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NHL Three Stars: Gaborik rallies King over Chicago; Boedker tricks Jets (Puck Daddy)
(Sat, 28 Nov 2015 23:08:33 PST)

Boedker gets another hat trick against Ottawa in 4-3 win (The Associated Press)
(Sat, 28 Nov 2015 22:55:03 PST)
Unfortunately for Mikkel Boedker, he won't see the Ottawa Senators again this season. Twice the Arizona Coyotes have faced the Senators, and Boedker had a hat trick both times. The latest three-goal performance came Saturday night in Arizona's 4-3 victory.

NHL-Highlights from Saturday's NHL games
(Sat, 28 Nov 2015 22:53:03 PST)
Nov 28 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights from National Hockey League games on Saturday: - - - - Kings 3, Blackhawks 2 (OT) Right winger Marian Gaborik scored two goals, including the game winner, as the Los Angeles Kings defeated Chicago Blackhawks 3-2 in overtime. Gaborik took a long lead pass from Kings center Anze Kopitar and sped in alone to beat Chicago goaltender Scott Darling with a wrist shot at 2:04 of the extra time. Los Angeles (14-8-1) remained atop the Pacific Division with the victory. Goaltender Jonathan Quick (11-7-1) stopped 20 Chicago shots for the win. ...

Johnny Gaudreau makes progress as Flames take step back (Puck Daddy)
(Sat, 28 Nov 2015 07:40:52 PST)
ANAHEIM –  In his second year, Calgary Flames forward Johnny Gaudreau has figured out a balance at forward. As players with offensive nature tend to push back at trying to better understand defense, Gaudreau has been able to boost his offensive numbers while becoming a better all-around player. “We saw the total package. How competitive he was, how good defensively he can be, how responsible he can be in key situations,” Flames coach Bob Hartley said. "That’s why when we lead by a goal, he’s on the ice for the last minute, because I think he’s proven to us he can read the play. He can commit when the other team has the puck and his skill set when he gets it, he can make plays that can allow us to win games.” While the Flames (8-13-2) have struggled and underachieved this season, Gaudreau has been one of the few improvements from 2014-15 where the team made the second round of the postseason for the first time since the 2004 Stanley Cup Playoffs. He has 21 points in 23 games to lead the Flames and his offensive creativity has led to several highlight-reel plays. While other rookies from last season like Filip Forsberg and Aaron Ekblad got off to slower-than-expected starts, Gaudreau hasn’t shown any signs of a sophomore slump.  “I feel a lot more comfortable and confident and it’s a lot different to start this season than last season,” Gaudreau said. “I think it’s a year under my belt and learning a lot last year and trying to make it come natural now rather than keep learning and learning.” If you ask one of Gaudreau’s teammates about memorable plays from this season, there’s a look of  befuddlement. Kind of like, ‘which one?’ There was the stickhandling move against the Ottawa Senators defenseman Mark Borowiecki. There were the 3-on-3 OT heroics against the Chicago Blackhawks. “He’s so shifty and so quick. You watch him on other defensemen, it’s tough to go at him so they try to contain him and when you contain him it opens up other guys and he makes good passes,” Calgary captain Mark Giordano said. “He’s a very underrated passer so that’s what makes him so good.” Gaudreau was supposed to be just a part of a deeper group of players this year that would push the Flames to a higher level in the Western Conference. He wasn’t supposed to be the runaway offensive leader of the group. But as the team has slumped, Gaudreau has taken his game to greater heights. Linemate Sean Monahan is second on team scoring with 15 points, and is on pace for fewer than his 31 goals and 62 points of a year ago. Giordano has just seven points and is a minus-15. Newly-acquired defenseman Dougie Hamilton has five points. Forward Jiri Hudler – last year’s scoring leader – has 14 points in 21 games.  Though Gaudreau doesn’t wear a letter with the Flames, he’s almost turned into a de-facto leader this season – just because nobody has equaled his production so far. “You look at the way he has been raised, the way he has been coached and he wants to win,” Hartley said. “When you want to win, you can’t be a one-trick pony and Jonny figured this out very quickly. He’s blocking shots he’s on the forecheck, he’s around the net and it doesn’t take anything away from his unbelievable talent. His skill set his speed, his quickness in tight areas most definitely makes him a very, very special player for us.” If Gaudreau didn’t produce this year, it would be easy to say last year, when he had 64 points and finished third in Calder Trophy voting, was a fluke. But his creative mind is a sponge, and kept him ahead of the rest of the league as it continues to try to figure him out. Said Giordano, “Johnny’s going to be a guy who gets points all the time.” MORE FROM YAHOO HOCKEY - - - - - - - Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter! Follow @joshuacooper  

