Saturday, December 5, 2009

NHL Recap 12-4-09

The "Oh cra-, wooo!" game of the night
Clinging to a 2-1 lead, New Jersey gave up a game-tying goal to Tampa Bay's Steve Downie on the power play with three minutes remaining.

As overtime loomed, Devils defenseman Andy Greene's shot from the point deflected off teammate Jamie Langenbrunner and past Lightning goalie Antero Niittymaki to give the Devils a 3-2 lead with less than 40 seconds remaining, and New Jersey hung on for the one-goal victory.

The goal was New Jersey's third of the period, after Brian Rolston and Niclas Bergfors each tallied on the power play in the opening 5:14 as a result of Tampa Bay taking three early penalties.

The "Happy Rout-Day!" of the night
Want to talk about good ways to celebrate a birthday? Ask the Montreal Canadiens. On the 100th anniversary of the franchise's inception, le Club de Hockey smashed Original Six rival Boston, 5-1.

Mike Cammalleri netted a hat trick and Carey Price stopped 37 shots. Montreal jumped out to a 5-0 lead and it was only Vladimir Sobotka's goal early in the third period that ruined Price's shutout.

The "Wait, where's that offense?!" of the night
Since embarrassing the Sharks, 7-2, Chicago has scored just five goals in four games since then following a 4-1 home loss to Nashville.

Dan Ellis was spectacular for the Predators, making 34 saves as the Blackhawks out-shot their opponent, 35-23. Goals by Jordin Tootoo and Joel Ward 35 seconds apart in the final two minutes ended any hope of a Chicago comeback.

Dan Hamhuis and Martin Erat gave Nashville a 2-1 lead after Jonathan Toews opened the game's scoring.

Non-3 Stars Selection of the night
Anaheim's Bobby Ryan for his two goals against Minnesota. Hard to argue with the selections (Andrew Brunette third with three assists; Mikko Koivu No. 2 and Antti Miettinen No. 1) but I had to pick someone. Would've been Joffrey Lupul except for his penalty at the end.

Quote of the night
"They were stupid penalties. Sometimes when pressure is on, people do stupid things. We've got to straighten out this penalty killing quick."
Lightning coach Rick Tocchet, talking about his team's struggles early in the third period

Marquee matchup
Saturday, Dec. 5 (14 games)
Chicago (17-7-3) at Pittsburgh (20-9-0), 7:30 p.m. ET. Potential Stanley Cup Final preview, and Marian Hossa's first game in Pittsburgh since he played in Game 6 with Detroit. Pittsburghers will let him hear it, though I'd be just fine if silence greeted the one-time brief Penguin.

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