The Blackhawks win again, the Ducks down the Wild, and the latest on the Ryan O’Reilly offer sheet fiasco, Jamie Benn, Sidney Crosby, Jonathan Huberdeau and Mike Green.
CHICAGO SUN-TIMES/COLUMBUS DISPATCH: The Chicago Blackhawks extended their season-opening points streak to 21 games (18-0-3) by downing the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-3 in overtime. Brent Seabrook tallied the game-winner on a beautiful feed from Jonathan Toews.
ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER/STARTRIBUNE.COM: The Anaheim Ducks (the Western Conference’s second-best team) continued their winning ways with a 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild. The win was the 12th in fourteen games for the Ducks, as well as their eighth straight at home this season.
DENVER POST: Mark Kiszla believes the botched Ryan O’Reilly deal proves a change is needed at the top for the Colorado Avalanche. Kiszla points out how the Avs, by setting too high an asking price for O’Reilly in the trade market, led the Calgary Flames to sign the holdout center to an offer sheet which will have significant consequences upon the Avalanche payroll for next season, as well upon efforts to re-sign key players.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flames are getting considerable, well-deserved heat for signing O’Reilly to an offer sheet whilst being unaware he played two games in the KHL post-NHL lockout (more on that in Canadian Corner), but the Avs deserve their fair share for creating this situation, only to then end up matching the offer, ensuring a high price just to qualify O’Reilly’s rights next year when he again becomes eligible for restricted free agent status. Both sides botched this situation, and Kiszla (as well as his colleague Adrian Dater) are justified in their criticism of the Avalanche front office.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL: James Mirtle reports on Sidney Crosby’s contributions to minor hockey in Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania.
DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Stars forward Jamie Benn faces a disciplinary hearing via phone today regarding “a game misconduct penalty he received for cross-checking Edmonton’s Ryan Jones Thursday”.
WASHINGTON POST: Capitals defenseman Mike Green has been sidelined again by a nagging groin injury.
SUN-SENTINEL.COM: Jonathan Huberdeau is the NHL rookie of the month for February.