THere were 5 games on the NHL schedule Wednesday night, with only one Eastern Conference matchup and a battle of the titans in the West. Here is a quick tour around the league:
- Nazem Kadri had 3 assists to lead the Maple Leafs to a 4-2 win over the Lightning. Toronto jumped out to a 4-0 lead on goals by Joffrey Lupul, Dion Phaneuf, Tyler Bozak and Nikolai Kulemin before Tampa got on the board. The Lightning rallied but it was too little too late as Radko Gudas scored his first NHL goal to break James Reimer‘s shutout bid almost 8 minutes into the third, and Cory Conacher added another with 3 minutes left.
- Devin Setoguchi had a pair and Mikko Koivu and Kyle Brodziak added singles as the Wild jumped back ahead of the Canucks for first in the Northwest with a 4-2 win over the Red Wings. Gustav Nyquist and Drew Miller scored for the Wings. Niklas Backstrom turned aside 36 shots for the Wild as they were outshot 38-19.
- Colorado stunned the Stars and in the process prevented Dallas from moving within a point of 8th, with a 4-3 win. Dallas took a 3-2 lead into the third but Ryan O’Reilly and Chuck Kobasew tallied in the final frame to give the Avs the win. Mark Olver and Gabriel Landeskog also scored for the Avs to tie it up earlier in the game after falling behind 2-0 in the first. Jaromir Jagr and Trevor Daley had given the Stars the early lead, and Ray Whitney broke the 2-2 tie before the end of the second, setting the stage for Colorado’s comeback.
- Logan Couture scored twice and added one in the shootout to give the Sharks a much needed win in Edmonton. Tommy Wingels had the game tying goal after Couture had narrowed a 3-1 Oilers lead to 3-2. Sam Gagner, Shawn Horcoff and Ryan Jones scored for Edmonton, who now sit 3 points behind the 8th place Sharks.
- The Ducks scored 3 times in the third period to shock the Blackhawks 4-2 in a battle of the top two teams in the Western Conference. Bobby Ryan tied the game at 2 with just 5 and a half minutes left, and Teemu Selanne scored the winner just over a minute later, and Sheldon Souray iced it with an empty netter. Peter Holland had given the Ducks an early lead just under 90 seconds in, but a shorthanded goal by Jonathan Toews and then a power play marker from Nick Leddy had the Hawks on to going into the third. The win moves the Ducks within 3 points of Chicago for first overall, with a game in hand.
That concludes our tour around the NHL for a moderately busy Wednesday night. As usual, Thursday is a busy night around the league with Boston facing Ottawa and Toronto facing Buffalo among the 9 games, many of which have Eastern Conference playoff implication. Check back tomorrow for a full recap.