It’s hard to believe but the Penguins have played 44 games this season, and only 17 had Sidney Crosby playing for the Penguins, yet the Pens still have a 27-12-5 record heading into their game today against Arizona.
The Penguins began last week at home on the back end of aback to back against the Florida Panthers. Frank Vatrano scored 2:28 into the 1st period but it was quickly answered by Jared McCann with his 11th goal of the year before Brett Connolly put the Panthers back ahead. The Penguins could not get much going and the Panthers added two more goals in the 3rd period to knock off the Penguins by a 4-1 score in Pittsburgh to begin the week for the Pens.
The Penguins then hit the road to face a familiar friend in Vegas on Tuesday night. Evgeni Malkin and Patric Hornqvist scored in the 1st period and Dominik Kahun scored a power play goal in the 2nd period to give the Penguins a 3-0 lead. The Golden Knights scored two goals before the 2nd period ended but Brandon Tanev scored his 9th goal this year early in the 3rd period to double the Penguins’ lead 4-2 and gave Pittsburgh some breathing room. Las Vegas would score with seven minutes left, but Tristan Jarry would not be denied the victory and the Penguins defeated Marc-Andre Fleury and the Golden Knights 4-3 in Vegas.
Pittsburgh closed out the week in Denver on Friday night. Fellow Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia native Nathan MacKinnon got the only goal in the 1st period but the Penguins answered with Teddy Blueger’s sixth goal of the year 13 minutes into the 2nd period, but Gabe Landeskog scored one of the ugliest goals the Penguins allowed in a long time on a nasty bounce from over one hundred feet away to give the Avs a 2-1 lead heading into the 3rd period. Bryan Rust and Evgeni Malkin would team up in the 3rd period to give the Penguins a 3-2 lead late in the 3rd period. However, Matt Calvert would deflect a shot from the blue line with 30 seconds remaining to force overtime. Jared McCann would score 3:19 into overtime for consecutive games and the Penguins came away with the 4-3 overtime win over Colorado.
The Penguins play another old friend this evening when Phil Kessel and the Coyotes host the Penguins in Arizona to wrap up a three game road trip for Pittsburgh. The Minnesota Wild will be waiting in Pittsburgh on Tuesday before the Penguins hit the road again with a back to back in Boston on Thursday and Detroit on Friday to wrap up next week.
The Capitals had a busy week with four games on the schedule beginning at home against the Sharks last Sunday. Neither team would score in the first frame, but that didn’t stop this one from become a high scoring game. Nic Dowd and Jakub Vrana scored in the 2nd period but Evander Kane would score a hat trick for the Sharks in the period to give San Jose a 3-2 lead after 40 minutes.
Things got very interesting in the 3rd period. Logan Couture scored into an empty net with one minute remaining to give the Sharks a 4-2 lead and 999 out of 1,000 times, the victory. But this turned out to be the one game out of the thousand where the team that scores an empty net goal to go ahead by two ends up losing as Vrana added another goal and T.J. Oshie got the equalizer with 15 seconds left in the game to force overtime. Lars Eller finished the epic comeback 2:01 into overtime to give the Capitals the 5-4 victory in a game they were down two goals in the final minute but still won.
Ottawa was up next for the Capitals two days later in DC. Ottawa scored the only goal in the 1st period, but the Capitals ran away with the game after the first period. T.J. Oshie and Alex Ovechkin would each score two goals and the Capitals scored three goals in the 2nd and 3rd periods to defeat the Senators 6-1 and Ilya Samsonov won his seventh straight game in net.
The Capitals were in Philadelphia the following night. The Flyers scored first three minutes into the game but the Capitals scored two goals in a five minute span to jump ahead by a goal before the Flyers would tie the game in the last minute of the 1st period. Kevin Hayes would score a shorthanded goal late in the 2nd period and Carter Hart would not be beat the rest of the way as the Flyers held on for the 3-2 victory over the Capitals.
