There were a hearty 9 games in play on Thursday night, one that will go down in history as Mats Sundin D-Day (Decision Day). While Captain Indecisive made the hockey community wait 6 months for his choice of the Vancouver Canucks (i.e. former Former Islander capital), the unsung heroes of the NHL, FIs kept plugging along. FIs made contributions in 5 of those games. Here is a look:
Philadelphia winger Arron Asham scored his 2nd goal in the last 5 games and added an assist as the Flyers were thumped by the host Montreal Canadiens 5-2. Asham snapped a 3 game point-less run and a 7 game assist-less streak with the effort. He now has 3 goals and 2 assists for 5 points on 31 games. The multi-point night was his first since February 16 when he had 2 goals as a member of the New Jersey Devils - a span of 57 games (5 playoff) without 2 or more points in a game.
Pittsburgh winger Miroslav Satan slapped home the game winning powerplay goal as the Penguins doubled up on the host Atlanta Thrashers for a 6-3 victory. Satan now has 12 goals and 11 assists for 23 points on 31 games this season. Over the last 3 games Satan has 3 points (2 goals, 1 assist). Satan has 9 points (6 goals, 3 assists) on the man advantage. The game winner was the 49th of Satan's career. Receiving the secondary assist on that winning tally was fellow FI Ruslan Fedotenko. Fedo has a balanced 8 goals and 8 assists for 16 points on 29 games. He is riding a 5 game point-scoring streak in which in he has tallied 3 goals and 4 helpers for 7 points or nearly half his season points. Fedotenko has 4 points (1 goal, 3 assists) on the man advantage.
Washington forward Viktor Kozlov had a big night scoring 2 goals and adding a powerplay assist as the Capitals downed the visiting St. Louis Blues 4-2. Kozzer has 7 goals and 14 assists for 21 points on 28 games. Kozlov has had points in 3 consecutive games racking up 2 goals and 3 assists for 5 points. The 3 point effort was his second in the last 12 games but the 2 goals were his first since January 21. Half of his season's assists (7) have come with the extra man. For the 12th consecutive season Kozlov has reached the 20+ point mark.
Boston captain and defenseman Zdeno Chara had 2 powerplay helpers as the Boston Bruins wowed the crowd in an 8-5 home win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. Chara has 6 goals and 11 assists for 17 points on 31 games. He has a shockingly good 10 points (3 goals, 7 assists) with the extra man this season. Over the last 6 games Chara is averaging a point-per-contest with 2 goals and 4 assists. Chara is currently only second to Dennis Wideman on the team in defensive scoring (1 goal, 1 assist and 2 points behind). Notching a goal for the Leafs was winger Jason Blake who netted the team's 5th and final goal, a powerplay tally. Blake's numbers are identical to Chara's (6 goals, 11 assists for 17 points) but have come in only 27 contests. The powerplay netter was the 35th of Blake's career. Blake has 7 points (3 goals, 4 assists) over the last 6 games.
Colorado winger Ryan Smyth had the primary assist on the lone Avalanche goal as they edged the host Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1 in SO on a very questionable call. Officials ruled that Tampa goaltender Mike Smith had "thrown" his stick in the 2nd round of the SO against Milan Hejduk to stop his shot yet replay only shows a spectacular save followed by the goalie's stick dropping to the ice. Not one to support the Lightning easily, it was clearly a case of poor officiating. But back to Smyth. He now has 10 goals and 9 assists for 19 points on 32 games. With the helper Smyth snapped a 3 game point-less streak. Smyth is currently 2nd on the Avs in goals and 3rd in points.
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