1.Providing a spark
It seems like every once and awhile, Kyle Palmieri will go off for one big game. On Wednesday, Palmieri got a chance to skate with Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf and boy, did he deliver. Palmieri scored a hat-trick and added five shots, a powerplay point, and plus-two rating. Perry and Getzlaf each notched three assists apiece, just in time for my matchup against their owner in my league. Thanks a lot guys.
2.The other Jonathan
Jonathan Bernier got the start on Wednesday which kind of surprised me, as Jon Quick seemed to be finally figuring his game out. Bernier has to be the most under-appreciated and under-used backup in the NHL though. I mean sure, he hasn't proven a whole lot yet with only 45 career starts coming into this year, but he now sits at 4-1-0 with a .931 save percentage and 1.7GAA after carrying the Kings through tonight's game.
3.Pacioretty Bites Back
Maxi Pacioretty got his revenge for the alleged 'bite' in the right way, lighting the Leafs up with two goals and seven shots on net. MaxPac was on the ice for all of the Habs first three goals, notching his first goal on the powerplay via a lucky deflection off his shin pad, and going plus-two on the night. Pacioretty now has 16 points (6G, 10A) and the goals are coming in bunches now as he has scored all six in the past six games.
1.Reversal of Roles
Phil Kessel, Tyler Bozak, and James van Riemsdyk made the most of their minutes Wednesday night, going a combined minus-12. The Leafs' top line was on the ice for all four of the Habs' even strength goals. Look, you know you're doing something wrong when Colton Orr is getting more ice time than you. I'm looking at you, JVR and Bozak. Kessel, you barely made the cut.
2.More Prey than Predator
The Predators had a disastrous first period that saw them give up three goals. They were unable to recover as they gave up another two in the second, where Pekka Rinne was eventually given the hook. Roman Josi was a team-worst minus-three, three days after his four point performance against Dallas. Rinne was given the hook after two periods, stopping only 16 of 21 shots against.
You just really really REALLY suck.
The Flyers' top line continued to click as Claude Giroux got a goal and an assist, and Scott Hartnell got a couple of helpers. No joy for Jakub Voracek however. I still believe he got a touch on that first goal and should have been given a secondary assist, but what I think doesn't matter.
Ilya Bryzgalov blew his shutout with two minutes left. Typical Bryz, allowing a brutal rebound to trickle off of him that Joel Ward put home.
Philipp Grubauer saw his first bit of NHL action tonight, relieving Braden Holtby after he allowed four goals. Grubauer was very impressive in the 25 minutes he played, making a slew of clutch saves highlighted by one great athletic glove save early in the third period.
Anze Kopitar finished with a goal and an assist, putting him at 14 points in 12 games in February. Jeff Carter scored yet another goal, extending his goal-streak to five games.