Saturday, December 11, 2010

Brodeur's return not enough as Devils lose again

Disallowed goal key in Ottawa's win over Jersey
If anything was going to kick-start New Jersey's season, it'd be the return of first ballot Hall of Famer, all-world Martin Brodeur between the pipes, right? Well, not exactly. Not yet, anyway.

Two points by Erik Karlsson and a disallowed Devils goal late in regulation allowed Ottawa to squeak past New Jersey, 3-2, to earn a key victory in the latest Hot Seat Bowl. Cory Clouston relieves some of the heat off him, for now, while John McLean's warms up.

New Jersey thought it tied the score at 3-3 but officials ruled David Clarkson kicked the puck in with 3:36 remaining in the third period.

Karlsson, Milan Michalek and Jarkko Ruutu scored for the Senators. Pascal Leclaire made 29 saves.

Ilya Kovalchuk had two assists for the Devils.

Red Wings reverse skid, hold off Habs
No way Detroit was losing four in a row.

Jimmy Howard made 36 saves, including 18 in the third period, and Detroit kept Montreal at arm's length in earning a 4-2 victory. Pavel Datsyuk had a goal and assist and defensemen Nicklas Lidstrom and Niklas Kronwall also scored for the Red Wings. Patrick Eaves had an empty net goal.

Montreal out-shot Detroit 19-3 in the third period. The Red Wings held an 18-7 shots advantage in the first period, possibly due to the strength of four first-period power plays. The Canadiens had only one man-advantage; Detroit had six.

Stewart-less Avs best Stewart-ful Thrashers
The non-Battle of the Brothers needs a rubber match. That won't happen this season unless Colorado and Atlanta meet in the Stanley Cup Final.

Minnesota nemesis Greg Mauldin scored a shorthanded goal but it was Milan Hejduk's strike early in the third period that proved to be the game-winner in Colorado's 4-2 win over Atlanta. The Avalanche had two shorties, but one was into an empty net, by Paul Stastny in the final minute to seal the win. Tomas Fleischmann had a goal and assist for Colorado and Craig Anderson made 24 saves.

In the shootout
--Andrew Raycroft and Cam Ward put on a goaltending display, particularly Raycroft, who stoned Joe Corvo with the glove late in overtime when Corvo had a gaping net, and Dallas edged Carolina, 2-1. Raycroft had 22 saves. Brad Richards scored the lone shootout goal. Ward finished with 28 saves.
--Steven Stamkos broke his long goalless drought but shootout goals by Jordan Eberle and Linus Omark allowed Edmonton to earn a 4-3 win. Nikolai Khabibulin made 38 saves and Magnus Paajarvi had a goal and assist for the Oilers.
--Anaheim blew another two-goal, third-period lead but recovered to down Calgary, 3-2. Jonas Hiller made 37 saves and Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry scored in the shootout. Lubomir Visnovsky had a goal and assist for the Ducks, while Jarome Iginla and Mark Giordano each had two assists for the Flames.

--I've seen only one view of the Clarkson non-goal, and it wasn't good, nor was it in slow-motion, so I shouldn't really judge, but based on that one replay, it seemed like a good call to waive off the goal. I saw what could have been interpreted as a kicking motion but honestly, on that look, I couldn't tell how the puck went in.

--I didn't watch the game (not that I'll let that stop me from making a rash, blind judgment) but do we give the Canadiens a passing grade for their effort tonight? Out-shooting Detroit 19-3 in the third sounds impressive, but I do wonder if the Red Wings just pulled back, similar to what the Penguins did a few nights ago against the Maple Leafs.

--The Ducks really need to tighten things up. This is the third straight game they've allowed a third-period lead of two goals to vanish. In two of those games, they were up by two with under 10 minutes to play.

--Not to alarm Wild fans, but Edmonton's only one point behind Minnesota.

--I listened to part of the Tampa-Edmonton game on my way home from work. At one point, the play by play guy said, "Edmonton has three goals on 15 shots against Dan Ellis." I just nodded and said, yeah, that's about right.

--The Lightning became the first team to allow 100 goals on the season. Yup, not even Edmonton has (the Oilers are at 99.)

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