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In this edition of NHL Talk, the Seattle Kraken, Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles Kings, Calgary Flames, and Minnesota Wild have the best quotes from around the League.
Grubauer Posts First Shutout in Kraken Franchise History
Kraken goaltender Philipp Grubauer made 19 saves in a 3-0 win at the New York Islanders on Wednesday, marking the franchise’s first-ever shutout victory. It is Grubauer’s 19th career shutout and his first since he was a member of the Colorado Avalanche in a 6-0 win over the Los Angeles Kings on May 12, 2021.
“It’s a great game from everybody,” Grubauer said. “I don’t think I had too many great chances (against) when you compare this to other games we’ve played, like breakaways, 2-on-1s. I think today it’s been the least scoring chances we’ve given up in a long, long time.”
The shutout capped off a four-game road trip against the Pittsburgh Penguins, New York Rangers, Boston Bruins and Islanders, with the Kraken posting a 2-2-0 record through the set of games.
“It’s been a good road trip,” Grubauer said. “I think we could’ve gotten a point or two points in New York (3-2 loss at the Rangers on Sunday) and gotten a point or two points yesterday (3-2 loss at the Bruins on Tuesday). It would’ve been an unbelievable road trip, but we found a way to win and close it out today and got a couple of days off now.”
Nugent-Hopkins Leads Oilers to Victory After Blown Three-Goal Lead
Oilers forward Ryan Nugent-Hopkins tallied a first-period assist and scored twice in the third period of a 5-3 win at the Washington Capitals on Wednesday. Edmonton held a 3-0 lead just 5:07 into the first period, but proceeded to allow three consecutive Capitals goals, eventually tying the game a 3-3 at 2:48 of the third period. Nugent-Hopkins saved the day for the Oilers with a shorthanded goal at 15:57 of the final frame, then added another goal into an empty net at 18:55.
“Obviously, you defend first (on the penalty kill) and don’t give anything up easy, but at the same time, you get a chance to go, and you’ve got to try to take advantage,” Nugent-Hopkins said. “Usually, it’s just one guy up top, so you can get some 2-on-1s and at least just control the puck.”
He centred a line with left-wing Zach Hyman and right-wing Derek Ryan. Hyman provided the assist on Nugent-Hopkins’ shorthanded goal, which ended up counting as the game-winner.
“I think just as a team we want to shoot more and get more pucks to the net, especially with [Capitals goaltender Ilya Samsonov] coming on a back-to-back,” Hyman said. “For sure, I think it was important to get pucks on him and luckily a couple went in there.”
Danault Helps Extend Kings’ Point Streak to Six Games
Kings forward Phillip Danault scored two goals in a 5-3 victory at the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday, extending Los Angeles’ point streak to six games. Now heading into the All-Star break with a 24-16-7 record, the Kings are tied for second place in the Pacific Division with the Anaheim Ducks.
“This is huge, especially going into the [All-Star] break,” Danault said. “We wanted to finish on the right note, and I thought we were awesome again tonight.”
Danault had a chance to finish the night with an empty-net goal for the hat trick, but his shot went off the post.
“I almost got it, but I guess it wasn’t meant to be,” Danault said. “It’s just iconic to get one.”
Tanev Tallies Career-High Four-Point Night for Flames
Flames defenceman Chris Tanev had a night to remember on Wednesday, tallying a career-high four points (one goal, three assists) in a 4-2 win at the Arizona Coyotes. The impressive performance bests his previous record three-point game, when he had three assists for the Vancouver Canucks in a 4-3 overtime win versus the Avalanche on Jan. 31, 2018.
“We came out strong, we made good plays with the puck, getting pucks deep,” Tanev said. “Our forwards did a great job of working their defenceman down below the tops of circles and below the goal line, and making plays from there.”
Tanev humbly deflected much of his success to his teammates; in particular, Johnny Gaudreau, who tallied an assist and had a game-high seven shots on goal.
“When he’s feeling it like he has been lately, I don’t know if there’s a better player in the League,” Tanev said of Gaudreau.
Talbot Turns Aside 30 Shots for 25th Career Shutout
Wild goaltender Cam Talbot stopped all 30 shots he faced in a 5-0 win at the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday. The game marks his 25th career shutout and extends Minnesota’s winning streak to six games. Talbot credits his teammates for helping secure the win, which was more important than the shutout.
“Shutouts are a team stat,” Talbot said. “Wins are what are most important. It’s certainly nice to throw one of those (shutouts) up every once in a while, but I’ll take the win more often than not.”
It was a successful night for Talbot and the Wild, who now head into the All-Star break ranked third in the Central Division, with a 28-10-3 record.
“We liked our game tonight, for sure,” Wild head coach Dean Evason said. “We did a lot of really good things right from the start. We didn’t deviate through the whole game, so that was good to see, for sure.”
Tom Pepper is an NHL columnist at The Hockey Writers. He lives in Toronto and is a diehard fan of the St. Louis Blues.