The Capitals wrapped up last week at home against the last place New Jersey Devils on Saturday. This game would not go as the Capitals had hoped, as the Devils scored the first three goals of the game before the Capitals got on the board eight minutes into the 2nd period. That would be as close as the Capitals got as the Devils continued to push and soundly defeated the Capitals 5-1 at Capital One Arena to close out the week for the Capitals.
The Capitals play three games this week before partaking in their bye week combined with the All Star break next week. The Hurricanes are next for the Caps on Monday night before the Devils are in DC on Thursday. The Capitals close out the week on the road against the Islanders on Saturday afternoon before their eight day break.
The Islanders have kept up with the Metro this season and have been see-sawing with the Penguins for second place in the Metro the last few weeks. The Colorado Avalanche were first in line last week for the Islanders at Nassau Coliseum on Monday night. It was quite a goalie duel in this one, as Pavel Francouz stopped 15 shots in the 1st period and Semyon Varlamov stopped 15 saves in the 2nd period and neither team managed a goal in the first 40 minutes. Anders Lee scored his 12th goal this season 6:54 into the 3rd period and Varlamov shut the door the rest of the way as the Isles secured a 1-0 victory in regulation.
The Islanders were in New Jersey the next night to take on the Devils. Casey Cizikas and Jordan Eberle scored in the 1st period, but P.K. Subban also scored in the 1st and the Devils added one more in the 2nd and took the lead in the 3rd with a power play goal midway through the 3rd period to go ahead 3-2. Tom Kuhnhackl scored his third goal of the year to tie the game at three with just over five minutes remaining and Anders Lee scored the game winner for the second straight night 4:09 into overtime as the Islanders came from behind and won 4-3 in overtime.
The Islanders had three days off before facing off with a tough test against the Bruins on Saturday at the Barclays Center. Scott Mayfield got the only goal in the 1st period and Jake DeBrusk answered for Boston in the 2nd period. John Moore put the Bruins ahead by one in the 3rd period and Mathew Barzal scored his 17th goal of the year midway through the 3rd period to tie the game where it would remain until overtime. Brock Nelson took a penalty 40 seconds into overtime and Patrice Bergeron would end the game on the ensuing power play to end the week with an overtime loss for the Islanders.
The Islanders continue play at Madison Square Garden on Monday before returning home the next night to play Detroit at Nassau Coliseum where they’ll stay the rest of the week. The Rangers are next on Long Island on Thursday before the Islanders close out this week with a back to back against the Capitals on Saturday and Carolina in Raleigh next Sunday evening.
Carolina wrapped up a season long home stand last week that began on December 28th, but still had four games this week first. They began last Sunday against the red hot Lightning who were looking for their seventh straight win. The Lightning scored twice in the first five minutes of the 1st period and another goal five minutes into the 2nd period to go ahead 3-0. Andrei Svechnikov finally got the Hurricanes a goal with his 18th of the year in the 3rd period, but it was far too late and the Lightning won their seventh in a row with a 3-1 victory over the Hurricanes.
The Flyers were next in Raleigh on Tuesday night. The Flyers got started with two quick goals in the first 9 minutes, but Carolina responded with four straight goals - two in the 1st period and two more in the 2nd. The Flyers would get one before the end of the 2nd period and Travis Sanheim scored for the Flyers with less than five minutes remaining to force overtime. Dougie Hamilton then scored his 14th goal of the year 1:56 into overtime to send the home fans home happy with a 5-4 overtime win.
Carolina had two days off before squaring off against Arizona on Friday. In an odd stat, Warren Foegele, Lucas Wallmark and Martin Necas all scored their 10th goal of the year for Carolina and Petr Mrazek stopped all 32 shots he faced as the Canes shut out the Coyotes 3-0, Arizona’s second straight shutout loss.
The Hurricanes wrapped up their seven game home stand by wearing their Hartford Whaler throwback jerseys against the L.A. Kings on Saturday. Nino Niederreiter scored his sixth goal of the year 4:52 into the 1st period, which turned out to be the game winner as the Hurricanes recorded their second shutout in two days and Teuvo Teravainen scored an empty net goal to make it 2-0 for Carolina to finish off their home stand with a 5-2 record and two straight shutouts.