Senators-Coyotes Preview (The Associated Press)
(Fri, 27 Nov 2015 22:30:44 PST)
Following an impressive win at Western Conference-leading Dallas, Ottawa coach Dave Cameron hoped the current road swing would become one the Senators could build upon. Ottawa may have to figure out a way to contain Mikkel Boedker to sweep the three-game trip and extend its win streak to five Saturday night against the Arizona Coyotes. The Senators (12-5-5) had difficulty coming through with timely goals during a 1-1-3 stretch before outscoring their opponents 19-7 during their longest streak of the season.

10 snapshots of the NHL season so far: Stars, streaks and big sticks (Yahoo Sports)
(Fri, 27 Nov 2015 20:17:19 PST)
Highlights and lowlights as the 2015-16 NHL season sails through the first quarter.

Jets-Avalanche Preview (The Associated Press)
(Fri, 27 Nov 2015 17:41:02 PST)
The Colorado Avalanche knocked off the Winnipeg Jets earlier in the week, but that win looks more and more like an outlier in what has been a dismal stretch for Colorado. Winnipeg will get another shot Saturday night when it visits Denver in a Central Division matchup. The Avalanche (8-13-1) won 4-1 at Winnipeg on Monday, their only victory in a five-game span in which they've surrendered 22 goals.

The Seven: Price drop in Montreal, McDavid's absence has upside for Oilers (Eh Game)
(Fri, 27 Nov 2015 13:29:38 PST)
In a twisted and torturous way, Connor McDavid’s injury has been a silver lining for the Edmonton Oilers. The Oilers are 2-6-1 since the super-duper rookie broke his collarbone. They’re last in the NHL with a 7-14-1 record, all but quashing any chance at a postseason berth – again – considering they were nine points off the pace at American Thanksgiving. McDavid was on a great run before he fell awkwardly into the boards, and was only getting better. The 18-year-old recorded 12 points in 13 games and almost certainly would have won the Calder Trophy. But here’s the issue – despite McDavid acting as likely the Oilers’ best player, his play wasn’t impacting results. The Oilers won just five of their first 13 games. After nearly a decade of failing to reach the playoffs, the hope was for the Oilers to show signs of progress under new coach Todd McLellan. But returning to the playoffs for the first time since 2006 was always a long shot. The Oilers earned 62 points last year and the average cutoff in the Western Conference over the past five seasons was more than 93. That’s a hefty increase for one season. This quarter-pole mark is not what the team or its fans had envisioned, but at least another Grade-A asset like Auston Matthews or Jakob Chychrun – or a top first-round pick to trade – could be coming down the pipeline. For that, the Oilers would largely have McDavid’s injury to thank. Now for the rest of The Seven – a weekly look at the Canadian-based NHL teams. This week we’ll break things down from first to worst.

The Quarter Pole (Rotoworld)
(Fri, 27 Nov 2015 08:20:00 PST)
The NHL season has hit the quarter pole and Michael Finewax looks at the surprising teams thus far.

