NHL Wednesday Night Live Thread

Before You Pig Out on Turkey Tomorrow, Get Your Fill of Hockey Tonight! [NHL Hump Day Live Thread]

11/23/11 in NHL   |   kramer   |   11004 respect

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and not one single team is playing tomorrow...happy Turkey Day from the NHL!  However, that means that tonight...IIIIIT'S A HOCKEY NIGHT, and a full one at that!  We've got games in Pittsburgh, DC, Detroit, Buffalo, San Jose, Phoenix, and everywhere in between.  In all there are 13 games, so what are we waiting for, let's hop aboard the Q Train, we've got plenty of stops to make!  ALL ABOARD!

First stop is Pittsburgh where the whole world is wondering what Sidney Crosby will do for an encore after his stellar return Monday night.  Overshadowed by his return was the fact that Marc-Andre Fleury also pitched a shutout.  The Blues are a much better team than the Isles, but at the same time the Blues are starting a stretch that's really going to tell us what they're made of.  Coming off a 3-2 loss on home ice last night, how will they respond?  This should be fun to watch!

St. Louis Blues @ Pittsburgh Penguins: 7:00 PM ET - FSN Midwest, ROOT Pittsburgh

Our next stop takes us to our Nation's Capital, where the Caps host the Jets.  Winnipeg is starting to win some games, while the Caps broke out of a slump with a big 4-2 victory over Phoenix 2 nights ago.  This all occurred by the way while Alex Semin was a healthy scratch...that's right.  That said, they did fall behind 2-0 early in the game, but scored 4 unanswered goals for a come from behind victory.  Will they win 2 in a row, or can the Jets stymie them again?
Winnipeg Jets @ Washington Capitals: 7:00 PM ET - TSN, CSN Washington

It's the Tale of Two Cities...or How Stella Got Her Groove Back.  The Flames beat the Wings in Detroit a few weeks ago, but since then the Flames have been inconsistent, while the Wings haven't lost on home ice.  On the road they're still shaky, but it looks like at least at the Joe, the Wings have gotten their mojo back.  Will they keep rolling along in front of the home crowd, or can the Flames torch them once again?

Calgary Flames @ Detroit Red Wings: 7:00 PM ET - TSN, FSN Detroit

This next game may be painful to watch.  The Flyers head to Long Island quite possibly without Pronger and Coburn.  That shouldn't make a big difference since they're playing an Isles team that has surrendered 11 goals in the past 2 games and hasn't found the back of the net once themselves.  This one could, and should get ugly very fast.
Philadelphia Flyers @ New York Islanders: 7:00 PM ET - CSN Philadelphia, MSG+

Next we're off to Niagara Falls, well close to it.  The Sabres are tied for the most wins in the east with 12.  Thanks to a 9-game win streak, the Bruins are one of the teams they're tied with.  Buffalo will look to put keep their division rivals from extending that hot streak to double digits.  Buffalo may be looking to get revenge from Milan Lucic smashing Ryan Miller.  Does the buck stop here?  We'll find out!
Boston Bruins @ Buffalo Sabres: 7:00 PM ET - NESN, MSG

Don't look now, but the Jackets are trying to put together an actual win streak.  They've won 2 in a row!  Can they make it 3?  I'm not holding my breath.  They are playing the Devils, who undoubtedly should be miles above them.  In fact the Jackets have never won in Newark.  That's not good, considering they're worse this year than they've perhaps ever been.  I see a stinker of a game here.
Columbus Blue Jackets @ New Jersey Devils: 7:00 PM ET - FSN Ohio, MSG+2

Our next stop is Raleigh where the Canes are coming off a 4-2 victory in Philly on Monday.  They look to keep things rolling against the visiting Habs, who beat them in Montreal just last week.  Beating one of the conference's best teams in their own building should give them a huge confidence boost though.  Cam Ward was his old dazzling self in Philly the other night, and it's going to take that same effort tonight against Montreal.

Montreal Canadiens @ Carolina Hurricanes: 7:00 PM ET - RDS, FSN Carolina

The Rangers had their win streak snapped Saturday, but they'll look to get right back on the horse in Florida tonight.  The Panthers, however, are starting to show everyone that the hot start was no fluke.  They've continued to play very well as of late.  This could be a goalie duel as Jose Theodore has been playing exceptionally well while King Henrik is his usual awesome self.  Due to the insanely good goalie matchup this should provide, first to 3 wins this game.
New York Rangers @ Florida Panthers: 7:30 PM ET - MSG, FSN Florida

We travel to the Twin Cities next where the Wild have proven to be another pleasant surprise to start the year.  The Preds are coming off a hard loss last night in Nashville in which Pekka Rinne was pulled in the first period.  They'll look to bounce back in Minneapolis, but this Wild team won't make it easy.  They've continued to defy all the odds, and when Nicklas Backstrom the goalie is playing well, this team is as tough as anyone.
Nashville Predators @ Minnesota Wild: 8:00 PM ET - FSN Tennessee, FSN North

The Stars finally beat the Oilers to break out of their slump a few nights ago, but they face a Kings team that's coming off a victory in St. Louis.  They usually suck in the Gateway City, but Quick has beaten the Stars like redheaded stepchildren in his career.  The 12-3-0 record and GAA under 2.0 against Dallas is insane.  This team needs to find the net if they're going to beat the Kings tonight!
Los Angeles Kings @ Dallas Stars:  8:30 PM ET - FSN West, FSN Southwest

Phoenix got beat in DC 2 nights ago to a struggling Caps team.  They'll try to right the ship against a Ducks team that has been struggling just as badly all year.  Can the Ducks avoid their first 7-game road losing streak in 2 years?  They'll need to actually score, and Mike Smith should be back in net.  That doesn't bode well for the Ducks, as he's been one of the toughest goalies to score on in the league.
Anaheim Ducks @ Phoenix Coyotes: 9:00 PM ET - FSN Prime Ticket - FSN Arizona

The next 2 teams seem to be Jekyll and Hyde to me.  The Canucks have dominated the Avs in recent years, but the Avs are a much improved team.  That said, they're still experiencing some growing pains, and that's to be expected out of such a young team.  The Canucks on the other hand should be better than they are.  This could either be a goalie duel or a barn burner.  Either way it's going to be close.
Vancouver Canucks @ Colorado Avalanche: 9:30 PM ET - Rogers Pacific, Altitude

Our night capper is at the Shark Tank, where the Sharks host the Blackhawks.  Both teams start the night with 12 wins.  This could very well be the game of the night.  However, the Hawks need to right the ship after getting embarrassed in Calgary and Edmonton.  The Sharks are playing better on home ice, and that's just dandy for a Hawks team trying to get back on the winning track.
Chicago Blackhawks @ San Jose Sharks: 10:30 PM ET - CSN Chicago, CSN California

You know the drill, this is your place to talk (or bitch) about the game(s) you're watching tonight!
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11/23/11   |   kramer   |   11004 respect

Blues win 3-2 in OT.  I'll be honest, the Pens were outplayed until about the last 10 minutes of the 3rd, and had absolutely no business going to OT in the first place.  I'll take this point with a grain of salt.

11/23/11   |   kramer   |   11004 respect

If not for Fleury the Blues would have 3 or 4 goals.  This should make St. Louis nervous though, as they've had tons of chances and still only have 1 goal of their own after 40 minutes.  It's games like this where the trailing team finds a way to win.

11/23/11   |   kramer   |   11004 respect

The Blues have a 1-0 lead and they awarded the Blues a 2nd goal, however it appears David Backes kicked the puck into the net...and no goal they say, so it's still just 1-0 despite the Blues playing miles above the Pens.