* More than half of Saturday’s 14 games start before 7 p.m. ET, including two airing on ABC and ESPN+ as well as one featuring NHL scoring leader Connor McDavid looking to extend his overall and road point streak to 15 and 17 contests, respectively.
* Saturday also marks Dustin Brown Night at Crypto.com Arena, with the Kings set to unveil a statue of their former captain and retire his No. 23 in a pre-game ceremony.
* Evgeni Malkin (463-737—1,200) collected two assists Friday and became just the fourth active player to reach the 1,200-point milestone.
* Vladimir Tarasenko found the back of the net in the opening three minutes of his Rangers debut and joined a short list of players to accomplish the feat with the club.
SATURDAY HIGHLIGHTED BY LIGHTNING-STARS, CAPITALS-BRUINS ON ABC, ESPN+ Saturday’s slate features two matinees airing on ABC and ESPN+, with the Lightning (33-16-2, 68 points) squaring off against the Central Division-leading Stars (30-13-10, 70 points) at American Airlines Center followed by the Capitals (27-20-6, 60 points) vying for a victory versus the League-leading Bruins (39-7-5, 83 points) at TD Garden.
* A total of 21 players who dressed at least one game in the 2020 Final remain with Tampa Bay or Dallas (min. 1 GP in 2022-23): Zach Bogosian, Erik Cernak, Anthony Cirelli, Victor Hedman, Alex Killorn, Nikita Kucherov, Pat Maroon, Brayden Point, Mikhail Sergachev, Steven Stamkos and Andrei Vasilevskiy for the visitors as well as Jamie Benn, Denis Gurianov, Joel Hanley, Miro Heiskanen, Roope Hintz, Joel Kiviranta, Esa Lindell, Jake Oettinger, Joe Pavelski and Tyler Seguin for the hosts. Lightning forward Corey Perry appeared in all six contests with the Stars, which included scoring the double-overtime winner in Game 5.
* Boston can become the fastest team in League history to reach 40 wins in a season, eclipsing the current mark set by the 2015-16 Capitals (40-9-4 in 53 GP). Eight players who dressed at least one game with Washington during that campaign remain with the team (min. 1 GP in 2022-23): Nicklas Backstrom, John Carlson, Marcus Johansson, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Dmitry Orlov, T.J. Oshie, Alex Ovechkin and Tom Wilson.
ROAD TO 2023 STADIUM SERIES CONTINUES FOR HURRICANES The Hurricanes (34-9-8, 76 points) return to action when they put the NHL’s longest active win streak on the line (7-0-0 since Jan. 19) against the Rangers (30-14-8, 68 points) – winners of four straight. Saturday is one of Carolina’s three games remaining on the schedule before it faces Washington in the 2023 Navy Federal Credit Union NHL Stadium Series at Carter-Finley Stadium on Feb. 18.
* Sebastian Aho (Rauma, Finland) enters Saturday on a six-game goal streak and sits one contest shy of matching the second-longest stretch in franchise history (Ray Ferraro: 7 GP in 1988-89 w/ HFD). Should he find the back of the net in the 2023 Stadium Series, he would become just the fourth Finnish-born player to score in an outdoor game following Kasperi Kapanen (2023 Winter Classic w/ PIT), Rasmus Ristolainen (2018 Winter Classic w/ BUF) and Erik Haula (2016 Stadium Series w/ MIN).
MALKIN REACHES MILESTONE WITH 1,200TH CAREER POINT Evgeni Malkin (0-2—2) assisted on two of six Pittsburgh goals to reach 1,200 career points, while Pierre-Olivier Joseph (2-1—3) put up a three-point performance as the Penguins (26-16-9, 61 points) claimed a victory in Anaheim and leapfrogged the idle Capitals (27-20-6, 60 points) for the first Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference. * Malkin (463-737—1,200 in 1,032 GP) became the third player in Penguins history to reach the 1,200-point milestone, joining Mario Lemieux (690-1,033—1,723 in 915 GP) and teammate Sidney Crosby (541-930—1,471 in 1,159 GP). He also became the fourth active player to reach the mark.
* Joseph became the third Penguins defenseman in the past 30 years to record multiple three-point games before age 24. The others: Kris Letang (4 GP) and Ryan Whitney (2 GP).
TARASENKO TALLIES IN RANGERS DEBUT AT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN In his team debut in front of the Blueshirts faithful, Vladimir Tarasenko (1-0—1) wasted no time in finding the back of the net, needing just 2:49 to score the first of his club’s six goals en route to a Rangers victory at Madison Square Garden.
* Tarasenko, who was acquired by New York from St. Louis on Feb. 9, became the first Rangers player to score in his team debut since Braden Schneider (1-0—1 on Jan. 13, 2022).
* Adam Fox (0-1—1), who became just the fifth defenseman to reach the 50-point mark this season (10-40—50 in 52 GP), recorded his third straight campaign with 40-plus assists and became the fourth blueliner in Rangers history to achieve the feat, joining Brian Leetch (4x), Brad Park (4x) and James Patrick (3x).
GOALTENDERS HIGHLIGHTED IN FRIDAY'S #NHLSTATS: LIVE UPDATES The latest edition of #NHLStats: Live Updates featured noteworthy performances from Toronto’s Ilya Samsonov and Chicago’s Jaxson Stauber, who both backstopped their teams to victory Friday:
* Stauber made 23 saves to help the Blackhawks earn their sixth multi-goal comeback win of the season, tied with the Canucks, Devils and Ducks for the most among all teams. He became the first goaltender in franchise history to earn a win in each of his first three NHL games.
* Samsonov turned aside all 30 shots he faced to help the Maple Leafs defeat the Blue Jackets in the first game of a back-to-back set between the two clubs. Toronto (32-13-8, 72 points), which bolstered its lead over Tampa Bay (33-16-2, 68 points) for second place in the Atlantic Division, will host Columbus at Scotiabank Arena on Saturday.
Welcome to Abel to Yzerman, a Red Wing blog since 1977. No other site on the internet has better-researched, fact-laden and better prepared discussions than A2Y. Re-phrase: we do little research, find facts and stats highly overrated and claim little to no preparation. There are 19 readers of A2Y. No more, no less. All of them, except maybe one, are juvenile in nature. Reminding them of that in the comment section will only encourage them to prove that.
Wait, Staples is now "Crypto.com Arena"? I missed that. Ridiculous, classless. No reason to expect anything else from Anschutz.
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