OK, first, I'll be having a live blog discussion during the Wild-Predators game Wednesday. It'll probably get underway sometime around 7:30 p.m. ET (6:30 CT.)
Second, we'll change things up a bit tonight.
I tried coming up with a catchy but tasteful headline for this item, but it's no laughing or teasing matter. After making eight saves in the first period against Montreal, Toronto goalie Jonas Gustavsson was removed from the game by coach Ron Wilson after Gustavsson experienced an increased heart rate.
Gustavsson was taken to a hospital. According to Damien Cox of the Toronto Star, Gustavsson was released after his heart rate slowed down on its own and planned to fly home with the team.
This is the second incident in less than three months concerning the health of Gustavsson's heart. He underwent a procedure known as a heart ablation to fix an increased heart rate after collapsing during the first day of training camp.
Wilson said it best: "I'm not going to be responsible for someone keeling over during a game. The game's not that important."
Toronto won the game, 3-0. Joey MacDonald entered in relief of Gustavsson and stopped 18 shots. Phil Kessel had two assists.
One of the unhappier people following Chicago's 4-3 shootout win over Columbus was Blue Jackets netminder Steve Mason. The shootout lasted 11 rounds, and several times after making a save, Mason lifted his arms up in an apparent attempt to spur his teammates into scoring.
Only three goals total were scored in the shootout - Marian Hossa in round 2, Jakub Voracek in round 3 to force sudden-death, and the winner from Brent Seabrook in the "bottom half" to end the game. After conceding the Seabrook tally, Mason proceeded to slam his goalie stick on the ice and then into the boards along the Columbus bench.
Whether it was frustration at himself for giving up the goal and losing in a shootout again - Mason is 0-5 in the tiebreak format - or upset that his teammates couldn't score isn't known, but obviously Mason is not enjoying his sophomore season.
"You're just hoping your guys score. Then you just try to do your job in order to make the next save," said Mason. "After that, you're just hoping that the next one goes in, but obviously give (Cristobal) Huet some credit. He made that one last stop that he needed."
The people you'd expect to produce for the Blackhawks did - Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp and Kris Versteeg all scored and Hossa had two assists. Huet stopped 20 shots in addition to nine in the shootout (Antoine Vermette hit the post on his attempt.)
Hello, old friend
Dany Heatley played his first game against his former team, as did Ottawa's Milan Michalek and Jonathan Cheechoo. Michalek scored twice, but Heatley's Sharks earned a 5-2 win. Heatley had two assists and Patrick Marleau had two goals. Thomas Greiss made 25 saves in relief of Evgeni Nabokov.
Close counts only in horseshoes, hand grenades and hockey overtime games
Jack Johnson's blast from the point was deflected in by Brad Richardson to give Los Angeles a 4-3 advantage with just 2:20 left and hung on for the win after Anaheim rallied from a two-goal deficit to tie the score at 3-3.
Justin Williams scored his first goal for the Kings since Nov. 11, breaking an eight-game scoreless streak, but Anze Kopitar was held off the scoresheet for the fourth consecutive game and fifth time in the last six.
Ducks winger Corey Perry had a goal and assist to extend his points streak to 20 games.
Non-3 Stars Selection of the night
MacDonald. Third star was Toronto's Matt Stajan (one goal), second was Leafs defenseman Tomas Kaberle (one assist) and Kessel was No. 1.
Wednesday, Dec. 2 (4 games)
Vancouver (14-12-0) at New Jersey (17-6-1), 7 p.m. ET.