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NHL Game Updates:
Arizona Coyotes @ Buffalo Sabres, Clayton Keller had two assists, setting a new Coyotes' record for points in a rookie season with 55. The Coyotes out-muscle the Sabers 4-1.
Montreal Canadiens @ Pittsburgh Penguins, Carey Price returned for the Canadiens, who gave up five in this won. Sidney Crosby picks up his 700th career assist in the 5-3 win.
Anaheim Ducks @ Calgary Flames, If the Calgary Flames were looking to gain some ground to get back into the Western Conference playoff race, they needed a better effort than what they gave tonight. The Ducks put four, and John Gibson gets the shutout, as Anaheim wins 4-0. The Ducks now sit third in the Pacific Division.
Boston Bruins v St. Louis Blues:
The suddenly surging St. Louis Blues were home to take on the Boston Bruins on Wednesday night. The Bruins, fresh off a Monday night overtime loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets, sit in second in the Atlantic Division, but lead the Eastern Conference by giving up just 184 goals. The Blues, who I wrote off a week ago, are back in the playoff race in the West, sitting just three points behind the Anahiem Ducks for the last Wild Card Spot. A win tonight would propell the Blues over the dreadful Dallas Stars.
This was another hard, physical game between two teams we very likely will see in the playoffs. In fact, with a point in this game, the Boston Bruins would clunch a playoff spot.
The Bruins would get on the board first in the first period when Ryan Donato picks up his second goal and fourth point as an NHL player after finishing his collegiate career a few days ago. Donato is in a fortunate area when the puck squirts out to him. He's all alone in the slot and fires home a shot past Blues goalie Jake Allen.
That pucks find Donato after a Blues player hits the referee with the puck as the Blues are attempting to clear the puck out of their zone while shorthanded. I really don't understand why the referee is above the goal line, and in the shooting lane for a playing trying to ice the puck...
You could call this game the Jaden Schwartz Show. Schwartz was flying for the St. Louis Blues in this game. In the second period alone, he had two breakaways. He was strong on the puck, and kept his foot moving throughout the game. He was definitely the most dangerous player in this contest.
Jaden Schwartz would get on the board in the third period after a scoreless second. At 9:36, Schwartz breaks in with two other Blues. Alexander Steen drops the puck for Schwartz, and two Bruins defenders jump toward the loose puck and the Blues forward. Those defenders create a screen for Schwartz to quickly shoot a puck that goalie Anton Khudobin never picks up before it's in the net.
Khudobin makes a huge diving save at the third period buzzer to send the game to overtime. This save preserved the 1-1 score, and provided the Bruins with the point they needed to clinch a playoff spot.
The extra point should be awarded exclusively to Jaden Schwartz, who again impressed by going coast-to-coast for the game winner. Schwartz picks up the puck in his own zone, flys through the center of the ice, and rips a shot past goalie Khudobin for the win. The shot again was through a Bruins defender, and the Bruins goalie had a hard time picking it up.
St. Louis jumps up to 9th place in the Western Conference with the win. They sit just one point behind the Los Angeles Kings for the final Wild Card spot. The Blues will likely go only as far as their goaltending takes them. Jake Allen was good in this game, stopping several strong Bruins' chances for the 2-1 win. Expect more of these hard-hitting, good defensive games from both of these teams as they make their push for the playoffs.
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