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Alex DeBrincat
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Hockey Daily Dose

DeBrincat, Kucherov with 5 Star performances

by Michael Finewax

The NHL announced their three stars of the week and Nikita Kucherov was the first star with three goals and seven assists in three games. He continued his hot pace Monday as you will read below.

 

Vladimir Tarasenko was the second star as he had four goals and 10 points in four games while Sidney Crosby was the third star as he also had 10 points in four games as he scored twice.

 

It was a busy night in the NHL with plenty of goals in a couple of games so let's get to it.

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CALGARY 5 ARIZONA 2

 

Mark Giordano, Michael Frolik and Mikael Backlund each had a goal and an assist to lead the Calgary Flames to a 5-2 win over Arizona.

 

It was a big night for Giordano who set a personal best of 57 points, one better than in 2015-16. At the age of 35, Giordano still has 25 games in which to completely smash his old mark.

 

Mike Smith picked up the win as he turned aside 27 shots. Smith is 16-11-2 with a 3.05 GAA and a .892 save percentage. Smith is battling David Rittich for the top job in the Calgary cage.

 

Derek Ryan and Austin Czarnik completed the scoring for Calgary.

 

Conor Garland with his 12th of the season and Jordan Weal, replied for Arizona. For Weal it was his first goal in 16 games as a member of the Coyotes.

 

Calvin Pickard had a rare start for Arizona and stopped 28-of-32 shots in taking the loss. It was his fourth straight loss dating back to November 24 and third loss in three games as a member of the Coyotes.

 

Elias Lindholm and Rasmus Andersson had two assists apiece.

 

Czarnik, Mark Jankowski and Sam Bennett were the only Flames who were not plus players as all three were even in the plus/minus category.

 

Alex Galchenyuk, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Alex Goligoski were all minus-three.

 

TAMPA BAY 5 COLUMBUS 1

 

Nikita Kucherov continued his amazing pace as he scored twice and added three assists to lead the Lightning to a 5-1 win over Columbus despite being outshot 40-20.

 

Kucherov has 29 goals and a Tampa Bay record 70 assists thus far in 60 games. He has 18 points in his last five games including seven goals as he has rocketed to a big 11-point lead in the scoring race over Patrick Kane and is 16 points ahead of Connor McDavid

 

It was another outstanding performance by goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy who stopped 39 shots, allowing only a goal by Lukas Sedlak with only 1:45 left in the third period to ruin his shutout bid. Vasilevskiy is 26-7-4 with a 2.28 GAA and a .930 save percentage. He has to be talked about as far as the Vezina Trophy is concerned.

 

Brayden Point had two goals and an assist while Steven Stamkos also found the back of the net.

 

It was not a great night for Joonas Korpisalo who made only 15 saves on 20 shots. The perceived number one goaltender for Columbus next season (as Sergei Bobrovsky is expected to bolt as a pending UFA), Korpisalo is 9-5-2 and has lost his last three games in a row.

 

Victor Hedman suffered a lower-body injury in the first period and did not return.

 

CHICAGO 8 OTTAWA 7

 

It was a wild night in Chicago as there were a total of 15 goals including nine in the first stanza as the Blackhawks prevailed over the Ottawa Senators 8-7.

 

The star of the night was Alex DeBrincat who had three goals and five points in the win as he has 32 goals and 60 points this season, eight better than his rookie campaign of last season. He still has 22 games to go this season.

 

Patrick Kane had a goal and three points, the 18th game in a row he has picked up a point. Kane is in second in NHL scoring with 88 points thus far.

 

Dylan Strome also had a goal and two assists and has 34 points in 35 games with Chicago since his trade from Arizona earlier in the season.

 

Jonathan Toews and Brandon Saad each had a goal and an assist while Gustav Forsling completed the scoring for Chicago.

 

Colin White had two goals and an assist while defenseman Thomas Chabot scored twice in the third to make it close.

 

Mark Stone had a goal and an assist with Rudolfs Balcer and Bobby Ryan also scoring.

 

Collin Delia got the start in net for Chicago but his evening was over just 7:55 into the first period as he gave up three goals on only 10 shots. Cam Ward took over and stopped 24-of-28 shots in taking the victory.

 

It was a similar play in the Ottawa net as Anders Nilsson got the start in goal and was pulled just 13:22 into the first after giving up four goals on 12 shots. Craig Anderson relieved him at that point and gave up four goals on 30 shots as he took the loss.

 

Jean-Gabriel Pageau had seven shots on goal while Kane and Toews each had six for Chicago.

 

Brady Tkachuk and Matt Duchene each had two assists. Duncan Keith had a pair for Chicago.

