Another NHL weekend in the books. A couple of legends crossed the line on the ice, and the star put on a show in her homeland. However, one team found itself in the spotlight with a dumb staffing decision.
Let’s take a look at the best moments and most important storylines of the weekend in the NHL.
Weekend goal: Brad Marchand beat Ilya Samsonov
In Saturday’s game between the Boston Bruins and the Toronto Maple Leafs, Marchand earned a penalty which he took full advantage of. Marchand hit Samsonov with a dirty fake shot, and the Toronto goalkeeper took the bait – hard.
The goalkeeper was completely broken, and when Marchand hit him from the left, Samsonov could only cling back.
Unfortunately for the Maple Leafs and Samsonov, this penalty became something of a double blow. Not only will Samsonov receive prize packages, he also suffered a knee injury during the game, head coach Sheldon Keefe announced after the game.
Weekend Heist: Kevin Shattenkirk streams his inner John Gibson
Goalkeepers are loved here. We have absolutely nothing against them. However, when a skater makes a big save while wearing some protection, we can’t ignore it. That’s what Ducks quarterback Kevin Shattenkirk did Sunday against the Florida Panthers.
Some tricky pass past the Panthers knocked Gibson out of position, and Sam Bennett thought he was down. It was then that Shattenkirk slid onto the stage and made an incredible stop, using his stick and glove to keep the puck out of the net.
This would count as a blocked shot on the stats table, but all blocked shots are not the same. It was the best save you have ever seen.
Alex Ovechkin breaks Gordie Howe’s record
With every game played, Ovechkin rises in the NHL record books. In Saturday’s game against the Arizona Coyotes, Ovechkin scored the 787th goal of his career and broke Gordie Howe’s record for most goals in a single game.
Howe scored 786 points in 1,687 games for the Red Wings, and it took Ovechkin 400 fewer games for the Washington Capitals to surpass that number.
Fittingly, Ovechkin’s record-breaker showed up in characteristic fashion, with an all-out left-hand powerplay shot. The fact that Ovechkin beat Mr. Hockey in this great Reverse Retro jersey makes things even better.
Now, it shouldn’t be long before Ovechkin passes Howe on the NHL’s all-time best goals list. He only needs 15 more to do so, and then he will be the sole owner of second behind Wayne Gretzky.
Boston Bruins messed up with Mitchell Miller
Unhappy with the Bruins’ hot start to the 2022-23 season, president Cam Neely and general manager Don Sweeney wanted to make a splash. But at the same time, they demonstrated a striking inaccuracy in decision-making.
On November 4, the Bruins announced that they had signed defenseman Mitchell Miller at the entry level. Miller was originally selected by the Arizona Coyotes in the 2022 NHL Entry Draft, but the team reversed the selection after it was revealed that Miller had been convicted of bullying in juvenile court. In 2016, Miller was charged with assault after bullying a black student with learning disabilities. The victim, Isaiah Meyer-Croters, said Miller repeatedly called him “the n-word”, physically abused him, and tricked him into eating candy that had been wiped off in the urinal.
Isaiah’s mother, Joni Meyer-Croters, claims that Miller apologized to her son on Snapchat about a week before the signing. She doesn’t think Miller’s apology was all that sincere.
“When Mitchell snapchatted my son a week and a half ago, he apologized and said, ‘This has nothing to do with hockey. Well, it has a lot to do with hockey.” Joni Meyer-Crothers told NBC Boston.
When it became known that the team had signed Miller, there was an immediate backlash. The Bruins’ front office also put players in the awkward position of having to be held accountable for management’s decisions, even if they didn’t fully agree with them. Captain Patrice Bergeron made it clear that he had doubts about whether Miller would be a good fit for the culture the crew had built:
“More than a week ago, Don (Sweeney) asked me for my opinion. As you just said, I had my own concerns. I shared my opinion. I think in a way I disagree with him. To be honest, I think the culture we’ve created here is against this type of behavior. I think we are a team that has created something about character and character people. What he did is obviously unacceptable and we do not support it. For me, in this dressing room we are all for inclusion, diversity and respect. These are the keywords and core values that we have.
“We expect the guys who wear this jersey to be people of high character, honesty and respect. Here’s how they should act. My understanding is that he’s going to work on development programs and community programs to get better. It depends on him. I believe this is the decision of hockey operations. We can control what we can control. Hopefully there is some growth and some changes. frankly, in this dressing room you would not be accepted, not wanted and not welcomed.
To make matters worse, the team said they did “due diligence” on signing Miller, but didn’t even contact the Meyer-Crothers family to check if he would be eligible to play in the NHL. According to commissioner Gary Bettman, the Bruins have been cleared to sign Miller, but he has not yet been cleared to play in the NHL.
Late Sunday night, Neely announced that the Bruins had parted ways with Miller, ending a brief but embarrassing saga that shouldn’t have started at all.
Mikko Rantanen demonstrates Finnish language skills in his home country
On Friday, the Colorado Avalanche and Columbus Blue Jackets played the first of two Global Series games in Tampere, Finland. This gave Avalanche striker Mikko Rantanen the opportunity to play in his home country and he looked at home.
In Friday’s game, Rantanen scored a hat-trick in a 6-3 win and sent the Nokia Arena into a frenzy. He even added an assist from Cale Makar and was named the first star of the game. By the end of the game, fans were serenading Rantanen, chanting his name.
On Saturday, the Avalanche completed their two-leg sweep of the Blue Jackets, and Rantanen added an assist in that win to end the weekend with five points. It was a great weekend for the Finnish forward and neither he nor the fans will ever forget him.
Claude Giroud scores 300th career goal against his old team
It really couldn’t have been a better stage for Claude Giroud to score his 300th career goal. With just 2:44 left in Saturday’s game against his former team, Giroud scored his 300th career goal thanks to a superb serve by teammate Tim Stutzle.
Thanks to the goal, Giroud has now scored a goal against all NHL teams. Despite the early count, the Philadelphia Flyers were able to rally and defeat Giroud and the Ottawa Senators 2-1. After the contest, Giroud said he was unhappy with the loss, “but I’ll wake up tomorrow and that’s what it is.”
“We fell into a small hole, but I have already fallen into big holes and got out of it, so now I’m very upset, but I don’t worry about it,” Giroud said.
The Senators are currently on a five-game losing streak, and their next chance to break it will be Tuesday against the Vancouver Canucks.
View this week’s meeting
Devil’s Flame | Tuesday, November 8: The two teams went into overtime in Calgary on Saturday night, and the Devils were able to walk away with a dramatic win. New Jersey is one of the hottest teams in the league right now, and Calgary have an opportunity to pick up a big win after a bit of a downturn.
Golden Knights in Maple Leafs | Tuesday, November 8: The Maple Leafs have come under fire after a mediocre start to the season, but victories over the Bruins and Hurricanes on consecutive days seem to have momentarily dispelled those fears. Toronto has a chance to gain even more momentum with the arrival of Vegas in the city.
Penguins in capitals | Wednesday, November 9: None of these teams are playing their best hockey right now, but I will never take Sidney Crosby vs. Alex Ovechkin for granted. They are still two of the best in the game today.
Flame in the Bruins | Thursday, November 10: These two teams are going in completely opposite directions. The Bruins have won seven of their last eight games and are gearing up for one of the best starts in franchise history. Meanwhile, the Flames dropped four…