Of the 8 NHL games played on a busy Sunday, 5 required extra time to declare a winner. In addition to the Ottawa Senators shootout loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins, there were 4 other games solved after 60 minutes. Here is a quick tour around the league:
- Alex Ovechkin had the winner for the Washington Capitals as they defeated the Buffalo Sabres 3-2. It was Washington’s first win of the year, becoming the last team to win their first game. Joel Ward had a goal and an assist in the win, while Michal Neuvirth made 22 saves in the win. The Sabres were without Thomas Vanek, who had been on the ice for every Sabres goal this season prior to Sunday’s game. The Sabres had scored 11 goals in their first 4 games. Vanek was in on 9 of them and was on the ice for the other 2.
- The Montreal Canadiens let a 3-1 third period lead slip away, but Andrei Markov scored his third straight game winner of the season in overtime to lift the Habs to a 4-3 win over the New Jersey Devils. The loss for the Devils means that every team in the Eastern Conference has lost at least one game, as they were the only undefeated team standing in the East.
- The Philadelphia Flyers Sean Couturier scored in the first minute, but it was all Tampa Bay Lightning after that as they cruised to a 5-1 win. Vincent Lecavalier had a goal and a momentum-swinging fight with Flyers defenseman Luke Schenn in the first period to lead his team to victory. Michael Leighton was victimized by all 5 Lightning goals, four of them being set up by Martin St. Louis.
- The Chicago Blackhawks improved to 6-0 and remain one of two unbeaten teams as they downed the Detroit Red Wings 2-1 in overtime. Nick Leddy scored the winner to keep the Blackhawks perfect, while Corey Crawford made 30 saves.
- Evander Kane had a goal and an assist and was the overtime hero as he led the Winnipeg Jets to a 5-4 victory over the New York Islanders. Al Montoya got his first win as a Jet, while John Tavares had a goal and two assists in the losing cause.
- Wade Redden opened the scoring for the second straight game, but the St. Louis Blues got all they could handle from the Minnesota Wild as they needed overtime to get the 5-4 win. Zach Parise had 2 goals and an assist in a 12 minute span in the second to give the Wild a 3-1 lead, but St. Louis replied with three of their own before Dany Heatley forced overtime. Vladimir Sobotka was the hero, netting his first of the season 2:16 into the extra frame.
- Cory Schneider and the Vancouver Canucks held Patrick Marleau under 2 goals for the first time this season, but it was Joe Pavelski with the pair leading the San Jose Sharks to a 4-1 win. Joe Thornton and Marleau each also had 2 points to remain tied atop NHL scoring with 13 points each. San Jose remains the other undefeated team (5-0) in the league as they race with the Chicago Blackhawks to be the last team standing.
There are 5 games on the schedule Monday night as the most intriguing matchup sees Roberto Luongo likely to get the start against the team that eliminated his Vancouver Canucks and made him essentially a spare part in Vancouver, the Los Angeles Kings.