Home Team in Caps
NY ISLANDERS 5, Columbus 2
CAROLINA 3, Pittsburgh 2 (OT)
ST. LOUIS 5, New Jersey 2
Buffalo 3, MINNESOTA 2
San Jose 4, WINNIPEG 1
CHICAGO 3, Nashville 2
Tampa Bay 4, COLORADO 0
ARIZONA 4, Edmonton 3 (OT)
MILESTONE WINS HELP CLUBS NARROW GAP IN CENTRAL
The Chicago Blackhawks (28-13-4, 60 points) and St. Louis Blues (25-14-7, 57 points) won to inch closer to the idle Dallas Stars (29-11-4, 62 points) in the race for first place in the Central Division and Western Conference standings.
* Brent Seabrook scored what proved to be the game-winning goal to help the Blackhawks defeat the Nashville Predators 3-2. The Blackhawks picked up their fifth straight win at United Center and extended their overall winning streak to eight games, their longest such run since Nov. 26 – Dec. 11, 2014 (8-0-0).
* After the Blackhawks signed him to a three-year contract extension earlier in the day, Joel Quenneville (782-469-169) picked up his 782nd career win to tie Al Arbour (782-577-248) for second place on the NHL's all-time list among coaches. Scotty Bowman (1,244-573-324) tops the list with 1,244 career victories.
* Patrik Berglund scored twice, including the game-winning goal, as the Blues scored four unanswered to defeat the New Jersey Devils 5-2 and improve to 2-0-3 in their past five games. Berglund, who missed St. Louis' first 40 games of the season due to injury, registered the 10th multigoal game of his career (519 GP) and first since April 3, 2015 at DAL.
* Ken Hitchcock (733-465-170) earned his 200th win with the Blues to join Quenneville (307) as the only coaches to reach the mark with St. Louis. Via the Elias Sports Bureau, Hitchcock, who recorded 277 wins w/ DAL, became the sixth coach in NHL history to register at least 200 regular-season wins with multiple clubs.
MOST REGULAR-SEASON WINS AS COACH, NHL HISTORY
1. Scotty Bowman: 1,422
t-2. Joel Quenneville: 782
t-2. Al Arbour: 782
4. Ken Hitchcock: 733
5. Dick Irvin: 692
DOMI, EKMAN-LARSSON POWER COYOTES TO FOURTH STRAIGHT WIN
Oliver Ekman-Larsson (1-3—4) scored with 8.9 seconds remaining in overtime after recording an assist on all three of Max Domi's goal in regulation to lift the Arizona Coyotes past the Edmonton Oilers 4-3 for their fourth consecutive victory. The Coyotes are 5-0-1 in their past six games.
* Ekman-Larsson scored his sixth game-winning goal of the season (second in overtime) to move within one of tying Joe Pavelski for the League lead. He also extended his franchise record for game-winning goals by a defenseman (22). With a career-high four points, Ekman-Larsson became the first Coyotes defenseman to post four points in a game since March 28, 2013 at NSH (Rostislav Klesla: 0-4—4).
* Ekman-Larsson paces the NHL with six overtime goals since 2013-14 and also ranks fourth among all players with 19 game-winning goals in that span, behind Alex Ovechkin (26), Max Pacioretty (25) and Rick Nash (20).
* Domi scored his first goals since Dec. 4 (15 GP) for his first NHL hat trick and pulled into a share of third among rookies with 13 goals this season, behind Artemi Panarin (15) and Dylan Larkin (14).
* Domi and teammate Anthony Duclair (Oct. 14 at ANA) are two of four rookies to record a hat trick this season. The others: Boston Bruins forward Frank Vatrano (Dec. 18 at PIT) and Buffalo Sabres forward Sam Reinhart (Jan. 10, 2016 at WPG).
* The Coyotes lead the League with five hat tricks overall this season. Elias says it's the most hat tricks in a season for the Coyotes since 2007-08, when they had six. That also marked the last time two different rookies scored a hat trick for the club: Peter Mueller (2x) and Daniel Carcillo.
* The Coyotes scored three unanswered goals to extend their point streak against the Oilers to 21 games dating to March 17, 2011 (17-0-4), the longest active point streak against one opponent in the NHL.
