Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 12/04/13 at 10:45 AM ET
CROSBY LEADS COMEBACK OVER ISLANDERS
Sidney Crosby scored the tying goal midway through the third period and then netted the game-winner on a spectacular individual effort in overtime to lead the Penguins to a come-from-behind victory over the Islanders. With the win, the Penguins (19-9-1, 39 points) overtook the idle Bruins (18-7-2, 38 points) for first place in the Eastern Conference.
* Crosby’s overtime winner marked the sixth of his NHL career and first since Nov. 23, 2009.
* According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it also marked the first time that Crosby has tied and then won a game in the third period or later.
* Crosby has 24-56—80 in 44 career regular-season games versus the Islanders, his highest assist and point totals against any opponent. He has only scored more goals versus the Flyers, finding the back of the net 30 times in 45 regular-season contests.
* Evgeni Malkin recorded two helpers to stretch his assist/point streak to nine games (4-15—19). He leads the NHL with 30 assists in 29 games this season, while ranking second to Crosby (15-23—38) with 37 points.
JONES HELPS KINGS EDGE DUCKS IN NHL DEBUT
Martin Jones made 26 saves and denied all nine shootout attempts to pick up a victory in his NHL debut. The 23-year-old native of North Vancouver was signed by the Kings as an undrafted free agent in October 2008 and has played the last three seasons for the club’s AHL affiliate in Manchester.
* According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Jones’ nine shootout stops were the most by a goaltender in his NHL debut. Anaheim’s Viktor Fasth is the only other netminder to record three or more shootout saves in his first career game; he stopped all three Nashville attempts in his NHL debut, a 3-2 victory Jan. 26.
* Dwight King scored the lone goal in the tiebreaker on his first career shootout attempt.
* The Kings improved to 8-2-1 in their last 11 games versus the Ducks, including a 6-1-1 mark since Dec. 22, 2011, Darryl Sutter’s first game as head coach.
* The Kings allowed fewer than three goals (excluding shootouts) for the 14th consecutive game, extending their franchise record.
* The Kings recorded 51 shots on goal, their highest regular-season total since April 10, 2010 (55).
* Despite the loss, the Ducks remained the only NHL team without a regulation defeat at home this season (10-0-2). Since 2005-06, only two other teams have played their first 12 home games without suffering a regulation loss: the 2008-09 Sharks (20-0-2) and 2012-13 Blackhawks (11-0-1).
* Earlier Tuesday, the Kings and Ducks unveiled their jerseys for the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series, set for Saturday, Jan. 25, at 9:30 p.m. ET / 6:30 p.m. PT at Dodger Stadium.
FOLIGNO’S HIGHLIGHT-REEL GOAL LIFTS BLUE JACKETS
Nick Foligno channeled Sharks rookie Tomas Hertl, scoring a highlight-reel, between-the-legs goal to provide all of the offense in a 1-0 victory over the Lightning. The Blue Jackets have recorded points in nine of their past 13 games (6-4-3), including a 3-1-1 mark in their last five at Nationwide Arena.
* Sergei Bobrovsky (18 saves) and Curtis McElhinney (8 saves) combined for the shutout (Bobrovsky left the game early in the third period with a lower-body injury). According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it marked the first tandem shutout in Blue Jackets history and the first in the NHL this season. There were two tag-team shutouts in 2012-13: by Chicago’s Corey Crawford and Ray Emery Feb. 28 (3-0 at St. Louis) and Pittsburgh’s Marc-Andre Fleury and Tomas Vokoun March 26 (1-0 vs. Montreal).
* The Blue Jackets improved to 34-0-0 when taking a lead into the third period under head coach Todd Richards (since Jan. 9, 2012).
* Foligno has seven goals and 14 points in 22 games this season. He totaled 6-13—19 in 45 games during the 2012-13 campaign.
LEHTONEN, STARS FEND OFF BLACKHAWKS
The Stars surrendered a three-goal lead, but Antoine Roussel scored the game-winner via a third-period penalty shot and Kari Lehtonen made a season-high 47 saves to fend off the Blackhawks.
* According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Stars last scored a game-winning goal via a penalty shot on Oct. 7, 1997, when Jere Lehtinen beat Dominik Hasek in a 4-2 victory over the Sabres.
* Lehtonen improved to 9-2-0 with a 2.37 goals-against average, .925 save percentage and one shutout in 11 road games this season.
* Lehtonen also became the second Finnish goaltender to appear in 400 NHL games (Miikka Kiprusoff: 623). He has a 192-152-39 career record with a 2.68 goals-against average, .915 save percentage and 23 shutouts.
Brad Stuart scored the decisive goal late in the second period to lift the Sharks to their sixth consecutive victory overall and sixth win in their past seven games versus the Maple Leafs. Stuart has scored three goals this season, all of which have been game-winners (21 GP). That matches his career high set in 1999-2000, his rookie season (82 GP).
* Former Maple Leaf Mike Brown scored in his first visit to Toronto since being traded on March 6. Brown played parts of three seasons for the Maple Leafs, totaling 5-8—13 and 213 penalty minutes in 112 regular-season games.
* Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf scored his 14th goal of the season to stretch his point streak to 11 games (8-8—16). He ranks third in the NHL with 32 points in 27 games.
* Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith collected an assist to extend his assist/point streak to a career-long eight games (0-10—10). He leads all defensemen and ranks third in the League with 24 helpers in 29 games this season. Keith also places second among blueliners with 25 points.
* Sharks captain Joe Thornton potted his fifth goal of the season to stretch his point streak to six games (3-5—8). He is tied for eighth in the NHL with 30 points in 27 games.
* Ducks forward Dustin Penner posted an assist to push his point streak to five games (5-2—7), his second such streak this season.
* Ducks forward Corey Perry scored to extend his point streak to five games (4-3—7). He is tied for third in the NHL with 16 goals and tied for sixth with 31 points in 30 games this season.
* Coyotes forward Radim Vrbata posted 1-1—2 to push his point streak to five games (3-4—7).
* Penguins forward Chris Kunitz recorded an assist to extend his point streak to five games (3-4—7).
The Coyotes improved to 13-2-2 versus the Oilers since the start of the 2009-10 season, including points in 10 consecutive meetings . . . Craig Anderson made 30 saves to lead the Senators to a come-from-behind victory over the Panthers, his former club. Anderson is 10-1-1 with a 1.91 goals-against average, .938 save percentage and two shutouts in 13 career appearances versus the Panthers, including a 9-1-0 mark since joining the Senators in February 2011 . . . Canucks forward Ryan Kesler posted his second consecutive two-goal game, scoring the game-winner in both contests . . . Islanders forward Kyle Okposo (2-0—2) recorded his first multi-goal game since April 5, 2012 . . . Hurricanes forward Jeff Skinner (2-1—3) and Coyotes forwards Mike Ribeiro (1-2—3) and Mikkel Boedker (1-2—3) each had three-point nights . . . Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane collected two assists, his 10th multi-point game of the season, and has 9-12—21 in his past 15 contests . . . Maple Leafs forward Phil Kessel scored his 200th NHL goal . . . Patrick Sharp potted his 200th goal as a Blackhawk and the 210th of his NHL career . . . Senators defenseman Chris Phillips skated in his 1,100th NHL game . . . Blackhawks defenseman Michal Rozsival played in his 800th NHL game . . . With Jimmy Buffett playing at Xcel Energy Center last night, the arena’s official Twitter feed posted this image of a custom Wild jersey, complete with a Hawaiian print, that was given to the singer/songwriter.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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