Welcome to the “NHL Morning Skate,” a daily collection of the latest news and notes from around the League.
OUTDOOR GAME QUICK HITS
* A total of 623,136 fans have attended the 11 regular-season outdoor NHL games to date, a per-game average of 56,649.
* A total of 382 players and head coaches have participated in the 11 regular-season outdoor NHL games to date.
* Visiting teams are 9-1-1 in the 11 regular-season outdoor NHL games to date. The only home clubs to win an outdoor game are the Bruins, who defeated the Flyers 2-1 in overtime in the 2010 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic, and the Flames, who shut out the Canadiens 4-0 in the 2011 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic.
* Sixty-nine NHLers have played for both the Blackhawks and Penguins. Of those 69, four have played in 100 or more games for both clubs: Marc Bergevin, Bob Kelly,Terry Ruskowski and Mike Stapleton.
* Eddie Johnston is the only head coach to have directed both the Blackhawks (1979-80) and Penguins (1980-83 and 1993-97).
* Nineteen NHLers have played for both the Canucks and Senators. Of those 19, three have played in 100 or more games for both clubs: Jarkko Ruutu, Sami Salo andPeter Schaefer.
* Roger Neilson is the only head coach to have directed both the Canucks (1982-84) and Senators (2002).
A view of Soldier Field Wednesday afternoon:
OLYMPIC-THEMED “NHL REVEALED” DEBUTS TONIGHT
“NHL Revealed: A Season Like No Other” returns tonight with an Olympic-themed, two-hour episode that will give viewers an unprecedented look into the men’s hockey tournament at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games (8:00 p.m. ET on CBC, 10:00 p.m. ET on NBCSN).
Fans will see the NHL’s stars exploring Olympic Park, mic’ed up on the ice for practice and spending time with their families as they participate in the Olympic experience. Viewers also will travel inside the locker room with Team Canada moments after they capture gold.
Home Teams in Caps
BUFFALO 5, Boston 4 (OT)
Detroit 2, MONTREAL 1 (OT)
Los Angeles 6, COLORADO 4
VANCOUVER 1, St. Louis 0
SABRES GO DOWN TO THE WIRE (AGAIN)
Matt Moulson scored the tying goal with 52.3 seconds remaining in regulation and Matt D’Agostini potted the game-winner 22 seconds into overtime to lead the Sabres to their second down-to-the-wire victory in as many nights. On Tuesday, Christian Ehrhoffscored the tiebreaking goal with 43.4 seconds left in the third period to lift the Sabres to a 3-2 win over the Hurricanes.
* According to the Elias Sports Bureau, this marks the second time in franchise history that the Sabres have won consecutive games when scoring the tying or tiebreaking goal in the final minute of regulation (also Nov. 17 and 20, 1976). They are the only team to accomplish that feat in 2013-14.
* Jhonas Enroth made 29 saves to pick up his first victory since Oct. 25 (44 saves at FLA). He also recorded his first career win versus the Bruins (1-4-2).
NYQUIST POWERS RED WINGS
Brian Gionta knotted the game late in regulation, but Gustav Nyquist scored with 27.3 seconds remaining in overtime to power the Red Wings to their third victory in their last four outings.
* Nyquist has 10 goals, including two game-winners, in his past 11 games (since Jan. 20). He had nine total goals in the first 63 games of his NHL career prior to this stretch.
* The Red Wings played their 3,000th regular-season road game in franchise history, improving to 1,086-1,439-475. They are tied for fifth in the NHL with 36 points as visitors this season (16-9-4).
KOPITAR LEADS KINGS’ COMEBACK
Trailing 4-2 late in the second period, the Kings scored four unanswered goals – including two from Anze Kopitar (2-1—3) – to pick up their second consecutive victory and match their second-highest offensive output of the season.
* Kopitar recorded his sixth game-winning goal of the season (60 GP), tying his career high set in 2010-11 (75 GP). He has 3-4—7 over his past three outings and is one goal shy of his seventh career 20-goal season.
* Jeff Carter posted 1-1—2, including the tying goal, for his eighth multi-point game of the season. He also collected his 200th NHL assist.
LACK SHUTS THE DOOR
Eddie Lack stopped all 20 shots he faced to record his third career shutout and help the Canucks snap a seven-game skid. Lack improved to 9-8-3 with a 2.11 goals-against average and .924 save percentage in 23 appearances this season.
