Goalies Reign Supreme On Saturday

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Dan Dobish
·11 min read
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The National Hockey League had all but one team in action on Saturday. Out of the 15 games we had four shutouts, as goaltenders were having their way. And in six of the games, the teams couldn't settle their differences in regulation, needing overtime in five of the outings and a shootout in another to figure out a winner. Semyon Varlamov posted a third consecutive shutout, and he also set a franchise record in the process. Fantasy managers and DFS players were treated to another outstanding day of action. Let's get started!

Boston Bruins 6, Buffalo Sabres 2

The Sabres started Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen in Saturday's game, but he was unable to come out for the third period due to an undisclosed injury. At the time, the Sabres were already down 3-1, but it got worse with Dustin Tokarski coming on cold and allowing three goals on 14 shots.

Most of the damage was done by Craig Smith, who notched his second-career hat trick, and first since Feb. 2020. He has surprised with 13 goals and 32 points across his 49 games to date.

David Krejci had a hand in each of Smith's goals, finishing with three helpers and a plus-2 rating, as the duo made a winner out of Jeremy Swayman. He allowed just two goals on 19 shots to improve to 6-2-0 with a 1.62 GAA and .942 SV%. The goaltender of the future might be the goaltender of now in Beantown. Fantasy managers and DFS players certainly like what they see.

Nick Ritchie also joined the multi-point club with a goal and an assist in the win.

Detroit Red Wings 1, Tampa Bay Lightning 0 (SO)

The scoring was not quite as prolific at Little Caesars Arena. In fact, it was non-existent.

Curtis McElhinney stopped all 15 shots he faced in regulation and overtime, and Thomas Greiss saved all 33 shots he faced.

Ross Colton and Jakub Vrana each scored in the first round of the shootout, and Brayden Point and Filip Zadina did likewise in the second round. Then McElhinney and Greiss stood on their heads again. The two goalies stopped four skates apiece before Tyler Johnson and Valtteri Filppula struck in the seventh round. Yanni Gourde missed wide in the eighth round, while Sam Gagner cashed in the winner to beat McElhinney.

New York Islanders 3, New York Rangers 0

Semyon Varlamov is on fire. He made 28 saves for his third consecutive shutout, setting a franchise record with a 213:56 scoreless streak and counting. He also improved to 19-9-4 with a 1.99 GAA and .930 SV% while he leads the league with seven shutouts.

Anthony Beauvillier provided him with all the offense he needed, scoring a pair of goals, while Josh Bailey added three assists. He has a pair of three-point games across the past six, and he has three points on three occasion since April Fool's Day, no fooling!

New Jersey Devils 4, Philadelphia Flyers 1

The Devils took care of the Flyers, who are now at .500 with a 22-22-7 record.

Mackenzie Blackwood allowed just one goal on 32 shots, and he had plenty of offensive support, too.

Jesper Bratt got him off to a quick start with a goal at 5:00 in the first period, and Janne Kuokkanen registered his seventh goal at 0:52 of the second. Yegor Sharangovich and Jack Hughes helped out on Kuokkanen's goal, which stood up as the game winner.

Nico Hischier chipped in with a shorthanded goal, and Sharangovich posted a goal with Hughes chipping in with another helper.

The only thing that didn't go well for Blackwood was Joel Farabee scoring with just 78 ticks remaining in regulation to spoil his shutout bid.

Pittsburgh Penguins 3, Washington Capitals 0

Another game, another solid effort in the cage. Tristan Jarry was the star in his one, as he stopped all 24 shots he faced for his second shutout of the season. Jar Jar Wins picked up his 23rd win, and he is third in the NHL behind only Tampa Bay's Andrei Vasilevskiy (30) and Colorado's Philipp Grubauer (26) for wins.

Bryan Rust was good for two goals, and newcomer Jeff Carter added another. He has four goals and six points with a plus-6 rating in his past eight outings, endearing himself to Pens fans and his new teammates.

Carolina Hurricanes 2, Columbus Blue Jackets 1 (OT)

The Hurricanes protected their home ice, and Alex Nedeljkovic did it with his glove and his stick.

Nedeljkovic made 31 saves on 32 shots, allowing just one goal to Max Domi 3:00 into the game. He settled down and didn't allow anything the rest of the way.

Teuvo Teravainen leveled the score at 1-1 late in the first period, and Dougie Hamilton registered the winner in overtime. Nedeljkovic posted the assist on an outlet pass to Hamilton in the extra session to help his own cause. It was Hamilton's first game-winning goal since Feb. 7, which was also against the Jackets.

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Montreal Canadiens 3, Ottawa Senators 2 (OT)

The Senators started out well. The Canadiens finished better.

Both Filip Gustavsson and Cayden Primeau put on a show in the first period, exchanging donuts, and neither goaltender allowed anything until Tim Stutzle broke the ice at 14:52 of the second period.

Thomas Chabot made it 2-0 at 5:51 of the third, and it looked good for the visitors. But Jeff Petry hit for his 12th of the season from Tyler Toffoli, and Toffoli took advantage of a cross-checking penalty to Nikita Zaitsev to strike on the power play and level the game 2-2.

The game ended up going into overtime, and Cole Caufield struck for the game-winning goal, which was his first NHL tally, and the home side got it done after a cold start.

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Toronto Maple Leafs 5, Vancouver Canucks 1

The Canucks opened the scoring with Tanner Pearson's 10th of the season at 13:28. Quinn Hughes had his 32nd assist, and Bo Horvat also chipped in. It looked like Vancouver was going to do it to Toronto again. Auston Matthews had other ideas.

