A Day in the NHL: Monday January 24th


While yesterday was a big day in the NFL with the Conference Championship games, there was still some NHL action. There was even an NFL game and NHL game staged in the same city (Chicago), but unfortunately the Bears and Blackhawks finished with the same result.

The Night that Was:

In a rematch of the Stanley Cup Finals, the Philadelphia Flyers came out on top, winning 4-1 over Chicago. Jeff Carter had two goals for Philly while Claude Giroux assisted on all four goals for the Flyers. Marian Hossa had the only goal for Chicago, and actually the only point as he scored it on a penalty shot. Sergei Bobrovsky, who made 30 saves, recorded a win in his fifth-straight start for the Flyers, who moved into sole possession of first place in the league with 69 points. Chicago lost in regulation for the first time since January 5th.

All of the sudden, the New Jersey Devils are hot again. Martin Brodeur backed Jersey to their fourth-straight win. The Devils also have points in each of their last seven games (just one overtime loss in that time), and their six wins this month are their most in any month this season. Ilya Kovalchuk had a goal and two assists giving him eight points in his last seven games and Jason Arnott scored two goals for the first time since November 22. The 5-2 loss was the fourth in a row for Florida, however they had earned a point in each of their previous three losing efforts.

After going cold for a good portion of the last month, Teddy Purcell had three assists in Tampa Bay’s big 7-1 win over Atlanta. Steven Stamkos added a league-leading 38th goal in the win, giving him seven goals in his last six, while four other members of the Lightning had multiple points. Atlanta was lucky to score at all, as Rich Peverley’s shutout-breaking goal with just 4:03 remaining in the game. Tampa moved three points up on Washington for the lead in the Southeast with the win while Atlanta continues to hold on to eighth in the East.

Taylor Hall provided the late-game heroics for the Oilers, tying their game with the Nashville Predators just 3:47 before time expired, but it wasn’t to be. Cody Franson scored in the shootout while Hall was stopped, as Nashville clinched a 3-2 victory in Oil Country. Alexander Sulzer’s first of the year opened up the scoring, while Franson had two assists to go along with his game-winner. While it was a fifth-straight loss for the Oilers, it was the first time they had earned a point since their last win (January 13), while Nashville has lost just twice this month.

Quick Hits:

-The Sabres got goals out of five different players in their 5-3 win over the New York Islanders, as they’ve won three of their last four. They’re also 7-3-1 this month.

What’s on Tonight?

Toronto heads to the host site of the All-Star game to take on the Hurricanes while the New York Rangers visit Alex Ovechkin following his weekend hat-trick. Nashville faces off against Calgary while St. Louis and Colorado go head-to-head. Two of the best in the West face off when Vancouver hosts Dallas and Boston pays a visit to Los Angeles.

The Injury Bug:

Kevin Bieksa suffered a swollen eye during a fight against Calgary over the weekend. There’s no word on how long he’ll be out, but the Canucks have called up Lee Sweatt to take Bieksa’s place on the roster.

-Atlanta has activated forward Fredrik Modin from injured reserve. The Thrashers never disclosed Modin’s injury as he missed five games. Modin has missed five games total this year.

-Both Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin had their availability for the All-Star game addressed this past weekend. Crosby will not participate, while Malkin is doubtful with a knee injury and a sinus infection.

-The Oilers’ Ales Hemsky and Jordan Eberle will join the ranks of those missing the All-Star game. Hemsky has a concussion and Eberle is still recovering from his ankle injury.

Rumours and News Around the League:

Peter Forsberg continues to skate with the Avalanche in practice in hopes of making another return with the Avs. He’s been mainly working with Ryan O’Reilly, trying to keep up with the 20-year old who’s currently on the mend.

-Apparently Evegeni Nabokov hung up on Garth Snow over the weekend, further adding fuel to the “What’s going on with Nabokov” bonfire. While Snow says he would love to have Nabokov in the lineup, Nabokov has said he wants to stick by his decision of sitting out, saying that he committed to a Cup contender, not a team contending for the first overall pick come June.

The Overlooked Fantasy Line of the Night:

I’m not sure how Teddy Purcell’s three assist game or Claude Giroux’s four assist game get overlooked, but somehow they weren’t among NHL.com’s three stars. The two of them had career nights and were instrumental in their team’s victories.

Follow Bryan on Twitter at BryanThiel_88 or e-mail him at bryanthiel74@hotmail.com.