From Abdelkader to Zuccarello – 19 March 2011

Washington Capitals 3 New Jersey Devils 0
It was retro night for the Devils: bringing out the old red and green get up what could of made this better is if Martin Brodeur had gone back to looking like his old self.

Brodeur may have been schooled by the young Michal Neuvirth. The rookie goalie (well one of the rookie goalies) for the Capitals went into the game with the Devils last night already having a 3-0-0 record against them. Neuvirth earned his fourth shutout of the season as the Capitals routed the Devils.

Washington took the early lead over New Jersey when Jeff Schultz score his first of the season. The slap shot was off of a pass from Mike Knuble who would go on to score the other two goals for the Captials.

Known more as a goal scorer Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin assisted on both of the Knuble goals as did young defenseman John Carlson.

Montreal Canadiens 3 New York Rangers 6
The Original Six match up of the night ended up being a big one for the streaky Rangers. The Canadiens playing the second in a back to back after beating the Tampa Bay Lightning the night before could not get control of the game.

One second into the game is all it took for New York’s Brandon Prust and Montreal’s Travis Moen to make a show of the game with a fight.

It was just over five minutes later that Artem Anisimov put a backhanded shot past Carey Price for the Rangers lead.

Montreal’s defenseman P.K. Subban tied the game up just minutes later only to see Dan Giradrdi get a shot past Price for the go ahead goal.

Late in the first period the Rangers got the best of Price scoring three goals in a span of 1:07. That would be the end of Price’s night as the Canadiens pulled him and put in Alex Auld.

The second period saw less goal scoring than the first with the only goal going to Canadiens defenseman James Wisniewski; a slap shot from the blueline. The second period saw just as many penalties including roughing calls to both Subban and Rangers Michael Sauer after Subban as given an interference call on Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.
The third period started with a power play goal for the Canadians. A penalty late in the second to Rangers Ryan Callahan for roughing had carried over and allowed for the Habs to cut the 5-2 lead down to 5-3 less than a minute into the third.

The Rangers made it 6-3 late in the third after Benoit Pouliot ran into Henrik Lundqvist and was called for interference. Vinny Prospal scored on the man advantage.

This morning we await word on Lundqvist condition as last night he had a stiff neck and was having trouble turning it.

New York Islanders 2 Carolina Hurricanes 3 (OT)
It took a little extra time but the Hurricanes “Raleighed” to beat the Islanders.

It was the rookie sensation Jeff Skinner who tipped in a Jussi Jokinen shot late in the first to give Carolina the lead; though it didn’t last long. Just over a minute later New Yorks Frans Nielsen put one past Cam Ward for a tie game heading into the first intermission.

After the break it was the Islanders turn to take the lead. Just a few minutes into the second period Michael Grabner took the lead for the Islanders with a backhanded shot. The Islanders held onto the lead until late in the third period when Eric Cole tie the game and forced the over time.

It was Hurricanes defenseman Joni Pitkanen that came up big in over time with a slap shot. Scoring only his third goal of the season it was a big goal worth the extra point in the heated play off race.

Phoenix Coyotes 3 Vancouver Cancucks 1
Coyotes played well in Canada last night beating one of the top teams in the league.

There was no scoring for either team until late in the game when the flood gates opened. It was a power play goal for Radim Vrbata at the 13:31 mark in the third that started the onslaught.

Just over a minute later Coyotes captain Shane Doan scored another power play goal for Phoenix to make it 2-0 heading into the final five minutes of play.

Trying to keep the game alive for the Canucks Christian Ehrhoff scored off of a play form Mikael Samuelsson and Daniel Sedin to bring the game within one with just minutes to go in the game. Vancouver pulled goaltender Roberto Luongo, who had stopped 26 of 28 shots he faced, for the extra skater as the clock ticked down. Not having Luongo in net allowed for Phoenix’s Lee Stempniak to score an empty net goal with over a minute left in the game making it 3-1 over Vancouver.

The win ended the Coyotes four game road trip with a perfect record as the took all 8 points on the trip. Coyotes goaltender Jason LaBarbera made 46 saves against the Cancucks to earn first star of the game with a 0.979 save percentage.

Up into the Netting

Minnesota Wild has been beating on it’s future with the hopes that their prospects develop as well as captain Mikko Koivu has. It is hard to hear that their 9th overall pick from the 2010 NHL Entry draft Mikael Granlund is being talked about by his HIFK (SM-liiga) coach as “Granlund’s career might be over” (according to Janne Virtanen via Twitter). The injury happened in the first SM-liiga playoff game with Granlund’s HIFK and the home town (Helsinki) rivals Jokerit.

Here is a video of the hit:

And here is a photo essay of the injury for if you want a different angle and still frames.

If you are a Wild fan or if you are just interested in keeping up with Granlund’s status (or if you want some SM-liiga playoff coverage) follow on Twitter Janne Virtanen (who is also a player in the UK currently out with a concussion of his own), Juha Hiitelä, and Risto Pakarinen.


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