Sport NHL on NBCSN: Confidence in roster led to quiet deadline for Blues
Blackhawks-Hurricanes stream: Tuesday’s NHL on NBCSN matchup
Coverage of Blackhawks-Hurricanes begins at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app.Hurricanes defenseman Dougie Hamilton enters Tuesday’s contest with the League’s longest active point streak (14 games, 2G-14A). Hamilton extended the streak with an assist on Martin Necas’ eventual game-winning power play goal during the third period of Carolina’s 4-3 win over first-place Tampa on Saturday. In doing so, Hamilton surpassed Auston Matthews (13 games) for the longest point streak this season. Edmonton’s Connor McDavid is the only other player with an active point streak of at least 10 games.
NBCSN’s coverage of the 2020-21 NHL season continues with the Wednesday Night Hockey matchup between the Colorado Avalanche and St. Louis Blues. Avalanche-Blues stream coverage begins at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN. You can watch the game online and on the NBC Sports app by.
Blues GM Doug Armstrong didn’t see a need to make an earth shattering move before.
The Blues aren’t comfortable by any stretch, but theyin the West Division ahead of the Wednesday Night Hockey matchup with division leading Colorado. St. Louis is a point ahead of fifth-place Arizona with two games in-hand on the Coyotes, and are four points ahead of sixth-place San Jose.
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Teams are doing a solid job creating their own cosmic luck -- or messes -- but the changing of the stars always means there's room for more.Teams are doing a solid job creating their own cosmic luck — or messes — but the changing of the stars always means there’s room for more.
Making a move to keep up with the Joneses? That’s never a recipe for success. There would have been salary cap gymnastics that would have been needed to make a bold move.or could have brought in assets to help either now or for the future, but the Blues made additions that didn’t cost anything.
has been back since early March; same for . and returned to the lineup earlier this month. Those are four key contributors who play a lot and produce in their own ways. Now the goals are starting to come for the Blues after struggling to score for most of the season.
There was a time, however, when Armstrong had the thought of selling. That 2-8-4 run that began in March led to the GM planning out return requests for some of his players. The phones went quiet and the Blues won three in a row and the Coyotes went on a losing streak. That brought back the belief that playoff hockey could be a reality this season.
The Buzzer: Surging Saros, Brady Tkachuk vs. Weber (Saturday in the NHL)
Scores, highlights, and more from around the league. Also more on the Canucks' COVID situation.For most of us, it was getting challenging to latch onto memories of Saros rebounding late in seasons during recent years. Through February (12 games), Saros was 5-5-0 with a troubling .898 save percentage. As much as the Predators wanted to let the 25-year-old take the torch from 38-year-old Pekka Rinne, they were running out of time.
“Each trade deadline has its own uniqueness, but with the shortened season and our fluctuation in play, it had our minds going in different directions,” Armstrong said Monday. “Certainly the play of the last three games and being in a playoff spot today was a reflection of really deciding to stand pat with this group.”
Consistency has been lacking this season for St. Louis, and we’ll see over the next month whether this three-game win streak steered Armstrong onto the wrong path. But healing up, plus aagainst the Coyotes could really cement their spot in the playoff race.
Look at Armstrong’s past and you’ll see times where he dealt key players —, — while the Blues were still in contention. That’s a sign of a lack of confidence in the roster. This season, however, he believes in his charges.
Oilers-Senators stream: Wednesday’s NHL on NBCSN matchup
Coverage begins at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app.McDavid (64 points) and Draisaitl (57 points) rank first and second in the League in scoring this season. The Edmonton pair finished first and second last season with Draisaitl claiming the Art Ross Trophy. If the duo finish 1-2 again, they would become the first set of teammates to sweep the top-two spots in consecutive years since Boston’s Phil Esposito and Bobby Orr did so in the ’73-74 and ’74-75 campaigns. Together, Esposito and Orr finished 1-2 on five separate occasions.
“You want so much for the players to experience playoff hockey,” Armstrong said. “I don’t want to say that I was any more frustrated than the coaches were or any more frustrated than the players were. It was a collective frustration, but also a collective understanding that nobody really cares if you’re frustrated or not.
“If you start to feel sorry for yourself — or God forbid, you’re willing to say, ‘We’ll get them next year’… If I had felt that was the indication, then there would have been a lot of player movement because our jobs are to fight to the bitter end until they tell us to stop fighting.”
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Blue Jackets-Lightning stream: Sunday’s NHL on NBCSN matchup .
Coverage begins at 6 p.m. ET on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app.Defending Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Bay is firmly in the top three of the Central Division standings with nine games left on its regular season schedule. The Lightning, which has yet to secure a playoff spot, trail Central-leading Carolina by four points. They enter Sunday’s contest against Columbus having alternated wins and losses in each of their last six games (3-3-0). The Blue Jackets were eliminated from playoff contention with the loss.