Tuesday, February 20, 2024

NHL Morning Skate – Feb. 6, 2024

Alexis Lafrenière scored the overtime winner to help the Rangers extend their lead atop the Metropolitan Division – a position they’ve held for 105 consecutive days.

* The Islanders saw three different players score a go-ahead goal – including Kyle MacLean netting his first-ever NHL tally – in a 3-2 win to move closer to playoff positioning.

* The Oilers will look to match the longest winning streak in NHL history when they travel to Vegas in a divisional duel against the Golden Knights as the second part of an ESPN+ and Hulu doubleheader.


RANGERS, ISLANDERS EARN WINS AHEAD OF STADIUM SERIES MATCHUP
Alexis Lafrenière scored the overtime winner for the Rangers while Pierre Engvall netted the decisive goal for the Islanders against his former club as both New York teams picked up wins on the first game day after All-Star break. The Rangers and Islanders will meet in less than two weeks when they face off in the 2024 Navy Federal Credit Union NHL Stadium Series at MetLife Stadium on Feb. 18.

Artemi Panarin scored his 31st goal of the season and became just the third Rangers player in the past 25 years to record as many through their first 50 games in a campaign, joining teammate Chris Kreider (33 in 2021-22) as well as Rick Nash (33 in 2014-15). The Rangers (31-16-3, 65 points) strengthened their lead atop the Metropolitan Division, building a four-point cushion over the idle Hurricanes (28-15-5, 61 points).



Mathew Barzal and Mitchell Marner kept their All-Star momentum going by trading the first two goals of the game before rookie Kyle MacLean netted his first NHL goal – in front of his father, John, who is an assistant coach with the Islanders – to give his team another lead before the Maple Leafs tied it again in the third period. Toronto’s comeback attempt would fall short, however, after Engvall scored the winner with 2:02 left in regulation to help New York (21-17-12, 54 points) move within two of idle Philadelphia (25-19-6, 56 points) in terms of standings points for third in the Metropolitan Division.


QUICK CLICKS

*Auston MatthewsConnor McDavid and Alex DeBrincat named NHL ‘Three Stars’ of the Week
NHL begins preparation for outdoor games at MetLife Stadium

Hurricanes stunning rose jersey kicks off Black Excellence Celebration
Anson Carter hosts teens from around world at Hockey 4 Youth event
Borje Salming’s family takes in All-Star Weekend, raise awareness for father’s foundation

OILERS LOOK TO MATCH NHL HISTORY DURING ESPN+, HULU DOUBLEHEADER

An eight-game slate will be highlighted by an ESPN+ and Hulu doubleheader that pits the Avalanche (32-14-4, 68 points) against the Devils (24-20-3, 51 points) before the Oilers (29-15-1, 59 points) look to tie the longest winning streak in NHL history when they visit the Golden Knights (29-15-6, 64 points) in a Pacific Division duel.
 



* Edmonton’s 16 consecutive wins since Dec. 21, 2023 are the most among all teams through that span and have helped the club climb from six points ahead of 32nd place in the NHL’s overall standings to within five points of Tuesday’s opponent for second place in the Pacific Division – with five games in hand.

* The Oilers have benefited from their depth throughout their 16-game run, watching 10 different skaters register a winning goal led by Leon Draisaitl (tied w/ 3). In comparison, Mario Lemieux (4) paced a list of just eight unique skaters with a game-winning goal for the 1992-93 Penguins during their 17-game win streak.

Connor McDavid has collected 9-17—26 through Edmonton’s 16-game winning streak, which currently stands tied for the fifth-most points among all players since Dec. 21, 2023. The Oilers captain currently leads a group of seven teammates with a double-digit point total through that span; in contrast, Lemieux (27-24—51 in 17 GP) led a group of eight players with at least 10-plus points, including six who reached the 20-point mark.
 

NHL EDGE AND EDMONTON’S WINNING STREAK
Here’s a look, courtesy of NHL EDGE, at how Edmonton has managed to move one win away from matching the longest winning streak in NHL history.

* Since the beginning of the Oilers’ 16-game run on Dec. 21, Edmonton has scored 37 goals from the high-danger zone, the third most among all teams behind Dallas (40) and Boston (38), with Zach Hyman accounting for a team-leading eight of those through that span – only Sam Reinhart (13) and Roope Hintz (9) have more.

* The Oilers have allowed only 11 high-danger goals against dating to Dec. 21 – the least among all teams – and a large part of that has been due to the play of Stuart Skinner. Skinner has recorded 12 games with a save percentage greater than .900 which is the most such performances among all goaltenders through that span.

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