Thursday, February 19, 2009

Tuesday February 17

There were 7 games on tap Tuesday night as 14 teams battled for midseason points. The chase for playoff spots is becoming furious and each win seems to be a matter of pride for most teams. Former Islanders are no strangers to helping recently and were involved in 5 of those games. Here is a quick recap of their efforts:

Buffalo center Tim Connolly had 2 assists including on the game winner and a powerplay helper as the Sabres downed the host Toronto Maple Leafs 4-1. Connolly, who recently saw a 5 game point streak snapped, got back on the boxscore and now has 24 points (11 goals, 13 assists) on 24 games. Over the last 7 outings he has 8 points on 2 goals and 6 assists. He has 7 multi-point games this season and despite having already missed most of the season is already 7th among Sabres players in points. Assisting on the lone Leafs' goal, a powerplay effort, was winger Jason Blake. He now has 21 goals and 24 assists for 45 points on 53 games. For the 6th straight season Blakey has reached the 45+ point mark. The extra man helper was his 10th of the season and for the 3rd time in the last 3 years Blake has reached that mark equaling his prior single season highs.

Boston defenseman Zdeno Chara had a powerplay helper on his team's 4th goal as the Bruins heartily defeated the host Carolina Hurricanes 5-1. Chara now has 13 goals and 21 assists for 34 points on 58 games. Chara now has 20 points (7 goals, 13 assists) with the man advantage this season making it 4 straight seasons hitting the 20+ mark in powerplay points.

Florida winger Richard Zednik kept up his hot play with a powerplay goal and an assist as the Panthers blanked the visiting New Jersey Devils 4-0. Zed now has 12 goals and 13 assists for 25 points on 46 games. Over the last 7 games he has 5 goals and 3 assists for 8 points. For the 2nd straight season and 9th time on his career Zednik has reached the 25+ point mark. Assisting on the game winning goal was d-man Bryan McCabe. He snapped a 5 game pointless streak and also has 25 points (10 goals, 15 assists) on 47 games. For the 8th time on his career has has recorded 25 or more points on a season. For the 9th consecutive season and 12th time on his career he has notched 15+ helpers.

Colorado winger Ryan Smyth scored his team's 2nd goal as the Avalanche pulled off a 3-2 OT win over the visiting Ottawa Senators. Smyth has 19 goals and 27 assists for 46 points on 58 games. Smyth is 2nd on the Avs in goals scored and 1st in assists and points.

Vancouver goaltender Roberto Luongo stopped 38 of 41 shots in the first 65 minutes and all 3 shots faced in the SO as the Canucks edged the host Calgary Flames 4-3. Luongo has won his last 6 starts while surrendering just under 3 goals per game, a fairly unimpressive figure. Unlike prior winning streaks by Luongo we have not seen shutouts or overwhelming flashes of brilliance, just consistency. Luongo is now 17-7-5 on the season with a .914 save percentage and a 2.61 goals against average. This is the longest winning streak for Luongo since December 26, 2006 to January 7, 2007 while in his first season with the 'Nucks. During that streak Luongo won 7 straight starts and similarly racked up no shutouts. Missing on his shot in the 3rd Round of the shootout was Calgary winger Todd Bertuzzi.

Check back soon for more updates at FIW.

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