Here are my top 3 stories from around the NHL on a busy Saturday:
1. NHL Honours – There were a number of ceremonies honouring different players and their personal accomplishments around the NHL. In addition to Chris Phillips‘ 1,000th game, the Calgary Flames were celebrating goalie Mikka Kiprusoff’s 300th win. The Toronto Maple Leafs honored former captain Mats Sundin and raised his jersey to the rafters (the Leafs don’t retire numbers) and the Phoenix Coyotes added Jeremy Roenick to the club’s Ring of Honour.
2. Panthers Won’t Go Away -The Florida Panthers continue to set the pace in the Southeast Division, and their win over the New Jersey Devils opened up a 2 point lead on the Washington Capitals. Neither team is setting the world on fire, but the Panthers are doing enough to keep their head above water in the race where one team will get the #3 seed, while the other could be on the outside looking in come April.
3. Sidney Who? – Evgeni Malkin continues to make sure that the Pittsburgh Penguins will be in good shape if and when Sidney Crosby can return. The NHL’s leading scorer had a goal and 4 assists in the Pens’ 8-5 win over the Winnipeg Jets, and now holds a 5 point edge in the scoring race over Claude Giroux and Steven Stamkos.