Max Pacioretty leads Canadiens over Oilers…Samuel Pahlsson’s first goal as a Canuck is a big one against the Jets…Senators defeat Conference-leading Rangers…Flames and Jets set to square off in Calgary for first time in 15 years…Why it may be best for the Maple Leafs to miss the playoffs….
MONTREAL GAZETTE/EDMONTON SUN: On the anniversary of Max Pacioretty’s season-ending injury a year ago, he scored twice, including his career-high 30th goal of the season, leading the Canadiens to a 5-3 win over the Edmonton Oilers.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Pacioretty’s recovery from that injury a year ago will make him a nominee for the Masterton Trophy. He’s also the first Hab to score 30 goals in a season since Alex Kovalev in 2007-08. Too bad they’re not enough to help the Canadiens make the playoffs this season, but it bodes well for his development as a player, and a bright spot for the Canadiens future.
OTTAWA CITIZEN: The Senators took advantage of shaky goaltending by NY Rangers backup Martin Biron to down the Conference-leading Blueshirts 4-1.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Yes, I know, the Senators faced the Rangers backup, who didn’t have a good game, but this will be a huge confidence boost for the Sens heading into the final month of the season.
CALGARY SUN: The Flames and Winnipeg Jets will square off in Calgary for the first time this season, marking the first time in 15 years the Flames have hosted the Jets.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL: James Mirtle explains why the Maple Leafs free fall in the standings is for the best.