Here’s our morning recap of the night that was in the NHL.
Essential Water Cooler
If you want bad blood…you got it. After an explosive opening evening, teams did nothing to quell their overwhelming passion on night No. 2, with Flyers enforcer Jay Rosehill throwing a hissy fit (and his elbow pad) after his cheapshot on Toronto’s Mark Fraser was followed up by Rosehill being cheapshotted by Colton Orr. All’s fair, right, Jay? On the other side of the continent, new Avalanche coach Patrick Roy literally almost knocked the glass down with his bare hands as he screamed at the Anaheim bench at the end of a 6-1 Colorado blowout. Which begs the question: How excited are you for the other 81 games Roy coaches this year? And was Rosehill right to be upset about his treatment? Give us your two cents in the comments.
It may have been in a losing cause, but new Philly center Vincent Lecavalier looked like he travelled back to his Tampa salad days for this incredible Brayden Schenn set-up against Toronto.
Men of the Night
Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado: Call him ‘Killer’ MacKinnon! The first overall pick from 2013 got into his first NHL scrap, courtesy Anaheim’s Ben Lovejoy (who later tried to take out the kid’s knee at the end of the game) and also posted two lovely set-ups for linemate Jamie McGinn.
Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit: Back to his old tricks already, Datsyuk had the 2-1 winner against Buffalo, on a mesmerizing backhand that eluded Ryan Miller.
Joffrey Lupul, Toronto: One fight, two assists for Lupul, who dropped the gloves with Brayden Schenn and then dropped the Flyers with his set-ups to Dave Bolland, who got his first two goals as a Maple Leaf. Jonathan Bernier was also stellar, stopping Wayne Simmonds on a crucial penalty shot with the game tied.
Zemgus Girgensons, Buffalo: This year is for the kids in Buffalo and the ‘Lethal Latvian’ is on the board with his first NHL goal, thanks to a Jimmy Howard gaffe and some on-the-spot timing from Girgensons.
Better Luck Next Time
Ducks defenders Cam Fowler and Francois Beauchemin were both on the ice for four of Colorado’s six goals, each registering a minus-3 rating. Considering the great season Beauchemin is coming off and Fowler theoretically entering his prime years, this wasn’t a good sign for Anaheim.