NHL Three Stars: Vatrano steals win; crazy Roy move almost works (Puck Daddy)
(Wed, 25 Nov 2015 23:08:11 PST)
No. 1 Star: Frank Vatrano,  Boston Bruins   The Bruins forward opened the scoring against the Detroit Red Wings with a goal and closed it out with a tip shot followed by a memorable celebration. In between, Detroit dominated, but Vatrano led the Bruins to a 3-2 overtime win.   No. 2 Star: Ben Bishop, Tampa Bay Lightning Bish made 37 saves for the Lightning and only allowed one goal in the shootout as Tampa Bay defeated the Los Angles Kings, 2-1. No. 3 Star: Shane Prince, Ottawa Senators Shane Prince scored his first and second NHL goals and assisted on another, as the Ottawa Senators survived a late push from the Colorado Avalanche for the 5-3 win. Craig Anderson made 40 saves. Honorable Mention: Sergei Bobrovsky made 27 saves and Matt Calvert had the second-period game-winner in the Columbus Blue Jackets’ 2-1 win over the New Jersey Devils. … Jack Eichel scored his seventh, but it wasn’t enough as the Nashville Predators got 30 saves out of Carter Hutton and won, 3-2. … Devante Smith-Pelly had two goals and Tomas Plekanec had three assists in the Montreal Canadiens’ 5-1 rout of the New York Rangers. Max Pacioretty scored his 12th. …  Evgeny Kuznetsov had a goal and two assists while Alex Ovechkin scored his 11th of the season in the Washington Capitals’ 5-3 win over the Winnipeg Jets. … Cam Ward made 30 saves and the Carolina Hurricanes scored four unanswered goals in their 4-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers. …  Radim Vrbata improved his (alleged) trade value, scoring two consecutive goals and helping the Vancouver Canucks to a 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild. … Kyle Okposo had the go-ahead goal and Frans Nieslen scored into an empty net for a 3-1 win over the offensively-challenged Philadelphia Flyers. …  Antoine Vermette had his first two goals of the season and Max Domi had two assists as the Arizona Coyotes picked up a big divisional win, 4-2, over the Anaheim Ducks. … Evegni Malkin’s slick goal in overtime gave the Penguins a 4-3 win over the St. Louis Blues. He previously assisted on Sidney Crosby’s power-play goal, which was Sid’s second of the game. … Patrick Kane extended his point streak to 17 games with two assists, as the Chicago Blackhawks defeated the San Jose Sharks, 5-2. Andrew Desjardins scored a key goal in the third period, 1:07 after Patrick Marleau’s tally. Did You Know? Patrick Roy pulled his goalie for a 6-on-4 power play, down three goals and with over 10 minutes left in the third – and it worked! Dishonorable Mention: Devils fans were outraged, but the refs were correct in taking a tying goal from Adam Henrique off the board after Gregory Campbell played the puck on a delayed call against Columbus. …  Linus Ullmark was pulled by the Sabres after they went down 3-0. … Mats Zuccarello, Rick Nash and Derick Brassard were all a minus-3. … Ryan Nugent-Hopkins was a minus-4, while Jordan Eberle was a minus-3. … Kevin Bieksa and Cam Fowler were minus-2. … Carey Price did not play in the third period for Montreal due to injury concerns. ... Semyon Varlamov was pulled after Ottawa took a 3-1 lead. … Feeling super bad for Nail Yakupov and this freak injury.

Prince scores first 2 NHL goals, Senators top Avalanche 5-3 (The Associated Press)
(Wed, 25 Nov 2015 22:49:01 PST)
Craig Anderson made sure Shane Prince got to celebrate his first NHL goal with a victory. Anderson made 20 of his 40 saves in the third period, Prince had two goals and an assist for his first career points, and the Ottawa Senators held on to beat the Colorado Avalanche 5-3 Wednesday night. Zack Smith, Kyle Turris and Mika Zibanejad each had a goal and an assist for Ottawa, which has won four straight.

