Rene Bourque and the Calgary Flames cruised to an easy 6-2 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Flames put up three first period goals on the Blue Jackets and gave Henrik Karlsson a memorable experience in his first NHL start.
While Bourque scored three and added an assist he almost scored four as he also had a goal disallowed. For the second Calgary win in a row, the Alberta native put in the game winner.
He now has four goals in five games and should have hit the 30 goal plateau last season if he did not miss nine games with injuries. His offense truly provides a spark for his team as Niclas Hagman, Ian White and Alex Tanguay all factored into the scoring and the captain Jarome Iginla added three helpers of his own.
The Blue Jackets scored via Jan Hejda and Derek Dorsett but got no primary scoring from their talented top two lines.
In Buffalo, Brian Elliott continued to have the Buffalo Sabres’ number as he stopped 34 of 36 shots and won 4-2. Although we predicted a strong outing from Elliott, it was Erik Karlsson and Daniel Alfredsson who helped the team seal the win, with Alfie scoring the hatty and Karlsson assisting on two.
Tim Connolly scored the only two goals for the Sabres as they failed to put together their first winning streak of the season.
Meanwhile, in Atlanta, Steven Stamkos solidified the third hat trick of the evening, putting in his unprecedented eighth goal of the season. The Lightning powerplay seemed to be clicking without Simon Gagne with Vincent Lecavalier having a nice evening and registering two points.
On the flip side, winger-turned-defenseman Dustin Byfuglien potted a powerplay goal of his own and assisted on a tally from Jim Slater. His numbers look pretty good for a defenseman as the playoff hero already has six points in seven games.
Chris Mason had trouble stopping most of the Lightning onslaught on the night and eventually let backup Peter Mannino get a try– who was better, stopping 15 of 16 before Stamkos put the puck in an empty net to seal the win.
The St. Louis Blues had the last laugh last night as they defeated their rivals, the Chicago Blackhawks.
For the second time this week sniper David Perron put up two goals against the Hawks. His skill level is simply top notch as he deserves far more credit than he gets. Coming up during his draft year the talented wing has improved his goal scoring every season with 13, 15 and 20 last season. He is on pace for 54 as of right now but could realistically pot 30 for the first time in his career.
Roman Polak and Patrik Berglund added two third period goals as the Blues cruised into their victory. For the Hawks, both Patrick Sharp and Brent Seabrook put the puck in the net as they continue their top-heavy production.
In Vancouver, the Canucks trounced the Minnesota Wild and Jose Theodore 5-1. Theodore, making his Wild debut, allowed five goals on 35 shots while he watched the much younger Cory Schneider turn away 23 of 24. For those counting at home, Schneider has two wins and the team has three.
If the Canucks can continue to score this way, it really should not matter who is between the pipes. Their current starting goalie Roberto Luongo should benefit from their waves of attack. Speaking of which, Manny Malhotra earned the star of the game with his three point night while Jeff Tambellini scored his first, assisted by both Sedins.
Watching the pride of British Columbia should be a treat as not only do they expect to win, but it appears they will continue to make things interesting.