MCDAVID STEALS SPOTLIGHT IN RETURN TO OILERS LINEUP
The Edmonton Oilers scored four unanswered goals, highlighted by a dazzling finish by Connor McDavid (1-2-3) for the eventual game-winner, to snap a three-game skid and earn a 5-1 victory against the Columbus Blue Jackets in McDavid's return from a 37-game absence.
* McDavid, who led all rookies in points prior to his injury on Nov. 3, has 6-9-15 through his first 14 NHL games, including four multipoint games. The others: Oct. 17 at CGY (2-1-3), Oct. 23 vs. WSH (1-1-2) and Oct. 29 vs. MTL (0-2-2).
* Via the Elias Sports Bureau, McDavid is the first player to record multiple three-point games in his first 14 career games -- all with the Oilers -- since Gord Sherven accomplished the feat in his 10th career game on Oct. 24, 1984.
CROSBY'S HAT TRICK POWERS PENGUINS
Sidney Crosby (3-1-4) scored his ninth career hat trick and first since Oct. 12, 2013 at TBL (3-1-4) to power the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 6-5 win against the Ottawa Senators, their ninth consecutive game with a point at Consol Energy Center (7-0-2), including five straight wins.
* The Penguins (25-17-7, 57 points) are 9-0-3 in their past 12 contests against Eastern Conference opponents to maintain their hold on the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the East.
* Crosby had his first four-point effort since Jan. 2, 2015 vs. TBL (0-4-4) to extend his point streak to eight games (8-6-14). He also stretched his home point streak to 10 games (12-7-19), including goals in a career-high eight straight at Consol Energy Center.
* Crosby, who leads the NHL in goals (11) and points (tied; 18) in the 2016 calendar year, moved within two points of 900 in his career (322-576-898 in 675 GP).
Video: Take a look at the 3 goals scored by Sidney Crosby
DIVISION LEADERS PICK UP WHERE THEY LEFT OFF
The leaders of the Atlantic, Central and Pacific all increased their division leads with wins:
* Jonathan Huberdeau (2-1-3) collected three points to help the Florida Panthers defeat the Washington Capitals 5-2, snapping a 10-game losing streak at Verizon Center dating to Jan. 8, 2011 (0-8-2) and halting the League-leading Capitals' home point streak at 13 games (12-0-1). Huberdeau paces the Panthers with 10-27-37 this season, including 3-3-6 on Florida's four-game winning streak. At 30-15-5 (65 points), the Panthers moved seven points ahead of the idle Tampa Bay Lightning (27-18-4, 58 points) and Detroit Red Wings (25-16-8, 58 points) for first place in the Atlantic Division.
* Artemi Panarin scored the eventual game-winning goal at 7:16 of the second period to help the Chicago Blackhawks defeat the Colorado Avalanche 2-1, snapping a three-game road losing streak and earning their 14th win in their past 17 games. Panarin, who leads rookies in goals (18), assists (29) and points (47), also moved into a share of the rookie lead with his fifth game-winning goal (tied w/ Dylan Larkin). At 34-16-4 (72 points), the Blackhawks maintained a three-point lead over the Dallas Stars (32-14-5, 69 points), who won in regulation, for first place in the Central Division and Western Conference. They also climbed within two points of the Capitals (35-9-4, 74 points) for first place in the NHL standings; Washington, however, holds six games in hand.
* Five different players -- Dustin Brown (2-0-2), Jake Muzzin (1-1-2), Alec Martinez (1-1-2), Anze Kopitar (0-2-2) and Drew Doughty (0-2-2) -- had multiple points as the Los Angeles Kings scored four times in the second period en route to a 6-2 victory in the finale of their season series with the Arizona Coyotes (ARI: 3-1-1, LAK: 2-3-0). At 31-16-3 (65 points), the Kings opened a nine-point lead over the San Jose Sharks (26-19-4, 56 points), who lost in regulation, for first in the Pacific Division.
OTHER CLUBS GAIN KEY INTRADIVISION POINTS
The Stars, St. Louis Blues and Anaheim Ducks all improved their playoff positioning with wins against intradivision rivals:
* Tyler Seguin scored twice, including the eventual game-winning goal at 2:49 of the third period, to help the Stars defeat the Winnipeg Jets 5-3 and win consecutive games for the first time since Dec. 19-22 when they won three straight. Seguin had his fifth multigoal game of the season to move into sole possession of fourth place in the League with 27 goals, three behind leader Patrick Kane (30). At 32-14-5 (69 points), the Stars kept pace with the Blackhawks (34-16-4, 72 points), who won in regulation, for top spot in the Central Division. Dallas holds three games in hand, but Chicago owns the ROW tiebreaker (CHI: 33, DAL: 30).
