Monday, December 6, 2010

Reviewing Sunday, previewing Monday

Perfect symmetry
The Islanders have a cool thing going on. Their record is 5-15-5, 15 points. In reverse, that's 5-15-5, 15. Neat, huh? That's after conceding two third-period goals to blow a 2-1 lead in losing to Philadelphia, 3-2. Sergei Bobrovsky made 28 saves. Danny Briere had the game-winner and Andrej Meszaros tallied two assists.

Wrong renovating
They're rebuilding parts of Madison Square Garden to create walkways above the playing surface, which just seems like a really bad idea. They should try and find a way to help the Rangers win at home. New York dropped its ninth home game out of 15 by conceding a hat trick to Chris Kelly in falling to Ottawa, 3-1. Pascal Leclaire made 25 saves. Kelly doubled his goal total for the season, capping the trick with an empty netter in the final second. That's final second, not seconds. Time of the goal was 19:59.

Chicago and Calgary combined for six power play goals as the Blackhawks earned a 4-2 win. Dave Bolland had two of them and Brent Seabrook had three assists. Jonathan Toews had a goal and assist and Corey Crawford made 24 saves.

Out West
--Ilya Bryzgalov made 26 saves and Phoenix blanked Anaheim, 3-0.
--Alexander Steen scored twice and added an assist in support of Jaroslav Halak's 21 saves as St. Louis edged Vancouver, 3-2.

Monday's games

New Jersey (8-16-2) at Pittsburgh (18-8-2), 7 p.m. ET, RDS

Last year, the Devils won all six games against the Penguins in regulation. That proved to be the difference when it came time to hand out the Atlantic Division championship plaque. Pittsburgh, with nine straight wins, has already surpassed last year's point total against New Jersey. Considering the Devils are, uh, down this season, maybe the Penguins can keep enjoying success against New Jersey.

By the way, I initially typed "Patrick Division" instead of Atlantic Division. Sigh.

Pittsburgh 4, New Jersey 2

Toronto (9-12-4) at Washington (18-8-2), 7 p.m.

That was a nice win and all against Boston, Toronto, but you have four goals to your name in your last five road games and you're entering a hornet's nest of some very angry Capitals players.

Washington 5, Toronto 1

Nashville (12-8-5) at Atlanta (14-10-3, 7 p.m.

Normally I'd say it's a bad thing to have a defenseman leading your team in scoring (Exhibit A: the Islanders; Exhibit B: the Oilers) but the Thrashers are making it work with Dustin Byfuglien, who by the way has more assists than Nashville's leading points player.

Atlanta 4, Nashville 1

Dallas (16-8-1) at Columbus (14-10-1), 7 p.m.

I'm not sure what was more embarrassing for the Blue Jackets, losing 7-2 at home Saturday or having their arena filled with an abnormally large group of Pittsburgh fans. This is kind of a minor tragedy; Pittsburgh-Columbus (only about three hours apart) would have been a pretty nice rivalry but since they're in opposite conferences, they barely play each other, even less so when there was the unbalanced schedule.

Anyway, after a competitive home-and-home series with Detroit and a shootout loss to Nashville, the Blue Jackets have lost their last two games by a 12-2 margin. The Stars, on the other hand, have rattled off six straight wins, giving up nine goals total in those games.

Dallas 3, Columbus 2

San Jose (12-9-4) at Detroit (17-4-3), 7:30 p.m., Versus

A chance for the Sharks to get a bit of revenge after the Red Wings won in HP Pavilion. Problem is, Detroit's pretty good in the Joe. It's not going to happen.

Detroit 4, San Jose 1

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