Talking points from two heavyweight showdowns on NHL Sunday

Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom (19). Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom (19). Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mark Stone (61)
Mark Stone #61 of the Vegas Golden Knights. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) /

Star Power

We have already mentioned the likes of Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and Nathan MacKinnon, but there will also be a lot of other headline acts on show across today’s two games in the National Hockey League. Let’s start with two centers in the first game of the day with Washington Capitals pivot Nicklas Backstrom tied 10th in the NHL with 17 points (6 G, 11 A) in 12 games, while Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin is starting to turn it on with four points (2 G, 2 A) in his past five games.

Rookie defenseman Pierre-Olivier Joseph has been a revelation for the Penguins with five points (1 G, 4 A) in eight games, while the likes of Tom Wilson and John Carlson are elite performers for the Capitals. But, who are we kidding, just the chance to see The Great Eight go up against Sid The Kid is one we will never turn down and a showdown between two heated rivals is a great way to start a Sunday of hockey.

Then we have two juggernauts in the Colorado Avalanche and the Vegas Golden Knights set to go head-to-head at T-Mobile Arena, and Nathan MacKinnon’s return will add another layer of intrigue to this contest. But there is also plenty of star power in the Vegas corner, including elite two-way forward Mark Stone who leads his team with 16 points (4 G, 12 A), and he’s also establishing himself as a Selke Trophy contender once again.

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Marc-Andre Fleury has been elite this year and is 6-1-0 with a 1.58 Goals Against Average and a .934 Save Percentage, while the likes of Shea Theodore, Chandler Stephenson, Alex Tuch, Jonathan Marchessault and William Karlsson have all come up with big contributions for the Golden Knights thus far. And let’s not forget about elite defenseman Alex Pietrangelo, either, who has four points (1 G, 3 A) in nine games for Vegas and is still finding his feet with his new team after signing a big ticket Free Agency deal in Sin City during the offseason. So, overall, while we only have two games on the docket today in the NHL, there is more than enough star power and talking points to keep us entertained.