* Jannik Hansen scored the lone goal at 11:13 of the third period. He has three game-winners this season (51 GP), matching his career high set in 2009-10 (47 GP).
MacKINNON STAYS HOT
Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon, the No. 1 overall selection in the 2013 NHL Draft, recorded an assist to extend his point streak to nine games (5-7—12). It marks the longest point streak by a rookie since 2010-11, when Kevin Shattenkirk also posted points in nine consecutive games for the Avalanche (Nov. 17-Dec. 4: 4-9—13).
Since Jan. 1, MacKinnon ranks second in the NHL with 12 goals and third with 21 points in 20 games. He leads all rookies in goals (22), assists (23), points (45), power-play goals (8), game-winning goals (5-tied) and shots on goal (171) in 59 games this season.
“BLACK TIE BLUE JACKETS STYLE SHOW” RAISES $500,000
For the eighth consecutive year, Blue Jackets players and their wives, along with 11 local pediatric cancer heroes, modeled the latest fashions in the Blue Jackets Foundation’s “Black Tie Blue Jackets Style Show.” The event raised $500,000 for the Blue Jackets Foundation’s local “Hats for Heroes” program and related pediatric cancer research initiatives and support programs. Click here to learn more.
Below, defenseman James Wisniewski and cancer hero John Wills high-five the crowd as they walk the runway.
The Blues were shut out for the first time since May 4, 2013 (Game 3 of WCQ) . . . Bruins forwards Jarome Iginla (2-6—8) and Milan Lucic (3-4—7) both extended their point streaks to five games . . . Kings captain Dustin Brown played in his 700th NHL game . . . Blues defenseman Roman Polak skated in his 400th career game . . . Bruins defenseman Johnny Boychuk appeared in his 300th NHL game . . . The Wild acquired forward Brad Winchester from the Blackhawks in exchange for defenseman Brian Connelly.
SNEAK PEEK AT THURSDAY’S ACTION
All Times Eastern
Columbus @ New Jersey, 7:00 p.m., FS-O, MSG PLUS 2
Toronto @ NY Islanders, 7:00 p.m., SNET-O, MSG PLUS
Chicago @ NY Rangers, 7:00 p.m., NHLN-US, CSN-CH, MSG
San Jose @ Philadelphia, 7:00 p.m., CSN-CA, CSN-PH
Montreal @ Pittsburgh, 7:00 p.m., RDS, TSN-HABS, ROOT
Detroit @ Ottawa, 7:30 p.m., FS-D, SNET-E, TVA
Washington @ Florida, 7:30 p.m., CSN-DC, FS-F
Tampa Bay @ Nashville, 8:00 p.m., SUN, FS-TN
Phoenix @ Winnipeg, 8:00 p.m., FS-A, TSN-JETS
Carolina @ Dallas, 8:30 p.m., FS-CR, FS-SW
Los Angeles @ Calgary, 9:30 p.m., TSN, FS-W
Minnesota @ Edmonton, 9:30 p.m., FS-N, SNET-W
BLACKHAWKS, RANGERS BATTLE IN THE BIG APPLE
The Blackhawks face off against the Rangers in their first visit to Madison Square Garden since Feb. 16, 2012, a 4-2 victory. Nine of the last 11 meetings between these clubs have been decided by one goal, including New York’s 3-2 win Jan. 8 at United Center. Overall, the Blackhawks have recorded points in five of their past six games (3-1-2), while the Rangers are 5-1-0 in their last six and 11-4-0 in their past 15 dating to Jan. 8.
OH, THE PLACES YOU’LL GO
Thursday’s game at Madison Square Garden marks the midpoint of an exciting week of playing in iconic venues around the globe for the seven Blackhawks – Niklas Hjalmarsson (Sweden), Patrick Kane (USA), Duncan Keith (Canada), Marcus Kruger (Sweden), Johnny Oduya (Sweden), Patrick Sharp (Canada) and Jonathan Toews (Canada) – who participated in medal games at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games:
Saturday/Sunday, Feb. 22-23: Bolshoy Ice Dome (Sochi, Russia)
Thursday, Feb. 27: Madison Square Garden (New York, N.Y.)
Saturday, March 1: Soldier Field (Chicago, Ill.)
Source: NHL Media