Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 12/09/13 at 11:46 AM ET
HARDING, WILD CONTINUE HOME DOMINATION
The Wild were outshot 38-13 but Josh Harding made a season-high 37 saves and Zach Parise scored his 13th and 14th goals of the season helping Minnesota improve to 13-3-2 at home this season.
* Harding improved to 13-1-0 at Xcel Energy Center this season with a 1.25 goals-against average and .945 save-percentage. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, he is the only goaltender in Wild/North Stars history to win 13 of his first 14 home decisions. He is now 34-10-2 in 46 career decisions in Saint Paul, including a 27-5-1 mark since Jan. 27, 2010.
* Harding has an overall record of 16-4-3 this season with a League-best 1.50 goals-against average. His 16 wins are tied for second.
SANTORELLI'S BIG NIGHT
Mike Santorelli recorded his first career three-point game (2-1--3) and Roberto Luongo made 28 saves as Vancouver beat Colorado 3-1 for their fourth consecutive win. Santorelli, who signed as a free agent in the off-season, has 21 points in 32 games since joining the Canucks after recording 15 points (11-4--15) in his previous 94 contests.
* Canucks defenseman Jason Garrison recorded an assist on Santorelli’s second goal and now has points in his last four games (1-5--6).
* Vancouver improved to 11-0-1 in its last 12 home games versus Colorado.
YOUNG DEFENSEMEN LEAD BRUINS
Defensemen Torey Krug and Kevan Miller each scored in the Bruins' three-goal second period, helping Boston improve to 11-1-1 in their last 13 games versus Toronto. Krug’s goal was his eighth goal of the season, moving him into a tie for first place among defensemen with Ottawa’s Erik Karlsson. His eight goals rank third overall among rookie skaters (tie) while his 17 points (8-9--17) also tie him for third on the rookie scoring list.
* Miller’s goal was the first of his career, coming in his fifth game, and proved to be the game-winner. The 26-year-old Los Angeles native played four years at the University of Vermont, signed with the Bruins as an undrafted free agent during the 2010-11 season and spent the past two seasons with the Bruins' AHL affiliate in Providence.
QUICK STRIKES SPUR CAPS
Washington forward Jason Chimera opened the scoring 2:28 into the second period and defenseman Steve Oleksy (1-1--2) tallied 25 seconds later as the Capitals evened their season series with the Rangers. Oleksy’s goal was his first of the season and first since he scored his only other NHL goal, against the Rangers on Mar. 10.
* Capitals goaltender Philipp Grubauer made 30 saves in collecting his first NHL victory. Washington’s fourth-round selection (112th overall) in the 2010 NHL Draft, Grubauer stopped all nine shots he faced in his only other appearance this season, in relief of Braden Holtby on Dec. 3 in Carolina. In four career games, he has posted a 1-1-0 record with a 2.20 goals-against average and a .939 save percentage. The Rosenheim, Germany, native becomes just the second German-born goaltender to record an NHL victory, joining Thomas Greiss.
POWER PLAY POWERS BLACKHAWKS
Patrick Sharp (1-2--3) and Patrick Kane (0-3--3) each finished with three points as Chicago went three-for-four on the power play en route to a 6-2 win over Florida, snapping a three-game winless streak.
* Kane extended his point streak to five games (1-8--9) and now has 26 points in his last 18 games after posting 8-9--17 on a 12-game stretch from Nov. 3 to 27.
Capitals forward Mikhail Grabovski scored on a penalty shot as part of a three-goal second period for Washington… Bruins forward Milan Lucic recorded two assists to extend his point streak to four games (2-4—6)… The Maple Leafs played their first regular-season home game on a Sunday since Feb. 23, 2003 (5-2 loss to the Predators)... Blackhawks forward Kris Versteeg extended his point streak to three games (1-3--4) with an assist in his first game against his former team.
THREE DISCIPLINARY HEARINGS SCHEDULED
* Bruins left wing Shawn Thornton will have a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety on a date to be determined for an incident with Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik on Saturday at TD Garden in Boston. Thornton was offered the opportunity for an in-person hearing as required by provisions of the Collective Bargaining Agreement for any suspension that can exceed five games.
* Penguins left wing James Neal will have a hearing today with the Department of Player Safety for a hit on Bruins left wing Brad Marchand on Saturday in Boston.
* Maple Leafs defenseman Dion Phaneuf will have a hearing Tuesday with the Department of Player Safety for a hit on Bruins defenseman Kevan Miller on Sunday in Toronto.
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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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