Recaps of Monday’s games featuring NHL Canadian teams, plus the latest on Henrik Sedin, Ryan Smyth, Mika Zibanejad and more.
TORONTO SUN/PHILLY.COM: The Maple Leafs lost goaltender James Reimer to a lower body injury, but they didn’t miss a beat, downing the Philadelphia Flyers 5-2. Ben Scrivens replaced Reimer in the second period and turned aside 32 shots for the Leafs, while Nazem Kadri, Matt Frattin and Cody Franson each had two point nights. Wayne Simmonds and Tye McGinn scored for the Flyers. The Leafs also received good news earlier in the day, as the NHL assessed no supplemental discipline on forward Mikhail Grabovski, who was accused of biting Montreal Canadiens forward Max Pacioretty during the Leafs-Canadiens game on Saturday.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Leafs coach Randy Carlyle downplayed the severity of Reimer’s injury, suggesting he might not be sidelined for long. It’s yet to be announced if it was a groin or knee injury, but Reimer appeared to have difficulty putting weight on his left leg and had to be helped from the ice.
STARTRIBUNE.COM/CALGARY HERALD: Mikko Koivu’s nifty shootout goal stood as the winner as the Minnesota Wild nipped the Calgary Flames 2-1. It was what Star-Tribune writer Michael Russo called a game “marred by icings, blocked shots, long droughts without shots, few completed passes and absolutely no flow”. Kyle Brodziak also scored for the Stars in regulation, while Jiri Hudler had the Flames only goal.
VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Canucks captain Henrik Sedin is only one point shy of the team franchise points record (756) set by Sedin’s idol, Markus Naslund.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’s an amazing achievement by Sedin. In my opinion, Henrik and Daniel are the two best players in Canucks history.
WINNIPEG SUN: All signs point to Dustin Byfuglien returning to the Jets lineup for Tuesday’s game against the Philadelphia Flyers, but goalie Ondrej Pavelec and defenseman Zach Bogosian remain questionable.
EDMONTON SUN: Veteran Oilers forward Ryan Smyth has been taking some ill-timed penalties this season.
LA PRESSE: Canadiens coach Michel Therrien has broken up the line of Max Pacioretty, Erik Cole and David Desharnais, putting Pacioretty with rookies Alexander Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher while moving Brandon Prust with Cole and Desharnais.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Given their offensive struggles over the past three games, it’s not surprising Therrien is shaking up his forward lines. We’ll find out soon enough if it snaps the Habs out of their scoring funk.
OTTAWA CITIZEN: Senators rookie center Mika Zibanejad will center Milan Michalek and Daniel Alfredsson when they face the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday.