December 20, 2009
The veteran defenseman appeared in his 712th career game on Saturday and did something against the Detroit Red Wings he had never accomplished previously in an NHL game. Skrastins scored two goals for the first time in his career, and added an assist, to lead the Stars past the injury-riddled Red Wings. His three points were a career high, and Skrastins collected his first two goals as a member of the Stars in 33 games.
The rookie goalie stopped 25 shots to record his first career shutout, earning the milestone during his first start since undergoing minor heart surgery, no less. Gustavsson helped the Leafs snap a two-game losing streak and a stretch of seven straight losses to the Bruins.
No. 3 star, Alexander Ovechkin, Washington Capitals:
The Capitals' superstar sparked a third-period rally by scoring two goals himself and assisting on the final of four scores for the visitors. Ovechkin put nine shots on goal, had another seven miss the net and doled out three hits during 23:38 of ice time.
Honorable mention: Jaroslav Halak(notes) turned away all 40 shots he faced for his first shutout of the season as Montreal won on the road to snap a five-game losing streak. … Wojtek Wolski(notes) scored two goals and added an assist while Milan Hejduk(notes) scored on goal and had two assists for victorious Colorado. … Martin Erat(notes) scored a goal and added two assists as Nashville won in Calgary. … James Neal(notes) scored two goals, added an assist and collected six hits in Dallas' win. … Henrik Lundqvist(notes) made 16 of his 36 saves in the third period as the Rangers won at Philadelphia. New York's Marc Staal(notes) logged 30:45 in ice time spread over 38 shifts to appear during more than half of regulation. Interesting to note the defenseman didn't get credit for a single hit over his 38 shifts. … Jonas Hiller(notes) stopped 39 shots for Anaheim. … Mike Brodeur(notes), no relations to Martin Brodeur(notes), made 22 saves and was a winner in goal during his NHL debut for Ottawa. … Sticking with the theme of goaltenders, Marc-Andre Fleury(notes) had 31 saves during 65 minutes of normal hockey and three stops during the skills' competition of a shootout in Pittsburgh's win. … Rookie Patrick Dwyer scored his second goal in as many games for Carolina. …
Dishonorable mention: Calgary goalie Miikka Kiprusoff(notes) allowed four goals on 19 shots at home and lost. … Martin Brodeur permitted three goals on six shots and that was enough for New Jersey coach Jacques Lemaire to hook the future Hall of Fame goalie. … Phoenix defenseman Ed Jovanovski(notes) took four minor penalties and Anaheim converted two into power-play goals.