It was another busy night as the regular season winds down. The playoff chase, though, is still very much a reality. Former Islanders are trying to push their teams in playoff positioning with some fireball squads (Capitals, Oilers) making the longshot attempt for a top 8 spot. Let us take a look at the FI work from Friday night:
* Jim Dowd scored Philadelphia's 2nd goal as the Flyers fell to the host New Jersey Devils 5-4 in SO. Dowd snapped a 12 game goal-less and point-less streak and now has 10 points (5 goals, 5 assists) on 69 games. For the first time since the 2005-06 season and the 10th time on his career Dowd has reached double digit points.
* Jeff Hamilton had a powerplay goals, including the game winner, as the Carolina Hurricanes thumped the visiting Atlanta Thrashers 7-1. Hamilton has 9 goals and 15 assists for 24 points on 56 games. He has 3 goals over the last 2 contests. Hammy has notched 16 points (7 goals, 9 assists) this season on the man advantage. It was, however, Hamilton's first game winner of the year and the 5th of his career.
* Chris Osgood stopped on 17 of 21 shots as the Detroit Red Wings fell in OT to the visiting St. Louis Blues 4-3 as the teams split the home-and-home series. Ozzie is now 27-9-4 on the season with a .915 save percentage, a 2.06 goals against average and 4 shutouts.
* Sean Hill assisted on the first insurance goal and received 3rd star of the game honor as the Minnesota Wild blanked the visiting Vancouver Canucks 4-0. Hill now has 2 goals and 6 assists for 8 points on 32 games. He is currently riding a 3 game point streak in which he has netted 2 goals and added 2 assists for 4 points. Canucks' goaltender was burned for the 2nd straight start stopping only 17 of 21 shots. He might be distracted with the impending birth of his child but Luongo was pulled for the 2nd straight game, this time after only 33 minutes. Luongo fell to 34-26-9 on the season with his 4th consecutive loss, his worst streak since March 19-25, 2004 while still with the Florida Panthers.
* Roberto Nilsson had 2 assists (1 powerplay) and a goal in the 1st round of the SO as the Edmonton Oilers were edged by the host Colorado Avalanche 5-4. Nilsson now has 10 goals and 31 assists for 41 points on 68 games. Nilsson, in the midst of a career year, has reached the 40+ point plateau for the first time on a season. He has 8 points (3 goals, 5 assists) on the man advantage. Teammate d-man Denis Grebeshkov assisted on Edmonton's 3rd goal. Grebeshkov has 2 goals and 15 assists for 17 points on 68 games. He has 15+ assists on a season for the first time on his career. Avs' winger Ryan Smyth assisted on the opening goal of the game. Smyth has 37 points (14 goals, 23 assists) on 52 games. The assist was the 601st point of Smyth's career since he reached the 600 point mark on March 24.
* Mathieu Schneider had a powerplay helper on the lone Anaheim goal as the Ducks fell to the visiting San Jose Sharks 3-1. Schneids snapped a 4 game drought and now has 10 goals and 27 assists for 37 points on 62 games. He has 16 points (4 goals, 12 assists) this season with the extra man.
Check with FIW soon for more recaps and highlights.