Game recaps, including Alexander Ovechkin potting career goal 400, plus the latest on Semyon Varlamov, Shane Doan, Pekka Rinne, Matt Duchene, Brooks Orpik and more.
WASHINGTON POST: Alexander Ovechkin became the 89th player in NHL history to score 400 goals (and the sixth-fastest to reach that mark) as the Capitals doubled up the Carolina Hurricanes 4-2.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Ovechkin continues scoring at his current pace, he could reach 500 within two years. That he reached 400 as quickly as he has in today’s game, which is far less wide open for scoring, is a truly remarkable achievement and a testament to his offensive prowess.
LOS ANGELES DAILY NEWS: Kyle Palmeiri overtime goal lifted the Anaheim Ducks to their seventh straight win by downing the New Jersey Devils 3-2.
NEW YORK POST: Michael Grabner scored twice as the New York Islanders defeated the New York Rangers 5-3.
NOTE: Games involving Canadian NHL teams are recapped in “Canadian Corner”.
DENVER POST: A domestic violence case against Colorado Avalanche goalie Semyon Varlamov has been dropped at the request of prosecutors, who doubted they could prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Remember what I said about innocent until proven guilty? Some people were quick to judge Varlamov before all the facts were in.
ARIZONA REPUBLIC: Phoenix Coyotes captain Shane Doan is suffering with a form of Rocky Mountain fever disease. Though improving he’s not ready to return to action.
THE TENNESSEAN: The Nashville Predators announced goaltender Pekka Rinne will remain sidelined for another two weeks due to ongoing rehab for a bacterial infection in his surgically repaired hip.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: They’ll stick with their current tandem of Marek Mazenec and Carter Hutton for the time being until Rinne’s return.
DENVER POST: Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene has established himself as the Avs top forward and may have played his way onto Team Canada at the upcoming Sochi Olympics.
POST-GAZETTE: Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik has forgiven his friend, Boston Bruins forward Shawn Thornton, for attacking him during a recent game. Orpik was sidelined by a concussion while Thornton received a 15-game suspension, which he’s now appealing.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Orpik’s a better man than me. I’d never forgive anyone who attacked me like that.
MERCURYNEWS.COM: San Jose Sharks rookie Tomas Hertl expects to be sidelined a month with a right knee injury. Hertl currently leads all NHL rookies in scoring this season. Hertl was injured during a knee-on-knee collision with LA Kings captain Dustin Brown, who received a game misconduct on the play, but no supplemental discipline.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Brown was fortunate to escape without a suspension. That was a nasty-looking hit.
NHL.COM: Former NHL defenseman Pavel Kubina has announced his retirement after 14 NHL seasons. His best years were with the Tampa Bay Lightning, helping them win the Stanley Cup in 2004.