Carolina will hit the road this week starting with the Capitals on Monday night in DC. The Blue Jackets host the Hurricanes next on Thursday night before the Canes wrap up their week at home against Anaheim on the back end of a back to back.
Philadelphia returned from a road trip last week, but first had to play against the Hurricanes in Raleigh on Tuesday night. The Flyers had high hopes with two goals in the first 8:57 of the game, but Carolina then had high hopes after scoring two goals in the 1st to tie and add two more early in the 2nd to go up 4-2 less than five minutes into the 2nd. Philly would get their hopes up once more when Nicolas Aube-Kubel scored his second goal this season to make it 4-3 and Travis Sanheim scored his fifth this year with less than five minutes in the 3rd to even the score again at four and force overtime. Dougie Hamilton scored 1:56 into overtime to give the Hurricanes the victory, but the Flyers were lucky to come away with one point despite losing their fourth game in a row.
The Flyers finally returned home to Philadelphia the following night for the first time since December 23rd when the Capitals were at the Wells Fargo Center on Wednesday. The first period was eventful as Travis Konecny scored 3:14 into the game but that was answered by two quick Capital goals five minutes apart before Robert Hagg scored his first of the year to tie the game at two after the first period. Kevin Hayes scored while shorthanded with just over two minutes in the 2nd period and Carter Hart did the heavy lifting the remainder of the way and the Flyers held on for the 3-2 regulation win over the Capitals.
The Flyers had two days off before playing at home against the Lightning who were attempting to win their 10th game in a row. Neither team scored in the 1st period and Pat Maroon took a penalty five minutes into the 2nd period and scored 20 seconds after the Lightning killed off the ensuing power play which turned out to be the only scoring of the game as Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 23 shots and recorded his second straight shutout.
The Flyers have a busy week this week and it begins with a big test at home against the Bruins on Monday night. The Flyers then head to St. Louis to face the team that defeated the Bruins for the Stanley Cup when the Blues and Flyers meet on Wednesday Night Hockey for a quick one game road trip before taking on the Montreal Canadiens back in Philadelphia the next day. The Flyers wrap up this week at home against the Kings on Saturday.
Columbus had quite a busy week last week with four games in six days across all three California teams and ending in Las Vegas on Saturday night. They began in Los Angeles last Monday. The Kings scored the only goal in the 1st period, but Columbus took the game over after that. Nathan Gerbe is doing his best to stick in the NHL with Columbus with his second goal this season to tie the game at one before Scott Harrington scored his first of the season to give Columbus the lead after two periods. Kevin Stenlund put Columbus up by two less than five minutes into the 3rd period, but Trevor Lewis scored for L.A. with less than 10 minutes remaining to make the game much more interesting. Gustav Nyquist then scored his 10th of the season into an empty net to seal the deal and give the Jackets the 4-2 victory.
Columbus was in Anaheim the next night, and John Tortorella stuck with Elvis Merzlikins once again in net. Anaheim took advantage against the far-from-home Blue Jackets and fired 15 shots on goal in the 1st period, but Merzlikins turned aside 14 of them and Eric Robinson scored for the Jackets to even the score at one after 20 minutes. Anaheim would score only 24 seconds into the 2nd period, but Gerbe again scored for his third goal in nine games to tie it with just over a minute in the 2nd period.
Zach Werenski continued his goal scoring barrage with his 14th of the year on the power play with 10 seconds left in the 2nd period to give the Jackets the 3-2 lead after two periods. Werenski then scored his 15th goal (and seventh goal in the last six games) at 18:27 of the 3rd period into an empty net which was massive for the Blue Jackets as Anaheim scored in the final minute to make it 4-3 and the empty net goal for Werenski turned out to be the difference in the game as Merzlikins stopped 37 shots for his second victory in 24 hours.
Columbus had one day off for as much rest as possible before taking on the Sharks in San Jose on Thursday night. Neither team would score in the 1st period and the Sharks would strike twice in the 2nd period before Sonny Milano finally got Columbus a goal late in the 2nd period. Brent Burns doubled the lead for the Sharks two minutes into the 3rd period and the Sharks held on for the 3-1 victory as Aaron Dell turned aside 30/31 shots Columbus sent his way.
