto Sports Media]
• It's been a few months, and with him finally being made whole by the NHL, let the "Wayne Gretzky to [insert team here]" rumors begin! [TSN]
• The next ESPN the Magazine's Body Issue will feature none other than Tyler Seguin. [Dallas Morning News]
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy12 hrs ago
It's a Thursday edition of Marek vs. Wyshynski beginning at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT, and we're talking about the following and more: unappealing
Special Guest Star: Katie Strang of ESPN NY talks Henrik Lundqvist, the New York Rangers and the New York Islanders.
• Mark Giordano is back to save the Flames (and maybe be an Olympian?)
• The Flyers' resurgence.
• Some stats of note in the NHL this season.
• NHL news and notes.
Question of the Day: Who is the biggest underdog player in the NHL this season, the player you root for against all odds? Email at firstname.lastname@example.org or hit us on Twitter with the hashtag #MvsW to @wyshynski or @jeffmarek.
- Dobber Hockey at Puck Daddy13 hrs ago
Dobber checks in every Thursday to force-feed you the latest fantasy hockey trends. The founder of and a columnist for The Hockey News website, he long ago immersed himself into this rollercoaster world and is unable to escape.
Rookie Tomas Hertl had "the four-goal game" and the rooster-petting hype that followed. Dustin Penner has that "man he's killing my fantasy team I'm never drafting him ag- wait, what?" thing. But what does Ryan Johansen have? He's hype-less. A man without buzz. But he's quietly crept up the scoring list and now sits third in scoring among all players making two million or less this season. Poolies in salary-cap leagues are understandably thrilled. And his agent is rubbing his hands with glee.
Here is the expanded list, courtesy of Frozen Pool.
These fellas are wielding a hot stick. Take that into consideration when you go after them in trade talks...
- Ryan Lambert at Puck Daddy14 hrs ago
[Author's note: Every sports website on earth dedicated to covering just one league publishes a weekly power ranking, and we here at Puck Daddy have finally decided to do the same. However, the problem with power rankings in general is that they are usually three things: Bad, wrong, and boring. You typically know just as well as the authors which teams won what games against who and what it all means, so our moving the Red Wings up four spots or whatever really doesn't tell you anything you didn't know. Who's hot, who's not, who cares? For this reason, we're doing a power ranking of things that are usually not teams. You'll see what I mean.]
8. George McPhee (again)
Last week Washington Capitals general manager George McPhee made the rankings because Martin Erat, a forward for whom he traded prized prospect Filip Forsberg less than a year ago, a) sucks now, and b) demanded a trade. Puts McPhee in rather a difficult position. If he can find someone to take Erat's salary — which is unlikely — the return he gets for him might be a Filip Forsberg rookie card with one of the corners bent.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy15 hrs ago
Hey, remember Dmitri Kalinin?
He was a defenseman for the Buffalo Sabres from 1999-2008, before making stops with the New York Rangers and the Phoenix Coyotes. After that he took his talents to the KHL, undoubtedly hoping to snag the Russo-Norris from the Bobby Orr of Russia, Kevin Dallman.
Playing for SKA, Kalinin faced Slovan on Wednesday, home to Branko Radiojevic and other players with vowels.
In the first period, Slovan’s Andrej Stastny took the puck with speed out of his own zone, catching SKA on a line change. Kalinin was back on defense, attempting to stop his rush with a poke check.
It was a bad decision. Bad bad bad bad bad.
Stastny, former member of the Vancouver Giants, danced around Kalinin for the goal, forcing the former NHLer into the rare failed-poke-check-into-failed-hip-check combo breaker.
You know, Kalinin was humiliated on this one, but Anton Burdasov (71) didn’t exactly lend support with his skate-skate-skate/oh, wait, he’s got this/oh, wait, he doesn’t/glide defense.