NHL-Highlights of Wednesday's NHL games
(Wed, 25 Nov 2015 22:02:06 PST)
Nov 25 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights of Wednesday's National Hockey League games. - - Canadiens 5, Rangers 1 Devante Smith-Pelly scored twice as the Montreal Canadiens earned a potentially costly 5-1 victory over the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. Goaltender Carey Price stopped 22 of 23 shots to grab the win, but left the game after two periods for undisclosed reasons. He missed eight games earlier this season with a lower-body injury and was playing in only his third game since returning. ...

Flames place goaltender Joni Ortio on waivers (Puck Daddy)
(Wed, 25 Nov 2015 09:50:44 PST)

Keeping track of the NHL's coaching carousel (The Associated Press)
(Wed, 25 Nov 2015 03:18:25 PST)
St. Louis Blues coach Ken Hitchcock felt a little sheepish arriving in Buffalo for a game this week. In greeting two members of the Sabres' new coaching staff, he mistakenly snubbed another. ''I forgot to say hello to Dave Barr, because I had forgotten David was here,'' Hitchcock said with a laugh.

Senators-Avalanche Preview (The Associated Press)
(Tue, 24 Nov 2015 23:01:09 PST)
The Colorado Avalanche have one of the league's hottest lines, their starting goaltender back from injury and a dominant record against their next opponent. What they don't have much of this season is success on home ice, but Wednesday night's matchup with the surging Ottawa Senators gives them an opportunity to change that. The Avalanche (8-12-1) opened their seven-game, 15-day trip with a 13-3 scoring advantage in three wins before they allowed 16 goals during three straight losses.

Pageau scores twice, Senators hold off Stars 7-4 (The Associated Press)
(Tue, 24 Nov 2015 22:50:38 PST)
Craig Anderson didn't need a third straight shutout, though he did need some big third-period saves. Anderson made 33 saves to help the Ottawa Senators end the Dallas Stars' five-game winning streak with a 7-4 victory on Tuesday night. ''We had good goaltending,'' Ottawa coach Dave Cameron said.

NHL-Highlights from Tuesday's NHL games
(Tue, 24 Nov 2015 22:37:41 PST)
Nov 24 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights from the National Hockey League games on Tuesday: - - - - Senators 7, Stars 4 Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Mike Hoffman scored two goals each to lead the Ottawa Senators to a 7-4 victory over the Dallas Stars. Right winger Mark Stone had a goal and two assists and right winger Bobby Ryan and left winger Milan Michalek also contributed goals. Goaltender Craig Anderson stopped 33 shots for Ottawa. Dallas got goals from left winger Patrick Sharp, two goals from left winger Jamie Benn and one from center Tyler Seguin. ...

NHL Three Stars: Getzlaf records five assists for Ducks; Pageau leads Senators (Puck Daddy)
(Tue, 24 Nov 2015 21:55:24 PST)
No. 1 Star: Ryan Getzlaf, Anaheim Ducks The Anaheim captain had a hand in all five of the Ducks’ goals in their 5-3 win over the Calgary Flames. Getzlaf recorded five assists for the first time since Oct. 2008, tying a franchise record.  No. 2 Star: Jean-Gabriel Pageau, Ottawa Senators  The size of the nets in Dallas were no problem Tuesday night as the Ottawa Senators downed the Stars 7-4 at American Airlines Center. Pageau led the offensive rush for the Senators scoring twice and assisting on another for his first multi-point game since Jan. 15. One of Pageau’s two third period goals came shorthanded to give him the NHL lead with three: No. 3 Stars: Rickard Rakell / Corey Perry, Anaheim Ducks Rakell and Perry each scored twice in the Ducks win, thanks in part to Getzlaf assists.  Honorable Mention : Craig Anderson made 33 saves, including this diving stop on Jamie Benn which then led to a Mike Hoffman empty net goal:  Jamie Benn finished with two goals and an assist for the Stars in a losing effort. His second of the night came via a great saucer pass from brother Jordie … Mark Stone scored a goal and assisted on two others for Ottawa … Bobby Ryan’s goal extended his point streak to nine games. He has four goals and 11 points over that stretch … John Gibson relieved Anton Khudobin in the first period and stopped 19 of 20 shots he faced … Michael Frolik scored twice in the Flames’ loss. Did You Know?   The @AnaheimDucks improved to 21-0-0 in their last 21 regular-season home games vs. CGY dating to April 4, 2004. — NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) November 25, 2015 Dishonorable Mention : Dallas’ five-game winning streak came to an end … Antti Niemi was pulled in the second period after allowing three goals, but re-entered the game when Kari Lehtonen was hurt in a collision with John Klingberg. Niemi would finish with five goal allowed on 16 shots faced. MORE FROM YAHOO HOCKEY:

