The NHL concluded its unofficial first half of the season with six games on the schedule on Wednesday. From a couple of tough injuries to a botched scoring chance on an open net, and an impressive (or depressing depending on your point of view) streak, it was another exciting night of NHL action.
Here’s the five things we learned on Wednesday night.
National hug day: If you’re a hockey player then National Hug Day is for you. Every goal you score means an extra special hug on this day.
Heck, even Vancouver got in the action despite having the night off. Shortly after announcing defenceman Kevin Bieksa’s injury, the Canucks sent the 10-year veteran a special hug-day reminder through Twitter to lift his spirits.
So close yet so far: Talking about hugs, Pittsburgh Penguins forward David Perron could’ve used one after this play. Perron looked primed and ready to put his name in the running for highlight of the year on Wednesday. After the newly acquired forward deked out two players and the goalie all he had to do was hit the wide-open twine for the easy goal. However, in the famous words of Harry Doyle in Major League, he was “juuust a bit outside.”
Record setters: Nobody will benefit more from a few days off than the Toronto Maple Leafs. It’s obviously been a historically tough stretch for the club, and despite netting three goals on Wednesday, more than they’ve had combined in their past five games, the Leafs still managed to lose their game to the Ottawa Senators. In the process the club matched a couple of dubious records.
Understandably a lot of criticism has been placed on the club’s top players. Their recent stats entering Wednesday’s contest shows why.
Curse of the Blue Jackets: Nobody has had worse luck than the Columbus Blue Jackets when it comes to staying healthy this season. On Wednesday, not only did they drop their game 4-0 to the Jets, but they also lost arguably their best player in all-star and 2012-13 Vezina winner Sergei Bobrovsky for the second time this season. This time Bobrovsky appeared to pull something while attempting to make a save. Take a look below.
11 years a slave: The Calgary Flames just can’t solve the Anaheim Ducks in California. It’s been more than 11 years since they last defeated them at Honda Center, and that’s going to continue for at least a couple of months after the Flames dropped their last game of the season there, and 20th straight overall, on Wednesday, 6-3.