Pens, Isles now tied for first – Metro Division Recap – Week 8
The Islanders had something to say about the Penguins being in first place in the Metro Division, as both teams met twice in home-and-home action. Recapping the week that was:
Record for the week: 1-1-1, three points. Total: 13-4-2, 28 points.
Are they on the rise or fall? Fall. While they shut Montreal out in the middle week, they dropped both ends of a home-and-home with the Islanders to close out the week, losing their stranglehold on first place.
Who’s hot? Marc-Andre Fleury, whose 27-save shutout against the Habs was his fourth in nine games. Fleury’s a native of Sorel-Tracy, Que. — approximately an hour from Bell Centre — so a shutout in his homeland is always something special.
Who’s not? Nobody in particular, but the rails did fall off for the team in their second game vs. the Islanders. The game was tied at one at the second intermission, and the Isles rattled off four goals in the third stanza to win 4-1.
Schedule for the week: Monday at Boston (7 p.m.), Wednesday vs. Toronto (7 p.m.), Friday vs. Hurricanes (7 p.m.), Saturday at Hurricanes (7 p.m.).
New York Islanders
Record for the week: 3-0-0, six points. Total: 14-6-0, 28 points.
Are they on the rise or fall? Rise. The Islanders won all three games in the week, beating Tampa Bay and taking both games of a Penguins home-and-home — one in a shootout, one by blowing a game wide open in the third period. As a result, the Isles now move into a tie with the Pens for first place in the division.
Who’s hot? Matt Martin, who added his first two goals of the game over the course of both Penguins games. Brock Nelson also added three points throughout the week.
Who’s not? No one, for now.
Schedule for the week: Monday vs. Flyers (7 p.m.), Wednesday vs. Capitals (7 p.m.), Friday at Capitals (5 p.m.), Saturday vs. Devils (7 p.m.).
New York Rangers
Record for the week: 2-1-0, four points. Total: 9-7-4, 22 points.
Are they on the rise or fall? Rise. Despite a 5-1 hiccup against Tampa Bay, the Rangers responded with two consecutive shutouts, beating the Flyers 4-2 and Montreal 5-0.
Who’s hot? Martin St-Louis and Rick Nash, who each posted two goals throughout the week. Nash’s goal total stands at 14 — tied with Steven Stamkos for second in the league. Also hot is whoever decided for the Rangers to wear their white jerseys during Wednesday’s tilt against the Flyers at Madison Square Garden — a nod back to hockey’s past.
Who’s not? It’s hard to find a “not” when a team wins two games by a combined score of 7-0.
Schedule for the week: Wednesday at Lightning (7:30 p.m.), Friday at Flyers (1 p.m.), Saturday vs. Flyers (1 p.m.).
Record for the week: 2-1-0, four points. Total: 9-8-3, 21 points.
Are they on the rise or fall? Even. The Caps won against Arizona and Colorado to close out a Western road swing, but couldn’t buy a goal in their return home against Buffalo, as Jhonas Enroth made an astounding 43 saves on 44 shots.
Who’s hot? Eric Fehr and Alex Ovechkin, for late game-winning goals. Fehr scored with 2:44 to play in overtime against the Coyotes, while Ovechkin scored with 5:54 to go against the Avs.
Who’s not? To an extent, play in the third period. The Caps allowed an early third period goal against the Avalanche, but quickly made up for it with Ovechkin’s game-winner. They also tied the Sabres at one in the third, but less than seven minutes later, Torrey Mitchell scored the game-winner for the Sabres.
Schedule for the week: Wednesday at Islanders (7 p.m.), Friday vs. Islanders (5 p.m.), Saturday at Toronto (7 p.m.).
New Jersey Devils
Record for the week: 1-1-1, three points. Total: 9-9-3, 21 points.
Are they on the rise or fall? Even. The Devils began a four-game Western road swing, where they lost 3-1 to Winnipeg, shut Edmonton out 2-0 and lost to Calgary in a shootout.
Who’s hot? Adam Henrique, with a two-point performance against the Flames, as well as a goal against the Oilers. Martin Havlat also added two points.
Who’s not? Scott Clemmensen, who took the loss in his first start of the season. He was tested 33 saves, but looked somewhat rusty against a third-place, surprise Flames team. The team also blew a 4-2 lead late, as Jiri Hudler and Curtis Glencross scored in the final 2:30 of regulation. Glencross’ tally — his second of the game — came with five seconds on the clock.
Schedule for the week: Tuesday at Vancouver (10 p.m.), Friday vs. Detroit (7 p.m.), Saturday at Islanders (7 p.m.).
Record for the week: 1-2-0, two points. Total: 8-9-2, 18 points.
Are they on the rise or fall? Fall. The Flyers looked lifeless in a 2-0 shutout against the Rangers (a “f—ing embarrassing” effort that drew the ire of GM Ron Hextall in the process) and lost to Minnesota with 46 seconds on the clock. They did beat the Blue Jackets, to snap a four-game losing skid.
Who’s hot? Jakub Voracek, Claude Giroux and Brayden Schenn, for recording multi-point weeks. Voracek’s 29 points continue to lead the NHL, while Giroux’s 24 points tie him with Steven Stamkos for fourth. Additionally, Eric Lindros and John LeClair get honorable mentions, as the legendary Flyers were inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame prior to Thursday’s game against the Wild.
Who’s not? Penalty kill, for allowing goals in all three games.
Schedule for the week: Monday at Islanders (7 p.m.), Wednesday vs. Red Wings (7:30 p.m.), Friday vs. Rangers (1 p.m.), Saturday at Rangers (1 p.m.).
Record for the week: 1-2-0, two points. Total: 6-11-3, 15 points.
Are they on the rise or fall? Somewhat even. While they beat a Dallas team that can’t win at home (their first win in Texas since the Hartford Whalers era), they lost by one goal apiece to Los Angeles and Colorado.
Who’s hot? Eric Staal, who had points in all three games last week, with three goals.
Who’s not? Third-period play. While they quelled a potential Stars third-period rally, they couldn’t tie against the Kings in the third period, and lost a 3-2 lead in the final minutes against the Avs.
Schedule for the week: Wednesday at Florida (7:30 p.m.), Friday at Penguins (7 p.m.), Saturday vs. Penguins (7 p.m.).
Columbus Blue Jackets
Record for the week: 0-2-1, zero points. Total: 6-12-2, 14 points.
Are they on the rise or fall? Fall. The Blue Jackets started their week with a 5-0 whitewashing against the Red Wings, lost to the Bruins in a shootout and los 4-2 to the Flyers.
Who’s hot? Ryan Johansen and Jack Johnson had multi-point weeks (three and two points, respectively).
Who’s not? Sergei Bobrovsky, who let up a total of 12 goals over the week. He faced 37 or more shots in each game — indicative of poor defense in front of him.
Schedule for the week: Tuesday vs. Winnipeg (7 p.m.), Friday vs. Vancouver (7 p.m.), Saturday at Nashville (8 p.m.).
Follow Rob Riches on Twitter @Riches61.