Matthews scored his 37th less than two minutes after Pearson in the first, and he scored his second of the game at 3:50 of the second period. That stood up as the game-winning goal.

Adam Brooks, Alex Galchenyuk and Joe Thornton added goals in the third period, while Mitch Marner struck for a pair of assists.

That was all Jack Campbell needed, as he allowed just one goal 27 shots to move to 15-2-1 with a 2.07 GAA and .927 SV% in 18 starts.

It also all good for the Leafs, as Justin Holl left in the third period after being hit in the face by a puck.

Florida Panthers 5, Chicago Blackhawks 4

The Panthers and Blackhawks won the award for the highest scoring game of the night. And it might have been the most fun, too.

Anthony Duclair opened the scoring with his ninth goal, and Sam Bennett picked up the primary assist. He had another helper on Owen Tippett's goal later in the game, and Bennett now has five goals, eight assist and a plus-11 rating in nine games since coming over in a trade from the Calgary Flames.

Duclair finished with two goals and three points with a plus-3 rating, and he is now working on a three-game goal-scoring streak with points in five in a row.

Kevin Lankinen allowed five goals on 42 shots, and he is winless in his past five, the longest drought of the season.

Adam Gaudette had two helpers for the losing side, and he has a goal, four points and a plus-1 in three games since coming over from the Vancouver Canucks in a deadline deal. Alex DeBrincat also scored while adding a helper, and he has two goals and two assists during his three-game point streak, and six goals with 12 points in the past 12.

Minnesota Wild 4, St. Louis Blues 3 (OT)

The Wild saw Kaapo Kahkonen push his record to 15-7-0 with a 2.69 GAA and .909 SV% in 21 starts and one relief appearance, as he made 28 saves on 31 shots.

Kevin Fiala posted the winner in overtime, helped out by Victor Rask and Mats Zuccarello. Fiala also lent a hand on Jonas Brodin's goal with an extra attacker which tied things up and forced overtime.

Jordan Binnington was staked to the early 2-0 lead with goals to Jordan Kyrou and Sammy Blais before Zuccarello scored to make it 2-1. David Perron scored to make it 3-1, and things were looking up for the Blues. But the third is when it flipped in the Wild's favor.

Nashville Predators 1, Dallas Stars 0 (OT)

Anton Khudobin and Juuse Saros put on a goaltending clinic in regulation, as neither backstop allowed a thing.

Saros stopped all 28 shots he faced, while Khudobin allowed just one goal on 34 shots in overtime. Erik Haula did the honors with his eighth goal of the season, helped out by Mattias Ekholm at 3:32 of the extra session.

Colorado Avalanche 4, San Jose Sharks 3

Devan Dubnyk made his first start against the Sharks, the team he started the season with, and he picked up the win. But it wasn't easy.

He and Josef Korenar posted donuts in the first period. Alexander Barabanov struck on the power play to open the scoring before Nathan MacKinnon and Andre Burakovsky answered with goals to make it 2-1 in favor of the home side.

Patrick Nemeth scored to make it 3-1, but Logan Couture notched a shorthanded goal to keep his team in it. While Mikko Rantanen scored to make it 4-2, and put a smile on the face of Over bettors, Tomas Hertl showed no signs of quit with a goal to make it 4-3 with 2:13 to go. Barabanov had an assist on Hertl's goal for the multi-point game.

Rantanen and Nathan MacKinnon each had a goal and an assist, while Connor Timmins posted two assists to get into the multi-point club.

Edmonton Oilers 4, Calgary Flames 1

Connor McDavid is ridiculous. He scored his 29th goal on the power play, and he added his 57th and 58th assists for yet another giant stat line. McDavid wasn't the only one.

Leon Draisaitl grabbed an assist on all four goals, giving him 47 helpers on the season. That was enough support for Mike Smith, who moved to 18-6-2 with a 2.30 GAA and .924 SV%.

Josh Archibald posted a goal with an assist to join the multi-point club.

Jacob Markstrom allowed just two goals on 27 shots, as Archibald and Darnell Nurse scored empty-net goals to make it look worse than it was.

Vegas Golden Knights 3, Arizona Coyotes 2 (OT)

The Golden Knights got all they could handle from the Coyotes.

William Karlsson scored to open the scoring with a helper from Jonathan Marchessault and Reilly Smith. Captain Mark Stone added his 20th of the season with helpers to Max Pacioretty and Chandler Stephenson. VGK led 2-0 heading to the third period.

But the Coyotes showed no quit, as Christian Fischer and Christian Dvorak tied it up and forced overtime.

But Marchessault, who assisted on the opening goal, scored the winner on the power play in overtime to close it.

Anaheim Ducks 6, Los Angeles Kings 2

Ryan Miller announced he was hanging up the goalie skaters at season's end. He was making the final home start of his NHL career, and he went out with a bang.

Miller allowed just two goals on 25 shots to move to 4-8-1, earning the 391st victory of his career as he extended his record for wins by an American-born netminder.

Trevor Zegras, Danton Heinen, Nicolas Deslauriers and Max Jones staked him to a 4-0 lead before Brendan Lemieux broke the ice for the Kings at 3:51 of the third. Jacob Larsson and Max Comtois weren't going to let the Kings back in the game, as they scored to put it out of reach at 6-1.

While it came in a blowout, Tobias Bjornfot was able to pick up his first NHL goal in the losing effort.