NHL Metropolitan Division Weekly: Hurricanes and Capitals Stay on Top

The Hurricanes still maintain that undefeated status, while the Capitals show they are not stranded as some pundits believe. Plus, bad news from Jersey: Jack Hughes won’t be back anytime soon.

Here’s what you missed in the Metro Divide this week:

Carolina Hurricanes (7-0-0)

The loss of top defenseman Dougie Hamilton didn’t slow down the Carolina Hurricanes. They’ve had three more wins since our last audit. The Hurricanes added to the Toronto Maple Leafs’ woes, beating the Leafs 4-1 on October 25. It was a fitting victory for goaltender Frederik Andersen, who was virtually absent from Toronto at the end of last season. He made 24 saves in the win.

Anderson followed up with a shutout from the Boston Bruins on Oct. 28. As the San Jose Sharks have witnessed, it’s tough to keep Boston’s top line, Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak, off the scoresheet, but Andersen intervened. up. He stopped 33 shots to claim the shutout.

A night later, the Canes kept rolling, this time against the struggling Chicago Blackhawks. Carolina won 6-3 over Antti Raanta. It was Raanta’s first game in goal for the Canes.

Andrei Svechnikov has been tearing him apart since joining Carolina. In his first seven games, he totaled 11 points including 7 goals and 14 penalty minutes. Sebastian Aho follows closely with 10 points (5 goals, 5 assists).

Washington Capitals (5-0-3)

The past week has been a good one for the Washington Capitals. They managed to get at least one point in their four games. Things started with a 4-3 loss to the Calgary Flames. The loss came in overtime, so the Capitals scored one point.

The Caps followed with a 7-5 win over the Ottawa Senators on October 25. TJ Oshie scored the hat trick and Alex Ovechkin added two goals in the win.

Two days later it was a 3-2 overtime loss to the Detroit Red Wings. The Capitals ended the week with a 2-0 shutout against the Arizona Coyotes. Ilya Samsonov only had to make 16 saves to ensure a perfect evening.

Ovechkin continues to appear ageless. The 36-year-old has 15 points this season including 9 goals. He’s going to have to continue his teardown if the Capitals are to keep winning. Oshie was placed on the injured list following the win over the Senators and Nic Dowd is considered to be on the day-to-day with a lower body injury.

Normally I drop the hockey highlights here, but this is the game of the week for the Capitals:

New York Rangers (5-2-1)

In the Big Apple, where it was just an average week for the Rangers. They lost to the Flames 5-1 on October 25, but rebounded with a shutout from the Columbus Blue Jackets on October 29. Goalkeeper Igor Shuesterkin stopped 31 shots for the win and defenseman Adam Fox collected three assists.

Fox leads the team with 8 points and 7 assists. Chris Kreider has scored 6 goals for the Rangers this season.

The team is without forward Ryan Reaves, who is on the injured list with a lower body injury.

Philadelphia Flyers (4-2-1)

The metropolitan division is difficult this season. Even though Philly has suffered just one regulation loss in this young season, the Flyers are still in fourth place. Philadelphia continued its momentum on October 27 with a 5-3 victory over the Edmonton Oilers.

The following night, our good friend Martin Jones won a 2-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks. Jones stopped 27 of 28 pucks in the win.

I saw a crazy statistic the other day:

Food for thought.

The Flyers ended their week on a negative note, being shut out by the Flames 4-0 on October 30.

Sean Couturier leads the team with 9 points. Cam Atkinson has 6 goals in the lead.

Newcomer Ryan Ellis is hand in hand.

New Jersey Devils (4-2-0)

The Devils are doing better than many expected at the start of the season. They lost 5-3 to Calgary on October 26, but rebounded with a 4-2 victory over Sidney Crosby and the Penguins on October 30.

Three players lead the team with 5 points: Pavel Zacha, Dougie Hamilton and Andreas Johnsson. Zacha also leads the team in goals scored with 4.

New Jersey is without goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood and forward Jack Hughes. Blackwood has a heel injury. He took some of his recovery time to receive his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine earlier this week.

The news is not good for Hughes. He parted with the shoulder in a game against the Seattle Kraken on October 19 and medics now say he won’t be back for at least five weeks. It’s a tough loss for the Devils, who before Hughes’ injury looked like they could make waves in the Metropolitan Division.

We’ll end with a cheerful look at Hamilton after the win.

New York Islanders (3-2-2)

A lot of people thought the Islanders were better than sixth place in the Metro Division, but so far they haven’t shown it.

The team followed the Arizona Coyotes shutout last week with a 2-0 shutout from the Vegas Golden Knights on October 24. Ilya Sorokin stopped 42 shots and beat Robin Lehner for the win. The team was out for nearly a week before facing the Nashville Predators on October 30. They lost in a shootout, 3-2.

The Islanders don’t get a lot of support from their top players. Their leading scorer is Josh Bailey, who has 5 points (1 goal, 4 assists) this season. Oliver Wahlstrom leads the team with just 4 goals.

If the Islanders are to keep pace in the Metro Division, they’ll need to start putting more pucks in the net.

Columbus Blue Jackets (4-3-0)

The Blue Jackets continue their average start to the season. They beat the Dallas Stars 4-1 on October 25, but lost to the Rangers 4-0 on October 29.

Oliver Bjorkstrand leads the team with 9 points (3 goals, 6 assists). Bjorkstrand is one goal behind Boone Jenner for the team lead.

Columbus lost a few players last week. Dean Kukan walked out with a fractured wrist. It will be some time before he gets back into the lineup. Adam Boqvist is on a daily basis.

They need to earn more, if only so that I can see this happening over and over again.

Pittsburgh Penguins (3-3-2)

The Pengiuns held their own early in the season, even without Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby, but they’re in the midst of a slippage and Crosby’s return hasn’t helped.

Crosby was back in the lineup on Oct. 30 but was not put on the scoresheet and ended the night with a minus-3 rating in the 4-2 loss to the New Jersey Devils. Crosby also took the penalty that gave the Devils the lead for good. His penalty led to this penalty and Jesper Bratt’s goal:

This is the third straight loss for the Penguins who lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-1 on October 26 and were shut out by the Flames 4-0 on October 28.

The score is rare for the Penguins. Danton Heinen leads the team with 6 points. He is also leading in goals with 4.

The team is still without defender Kris Letang, who follows COVID-19 protocol.

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