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Wild surge past Blackhawks
The pre-game coverage all surrounded the two goalkeepers as it is widely thought that Devan Dubnyk, Minnesota Wild, and Corey Crawford, Blackhawks, are the two best keepers at this moment and time.
Devan Dubnyk made 36 saves to help the Wild to their first win of the season, 5-2 at United Center on Thursday.
Minnesota were on fire in the third period as they scored four goals playing with eight forwards after Marcus Foligno, Nino Niederreiter and Charlie Coyle each left with apparent injuries.
For Crawford, he made 29 saves but was unable to keep out a third period surge from the Wild. It was the first game the Blackhawks have failed to score more than two goals.
They had amazingly outscored opponents 21-7. “They came in ready,” said Chicago coach Joel Quenneville. “They were sharp off the puck drop. … They check well. They won a lot more puck battles than we did in vital situations”.
The goal of the game came after Seabrook kicked the puck into the Blackhawks zone from the neutral zone, Zucker managed to collect it, then skated into the left face-off circle and passed across the slot to Stewart.
Up next for the Wild is a home game against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday and for the Blackhawks, they also are the hosts as they welcome the Nashville Predators on Saturday.
Tampa scraps a win against the Penguins
Slater Koekkoek scored the first two goals of his NHL career to help Tampa Bay Lightning defeat the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-4 at Amalie Arena on Thursday.
This game also saw Steven Stamkos score his first goal in almost a year.
This goal clearly meant a lot to center who missed 65 games last season with a lateral meniscus tear in his right knee. “I knew it was a matter of time, so I wasn’t losing any sleep over it,” Stamkos said. “I’m just happy to be playing hockey again and glad to be part of some wins here.
I thought we came out strong against the Washington Capitals and followed that up for the most part. That’s two good teams that have come in here and we’ve gotten two wins, so we’ll look to build on that”.
Victor Hedman and Nikita Kucherov scored for Tampa, while Alex Killorn had four assists. Andrei Vasilevskiy had another impressive day in goal as he made 36 saves. Jake Guentzel and Bryan Rust each had a goal and an assist for the Penguins, albeit in vain.
Conor Sheary and Matt Hunwick scored, while Antti Niemi made 29 saves to keep up his good run of form.
The Penguins host the Florida Panthers on Saturday while the Lightning welcomes the St. Louis Blues on Saturday to the Amelia Arena.
Sharks record first victory of the season
It wasn’t just the Sharks’ first win of the season, Tomas Hertl, Chris Tierney and Timo Meier each scored their first goal of the season to help the Sharks win their first game, 3-2 against the winless Buffalo Sabres.
“It’s tough to lose the first two games, but I think it’s huge to win that game tonight and we want to build off that,” Meier said.
“We had a good week of practice, and I think it’s all about our mind set, sticking to our identity. Just go out there every night and compete and play hard”.
The Sharks took a 1-0 lead when Hertl scored on the power play in the first period, collecting Kevin Labanc’s cutback and finishing with a clever finish.
“We played great, all four lines,” said Hertl, who was moved from center on the third line to left wing on the second line. Pominville equalised at 12:26 of the first to tie it 1-1and the Sabres and Sharks traded goals until Timo Meier sealed the win.
The Sabres must now travel to the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday in desperate need to stop this winless streak. The Sharks will go into their next game at home to the New York Islanders on Saturday full of confidence after this very important win.