Penguins crush Jets…Devils blank Senators…Avalanche nip Flames…Islanders pound hapless Maple Leafs…Hemsky leads Oilers to victory over Predators…Patrick Roy denies deal in place for him to take over as Canadiens head coach…Is Alain Vigneault’s tenure as Canucks head coach drawing to a close?…
WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: The Jets could do little to slow the high-flying Pittsburgh Penguins. Lead by Sidney Crosby (4 assists), James Neal (hat trick) and Evgeni Malkin (five points, including his 200th career NHL goal), the Pens humbled the Jets 8-4.
OTTAWA SUN: The New JerseyDevils nipped the Senators 1-0, thanks to a goal by Ilya Kovalchuk, the 400th of his NHL career.
CALGARY HERALD: The Flames dropped their third straight game, falling 2-1 in overtime to the Colorado Avalanche. The Flames remain only two points out of a playoff berth, but they must snap out of this losing skid soon, or it’ll prove costly.
TORONTO SUN: A third period collapse by the Maple Leafs resulted in the NY Islanders emerging with a 5-2 victory. And the chants of “Fi-re Bur-kie” have begun.
EDMONTON SUN: Ales Hemsky netted his first career hat trick as the Oilers downed the Nashville Predators 6-3.
CANOE.CA: Quebec Remparts owner/GM/head coach – and Canadiens legend – Patrick Roy denied rumors he had a deal in place with the Montreal Canadiens to take over as head coach following this season. Roy has done well as a coach in junior hockey, but his hair-trigger temper would make him an angrier version of Michel Therrien, who to his credit had a better grip on his temper when he coached the Penguins than he did when he coached the Habs. And no, I don’t believe Roy would be a good choice to become Habs GM. Yes, he’s proven to have a good eye for talent at the junior level, but he lacks management experience at the NHL level, which in my opinion is what’s required if the Canadiens are to replace Pierre Gauthier as GM. If they want to hire him as assistant GM, to one day groom him for the big chair, fine.
VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Tony Gallagher believes Alain Vigneault’s tenure as Canucks head coach is nearing an end. Unless, of course, the Canucks march on to the Cup Final again, in which case, never mind.