Another big night of goalscoring across the NHL as 60 goals were scored in the 10 games played. Lets take a look at which rookies and prospects impacted their teams games…
Patrik Laine posted his second hat trick in just 14 games played at the NHL level in Winnipeg's 8-2 domination of Dallas. The Finnish superstar-to-be now leads the NHL in goals scored with 11. He has scored in three straight for the Jets, and has seven points over that same span. Coming into the season, some thought that he could be a 30 goal scorer as a rookie, and thats proving to be an attainable number. Teams will continue to evolve defensively against the sniper, learning more of his tendancies as he plays more games. However, Laine has proven that if he gets even an inch of space to get his shot off, theres a good chance of it being buried in the back of the net.
Check out his third goal from last night: Laine takes Scheifele's pass (that would handcuff a lesser player) at full speed and instead of allowing to puck to get buried in his skates, he opens his body up to accept the pass and lean on a beautiful one timer. Top-end talent.
Laine's Third Goal (Sorry the embed is being wonky)
Another rookie who has been on fire as of late is Pavel Buchnevich. The Rangers forward posted a goal and two assists in New York's 5-3 loss to Vancouver last night, extending his goal streak to three games. Buchnevich hasnt missed a beat after sitting out five games due to injury in October. He now has seven points in nine games, and looks to be carving out a permanent spot in both the Rangers top-nine and first power play unit.
Andreas Athanasiou continues to show that he needs more ice time. The 2012 fourth round selection scored the game tying goal half-way through the third period that would eventually send the game to overtime, and on to a shootout. In the shootout, Athanasiou netted the only goal, and shootout winner after five saves from Jimmy Howard and Steve Mason.
Much of the talk on Tuesday night centered around Connor McDavid versus Sidney Crosby when the Oilers and Penguins took the ice in Pittsburgh. However, it was Crosby's teammate Conor Sheary who stole the show. The 24 year old Sheary scored twice, including the game winner in a 4-3 Penguins win. Sheary has seven points in his last six games, despite averaging just over 12 minutes per game.
Not to be outdone, Connor McDavid recorded three primary assists in his teams loss, giving him 12 for the season. That number leads the NHL.
A few firsts from last night…
– San Jose prospect Kevin Labanc played 13 minutes in his NHL debut last night alongside Logan Couture and Joonas Donskoi. He did not record a point. Labanc has had a great start to his eason at the AHL level with 10 points in his first six games.
– Defenseman Anthony DeAngelo also made his NHL debut last night, and scored his first NHL goal in a 4-2 Arizona Coyotes win over the Colorado Avalanche.
– First NHL point for Kings defenseman Kevin Gravel, who was called up to the NHL on November 3rd. He has appeared in three games, chipping in with nine hits and six blocked shots.
Team WHL defeated Russia 4-1 in Game Two of the CHL's Canada-Russia Series. Vancouver Giant and Oilers prospect Tyler Benson led the way with a goal and two assists. Brandon's Kyle Clauge (LA), Everett's Noah Juulsen (MON) and Regina's Austin Wagner (LA) also got their names on the score sheet for Team WHL. The next game in the series will take place when Team OHL takes on the Russian team tomorrow night in North Bay.
NHL Games tonight:
Anaheim at Columbus: 7:00 PM ET
Ottawa at Buffalo: 7:30 PM ET
Chicago at St. Louis: 8:00 PM ET
Enjoy the hockey!
Give Kevin a follow @kleblanchockey for NHL prospect talk and happenings.