NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 5, 2020
Alex Ovechkin moves closer to 700 goals, Joe Thornton reaches his 1,500th career point, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines
NHL.COM: A natural hat trick by Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin rallied his club over the Los Angeles Kings 4-2. He now has 698 career goals and reached the 40-goal mark for the 11th time in his career. Teammate John Carlson had a three-point performance while Kings forward Jeff Carter scored twice.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ovechkin has taken over sole possession of first place in this year’s goal-scoring race. He’s just 10 goals away from his ninth 50-goal season, which would tie the record held by Wayne Gretzky and Mike Bossy. He also needs just 11 more goals to surpass Mike Gartner (708 goals) for seventh on the all-time scoring list.
San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton became the 14th player in NHL history to reach 1,500 career points during a 3-1 win over the Calgary Flames. The 40-year-old Thornton picked up two assists. Flames defenseman Mark Giordano left the game in the second period with a lower-body injury.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Jumbo Joe also sits seventh among the league’s all-time assist leaders with 1,085.
Tuukka Rask turned in a 25-save shutout as the Boston Bruins blanked the Vancouver Canucks 4-0. Charlie Coyle had a goal and an assist as the Bruins (76 points) sit one back of the Capitals for the top spot in the Eastern Conference and the overall standings.
A four-point performance by Andre Burakovsky (one goal, three assists) powered the Colorado Avalanche to a 6-1 drubbing of the Buffalo Sabres. Valeri Nichushkin had a goal and two assists. The Avalanche have won four of their last five contests.
Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy tied a franchise-record 16-game points streak as his club doubled up the Vegas Golden Knights 4-2. Brayden Point had a goal and an assist for the Bolts while captain Steven Stamkos tallied the game-winning goal. The Bolts are on a four-game win streak.
Brayden Schenn and Zach Sanford each scored twice as the St. Louis Blues downed the Carolina Hurricanes 6-3. Blues center Ryan O’Reilly collected three assists.
An overtime goal by Anthony Beauvillier gave the New York Islanders a 4-3 victory over the Dallas Stars. Beauvillier scored two goals for the Isles (66 points), who hold the first wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference.
The Columbus Blue Jackets nipped the Florida Panthers 1-0 on an overtime goal by Zach Werenski. Elvis Merzlikins picked up the shutout with 32 saves.
The Arizona Coyotes got their first win in six games by shutting down the Edmonton Oilers 3-0. Antti Raanta posted a 30-save shutout while Lawson Crouse had a goal and an assist. With 61 points, the Coyotes hold the first wild-card spot in the Western Conference.
Matt Dumba tallied in overtime and Kevin Fiala scored twice as the Minnesota Wild beat the Chicago Blackhawks 3-2. Blackhawks winger Patrick Kane was held scoreless for the first time in 12 games. The Wild (54 points) are six points out of a Western Conference wild-card berth, while the Hawks are three points out.
Mikael Granlund scored in overtime as the Nashville Predators downed the Winnipeg Jets 2-1. With 57 points, the Predators and Jets are three points out of a Western Conference wild-card spot.
Ilya Kovalchuk scored the only goal in the shootout as the Montreal Canadiens edged the New Jersey Devils 5-4. The Habs scored four straight times to overcome a 3-0 deficit before Kyle Palmieri forced the game into extra time with a power-play goal in the dying seconds of regulation. Montreal (57 points) sits seven points behind the Florida Panthers for third in the Atlantic Division.
Shootout goals by Ondrej Kase and Rickard Rakell gave the Anaheim Ducks a 3-2 win over the Ottawa Senators. The Ducks have won five of their last seven, while the Senators have dropped three straight.
TORONTO SUN: Maple Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen is day-to-day with a neck injury. The Leafs have recalled Kasimir Kaskisuo from the Toronto Marlies to back up Michael Hutchinson in tonight’s game against the New York Rangers.
Markstrom was fantastic against the Bruins last night.
Boy, Grandpa Munster sure can build a team.
The Canucks look good.
Green has them playing the right way.
After 15 years playing Gretzky had 811 goals. Ovechkin has 698 with some games remaining in his 15th year. On a year to year comparison Ovi is off the pace. For him to catch Gretzky by the time he is 38, Ovechkin is going to have to continue to score at a very high rate per year as he and his surrounding cast get older.
Gretzky scored 129 goals in his remaining years. Ovechkin may have to average over 40 goals per year to get there.