The Jackets went with Merzlikins for the fourth road game in six nights as the Jackets closed out last week in Las Vegas on Saturday night, and it paid off handsomely for Columbus. Emil Bemstrom scored a power play goal in the 1st period, Pierre-Luc Dubois scored his 15th in the 2nd and Alexander Wennberg added one in the 3rd as Merzlikins stopped all 27 shots on goal for the first shutout of his career and his fourth win in six games since taking on the starter’s role with Columbus.
The Blue Jackets have two days off to recover before beginning a three game home stand this week starting against the Boston Bruins on Tuesday night. The Carolina Hurricanes are next on Thursday before they wrap up this week with the first game of a back to back against New Jersey in Columbus on Saturday and against the Rangers in New York on Sunday.
The Rangers returned home from a trip through western Canada last week, and began at home against the Avalanche on Tuesday night. Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin made his NHL debut for the Rangers, and the Avalanche welcomed him to the NHL with two quick goals in the first 6:34 of the game to hop out to a quick 2-0 lead. But the Rangers would get both goals back before the period ended and the game was tied at two after 20 minutes. Brady Skjei buried his sixth of the year to give the Rangers a 3-2 lead in the 2nd period, but J.T. Compher would sore again for the Avalanche to tie it once more. Ryan Strome would break the tie minutes later and the Rangers had a one goal advantage for Shesterkin heading into the 3rd period. Shesterkin stopped all 13 shots he faced in the 3rd and Artemi Panarin scored into an empty net to give the Rangers the 5-3 victory and Shesterkin his first career win.
The New Jersey Devils were next for the Rangers in New York two days later, and Tony DeAngelo had a game that he likely will never top. DeAngelo scored a goal and assisted on two others in the 1st period as the Rangers led 3-2 after 20 minutes. The Devils tied it near the midway point in the 2nd period, but DeAngelo scored two more goals in the 2nd period to record the hat trick and give the Rangers a 5-3 lead after 40 minutes. Although DeAngelo was done scoring, the Rangers weren’t as Jesper Fast scored his seventh of the year in the 3rd period and the Rangers put away the Devils with a 6-3 victory and DeAngelo had three goals and two assists in the game.
The St. Louis Blues hosted New York on Saturday to end the week for the Rangers. Filip Chytil scored his 11th goal of the game only 1:34 into the game, but it was all St. Louis after that early goal. The Blues got the next three goals of the game before the Rangers added their second goal, and the Blues added two more before the end of the 2nd and led 5-2 after 40 minutes. The Rangers couldn’t anything going in the 3rd period and the Blues held off the Rangers in a 5-2 victory for the Stanley Cup Champions.
The Rangers have a quiet week this week with a home and home against the Islanders in New York City on Monday and Long Island on Thursday night.
The New Jersey Devils have played much better as a team with Alain Nasreddine as coach, most notably with Mackenzie Blackwood in net, but are still alone in last place where they will likely remain the rest of the season.
New Jersey had two days of rest to begin last week before the Devils and Islanders met at The Rock last Tuesday night. P.K. Subban continued his rebound after a slow start with his fifth goal of the year in the 1st period, but that was sandwiched around two Islander goals as the Isles led after 20 minutes. Nico Hischier has been on fire since Taylor Hall was traded and scored his 10th goal of the year in the 2nd period to tie the game at two and he also set up Kyle Palmieri on the power play in the 3rd period for his 16th of the year to give the Devils the 3-2 lead. That lead was short lived, however, as Tom Kuhnhackl tied the game minutes later and Anders Lee would score in the last minute of overtime as the Islanders complete the comeback and hand the Devils the 4-3 overtime loss.
The Devils then played the other New York team, this time in New York, when the Rangers hosted the Devils two nights later. It was another game to forget for New Jersey this season, as the Devils were outscored in each period as the Rangers scored three in the 1st period, two in the 2nd and one more in the 3rd to knock down the Devils 6-3 at Madison Square Garden.