* Troy Brouwer scored the lone goal with 65 seconds remaining in regulation and Brian Elliott posted a 16-save shutout to lead the Blues (29-16-8, 66 points) to a 1-0 win against the Nashville Predators (24-19-8, 56 points) in a clash between Central Division foes. Elliott had his 31st career shutout and first since March 17, 2015 at CGY (25 SV). At 29-16-8 (66 points), the Blues moved nine points ahead of the Avalanche (27-23-3, 57 points), who lost in regulation, for third place in the Central Division.
* Frederik Andersen made 30 saves, including 14 in the first period, to lead the Ducks to their fourth straight win, 3-2 against the San Jose Sharks, giving them an 11-3-1 record in their past 15 games and a season-series victory vs. the Sharks (3-1-0; SJS: 1-3-0). Andersen pushed his personal winning streak to four games to help the Ducks (23-18-7, 53 points) move within three points of the Sharks (26-19-4, 56 points) for second place in the Pacific Division.
MAPLE LEAFS MOUNT COMEBACK, UNVEIL NEW LOGO
Leo Komarov (1-1-2) and Nazem Kadri (1-1-2) scored in the third before PA Parenteau scored at 3:06 of overtime to lead the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 4-3 win against the Boston Bruins.
* Parenteau scored his second career overtime goal to lift the Maple Leafs to their first win under the 3-on-3 overtime format (1-4).
* James Reimer made 39 saves, including 16 in the third period and overtime, to earn a victory in his 200th NHL game.
* ICYMI: The Maple Leafs unveiled a new logo for their centennial season following the comeback win. Click here for details.
MILESTONES & BENCHMARKS
* Jean-Francois Berube made 40 saves, including 19 in the first period, to earn his first NHL win as the New York Islanders defeated the Minnesota Wild 5-3 and improved to 4-1-1 in their past six outings. Per Elias, Berube became the fourth Islanders goaltender to make at least 40 saves in his first career NHL win. The others: Peter Mannino (March 15, 2009 at CHI: 40 SV), Roberto Luongo (Nov. 28, 1999 at BOS: 43 SV) and Tommy Salo (April 18, 1995 vs. QUE: 40 SV).
* Wild forward Jason Pominville (1-0-1) had his 600th career point (243-357-600 in 802 GP).
* Colorado's Erik Johnson, the No. 1 pick (by STL) in the 2006 NHL Draft, became the first defenseman from his draft class to appear in 500 career games.
* Panthers forward Jaromir Jagr had an assist to move within one of becoming the sixth player in NHL history to record 1,100 career assists.
* Dave Tippett (ARI) became the 24th coach in NHL history to serve 1,000 games behind an NHL bench.
Wayne Simmonds (2-0-2), Jakub Voracek (0-3-3) and Brayden Schenn (1-1-2) all had multiple points to help the Philadelphia Flyers defeat the Montreal Canadiens 4-2 and improve to 9-0-1 in their past 10 games against the Canadiens at Wells Fargo Center dating to Nov. 22, 2010 (MTL: 1-9-0) . . . Cory Schneider made 31 saves, including 12 in the second period, and the New Jersey Devils overcame a pair of one-goal deficits to defeat the New York Rangers 3-2 and earn their fifth win in their past six games . . . Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane notched his League-leading 44th assist to move within four of 400 in his career . . . Capitals forward Evgeny Kuznetsov (0-2-2) has 10 assists in his past four games . . .Panthers forward Reilly Smith (0-1-1) had his goal streak snapped at four games, but extended his point streak to five (4-2-6) . . . Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere (1-6-7) and Penguins forward Carl Hagelin (0-5-5) also extended point streaks to five games . . . The Capitals lost in regulation for the first time at Verizon Center since Nov. 19 vs. DAL, ending their franchise record-tying home point streak at 13 games (12-0-1) . . . Islanders forward Brock Nelson scored his team-leading 20th goal of the season (48 GP) to match a career high established in 2014-15 (82 GP) . . . Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (18 SV) improved to 6-0-1 in his past seven home starts and earned his seventh straight win vs. OTT . . . Forward Chris Kunitz had 1-2-3 in his return to the Penguins lineup . . . Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf (0-1-1) moved within one assist of 500 in his career . . . The Sharks lost in regulation for the first time since Jan. 7 vs. DET (2-1 L), ending their point streak at 10 games (8-0-2) . . . Sharks forward Joe Thornton saw his point streak end at 10 games (2-12-14), the third-longest in the NHL this season . . . Flyers goaltender Steve Mason (30 SV) improved to 4-0-0 in four career appearances vs. MTL (1.72 GAA, .936 SV%) . . . ICYMI: The NHL announced a trio of rescheduled games.