In today’s roundup of notable NHL Canadian team news: The Oilers snap the Capitals winning streak…Jets win a wild one over the Flyers…Erik Cole rounding into form for the Canadiens…Mats Sundin returns to Toronto…Nick Foligno lifts Senators over the Florida Panthers…Flames will stick to their system…Some lousy stats for the Canucks.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Nikolai Khabibulin stopped 34 shots and Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle scored as the Oilers snapped the Washington Capitals win streak at seven, with a 2-1 win.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Big win for the Oilers, and a great effort by Khabibulin. Don’t look now, kids, but the Oilers are 5-2-2 and perched atop the Northwest division. It probably won’t be long until the young Oilers return to earth, but they’re off to a good start to this season, and their fans will enjoy it for as long as it lasts.
WINNIPEG SUN: The Jets blew 5-1 and 6-2 leads over the Philadelphia Flyers, but rallied to defeat the Flyers 9-8.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Holy 1985, Batman! This was not a game the goaltenders of either club will remember fondly. But hey, a win is a win, and the Jets, struggling early in the season, will take it.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: After a slow start earlier this month, Erik Cole is turning his game around with the Canadiens, with points in his last three games.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was believed Cole didn’t have the confidence of head coach Jacques Martin, but over the last three games, Cole has been among the Habs best forwards, and his ice time has been increased. He’s turning it around at the right time, as the Canadiens have struggled early.
TORONTO SUN: Former Maple Leafs captain Mats Sundin is back with the team as a part-time ambassador.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ve always felt Sundin, who holds Leafs records for most goals and points, plus most assists for a Leafs forward, has never received his just due from Leafs fans as they gave former captains Darryl Sittler, Wendel Clark and Doug Gilmour during their playing days. Hopefully, that’ll change now that he’s retired.
OTTAWA CITIZEN: Nick Foligno’s goal late in the third period lifted the Senators to a 4-3 win over the Florida Panthers.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: After lurching out to a 1-5 start, the Senators have won four straight to climb to a .500 record.
CALGARY HERALD: Despite struggling offensively, the Flames won’t be changing their style.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Given their lack of genuine scoring talent, the Flames have little choice but to grind out victories with a defensive system.
VANCOUVER SUN: The Canucks weak statistics to open this season mirror their poor performance.