NHL 2021-22 Recap Week 6 – Oilers hot but for how long, Islanders rough start, Lucas Raymond’s great start
The Edmonton Oilers are rolling and outscoring everyone to death. That’s fun to watch, especially when Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl show off their skills as McDavid did again below. They are the second-highest scoring team in the NHL. But I worry about how this will translate into the playoffs. They’ve lost in the first round two years in a row because they can’t replicate their play style in a playoff series. I don’t normally agree with John Toretella, but he mentioned they would need to change their playing style to win in the playoffs this week. And he’s right. This team seems deeper, but I said last season’s team was the deepest of the McDavid era, and they were swept.
They also lost top defenseman Darnell Nurse for two to three weeks. On the bright side, there’s a chance they may have found something with hometown goalie Stuart Skinner. They need a young goalie to grow with the team, and with his 46 saves against the Winnipeg Jets, Skinner might be the answer.
Things I like
1. It’s undeniable the Detroit Red Wings have been bad for a while. But they’ve assembled a few good pieces over the years. Lucas Raymond had 17 points in his first 17 games, a feat held by Cale Makar, Elias Pettersson, Clayton Keller, Connor McDavid, and Artemi Panarin. That’s some great company. Throw in a rejuvenated Dylan Larkin, Tyler Bertuzzi, and Moritz Seider, and the future doesn’t look so bad anymore.
2. We had a short-handed goal bonanza on Saturday Night with eight. Several games had two. Short-handed goals are my favorite because they are rare. But not on this day. A few will be mentioned below.
Things I don’t
1. My top two teams out west didn’t look so hot. The Colorado Avalanche and Dallas Stars were both below .500. The Avalanche have since gone on a mini winning streak but have a ways to go. Cale Makar has five points in his last two games. The Dallas Stars continued their perplexing uneven play and digging themselves into early holes. But they’ve won three of four, including a huge win over the St. Louis blues. Roope Hintz scored two short-handed goals, both assisted by Michael Raffl, including the game-winner. I’m not ready to declare either team a favorite again, but they’re getting better. However, neither is in the playoffs at the moment.
2. The New York Islanders have had a rough start to the season due to their arena not being finished. Consequently, they opened up with 13 games on the road. Hard for any team to handle even a two-time conference finalist. They did okay but lost the last four and were outscored 10-2 the last two. They are currently 14th in the conference, but they have games in hand and are now home for a long home stretch. Sadly, they lost their first game in their new home. They even had to wait on their first goal scored in the new building as it wasn’t clear to the refs if it went in. Then they were shut out in their second game and outscored 8-2 in their first two home games, making it six losses in a row by a margin of 27-6. Terrible by any stretch. They are also last in goals scored in the NHL. This is officially rock bottom. They can all go up from here.
Fights of the Week
Special thanks to hockeyfights.com for making this section a little easier to do.
Alex DeBrincat vs Yanni Gourde
A decent back and forth with lots of punches.
Jonah Gadjovich vs Marcus Foligno
A long and great back and forth.
Goat of the Week
Jakub Voracek – Columbus Blue Jackets
Here’s one of the aforementioned short-handed goals. Reilly Smith gets in the passing lane and goes the other way for the game-tying goal. The Golden Knights scored nine minutes later to win the game. It was a bad pass, as you can see Smith sneaking into the lane.
Goal of the Week
Ryan Lindgren – New York Rangers
The passing on this game-winning goal with a second left was simply beautiful.
Stat Line of the Week
11/16/21 Anaheim 3 vs. Washington 2
The ninth overall pick in the 2019 draft, Trevor Zegras has amassed five points in two games, including two goals in this game. He scored the final one in overtime on a nifty deke move, giving the Anaheim Ducks their 1000 franchise win. Zegras received a ten-minute game misconduct for throwing his stick over the boards because the NFL can’t be the only league to hand out dumb penalties.
1001 – Points for Ryan Getzlaf, the 92nd NHL player to reach the 1000 mark
4 – Short-handed goals by the Colorado Avalanche in 14 games
1 – Natural hat trick by Matt Duchene in a losing effort against the Montreal Canadiens
27 – Goal differential by the Calgary Flames, first in the NHL
-35 – Goal differential by the Arizona Coyotes, last in the NHL, and they actually won three of their last four
16 – Game point streak by Troy Terry
3 – Games missed by the Ottawa Senators due to COVID
The rankings are based on how the teams are currently playing.
27. San Jose