Eight games and 16 teams equalled a busy Thursday night around the NHL. Former Islanders are lending support to about 2 dozen teams around the league. Let us look at the FI happenings:
* Bryan Smolinski assisted on the 2nd Montreal goal as the Canadiens won in SO 3-2 over the host Atlanta Thrashers. With 2 assists in the 4 games since returning from injury, Smolinski now has 13 points (2 goals, 11 assists) on 32 games this season.
* Zdeno Chara scored the first Boston goal as the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs capped a comeback with a SO win over the Bruins. Chara has 30 points (7 goals, 23 assists) on 45 games. Over the last 2 games, Chara has 4 points on 1 goal and 3 assists.
* Robert Nilsson scored the 2nd Edmonton goal and a few FIs got involved in some SO action as the Oilers fell 5-4 to the host Washington Capitals. Nilsson scored an unassisted powerplay goal in the 1st period and now has 19 points (5 goals, 14 assists) on 38 games. He was stopped in his attempt in the 4th round of the 12 round marathon SO. Other FIs involved in the SO were Viktor Kozlov (saved, 4th round) and John Erskine (saved, 11th round).
* Randy Robitaille scored an insurance goal as the Ottawa Senators dominated the visiting Carolina Hurricanes for a 5-1 win. Robitaille snapped a 3 game point-less streak and now has 15 (7 goals, 8 assists) on 35 games. Owing to Dany Heatley's injury, Robitaille just got promoted to Ottawa's top line, quite a turnaround considering Randy started the season in Russia.
* Ultimately Detroit might have won but Roberto Luongo's star shone bright as he stopped 47 of 49 shots and 2 of 3 in SO as the Red Wings downed the visiting Vancouver Canucks 3-2 in the sudden death frame. Luongo's record fell to 21-14-4 but his save percentage swelled to .928 and his goals against average continues to hover around 2.00 (currently 2.04). Teammates Trevor Linden (2nd round) and Taylor Pyatt (3rd round) were unsuccessful in their SO attempts.
* Todd Bertuzzi and the Anaheim Ducks are on fire. As the Ducks climb the Western Conference standings, Bertuzzi continues to rake in points, this time assisting on the game winner as the Ducks edged the host Nashville Predators 2-1. Bertuzzi has 24 points on 9 goals and 15 assists on 35 games. In the midst of a 5 game scoring streak, Bert has 3 goals and 6 assists for 9 points. Receiving the primary assist on the opening goal of the game, a powerplay tally, was defenseman Mathieu Schneider. He now has 20 points (5 goals, 15 assists) on 34 games. Schneider has 9 points (3 goals, 6 assists) on the man advantage.
* Michael Peca had 2 assists, including 1 on the powerplay, as the Columbus Blue Jackets managed a last second win over the host Phoenix Coyotes 4-3. Peca had the lone assist on the game winning goal with 22 seconds left in regulation. Peca has 19 points (4 goals, 15 assists) on 32 games. He has managed 7 points (1 goal, 6 assists) from the powerplay alone.
Check back soon for more updates and recaps.