 

COLORADO 3 VEGAS 0

 

Semyon Varlamov stopped all 40 shots to lead the Colorado Avalanche to a 3-0 win over the Vegas Golden Knights.

 

Varlamov evened his record at 15-15-8 as he picked up his second shutout of the season.

 

It was also a big night for Andrew Agozzino who scored his first career NHL goal and added an assist in his first game of the season with the Avalanche. He last played in the NHL in 2015-16 as he played in nine games with Colorado, garnering two assists.

 

Tyson Jost with his seventh of the season and Matt Calvert with his ninth of the year, also scored for Colorado.

 

Malcolm Subban took the loss as he stopped 35 shots. Subban was playing in his second game in a row, replacing the slumping Marc-Andre Fleury who has loss three in a row. Subban was riding a three-game winning streak.

 

The Golden Knights are really slumping of late with a record of 3-8-0 in their last 11 contests.

 

Jonathan Marchessault had seven shots on goal while Gabriel Landeskog had six.

 

BOSTON 6 SAN JOSE 5 (Overtime)

 

Charlie McAvoy scored the overtime winner and allowed the Boston Bruins to escape with a 6-5 win over San Jose.

 

The Bruins jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first period as defensemen Torey Krug and Zdeno Chara made it 2-0 before Karson Kuhlman with his first career goal in only his second NHL game gave Boston the big lead.

 

Joe Thornton scored his first of three goals with only three seconds remaining in the third to breath some life into the Sharks.

 

Joe Pavelski with his 32nd of the season, cut the lead to 3-2 as he scored on the power play but Jake DeBrusk, also on the power play, made it 4-2.

 

Thornton made it 4-3 with his 12th of the season and Logan Couture tied it up before the end of the second with a shorthanded goal.

 

Thornton gave San Jose its first lead of the game at the 13:32 mark of the third but Chris Wagner, who fought Justin Braun earlier in the contest, tied it at 5 with 1:49 left in the third to send it into extra time and set up McAvoy’s heroics.

 

Tuukka Rask stopped 33 shots and picked up his 20th win of the season.

 

It was a horrible outing for Martin Jones as he allowed all six goals on only 20 shots. The San Jose netminder is 28-11-5 this season but his peripherals are terrible as he has a 2.95 GAA and a .896 save percentage.

 

David Krejci had three assists for Boston while DeBrusk had two. Pavelski had a pair of assist as well.

 

McAvoy led both teams with seven hits.

 

 

WASHINGTON 3 LOS ANGELES 2

 

Alex Ovechkin scored twice on the power play including the eventual game-winner as the Washington Capitals held on to defeat Los Angeles 3-2.

 

Ovechkin’s two goals give him a league-leading 42 goals this season as he attempts to score 50 for the eighth time in his career and first time in three seasons as he last had 50 in the 2015-16 campaign.

 

Brett Connolly also scored for Washington as his 14th of the season was sandwiched around the pair from Ovie.

 

Pheonix Copley picked up the win as he stopped 26 shots. He is 13-5-3 and it was the second time in a week that he beat the Kings.

 

Alex Iafallo with his 13th and Ilya Kovalchuk also with his 15th, scored in the third period for Los Angeles.

 

Jack Campbell was not busy in the Kings cage and stopped only 18-of-21 in taking the loss.

 

John Carlson had a pair of assists as he set up Ovechkin for both his power play goals.

 

Nightly Leaders

 

GOALS

 

Alex DeBrincat - 3

Joe Thornton - 3

Nikita Kucherov – 2

Brayden Point – 2

Colin White – 2

Thomas Chabot – 2

Alex Ovechkin - 2

 

Assists

 

Nikita Kucherov - 3

David Krejci - 3

Elias Lindholm - 2

Rasmus Andersson – 2

Dylan Strome – 2

Alex DeBrincat – 2

Patrick Kane – 2        

Duncan Keith – 2

Brady Tkachuk – 2

Jake DeBrusk – 2

Joe Pavelski – 2

John Carlson - 2

 

Shots on Goal

 

Jonathan Marchessault - 7

Jean-Gabriel Pageau - 7

Cam Atkinson – 6

Patrick Kane – 6

Jonathan Toews – 6

Gabriel Landeskog – 6

Logan Couture - 6

 

           

Hits

 

Charlie McAvoy - 7

Kole Sherwood – 6

 

 

Penalty Minutes

 

Justin Braun – 5

Chris Wagner - 5

Nikita Kucherov – 4  

Josh Anderson - 4

Dylan DeMelo – 4

Slater Koekkoek - 4

Michael Finewax

Michael Finewax is entering his 14th season as the Senior Hockey Writer and Editor for Rotoworld. You can follow him on Twitter @mfinewaxhockey.