- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy5 hrs ago
It's my sincere hope that these guys met at the game and just sat together after realizing they were a complete set.
No. 1 Star: Corey Perry, Anaheim Ducks
Perry reached 20 goals on the season with two in the Ducks' 5-2 rout of the hapless New York Islanders, who are definitely about to fire their coach. Perry's goal with two seconds remaining in the second period was a thing of beauty. It also pushed his goal streak to 6 games.
No. 2 Star: Eddie Lack, Vancouver Canucks
Lack was perfect in his first NHL home start, stopping all 31 shots he faced for his first career shutout in the Canucks' 2-0 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.
No. 3 Star: Clarke MacArthur, Ottawa Senators
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy6 hrs ago
The Anaheim Ducks moved into a tie for first in the NHL with Monday night's 5-2 win over the New York Islanders, and it's not difficult to see why they've been so successful. They're 11-0-2 at the Honda Center, for one thing, making them the league's only team without a regulation loss at home.
Also they have Corey Perry, who happens to be pretty incredible, and demonstrated this fact with a dazzling goal of the year candidate from his knees. Watch and marvel:
Lovely move to step around Calvin de Haan, but the real magic here comes after he's taken down, and still manages to corral this puck and fire it past Anders Nilsson. Corey Perry, getting it done from his knees like a grandma in prayer.
This is about as spirit-breaking a goal as you're going to see too. It doubled the Ducks' lead -- a lead they took less than a minute earlier. It did so just seconds from the intermission. Those things alone are enough to break a team's spirit. But it was also just gorgeous -- gorgeous enough to make a team wonder why they should even bother anymore.
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy12 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 young fan is rewarded with Roberto Luongo's shtick after the Vancouver win over the Colorado Avalanche in their NHL game at Rogers Arena December 8, 2013 in Vancouver..."
• • •
Preview: Philadelphia Flyers at Ottawa Senators, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview: Columbus Blue Jackets at Pittsburgh Penguins, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview: Carolina Hurricanes at Vancouver Canucks, 10 p.m. ET
Preview: New York Islanders at Anaheim Ducks, 10 p.m. ET
• • •
Five things to know about tonight's NHL games ...
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy13 hrs ago
Drawing a penalty is, in our estimation, one of the true exemplary aspects of a successful forward in the NHL.
It shows you’re working hard, getting chances, forcing your opponent to do something illegal and detrimental to their own team to stop you. Or, in some cases, you’re a nefarious diver whose sneaky behavior makes you both a scourge on the League’s moral standing ... and a complete asset to your team.
Conversely, forwards that take penalties more than they draw them are problematic. In some cases, it’s just doing your job as a fourth-line goon or defensive forward. In other cases, perhaps you’re not earning enough penalties to offset your lapses.
Like, for example, Thomas Vanek of the New York Islanders.
Vanek is a player that, for whatever reason, takes more penalties than he draws. That was the case last season for the Buffalo Sabres, when he took four and drew nothing. And that’s the case thus far this season with the Sabres and the Islanders, as he’s the worst player – forward or otherwise – in the NHL in penalty plus/minus.
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy14 hrs ago
The Philadelphia Flyers won just 1 of their first 8 games, and 4 of their first 15.
This in mind, it's downright remarkable that the club comes into Monday night's action with a chance to finish the evening within a point of the Metropolitan Division's third playoff spot -- with a game in hand. A win over the Ottawa Senators and a Carolina Hurricanes loss in Vancouver and they'll be back in control of their own playoff destiny, one month to the day after they racked up their measly 5th win in their 16th game.
It hardly makes sense.
Of course, that's the Flyers' modus operandi. Nothing ever makes sense for this team. It's always funny in Philadelphia, and this season has been no exception.
Consider their team MVP this year. No, it's not $66 million team captain Claude Giroux, who remains hot and cold despite being the team's top scorer.
It's their goaltender.
Now, this alone is pretty wacky considering the Flyers' recent history, but it's even wackier when you recall that their goalie is Steve Mason.
- Dmitry Chesnokov at Puck Daddy15 hrs ago
Sergei Bobrovsky of the Columbus Blue Jackets was injured in a game against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Dec. 3, straining his groin. He’s expected to miss around a month of action, which pushes his injury rehab right into the time when the Russian Olympic team’s roster will be announced.
When I spoke to him this weekend for Sovietsky Sport, he was resting at home and reading “The Count of Monte Cristo.” The Blue Jackets are eager to see if Bobrovsky will be back with a vengeance like Edmond Dantes.
Q. How are you nowadays?
BOBROVSKY: “I am trying to stay positive. Every athlete has injuries at some point of their careers.”
What happened on that play? There was no contact with the opposing player.
“Tampa’s player shot the puck to the top corner, and I was sliding in the opposite direction, I made a sudden move, caught the puck but felt right away that something bad had happened.”
Did you realize right away something bad happened?
“Immediately. I had never had anything like that before. It was my first ever groin injury.”
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy16 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.
• Dale Weise and David Rundblad get close. A little too close, if you ask the lady on the other side of the glass. [AP]
• The NHL's Board of Governors meet this week in Pebble Beach. Among the items on the agenda: updates on next season's salary cap, the ex-player's lawsuit and a pizza party to celebrate the $5.2 (CA) billion Canadian TV deal. [ESPN]
• Here is Brendan Shanahan's schedule for the week: James Neal, phone hearing today. Dion Phaneuf, phone hearing Tuesday. Shawn Thornton, in-person hearing later this week. All while Pebble Beach Golf Links stares him in the face.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy17 hrs ago
The NHL has suspended James Neal five games for an intentional knee to the head of Brad Marchand, skating through his skull while the Boston Bruins forward was attempting to get back to his skates in Saturday's game.
It’s one of those suspensions that makes you wonder if the NHL is ever going to be able to follow its own principles for player safety or criteria for repeat offenders.
Pittsburgh Penguins forward James Neal has been suspended for five games, without pay, for kneeing Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand during NHL Game No. 438 in Boston on Saturday, Dec. 7, the National Hockey League's Department of Player Safety announced today.
The incident occurred at 11:06 of the first period. Neal received a minor penalty for kneeing.
Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement and, based on his average annual salary, Neal will forfeit $128,205.15. The money goes to the Players' Emergency Assistance Fund.
And here’s the Brendan Shanahan video:
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy17 hrs ago
It's a Monday 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: Joe Haggerty of CSN New England and Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review join us to talk about the Bruins/Penguins malarkey.
• Is the Code worthless?
• Bettman talks tougher fighting penalties.
• The playoff races, such as they are.
• NHL news and notes.
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy18 hrs ago
Changes were bound to come. Pierre-Marc Bouchard appears to be the start.
Bouchard is on a one-year deal worth $2 million. With nine points in 28 games and a 51.1-percent Corsi, which measure shot attempts, there's a pretty good chance some team will grab the 29-year old forward.
The Islanders are 14th in the Eastern Conference, 2-12-2 in their last 16 games and finish up their current west coast road trip with Anaheim, San Jose and Phoenix. By the time they return to Nassau Coliseum this weekend, the distance between them and a playoff spot could be, well, uglier.