NHL Review March 26, 2021

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NHL Review March 26, 2021

ZIBANEJAD RE-WRITES NHL HISTORY BOOK WITH ANOTHER SIX-POINT OUTING

After matching an NHL record for most points in a single period last week against the Flyers, Rangers forward Mika Zibanejad (3-3—6) mirrored his performance with another natural hat trick and another six-point outing. He outscored teammates Adam Fox (0-5—5), who matched a regular-season franchise record for assists in a game, and Ryan Strome (1-3—4) as the Rangers beat the Flyers 8-3.

Zibanejad became the first player in NHL history to record six or more points in consecutive games played against one opponent within a regular season.

He is also one of three players in League history to record multiple games with six or more points against the same opponent at any point in a single campaign — and the first to do so in nearly 80 years.

Zibanejad also became the third player in NHL history to score a natural hat trick in consecutive games against the same opponent in a single season, joining Buffalo’s Thomas Vanek (2007-08 vs. TBL) and Washington’s Peter Bondra (1995-96 vs. NYI).

The Rangers forward joined Sidney Crosby (1-5—6 on Dec. 13, 2006 and 2-4—6 on Jan. 19, 2010) as the second active NHL player with multiple six-point outings in his career.

Zibanejad became the fourth player in the last 30 seasons to record six or more points in a game multiple times in a single campaign, joining Mario Lemieux (3x in 1991-92, 2x in 1992-93 & 2x in 1995-96), Eric Lindros (2x in 1996-97) and Pat LaFontaine (2x in 1991-92).

Flyers forward Samuel Morin has been fined $3,017.24, the maximum allowable under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, for unsportsmanlike conduct against New York Rangers forward Brendan Lemieux during Thursday night’s game. The incident occurred at 18:34 of the third period. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

GRIMALDI SCORES EARLY AND OFTEN TO SET AND MATCH CLUB RECORDS

Rocco Grimaldi scored four of the Predators’ seven goals, including three in a span of 2:34 during the opening 8:08 of the first period, to record his first career hat trick as Nashville swept its two-game set against the Detroit Red Wings.

He set a franchise record for the fastest three goals in a game – at any point and from the start of a contest – and later equaled the club mark for most goals in a single game with four. It was the second straight day that an NHL player posted at least four goals in a game.

Grimaldi’s hat trick marked the fifth time in Predators history that a player has scored three goals in a single period and just the second time a player has done so in the opening frame. It also marked the 10th-fastest hat trick from the start of a regular-season game in NHL history.

CROSBY REACHES 1,300-POINT MARK IN PENGUINS WIN

Sidney Crosby (475-825—1,300 in 1,017 GP) tallied three assists to become the eighth-fastest player in NHL history to reach the 1,300-point milestone. He followed Joe Thornton (423-1,098—1,521 in 1,657 GP) and Alex Ovechkin (721-584—1,305 in 1,180 GP) as the third active NHL player to hit the benchmark.

Crosby became the 14th player in NHL history to accumulate 1,300 or more points with one franchise and the second to do so with the Penguins (Mario Lemieux: 690-1,033—1,723 in 915 GP).

Crosby recorded three assists in a contest for the 57th time in his career, one shy of matching Thornton (58) for the 12th most such instances in NHL history. Since he entered the League in 2005-06, no player has recorded more three-assist outings than Crosby.

HONDA WEST DIVISION HEATING UP AS AVALANCHE, WILD PULL CLOSER TO VEGAS

The Avalanche (21-8-3, 45 points) claimed the first of consecutive games against the Golden Knights (22-8-1, 45 points) to pull even with them in terms of points atop the division standings, while the Wild (21-10-1, 43 points) continued their franchise-record home win streak to move within two points of first place.

Gabriel Landeskog (1-1—2) notched multiple points for the fourth time in five games and Philipp Grubauer (17 saves) recorded his 20th win of the season as the Avalanche extended their point streak to nine games (8-0-1). Landeskog boosted his totals to 7-13—20 in March (14 GP), marking the first time he has had as many points in a single calendar month.

Cam Talbot (37 saves) posted his second shutout in six games as the Wild improved to 11-0-0 at Xcel Energy Center since Jan. 31 (allowing fewer than three goals in each of their last six home games). Rookie scoring leader Kirill Kaprizov (11-16—27 in 32 GP) moved into ties for fourth and fifth place in franchise history for points and goals by a rookie in a single season, respectively.

DIVISION LEADERS CLAIM OT WINS; HURRICANES DO SAME TO INCH CLOSER

A pair of division leaders – the Islanders and Maple Leafs – claimed overtime wins following third-period goals in their games, while the Hurricanes did the same to maintain the No. 2 spot in the Discover Central Division:

The Bruins tied the game just 54 seconds after New York’s third straight goal gave them a lead, but Anthony Beauvillier scored in overtime to help the Islanders improve to 5-0-0 this season against Boston. They are the first club since the 2007-08 Canadiens to post five or more consecutive wins against the Bruins in a regular season and the first since 2009-10 to post five wins against the club at any point in one campaign.

After surrendering a tying goal in the third period, Maple Leafs teammates Mitchell Marner (0-1—1) and Auston Matthews (0-1— 1) set up the overtime winner and helped Toronto maintain first place in the Scotia North Division. Jack Campbell improved to 5-0-0 this season.

In a back-and-forth contest that saw Columbus even the score with 16 seconds left in the third period, Dougie Hamilton (0-1—1) extended his point streak to 13 games and Sebastian Aho scored in overtime as Carolina (22-7-3, 47 points) inched closer to Tampa Bay (24-7-2, 50 points) for first place in the Discover Central Division standings.

KESSEL EXPECTED TO PLAY 1,100TH NHL GAME ON FOUR-GAME FRIDAY

A four-game Friday is expected to see Coyotes forward Phil Kessel lace up for his 878th consecutive regular-season game – the 1,100th of his NHL career.

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