NHL NEWS NOVEMBER 18, 2022 – KESSEL FIRST IN NHL HISTORY TO REACH 1,000 CONSECUTIVE GAMES
Three weeks after passing Keith Yandle for sole possession of the NHL “Ironman” record on Oct. 25, Golden Knights forward Phil Kessel became the first player in League history to appear in 1,000 consecutive games when he took to the ice Thursday. Prior to Vegas’ 4-1 victory versus Arizona, the club celebrated Kessel’s accomplishments in a pre-game ceremony.
BRUINS, DEVILS EXTEND LENGTHY WINNING STREAKS
The top two teams in the Eastern Conference continued their winning ways as Boston (15-2-0, 30 points) collected another two points at TD Garden and New Jersey (14-3-0, 28 points) extended its double-digit winning streak:
- Jim Montgomery and the Bruins defeated the Flyers to improve to 10-0-0 at TD Garden in 2022-23 and become the fifth team in NHL history with wins in each of their first 10 or more home games to start a season. Of the four previous instances, two also involved a new head coach with a club: Billy Reay (1963-64 w/ CHI) and Alex Curry (1925-26 w/ SEN).
- Montgomery (17 GP) also matched the fewest games by a head coach to record his first 15 wins with a new team, a mark set by John Paddock (17 GP in 2007-08 w/ OTT).
- Vitek Vanecek made 25 saves and Yegor Sharangovich scored at 0:57 of overtime as the Devils extended their overall and road winning streak to 11 and seven games, respectively. New Jersey is now two games shy of matching its franchise record for longest winning streak, a mark set from Feb. 26 to March 23, 2001 (13-0-0).
- Vanecek improved to 8-0-0 in his last nine appearances dating to Oct. 25 (1.78 GAA, .933 SV%, 1 SO), which was when the Devils’ 11-game run began.
DETROIT rED wINGS tOP sHARKS 7-4 ON THE rOAD
David Perron scored his 6th goal of the season and added 2 assists in the Detroit Red Wings‘ 7-4 road win over the Sharks.
RED WINGS ASSIGN AUSTIN CZARNIK TO GRIFFINS
The Detroit Red Wings have assigned center Austin Czarnik to the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins.
Czarnik, 29, appeared in four games with the Red Wings, recording one goal, four shots and six hits in 11:50 average time on ice. The 5-foot-9, 170-pound center has also logged 10 points (5-5-10) in just eight games for the Griffins. He was named the Howies Hockey Tape/AHL Player of the Week for the period ending Oct. 16 after tallying five points (3-2-5) in his first two games with Grand Rapids. Czarnik signed with the Red Wings as a free agent on July 13 after splitting the 2021-22 campaign between the New York Islanders and Seattle Kraken, recording five points (2-3-5) in 11 games with the Islanders along with two assists in six appearances for the Kraken. He also suited up in 38 games with the AHL’s Bridgeport Islanders last season and posted 37 points (14-23-37) and eight penalty minutes, in addition to 10 points (3-7-10) in six Calder Cup playoff games. Originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the Boston Bruins on March 31, 2015, Czarnik has played in parts of seven NHL seasons with the Bruins, Calgary Flames, Islanders, Kraken and Red Wings, totaling 46 points (16-30-46) and 20 penalty minutes in 146 games since 2016-17. He has also compiled 235 points (86-149-235), a plus-25 rating and 88 penalty minutes in 235 AHL games with the Providence Bruins, Stockton Heat, Islanders and Griffins. Czarnik paced all AHL rookies with 61 points (20-41-61) in 68 games during the 2015-16 season and went on to represent Providence at the 2018 AHL All-Star Classic.
FIVE CENTRAL DIVISION TEAMS EARN VICTORIES
Five of the seven Central Division clubs in action Thursday registered wins:
- Roope Hintz celebrated his 26th birthday by scoring two of his team’s six goals and Jason Robertson picked up an assist to help Dallas (10-5-2, 22 points) stymie Florida’s comeback attempt at FLA Live Arena and maintain the top spot in the Central Division. Hintz (6-9—15 in 10 GP) and Robertson (9-10—19 in 10 GP) both extended their point streaks to 10 games and became the first Stars players with a double-digit run since Patrick Sharp from Dec. 19, 2015 to Jan. 9, 2016 (6-9—15 in 12 GP).
- After Teemu Selanne and Teppo Numminen were inducted into the Winnipeg Jets Hall of Fame during a pre-game ceremony, Kyle Connor netted his third career NHL hat trick to help the hosts improve to 10-4-1 (21 points) and reach the 10-win mark in 15 games for the first time in franchise history. Only four players have posted more hat tricks with the Jets/Thrashers than Connor, who also moved up the club’s all-time multi-goal games list: Ilya Kovalchuk (11), Patrik Laine (8), Mark Scheifele (5) and Nikolaj Ehlers (4).
- The Avalanche (9-5-1, 19 points) and Predators (8-8-1, 17 points) kept pace with the Stars and Jets on Thursday. Colorado goaltender Pavel Francouz made a career-high 46 saves and Artturi Lehkonen scored the overtime winner, while Nashville captain Roman Josi recorded four assists including three in the opening 9:41 of the first period.
- Thomas Greiss (47 saves) fell four saves shy of the most in a game by a Blues goaltender as St. Louis captured its fifth straight win on the heels of an eight-game losing streak. Only two teams in NHL history have recorded a longer winning streak immediately after suffering losses in eight or more consecutive games: Philadelphia in 2017-18 (6-0-0) and San Jose in 2005-06 (6-0-0). Each team had lost their previous 10 contests.
OVECHKIN CLIMBS NHL’S ALL-TIME POINTS LIST; CROSBY MAINTAINS LEAD
A pair of veterans had themselves a big night as Alex Ovechkin (1-2—3) continued his ascent of the League’s all-time points list, while Sidney Crosby (2-2—4) recorded the 36th four-point game of his NHL career to remain ahead of his longtime rival.
- The first of Ovechkin’s three points was his 401st career road goal, moving the Capitals captain within one of Wayne Gretzky (402) for the most in NHL history. Two days after Crosby passed Bryan Trottier on the League’s all-time points list, Ovechkin’s Thursday-night performance witnessed him do the same.
KINGS, CANUCKS SET TO CLASH AT ROGERS ARENA ON FRIDAY
Friday’s slate features Los Angeles (11-7-1, 23 points) visiting Vancouver (5-9-3, 13 points) in the first contest of the Pacific Division rivals’ four-game season series. The Canucks are 8-0-2 in their last 10 outings against the Kings dating to Nov. 24, 2018 (LAK: 2-5-3), which marks Vancouver’s longest active point streak versus one franchise.