NHL news and notes: April 4

NHL news and notes: April 4

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

The goalies below have been confirmed by a source:

Kari Lehtonen, Atlanta Thrashers - Lehtonen is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Capitals, reports the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The AJC Thrashers blog writer seems to think that Johan Hedberg will start against the Hurricanes due to Lehtonen's poor record against that team.


The goalies below have not been confirmed by any sources:

Brent Johnson, Washington Capitals - Johnson is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Thrashers.

Evgeni Nabokov, San Jose Sharks
- Nabokov is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Ducks.

Jean-Sebastien Giguere, Anaheim Ducks
- Giguere is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Sharks.


Year-to-date: 2269 / 2388 = 95.0%

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Re: NHL news and notes: April 4

Hockey Today - April 4
Wed, Apr 4, 2007
By Associated Press

SCOREBOARD
Wednesday, April 4

San Jose at Anaheim (10 p.m. EDT). San Jose's Joe Thornton needs just two assists to become the third player in NHL history to have back-to-back 90-assist seasons.

STARS Tuesday

-Saku Koivu, Canadiens, scored twice in Montreal's 2-0 victory over Boston.

-Bryan McCabe, Maple Leafs, scored a power-play goal 2:18 into overtime to give Toronto a 3-2 victory over Philadelphia.

-Joe Sakic, Avalanche, scored once and assisted on Colorado's other three goals in a 4-3 victory over Calgary.

-Wade Dubielewicz, Islanders, stopped 36 shots, plus three more in the shootout, to lead the Islanders to a 3-2 win over the New York Rangers.

STORM DRAIN

Carolina's 3-2 loss to Tampa Bay on Tuesday night officially eliminated the defending Stanley Cup champions from playoff contention. The Hurricanes became the first defending champion to miss the playoffs the next season since New Jersey in 1996. Carolina has dropped four of five.

CUTTING CREW

Buffalo clinched the Northeast Division and wrapped up the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference for the first time in 27 years with a 4-1 victory over Pittsburgh on Tuesday night. The Sabres last won a conference title, the Prince of Wales, in the 1979-80 season and hadn't won their division in 10 years.

MASKED MILESTONES

Martin Brodeur tied Bernie Parent's single-season record for wins, earning his 47th in a 2-1 shootout victory over Ottawa on Tuesday night. Parent set the record in 1973-74. ... Buffalo goalie Ryan Miller matched a team record, earning his 38th victory in the Sabres' 4-1 win over Pittsburgh. Don Edwards set the franchise mark in 1977-78. ... Toronto's 3-2 win over Philadelphia was Andrew Raycroft's 37th of the season, tying the franchise record set by Ed Belfour in 2002-2003.

SHUTOUTS

Jaroslav Halak stopped 29 shots in Montreal's 2-0 win over Boston on Tuesday night to shut out the Bruins for the second time in seven games. He made 30 saves in a 1-0 win over the Bruins on March 20. Halak is 7-0 at the Bell Centre. ... Dominik Hasek made 35 saves and moved into a tie for eighth place on the career shutouts list with No. 76, leading Detroit to a 3-0 win over Columbus. Hasek tied Ed Belfour and Tony Esposito for career shutouts and notched his eighth of the season. ... Olie Kolzig made 27 saves and got his first shutout in more than three years during Washington's 1-0 victory over Florida. The shutout was Kolzig's first since Feb. 15, 2004, during the Capitals' 4-0 win at Chicago. ... Niklas Backstrom stopped 25 shots for his fourth shutout this season, helping Minnesota end a three-game winless skid with a 3-0 victory over Edmonton.

CAPITAL IDEA

Alex Ovechkin's goal in Washington's 1-0 win over Florida on Tuesday night gave him 90 points this season, making Ovechkin only the second Capitals player to score 90 or more points in back-to-back seasons. Dennis Maruk was the other to accomplish the feat in 1980-81 and 1981-82.

STREAKING

Colorado has points in 15 of its past 16 games (13-1-2) after Tuesday night's 4-3 win over Calgary. Avalanche goalie Peter Budaj is unbeaten in regulation in his past 14 games (12-0-2).

SNAPPED

Calgary's 4-3 loss to Colorado on Tuesday night snapped the Flames' six-game winning streak. The Flames lost at home for just the eighth time this season.

WRONG TIME

Nashville lost its third straight, and is 3-5-2 over its past 10, after Tuesday night's 3-2 shootout loss to Chicago. The Predators have dropped out of the top of the NHL, Western Conference and Central Division standings during the slump.

SLUMPING

Edmonton's 3-0 loss to Minnesota on Tuesday night was the Oilers' fifth straight, and eighth in a row on the road. The Oilers have lost 17 of 18, and have been outscored 65-21 in that stretch. ... Phoenix has dropped 13 of its past 15 games after a 5-2 loss to St. Louis. ... Los Angeles has lost five straight with Tuesday night's 4-2 loss to Vancouver.

SPEAKING

''We're completely frustrated as a team. Embarrassed. We wanted to be in the playoffs. We wanted to defend the Cup we won last year, and we didn't get it done tonight. It's unacceptable for the guys we have in this room and the amount of talent we have. Everyone feels just terrible.'' - Carolina center Eric Staal after Carolina lost 3-2 to Tampa Bay on Tuesday night, officially eliminating the defending Stanley Cup champions from playoff contention. The Hurricanes became the first defending champion to miss the playoffs the next season since New Jersey in 1996.

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