Game recaps featuring non-Canadian NHL teams, plus the latest on Mike Smith, Anton Volchenkov, Ilya Bryzgalov and more.
PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW: Pascal Dupuis and Jussi Jokinen each had three-point games as the Pittsburgh Penguins doubled up the Tampa Bay Lightning 6-3.
STLTODAY.COM: Brian Elliott picked up his third straight shutout, breaking a team record held by the great Jacques Plante for consecutive shutout minutes on the road, as the Blues blanked the slumping Minnesota Wild 2-0.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: About a month ago, Elliott was spending most of his time nailed to the bench and there were rumors the Blues were trying to move him at the trade deadline. He picked the right time of the season to rediscover his mojo.
LOS ANGELES TIMES: The Kings nearly squandered a 2-0 lead but managed to down the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 in a shootout.
WASHINGTON POST: Braden Holtby made a career-high 43 saves in a regular season game while Troy Brouwer scored twice as the Washington Capitals downed the floundering Carolina Hurricanes 3-1. It was the Capitals sixth straight win and the Hurricanes seventh straight loss.
NEWSDAY: Josh Bailey’s two goals lifted the New York Islanders to a 2-1 victory over the Boston Bruins. The win lifted the Isles into a tie with the sixth place Ottawa Senators (who hold a game in hand) and two points over the eighth place NY Rangers and ninth place Winnipeg Jets.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Islanders have won eight of their last 10 games and are making a strong push for a playoff berth.
SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS: The San Jose Sharks squeezed past the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 in a shootout. The win opened a five point cushion for the fifth place Sharks over the Red Wings, who are barely clinging to eighth overall.
NHL.COM: The NHL and NHLPA officially announced a partnership with the “You Can Play” Project, which promotes tolerance and education on LGBT issues in sports.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kudos to the NHL and NHLPA for taking the lead among North American professional team sports on this issue, and to Patrick and Brian Burke, Brian Kitts and Glenn Witman for their tireless efforts promoting this project.
ARIZONA REPUBLIC: The Phoenix Coyotes will need more heroics from goalie Mike Smith to have a shot at making the playoffs.
NJ.COM: The NHL has suspended Devils defenseman Anton Volchenkov four games for elbowing Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand in the head during a recent game.
PHILLY.COM: Flyers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov lashed out at the Philadelphia media for reporting a story claiming Bryzgalov had fallen asleep during a recent team meeting.
THE TENNESSEAN: Predators Paul Gaustad (shoulder), Colin Wilson (shoulder) and Gabriel Bourque (knee) will all undergo season-ending surgeries.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: This news could be the final nail in the Predators coffin this season.