From Abdelkader to Zuccarello – 24 March 2011

Vancouver Canucks 2 Detroit Red Wings 1
A game between the top two seeds in the West saw players from both sides missing from the line up as both are battling injuries as the playoffs inch closer.

The game had not even started yet when the Michigan Blue Cross Youth Skater stole the show when he took a few extra laps and got some high-gives from the players:

The first period went scoreless while the second saw Daniel Sedin score early in the second to give Vancouver the lead over Detroit.

It was another goal from Sedin gave the Canucks the 2-0 lead over the home team; and earned him the first star of the night.

Roberto Luongo took second star of the night with his 39 saves. Only a power play goal from Jiri Hudler midway though the third got past Luongo. Luongo’s Red Wing counter part Jimmy Howard took third star with his 0.939 save percentage. Red Wings have had some goaltending woes as of late with three-time Stanley Cup winner Chris Osgood bouncing on and off the Long Term Injured Reserve list still recovering from surgery shortly after his 400th win. Jimmy Howard hitting a sophomore slump; but seems to be rebounding. Joey MacDonald has been bounced to and from the Grand Rapids Griffins oh and the Red Wings signed Troy Passingham to an emergency contract.

Game photos.

Florida Panthers 0 Chicago Blackhawks 4
For the second straight game the Panthers have been shutout. The New York Rangers shut the Panthers out 1-0 at Madison Square Garden the other night and now the Blackhawks have in Chicago.

No once scored in the first though each team was given a power play: Chicago with one less than a minute into the game when Florida’s Mike Weaver took a penalty for hooking. The Panthers had one late in the first when Chicago’s Marian Hossa was called for hooking the stick.

It was penalty trouble for the Panthers in the second that lead to the Blackhawks finally scoring on their third power play of the period. Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook put a slap shot past Panthers net minder Tomas Vokoun to start the flood of scoring for Chicago.

Less than a minute into the third Viktor Stalberg made it 2-0 Blackhawks. It would be Patrick Kane that would make it 3-0 shortly after the halfway point in the period and Tomas Kopecky would notch the final goal late in the game.

Anaheim Ducks 4 Dallas Stars 3 (OT)
Things are looking good for the Ducks as they fight their way into a playoff spot. Their All-Star goaltender Jonas Hiller who has been sitting on the sidelines pretty much since the All-Star game with vertigo has been reactivated. The Ducks have said they are going to carry three goaltenders for the remainder of the season. That gives them Hiller, Ray Emery, and Dan Ellis to fight their battles in net to get to the playoffs.

It was a power play goal from Lubomir Visnovsky within the first minute of play in the second that opened up the scoring and put the Ducks up over the Stars; by the end of the period it would be a tie game with a power play goal from Stars Alex Goligoski.

With the domatium from the game tying goal the Stars Loui Eriksson scored early in the third to take the lead for the first time in the game. Ducks Corey Perry was not about to let the Stars keep the lead as he retied the game 11 seconds later off his backhand.

Stars defenseman Trevor Daley regained the lead for Dallas as he put a wrist shot past Ray Emery with Mike Ribeiro and Steve Ott getting the assist.

It looked as though the Stars were going to win this one in regulation and take the much needed two points from the Ducks – that is until Teemu Selanne reminded everyone why he is The Finnish Flash. With seconds left on the clock in regulation Selanne put a quick snap shot in past countryman Kari Lehtonen from a pass from Saku Koviu.

A lot of Finnish to the end of regulation.

Overtime lasted a mere 1:42 as Anahiem’s rookie defenseman Cam Fowler (picked 12th overall in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft) score the game winner – helping him to take the first star of the game (teammate Selanne was second star while Dallas Stars Trevor Daley took the third star).

Calgary Flames 3 San Jose Sharks 6
Unlike the rest of the games last night were there were no goals scored in the first there were six goals cored in the first period between the Flames and the Sharks.

It was three minutes exactly into the game with the Sharks took the lead with a goal from Torrey Mitchell. It would be matched little over 4 minutes later as Flames captain Jarome Iginla took advantage of a power play after Sharks Dany Heatley was called for boarding.

San Jose would regain the lead a few minutes later when Andrew Desjardins put a wrist shot past Miikka Kiprusoff to make it 2-1 Sharks.

Not to be out done Cory Sarich put a slap shot past Sharks Antti Niemi to tie the game at two with six minutes left in the first. Exactly one minute after Sarich’s game tying goal Patrick Marleau backhanded one in for the lead and then Marleau scored again on the man advantage as Flames Alex Tanguay was called for holding late in the first.

There would not be another goal until 13:20 of the second period when Calgary’s Rene Bourque would put in a wrap-around goal on Niemi to bring the Flames within one goal of the Sharks.

Torrey Mitchell increased the Sharks lead to two goal lead over the Flames before heading into the second intermission.

The third period started with a fight between Flames Cory Sarich and Sharks Ryane Clowe; and the only goal scored in the third was from Sharks Logan Couture to make double the score count for the Sharks over the Flames 6-3.

Up into the Netting
First off – please visit www.phoenixcoyotes.com to vote for the hardest working player on the team. The annual award has been renamed after long time Coyotes/Jets franchise Massage Therapist Jukka Nieminen whom unexpectedly passed away last year.

A video about the Western Michigan Bronco Hockey team (CCHA) You have to see to believe:

The Detroit Red Wings may have goaltending depth but that doesn’t do any good when you can’t get them to the game on time as Detroit signs Troy Passingham to an emergency contract.

He became the first 4th generation NHL player this season and now Blake Geoffrion has his first career hat trick with the Nashville Predators. It is too bad he only recently got the call up from the miniors or he would probably be in the Calder debate:

Blake Geoffrion after his first career hat trick (Nashville Predarots / Twitter)

Washington Capitals to offer Standing Room Only Season Tickets for next season. Only $2,550 and you can enjoy all the action – just you can’t sit down.

The Flyers announced that Jody Shelley will be having surgery on Thursday on his orbital bone near his left eye and will out for 4 weeks.

The HBO 24/7 special about the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Washington Capitals leading up to the Winter Classic has been nominated for three Sports Emmys.

Monica McAlister
An avid hockey lover that grew up in Michigan and lived in the Washington D.C. area while going school for Sports Management. Volunteer with the American Special Hockey Association (ASHA); and follows as much SM-liiga and Elitserien as possible along with the vast array of North American leagues.

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