The Brothers Benn hook up for pretty alley-oop shorthanded goal (Video) (Puck Daddy)
(Tue, 24 Nov 2015 20:08:52 PST)
There were a lot of goals in Dallas tonight as the Stars fell to the Ottawa Senators 7-4. The prettiest one of the eleven came early in the third period when Jordie and Jamie Benn hooked up for a shorthanded tally. Down a man, Jordie took the puck in the defensive zone, saw brother Jamie shooting up ice and flipped a perfect pass that took one bounce and landed on the reigning MVPs stick, who then proceeded to beat Craig Anderson with a great move. Via SomeHockeyVideos : (“This is double Bennetration” is a call only Daryl Reaugh could make.) [ Play Yahoo Daily Fantasy and get a 100% deposit bonus with your first deposit ] Notice as soon as the puck leaves Erik Karlsson’s stick at the blue line and heads toward Jordie, Jamie starts making his move up ice and calls for it. The Stars’ eventually came up short, but the Benns did their best to try and jumpstart a comeback. - - - - - - - Sean Leahy is the associate editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Sean_Leahy MORE FROM YAHOO HOCKEY:

The Price is Right (Rotoworld)
(Tue, 24 Nov 2015 10:56:00 PST)
Joey Alfieri has everything you need to know about goaltending matchups for the upcoming week.