The Devils then finished up their week on the road against the Metropolitan leading Capitals. Surprisingly, this game was all Devils from the start. Nico Hischier scored the first of his two goals in the 1st period and the Devils scored three more in the 2nd to lead 4-1 after 40 minutes in DC. Miles Wood would add one more in the 3rd period and the Devils took care of business in one of their most impressive wins this season with a 5-1 victory over the Capitals.
The Devils return to action this evening at home on the back end of a back to back against the Tampa Bay Lightning before hitting the road to close out this week before their bye week and All Star weekend break. New Jersey will be in Toronto on Tuesday, DC once more on Thursday and finish the week in Columbus on Saturday night.
27-12-5; 59 pts; 150 Goals For (T-8th in the NHL; T-7th last week); 119 Goals Against (T-3rd; 3rd)
2-1 record last week
Pens don’t bring A-game, fall 4-1 to Florida
Gritty Penguins use fast start to hold onto 4-3 win in Vegas
PIT: 4 OT
Resilient Pens battle back, win in overtime
Sunday, January 12 - @ ARI, 6 p.m. ET
Tuesday, January 14 - vs MIN, 7 p.m.
Thursday, January 16 - @ BOS, 7 p.m.
Friday, January 17 - @ DET, 7:30 p.m.
- 11/9/19, C Sidney Crosby - IR; Core muscle surgery
- 11/14/19, C Nick Bjugstad - IR; Core muscle surgery
- 12/1/19, D Brian Dumoulin - IR; Lacerated ankle tendons
- 12/16/19, D Justin Schultz - IR; Lower-body injury
- 12/29/19, LW Jake Guentzel - IR; Shoulder surgery
30-11-5, 65 pts; 164 GF (1st; 3rd); 138 GA (14th; T-12th)
2-2 record last week
WSH: 5 OT
Caps Shock Sharks in 5-4 OT Victory
Caps Play With Pride in 6-1 Blowout Win
Washington’s Power Play Goes Dark Against Philly as Caps Lose 3-2
Washington Wastes One
Tuesday, January 13 - vs CAR, 7 p.m.
Thursday, January 16 - vs NJD, 7 p.m.
Saturday, January 18 - @ NYI, 1 p.m.
- 1/10/20, RW Richard Panik - Day-to-day; Upper-body injury
(3)New York Islanders
27-12-4, 58 pts; 122 GF (24th; T-24th); 111 GA (2nd)
2-0-1 record last week
Semyon Varlamov shuts out Colorado as Isles get a goal
NYI: 4 OT
Lee’s OT winner secures 2 points for Isles
BOS: 3 OT
Bergeron overtime winner spoils 60-minute effort
Monday, January 13 - @ NYR, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, January 14 - vs DET, 7 p.m.
Thursday, January 16 - vs NYR, 7 p.m.
Saturday, January 18 - vs WSH, 1 p.m.
- 12/20/19 - RW, Cal Clutterbuck - IR; Wrist
- 1/1/20 - D Adan Pelech - IR; Achilles
27-16-2, 56 pts; 150 GF (T-8th; 10th); 123 GA (6th; T-6th)
3-1 record last week
Svech scores, but Hurricanes Fall Flat in 3-1 Loss to Lightning
CAR: 5 OT
Doogie wins it in OT
Mrazek Shines in Shutout Win
Reimer one-ups Mrazek in shutout of Kings
Monday, January 13 - @ WSH, 7 p.m.
Thursday, January 16 - @ CBJ, 7 p.m.
Friday, January 17 - vs ANA, 7:30 p.m.
23-16-6, 52 pts; 140 GF (17th; T-14th); 137 GA (12th; T-14th)
1-1-1 record last week
CAR: 5 OT
Flyers blow lead, battle back only to fall in overtime to Hurricanes
Flyers grab huge win vs. Capitals looking to right the ship
Flyers lose to Lightning in just their third regulation home loss of the season
Monday, January 13 - vs BOS, 7 p.m.
Wednesday, January 15 - @ STL, 8 p.m.
