No victory, but a valuable standings point and essentially a 41-save shutout for Thomas Greiss last night against the Lightning. We’ll take it, especially for the first game after a nine-day break (and the beginning of a very busy February).
Leave your FIG picks for tonight here.
- About last night: Bummer to lose, but good effort coming off the break to shutout the league’s top team. [LHH | Newsday | Isles | NYI Skinny | Raw Charge]
- The Sound Tigers’ game was a polar opposite: Bridgeport took the loss in a 7-5 goalfest against the Phantoms. [CT Post | Josh Ho-Sang: “All games are weird.” Thompson “At times Josh is dynamic, at times he tries to do too much.” Soundin’ Off | BST]
- Barry Trotz concedes he misses ties a bit, as the shootout is a bit too individual. But as he put it concisely, “From a fan standpoint, they [or Gary Bettman] want to see an end result.” [Newsday]
- He didn’t start last night but the accolades continue: Robin Lehner was named NHL 2nd Star of the Month. [Isles | Newsday]
- Casey Cizikas has always had some real offensive talent (we remember tracking him as a draft pick), and this season more of it is showing. [Athletic]
- Thomas Hickey and Andrew Ladd are skating, but no timetable for their return. [Isles]
- Stan Fischler recalls how Mike Bossy was targeted by the league’s most violent beasts, but that was nothing new for the greatest pure goal scorer of the 20th century. [Isles]
- Sound Tigers announcer Chris King did double podcast duties: Isles Buzz | PTIsles
- The Railers lost also, with some tough luck, 5-2 in Newfoundland. [Railers]
Kucherov was fined for that slew-foot on Scott Mayfield in the first period last night:
Tampa Bay’s Nikita Kucherov has been fined $5,000, the maximum allowable under the CBA, for a dangerous trip on NY Islanders’ Scott Mayfield.— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) February 2, 2019
“Coming out of the break you don’t know what you’re going to get, and you’re playing one of the better offensive teams with a couple of games already under their belt.”
- The Penguins got rid of their poor fit in Derick Brassard, acquiring big Nick Bjugstad from the Panthers in a multi-player, multi-pick deal. [NHL | PensBurgh | Litter Box Cats | Post | Why Hockey Podcast] Jim Rutherford discusses Brassard, Bjugstad. [Athletic]
- We associate Alex Ovechkin with that left-circle one-timer but it wasn’t always so, and it took a little while to become a go-to thing. [NHL]
- Mid-season draft rankings. Still Hughes to lose. [THN]
- “I have brain damage.” Daniel Carcillo talks to Broad Street Hockey.
- George McPhee discusses how he’s pretty happy with the team he has. [Knights On Ice]
- Auston Mathews’ little tribute to Patrick Marleau at the All-Star Skills Competition in San Jose was appreciated. [Fear the Fin]