Rangers are NHL's most valuable team in annual Forbes rankings (Puck Daddy)
(Tue, 24 Nov 2015 08:46:44 PST)
The New York Rangers are the NHL’s most valuable team.  Forbes annual NHL franchise valuations puts the Rangers as the NHL’s most valued franchise, currently listed at $1.2 billion. According to Forbes, it is the first time since 2004 that the Rangers have been the most valued team in the NHL. Said Forbes: The Rangers generated the most revenue ($229 million) in the league during the 2014-15 season, cashing in on the $1 billion renovation of Madison Square Garden and drives to the Stanley Cup finals in 2014 and Eastern Conference Finals in 2015. The Rangers took in more than $95 million from premium seating and advertising at MSG last season, tops in the NHL. Forbes also notes the average NHL team is worth $505 million, a three percent increase from a year ago and revenue was up to $133 million – an eight percent increase. [ Play Yahoo Daily Fantasy and get a 100% deposit bonus with your first deposit ] Operating incomes were averaged at $15 million “almost identical” to last season, says Forbes. Forbes says the NHL’s deal with Major League Baseball Advanced Media is a sign that even greater progress is on the horizon. The most bullish signal for the league since the Rogers media deal was the agreement reached with Major League Baseball Advanced Media, baseball’s internet and technology arm, this summer. MLBAM will pay the National Hockey League $100 million annually starting next year to operate the website, and the NHL Network will also distribute out-of-market games online through NHL GameCenter Live and through television providers on NHL Center Ice. In addition to the rights fees that MLBAM will pay, the NHL will get a stake of 7% to 10% in BAM Tech, which could fetch between $3 billion to $5 billion if it were carved out of its parent.  Here are the teams and valuations:  1. New York Rangers, $1.2 billion 2. Montreal Canadiens, $1.18 billion 3. Toronto Maple Leafs, $1.15 billion 4. Chicago Blackhawks, $925 million 5. Boston Bruins, $750 million 6. Vancouver Canucks, $745 million 7. Philadelphia Flyers, $660 million 8. Detroit Red Wings, $600 million 9. Los Angeles Kings, $580 million 10. Washington Capitals, $565 million 11. Pittsburgh Penguins, $560 million 12. Edmonton Oilers, $455 million 13. Dallas Stars, $450 million 14. San Jose Sharks, $445 million 15. Calgary Flames, $435 million 16. Anaheim Ducks, $400 million 17. Minnesota Wild, $380 million 18. Ottawa Senators, $370 million 19. Colorado Avalanche, $360 million 20. Winnipeg Jets, $350 million 21. New Jersey Devils, $330 million 22. New York Islanders, $325 million 23. Buffalo Sabres, $300 million. 24. St. Louis Blues, $270 million 25. Tampa Bay Lightning, $260 million 26. Nashville Predators, $255 million 27. Columbus Blue Jackets, $226 million 28. Carolina Hurricanes, $225 million 29. Arizona Coyotes, $220 million 30. Florida Panthers, $186 million According to Forbes, the Canadiens added 18 percent value from the previous year. Last season, the Canadiens began a long-term local television deal with Réseau des sports that will pay the team an average of C$68 million a season, more than double their previous agreement. The Toronto Maple Leafs were the most valued franchise since 2006, but lost their top spot due to a devalued Canadian currency and various other factors – such as making the playoffs once since 2006 and a 13-year sellout streak ending last March. Forbes said, the Habs were the only Canadian team to increase value over the last year. Here is our blog of last year’s rankings. MORE FROM YAHOO HOCKEY - - - - - - - Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter! Follow @joshuacooper          

Senators-Stars Preview (The Associated Press)
(Mon, 23 Nov 2015 11:39:54 PST)
Boosted by a strong homestand, the Ottawa Senators visit the NHL's hottest team with their goaltender playing at his highest level of the season. Craig Anderson puts his shutout streak on the line against the high-scoring Dallas Stars, who enter Tuesday night's matchup with a chance for their longest winning stretch in four seasons. Anderson followed up a 25-save shutout Thursday against Columbus with 36 stops in Saturday's 3-0 victory over Philadelphia, capping a 3-0-2 residency for Ottawa (10-5-5) in which he posted a 1.22 goals-against average in four starts.

Vancouver hot on the PP (Rotoworld)
(Mon, 23 Nov 2015 08:39:00 PST)
The Power Play Report looks at great weeks from Vancouver and Toronto and of course Justin Faulk once again.