Thursday, January 16 - vs MTL, 7 p.m.
Saturday, January 18 - vs LAK, 7 p.m.
- 9/12/19, C Nolan Patrick - IR; Migraine disorder
- 11/6/19, D Samuel Morin - IR; Torn right ACL
- 12/10/19, LW Oscar Lindblom - IR; Illness
- 1/5/20, Justin Braun - Day-to-day; Groin
- 1/7/20, D Shayne Gostisbehere - Day-to-day; Knee
(6)Columbus Blue Jackets
22-16-8, 52 pts; 121 GF (T-25th; 28th); 124 GA (T-7th; T-6th)
3-1 record last week
Winner Winner Chicken Dinner! Late night hockey sees Blue Jackets win; Points now in 13 of 14
Jackets secure four points in two nights in SoCal
Blue Jackets needed a bigger boat, lose to Sharks 3-1
Elvis earns first career shutout, Blue Jackets blank Vegas 3-0
Tuesday, January 14 - vs BOS, 7 p.m.
Thursday, January 16 - vs CAR, 7 p.m.
Saturday, January 18 - vs NJD, 7 p.m.
- 9/24/19, C Brandon Dubinsky - IR; Wrist
- 12/13/19, D Ryan Murray - IR; Upper-body injury
- 12/13/19, RW Josh Anderson - IR; Shoulder
- 12/16/19, Andrew Peeke - IR; Fractured finger
- 12/18/19, RW Cam Atkinson - IR; Lower-body injury
- 12/20/19, RW Oliver Bjorkstrand - IR; Back
- 12/28/19, G Joonas Korpisalo - Day-to-day; Torn meniscus
- 12/31/19, C Alexandre Texier - IR; Lumbar stress fracture
- 1/2/20, D Dean Kukan - IR; Torn meniscus
(7)New York Rangers
21-19-4, 46 pts; 146 GF (13th; T-14th); 149 GA (26th; T-23rd)
2-1 record last week
Igor Shesterkin Picks Up First Career Win in NHL Debut
Tony DeAngelo’s Five Points Fuels 6-3 Win Over New Jersey
Rough Night in St. Louis Ends New York’s Winning Streak
Monday, January 13 - vs NYI, 7 p.m.
Thursday, January 16 - @ NYI, 7 p.m.
- 12/26/19, LW Brendan Lemieux - IR; Fractured hand
- 1/10/20, D Marc Staal - Day-to-day; Upper-body injury
(8)New Jersey Devils
16-21-4, 39 pts; 117 GF (29th); 155 GA (30th)
1-1-1 record last week
NYI: 4 OT
The Heritage Jersey Curse Continues: Devils Battle Back but Fall in OT to the Islanders
Devils’ Defensive Deficits their Downfall in 6-3 Loss to Rangers
Devils pound Capitals 5-1
Monday, January 12 - vs TBL, 7 p.m.
Tuesday, January 14 - @ TOR, 7 p.m.
Thursday, January 16 - @ WSH, 7 p.m.
Saturday, January 18 - @ CBJ, 7 p.m.
- 9/30/19, D Brian Strait - IR; Concussion
- 1/1/20, C Jack Hughes - Day-to-day; Upper-body injury
- 1/8/20, LW Ben Street - IR; Upper-body injury
- 1/10/20, G MacKenzie Blackwood - Day-to-day; Upper-body injury
Which Metropolitan game is the most intriguing?
This poll is closed
1.12.20 - PIT @ ARI, 6 p.m. ET
1.13.20 - CAR @ WSH, 7 p.m.
1.13.20 - BOS @ PHI, 7 p.m.
1.13.20 - NYI @ NYR, 7 p.m. 1.16.20 - NYR @ NYI, 7 p.m.
1.16.20 - PIT @ BOS, 7 p.m.
1.16.20 - NJD @ WSH, 7 p.m.
1.16.20 - CAR @ CBJ, 7 p.m.
1.18.20 - WSH @ NYI, 1 p.m.
1.18.20 - NJD @ CBJ, 7 p.m.