First of all I would just like to add an apology to the likely 1 percent of our readers who relied on our Curtis McElhinney/Jonas Hiller non-call. Usually I stay on the site until 10 or 10:30 to confirm Hiller but there was a death in the family which did not allow me to properly report the goalie change when it happened at 10 PM, and for that I apologize. The same goes for this very late nightly scrap. I haven’t missed one yet and do not intend to as the season progresses.
At a little past 7 PM, the Pittsburgh Penguins announced they would play without superstar Evgeni Malkin.In what was the second of back-to-back nights, the Pens clearly wanted to avoid losing both games.
With Brent Johnson between the pipes the team did just that, winning 3-0 against the Carolina Hurricanes– who also played the night before. The top line with Sidney Crosby scored two of the three markers but it was Pascal Dupuis as the triggerman, scoring his third and fourth on the season.
Johnson, however, was not the top goalie of the night as four other starters allowed goose-eggs around the League.
Henrik Lundqvist grabbed his first shutout of the year, fighting off a hungry Toronto Maple Leafs team. His team claimed the victory with good forechecking and markers from Brian Boyle and Ryan Callahan, as they both scored their fourth of the year.
Tim Thomas seems to be in full possession of the starting role in Boston as he posted his second consecutive shutout and improved to 6-0-0. Milan Lucic, Tyler Seguin, Jordan Caron and David Krejci all scored for the Bruins who are creeping up to Montreal in the standings.
Dan Ellis has also started a shutout streak of his own. After playing 48 perfect minutes of relief to defeat the Pens on Wednesday, Ellis made another 23 en route to a 3-0 shutout against the Phoenix Coyotes. Steven Stamkos put his ninth of the season in the net after the bottom two lines got the team up 2-0. The only fantasy relevance on the Yotes side came in the form of PIMs by Shane Doan and Keith Yandle.
Andrew Raycroft has yet to let a goal in, getting a shutout in his first start for the Stars as they beat the Buffalo Sabres 4-0. James Neal, Brenden Morrow, Steve Ott and Trevor Daley all got goals as the Stars earned their sixth win of the young season.
Now lets move from the perfect to the almost perfect.
Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 30 of 31 shots as his Philadelphia Flyers cruised to a 6-1 victory over the New York Islanders. Both Jeff Carter and Chris Pronger scored two goals while Kimmo Timonen posted three points in the rout. After being promoted to the top line, Andreas Nodl scored his second goal of the year as well.
Tomas Vokoun gave his best impersonation of Patrick Roy when he stopped 40 of 41 in Montreal and the Florida Panthers won 3-1. After getting benched earlier in the week, both Shawn Matthias and Michael Frolik responded with goals while leading scorer David Booth put one in off a penalty shot.
Just 24 hours after allowing four goals on 12 shots, Marty Turco threw up a beauty, stopping 25 shots and winning his sixth game of the year. Troy Brouwer and Duncan Keith both scored their first goals on the season while Jake Dowell put in his third. In addition, Patrick Kane seems to be turning the corner with two assists of his own, giving him a four game point streak.
In another starting appearance Peter Budaj almost blanked the visiting Columbus Blue Jackets and the often-disappointing Steve Mason. As usual, the top line of Chris Stewart, Paul Stastny and TJ Galiardi lead the team to victory, combining for 2 goals, 3 assists, +5 and 4 PIM. Their second line really should not be disregarded either.
Jonathan Quick and the Los Angeles Kings simply got the better of a tired and still inconsistent New Jersey Devils team. Led by their second line, Justin Williams and Jarret Stoll each scored a goal and Michal Handzus added a powerplay marker. The rookie, Matt Taormina scored the only goal for the Devils, who now dropped to 3-8-1 and once again 15th in the Eastern Conference. On top of that the team may have lost left wing Zach Parise.
In all the ruckus there were also some useful starts that got the win.
Antero Niitymaki played an excellent game against the Anaheim Ducks, defeating them 5-2. The top line with Joe Thornton, Patrick Marleau and Dany Heatley combined for three goals and seven total points as the Shark won this Battle of California. Teemu Selanne, Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf connected for two third-period powerplay goals but were too late to actually sway the game in their favor.
Alexander Ovechkin and company simply dominated the Calgary Flames in a 7-2 win. The Great 8 scored two and helped out on another while Mike Green had three points and Nicklas Backstrom put up four. Michal Neuvirth was good enough to win his seventh game in this lopsided afair.
When the Detroit Red Wings stars are scoring, all is well with their team. That is exactly what happened with Pavel Datsyuk scoring twice and the Wings defeated the Nashville Predators 5-2 in front of Chris Osgood. The ageless Nicklas Lidstrom and veteran Ruslan Salei each put up two assists even though the third line failed to score for yet another game.
Our last game of a long action-packed night of hockey featured the St. Louis Blues against the Atlanta Thrashers– who followed no patterns similar to the games above. The Thrashers could have started former Blues netminder Chris Mason but elected to throw Ondrej Pavelec between the pipes. His second start of the year was spoiled by a Jay McClement hat trick followed by a shootout loss. Andrew Ladd would continue to produce with two assists while Nik Antropov and Rich Peverley made up for the loss of Bryan Little with multi-point games of their own.
Overall an exciting night in hockey for both fantasy owners and hockey fans around the world. We hope you enjoyed our most recent edition of Nightly Scrap, be sure to check out plenty more of our new material moving forward. You can follow us on twitter @dailyfaceoff as we continue to bring you information on starting goalies, team lineups and major injury updates as well as provide in-depth injury updates in the future.