5 things we learned in the NHL: Flames’ Gaudreau, Tkachuk make history

Matthew Tkachuk scored two goals and added three assists to help the Calgary Flames burn the New York Rangers.

The Flyers and Avalanche took severe hits to their respective playoff hopes, there was yet another goal bonanza at Scotiabank Arena and Marc-Andre Fleury reclaimed the NHL wins lead.

Here are five things we learned in the NHL Friday.

Gaudreau sets new record for Flames left wingers

Johnny Gaudreau set the hockey world on fire earlier this week with an absurd six-point effort and he started Friday’s game against the Rangers right where he left off.

Gaudreau scored his 34th of the season midway through the opening period. It was his 91st point in 2018-19, which set a new Calgary Flames record for points by a left winger in a single season, surpassing the 90 points Gary Roberts had back in 1991-92.

The 25-year-old is on pace to record the first 100-point season by a Flames player since Theo Fleury in 1992-93.

Tkachuk hits 100 career assists in five-point effort

Speaking of impressive accomplishments, Matthew Tkachuk enjoyed his first five-point night in the NHL and became the first player from the 2016 draft to record 100 assists. He is the youngest player in Flames history to record a five-point outing.

Tkachuk’s 170 career points are the third-highest total from his draft class, trailing only Patrik Laine’s 182 and Auston Matthews’s 197.

Marleau moves into sixth place on ironman list

Patrick Marleau skated in his 777th consecutive regular-season game Friday to move into sole possession of sixth place on the NHL’s all-time list of ironman streaks. The Toronto Maple Leafs winger leapfrogged Craig Ramsay, who suited up 776 consecutive times for the Buffalo Sabres between 1973-1983.

Marleau is one of three players with active ironman streaks of more than 700 games. Keith Yandle of the Florida Panthers is the current leader with 785 consecutive games (a record for defencemen), while Pittsburgh Penguins winger Phil Kessel has played in 763 straight contests.

Only four players in NHL history have had ironman streaks that surpassed 800 games. Doug Jarvis went his entire 964-game career without missing one, Garry Unger is second at 914 games, Steve Larmer is third at 884, plus Andrew Cogliano had his 830-game streak snapped in January 2018.

Marleau capped off his night by scoring his 15th goal of the season, marking the 20th consecutive year he has accomplished the feat. The goal was Marleau’s 550th of his career, which moved him past Ron Francis for 28th place on the NHL’s all-time goals list.

JVR channels his inner Nieuwendyk

James van Riemsdyk recorded a hat trick in a losing effort Friday, becoming the first Maple Leafs alumnus to burn his former team with a three-goal game since Joe Nieuwendyk did so with the Panthers back in 2006. Irrelevant fun fact: both JVR and Nieuwendyk wore No. 25 with the Leafs.

JVR had scored just once in 10 previous games against the Maple Leafs. He of course spent the past six seasons with Toronto before signing with the Philadelphia Flyers as a free agent in the summer.

Bobrovsky earns huge shutout

Sergei Bobrovsky picked up the 30th and most impressive shutout of his career Friday in a vital 3-0 win over Carolina to improve Columbus’s chances of making the playoffs.

The two-time Vezina Trophy recipient made 46 saves, which is a new personal best for a shutout victory. He had never recorded a shutout in which he made more than 39 saves prior to Friday.

Bobrovsky set his career high for saves in a single game with 52 back in 2014 but he did allow three goals in that contest in a win over the Panthers.

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