Has John Tortorella actually improved Columbus Blue Jackets? (What We Learned) (Puck Daddy)
(Mon, 23 Nov 2015 07:02:00 PST)
(Hello, this is a feature that will run through the entire season and aims to recap the weekend’s events and boils those events down to one admittedly superficial fact or stupid opinion about each team. Feel free to complain about it.) It's hard to argue with the results. Columbus started the year 0-7, and fired Todd Richards. Now they're 8-7 under John Tortorella, but also 6-4 in their last 10. This is a team that, at long last, appears to be moving in the right direction. Like all Tortorella-coached teams that have any amount of success (sorry, 2013-14 Canucks), people seem to be fixating on the coach's defense-heavy, shot-blocking demands of his players as the thing that leads to all the winning . And it's impossible to say that Columbus isn't collectively getting in the way of more shots per game than they were before. In fact, the number of shots they're blocking every night has increased more than 38 percent (from 10.4 under Richards to 14.4 under Tortorella). But here's the thing: It's easier to block more shots when you're also giving up more shots. And is that what Columbus is doing? Of course it is. [ Play Yahoo Daily Fantasy and get a 100% deposit bonus with your first deposit ] Once you adjust possession numbers for the various score effects involved, Columbus goes from a slightly-below-even possession team (49.7 percent) to a dreadful one (46.6 percent). ( Ed. Note : These stats do not include Sunday night's loss to San Jose.) The latter number is the third-worst score-adjusted number in the league since Richards' last game behind the bench, ahead of only Ottawa and Florida. The positive thing you can say about the Blue Jackets under Tortorella is that they're allowing fewer high-quality chances per 60 minutes (a 13.3 percent drop) and getting more of them (23 percent improvement), which is obviously going to be quite conducive to winning more than you lose. But otherwise, there seem to be a lot of cracks in the system that should give everyone pause as to the whole “Columbus has improved immensely under Tortorella” thing. There's no question, for example, that they play a more muted style of hockey, which isn't necessarily good or bad but is certainly not as fun to watch or, presumably, play (no one has ever accused Torts Hockey of being boring or injurious, right?). And that comes almost across the board, with scoring chances, shot attempts, unblocked attempts, and goalscoring all taking at least some step back on a per-60 basis. That “unblocked attempts” one is interesting too. You'd think a team like Tortorella's that blocks almost 40 percent more shots per game than it used to would, if it reduced shot attempts against per 60, likely see fewer unblocked attempts getting through as well; simply because the team would, theoretically at least, be getting better at controlling shot quality. But interestingly, the number of unblocked attempts they concede per 60 has actually ticked up under Tortorella, albeit very slightly (by 0.1).

Improved Sergei Bobrovsky leading Blue Jackets' turnaround (Puck Daddy)
(Sun, 22 Nov 2015 11:12:39 PST)
Don’t look now, but Sergei Bobrovsky’s lost confidence may have been found.  The Columbus Blue Jackets netminder was stellar in Friday night’s 4-0 shutout of the Nashville Predators making 39 saves, including this highlight-reel stop on James Neal: The win was another sign of a revived Blue Jackets squad under new head coach John Tortorella.  Following the team’s fourth loss to begin the 2015-16 season, a 7-3 thrashing by the Ottawa Senators, Bobrovsky admitted to having “zero confidence.” The rough start led to Todd Richards’ eventual dismissal, and installing Tortorella has brought a turnaround, with ‘Lumbus winning four of their last five and going from pointless in their opening eight games to within five points of a wild card spot 13 games later. It’s been a tale of two months for the Blue Jackets. We know how horrible October went, but once the calendar turned to November, Columbus tightened up defensively and, as Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch pointed out , are blocking more shots since noted shot-blocking fan Tortorella took over. Their even strength shot differential has also improved by nine shots , according to War on Ice . While Tortorella preaches shot blocking, he stays away from his goalies. He wasn't about to try and get inside Bobrovsky's head while he struggled. While in New York he let Benoit Allaire handle all things Henrik Lundqvist related. In Columbus, he’s left that work to the team’s goaltending coach, Ian Clark. “[Bobrovsky’s] really quiet, and I don’t want to disturb him in any way. I just want him to stop the puck, but he is always working out, he is always preparing and some of the comments he made when Richie was fired out of here, those were honest comments from him,” Tortorella said earlier this month.   The Blue Jackets’ plan to start digging up the Eastern Conference standings relied on better defense, starting with Bobrovsky’s. On the books until 2019 and carrying a $7.425 million cap hit, October made fans yearn for the Vezina Trophy winning Bobrovsky, but it was only a matter of time before he regained his form. Bobrovsky’s newfound confidence has resulted in a jump in score-adjusted even-strength save percentage from .872-percent in October to .941 in November so far, fourth-best among goaltenders this month. Winning creates confidence, and the Blue Jackets’ disastrous start was early enough in the season that there was still plenty of rope to use to help them climb out. - - - - - - - Sean Leahy is the associate editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Sean_Leahy MORE FROM YAHOO HOCKEY:

NHL-Highlights of Saturday's NHL games
(Sat, 21 Nov 2015 22:05:19 PST)
Nov 22 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights of Saturday's National Hockey League games. - - - Stars 3, Sabres 0 Dallas winger Jamie Benn scored two goals, Tyler Seguin had two assists and goaltender Antti Niemi stopped all 22 shots he faced as the Stars defeated the Buffalo Sabres 3-0 at American Airlines Center. Benn recorded both of his goals in the third period, scoring a power-play goal off a rebound at 7:11 and then converting off the rush 1:53 later at 9:04 for his 14th goal of the season. ...

Anderson gets 2nd straight shutout, Senators beat Flyers 4-0 (The Associated Press)
(Sat, 21 Nov 2015 20:34:37 PST)
After dropping five of their first six home games, the Senators seem to have figured out the Canadian Tire Centre. Mike Hoffman had a goal and an assist and Craig Anderson made 36 saves for his second consecutive shutout as Ottawa beat the Philadelphia Flyers 4-0 on Saturday night. Anderson and the Senators also blanked Columbus 3-0 Thursday and now have consecutive wins while earning at least one point in four straight.

Yahoo Daily Fantasy Hockey: Patrick Kane worth the price on Saturday (Puck Daddy)
(Sat, 21 Nov 2015 07:16:20 PST)

The Seven: Canucks' overtime woes destined to end soon (Eh Game)
(Fri, 20 Nov 2015 15:04:33 PST)
When it comes to overtime, if the Vancouver Canucks didn’t have bad luck they’d have no luck at all. After falling 4-3 to the Montreal Canadiens on Monday, the Canucks saw their record fall to a putrid 0-6 in the revamped 3-on-3 extra-period session this season. A lot of things have to go wrong for a team to lose each and every time in six straight OT outings – especially for a team like the Canucks. Truly, they’ve deserved a better fate. According to War On Ice, the Canucks boast an impressive Corsi rating of 54.5 in OT, meaning they direct more shots towards the net than their opponents during overtime. They also win more faceoffs (52.6 percent), a stat that’s even more important with fewer skaters on the ice; starting with the puck helps. So part of the problem has been bad breaks, as evidenced by their paltry 54.5 PDO – a measure of adding their save and shooting percentages. Most of the goals they’ve allowed have come on odd-man rushes like the one that saw P.K. Subban connect with David Desharnais on Monday. There have been some errors, too. Giving New Jersey a power play in overtime didn’t end well. Leaving Daniel Sedin to defend a 2-on-1 against Edmonton resulted in a Lauri Korpikoski marker. Surely there are a few tweaks that Canucks coach Willie Desjardins can try. Despite their intimate familiarity, the Sedins aren’t the fleetest of foot and that works to their detriment with the added open ice. Splitting them up – blasphemy, I know – might be worth a shot. A timely save or two by goaltenders Ryan Miller and Jacob Markstrom wouldn’t hurt either. At least the overtime “loser” point was helping the Canucks remain on the playoff bubble in the Western Conference, with a 7-7-6 record. They’ve given away some crucial extra points, but there are reasons to believe that could change sooner than later. Now for the second act of The Seven – a weekly look at the Canadian-based NHL teams. This week we’ll break things down from east to west. MONTREAL CANADIENS

Flyers-Senators Preview (The Associated Press)
(Fri, 20 Nov 2015 12:24:53 PST)
The Senators finally had the kind of game they wanted at home. The Philadelphia Flyers hope their home form won't carry into Ottawa for Saturday night's game. Erik Karlsson had two goals and an assist and Craig Anderson made 25 saves for his 30th career shutout as Ottawa (9-5-5) beat Columbus 3-0 on Thursday, recording its second regulation win in 11 home games.

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