Noteworthy is a feature blatantly ripped off from Trey Kerby and The Basketball Jones crew that catches you up on everything you need to know from the night before in the NHL.
Devils/Panthers, Devils won 3-2 in OT
Guess who’s back. Back again: Travis Zajac had a tough season, only getting in the lineup 15 times thanks to surgery on his Achilles (prior to it, he had played in 401 straight games. Did you even know he’d been in the league that long?). But last night should take some of the sting out, as he scored his 6th career playoff goal, winning the game for the Devils off a Kovalchuk pass in overtime. The recognition by Florida’s D on the play was just, truly, terrible.
That they were: The whole “need your best players to be your best players” thing worked out well for the Devils. Zajac had one and one, Kovalchuk did too, and Parise’s stat line: an assist, plus one, five shots, a blocked shot, two takeaways, two hits, and nearly 25 minutes of ice time. Not. Too. Shabby.
Lopsided: The game may have gone to OT, but New Jersey was all over the Panthers net – Scott Clemmensen made 39 saves, as the Devils outshot Florida 42-16, including a dominating 16-4 second period (in which Florida scored both their goals, oddly).
Iron lungs: Brian Campbell was on the ice for 27:10, more than anyone else in the game. Dude takes abuse because he’s overpaid, but…so what if he is? Panthers don’t have cap issues, and he’s been extremely valuable to them this season.
Iron lungs, powerplay edition: Ilya Kovalchuk plays more minutes than any other forward just about every season, but his TOI from last night is silly: he logged 7:24 of ice time.
…Oh, on the powerplay, I should specify that that was on the powerplay, and probably also that the Panthers only had eight PIMS as a team yesterday. That’s more ice that some forwards see in a full game. (His game total was 26:25.)
Iron throat: This had to hurt like hell, right? Here’s Tomas Kopecky unintentionally “jousting” Peter Harrold’s throat:
That could’ve ended worse.
Black aces, unimpressive edition: I don’t know why I’m so enthralled with the total of AHL players teams choose to have around as black aces, but these two teams combined to have seven. Phoenix had 17 alone yesterday. I’m not sure what Phoenix is trying to accomplish.
Game 7′s: We’re going to be treated to three of ‘em, Boston and Washington at 7:30 ET tonight, then Florida/New Jersey and Ottawa/New York Thursday night.
Moving pictures: If the tidbits didn’t fill you in enough, check out every relevant highlight from last night: