Monday, President’s Day had 7 games scheduled throughout the day and it seems as though shutout was the common factor of the day with 4 of the 7 games ending with a goose egg.
Philadelphia Flyers vs. New York Islanders
They Flyers exploded to put up a 7 spot against the Islanders Monday afternoon. The first year captain Claude Giroux was very vocal recently saying the team was not putting forth enough effort including himself. He proceeded to then lead by example against the Islanders getting 2 goals and an assist, as well as earning the #1 star. The Islanders, who were coming off of two big wins over the Rangers and Devils, were completely overpowered against the Flyers getting shutout by Ilya Bryzgalov. The Flyers are hoping this win will shift the momentum for them as they still have only won 2 of their last 5 games.
Ottawa Senators vs. New Jersey Devils
The Senators went into Monday’s matinee looking to finally change their fortune after having a slew of top players going down for the season. The Sens bread and butter, Craig Anderson, got the day off Monday giving big guy Ben Bishop the start. The Devils got an early 1-0 lead with Stephen Gionta’s second of the season. They held the lead until midway through the 3rd period when Daniel Alfredsson tied it up to force OT and eventually a shootout. Jakob Silfverberg got the only goal of the SO beating Martin Brodeur and pulling out the 2-1 win.
Nashville Predators vs. Colorado Avalanche
The Avalanche had a huge 2nd period to push them past the Predators 6-5. The first goal of the 2nd period for the Av’s is a heavily controversial one. Matt Duchene was well offside when he received the puck and then continued to play after not hearing a whistle. It was ruled that Nashville brought the puck into the zone therefore okay for Duchene to play the puck. After the game concluded the NHL did say that the wrong call was made, and play should have been called dead. The Predators pulled within one with a late Shea Weber goal, but weren’t able to get the tying goal before the clock expired. With the win Colorado snapped a string of nine straight losses to Nashville.
Carolina Hurricanes vs. Montreal Canadiens
The Canadiens have now won four straight games with the 3-0 shutout against the Hurricanes Monday. Max Pacioretty finally got his 1st of the year on a fluke dump in goal from the blue line that bounced right past Cam Ward. Captain Eric Staal had his 12 game point streak snapped in the loss. Despite the 3-0 shutout the Hurricanes are still 1st in the Southeast Division. Carey Price missed his second straight game with the flu, but was well enough to be the backup for the game. Peter Budaj made his fourth start of the year making 19 saves and getting his 1st shutout as a Canadien. With the win Montreal took over the top spot in the Northeast Division moving past Boston.
Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Florida Panthers
The Maple Leafs improved to 7-2 on the road this season with a 3-0 win over the Panthers Monday night. Ben Scrivens collected his 2nd straight shutout and has filled in very nicely since James Reimer went down with a knee injury. Nazem Kadri has continued to be a nice surprise for the Leafs (and my fantasy team) getting the first goal of the night and his 5th of the season. Toronto also got much needed production from Phil Kessel who now has 3 goals on the year all coming on the road. The Panthers current skid continues having lost five straight games now. Florida is still without one of their biggest offensive threats in Kris Versteeg, who missed his third straight game with an upper-body injury.
Calgary Flames vs. Phoenix Coyotes
Mike Smith made 29 saves against the Flames earning his 3rd shutout of the season. Just 41 seconds into the game Keith Yandle put in a rebound to make it 1-0, which would become the eventual game winning goal. The Coyotes added three more goals in the third period from Mikkel Boedker, Antoine Vermette and Raffi Torres to make the final score 4-0. The Flames goalie Danny Taylor was making his 1st career start on Monday and made 33 saves in the loss.
Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Anaheim Ducks
The Ducks were able to hold on at the end of the game to get the 3-2 victory over the Blue Jackets to win their 5th straight. It looked as though Columbus was going to have a great chance to win this game when Anaheim got out to an abominable start. The Ducks turned it around when Peter Holland got his 1st career goal to tie it up at 1. Just 21 second later Ryan Getzlaf added another putting the Ducks up for good. It’s safe to say that the Blue Jackets continue have the same struggles as last year having only won 4 games total this season.
I leave you tonight with the four goalies who posted shutouts Monday.
Ilya Bryzgalov – Flyers
Peter Budaj – Canadiens
Ben Scrivens – Maple Leafs
Mike Smith – Coyotes