NELSON'S HAT TRICK PULLS ISLANDERS EVEN WITH RANGERS
Brock Nelson (3-1—4) registered his first career hat trick and equaled a career-high for points in a game (also Oct. 10, 2014 at CAR: 2-2—4) to lead the New York Islanders to a 5-2 win against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
* At 23-15-5 (51 points), the Islanders pulled even with the idle New York Rangers (23-14-5, 51 points) in terms of points for second place in the Metropolitan Division standings. The teams play three more times this season, including Thursday at Barclays Center. The Islanders won their first game on Dec. 2 (2-1 SO W).
* Nelson scored the first-ever hat trick at Barclays Center (23 GP). Via Elias, the first hat trick recorded at Nassau Coliseum (the Islanders' former home) was scored by Canadiens forward Jacques Lemaire on Oct. 24, 1972. Craig Cameron became the first Islanders player to register a hat trick at Nassau Coliseum on Jan. 23, 1973 in an 8-1 victory over the California Golden Seals.
* Nelson has 17-10—27 in 43 games this season. His 17 goals lead the Islanders and are three shy of tying his total from last season (20-22—42 in 82 GP).
AROUND THE RINKS
* Steven Stamkos scored twice to reach the 20-goal mark for the eighth time in as many NHL seasons and help the Tampa Bay Lightning defeat the Colorado Avalanche 4-0 to close their four-game road trip with three straight wins (3-1-0). Via Elias, only Vincent Lecavalier (12 straight from 1999-11) and Martin St. Louis (9 straight from 2002-11) have recorded as many consecutive 20-goal seasons in Lightning history.
* The Carolina Hurricanes saw a multigoal lead erased for the second consecutive game before Jeff Skinner scored at 3:02 of overtime to lift them to a 3-2 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins. It was the Hurricanes' third straight win, equaling their longest such run of the season (Oct. 27-30: 3-0-0). Skinner scored his 20th career game-winning goal (fifth this season) and second in overtime (also Jan. 2, 2014 at WSH).
* The San Jose Sharks scored three unanswered goals, including the eventual game-winner by Joe Thornton at 19:13 of the first period, to defeat the Winnipeg Jets 4-1. The Sharks won their third straight and are 5-1-1 in their past seven road games. Thornton is third on the Sharks with 9-23—32 (41 GP), including at least one point in 11 of his past 12 games (5-11—16).
* The Buffalo Sabres held on for a 3-2 win against the Minnesota Wild after racing to a 3-0 lead in the first period, highlighted by goals 20 seconds apart from Rasmus Ristolainen (17:30) and Brian Gionta (17:50). The Sabres picked up their second straight win. Ristolainen (43 GP) scored his eighth goal of the season to equal his total from 2014-15 (78 GP).
MILESTONES & BENCHMARKS
* Goaltender Ben Bishop (21 SV) registered his 12th shutout in a Lightning uniform to tie Daren Puppa for second on the franchise's all-time list behind Nikolai Khabibulin (14). Bishop has registered two other career shutouts: one with the Blues and one with the Ottawa Senators.
* Blues forward Ty Rattie, a second-round selection (No. 32) in the 2011 NHL Draft, scored his first career goal (19 GP).
Coyotes goaltender Louis Domingue (25 SV) earned his fourth consecutive win to improve to 7-0-2 in nine starts this season . . . Blackhawks goaltender Corey Crawford made 41 saves to earn his sixth consecutive victory, his longest winning streak since 2010-11 when he had runs of 7-0-0 (Nov. 14 – Dec. 8, 2010) and 8-0-0 (Feb. 20 – March 5, 2011) . . . Sharks defenseman Brent Burns had an assist to extend his point streak to a career-high eight games (6-6—12) . . . The Lightning had their first win in Colorado since March 1, 2004, snapping a six-game skid (0-4-2) . . . Lightning forward Ondrej Palat (1-2—3) had his first multipoint game since April 9, 2015 vs. NJD (0-3—3) . . . Forward Elias Lindholm (0-3—3) factored on all three Hurricanes goals, his second three-assist effort of the season (Dec. 12 at ARI) . . . Penguins captain Sidney Crosby had two assists to pull into a share of the team lead with 21 (w/ Kris Letang) . . . Blues defenseman Colton Parayko (0-1—1) pulled into sole possession of first place among rookie defensemen with 6-11—17 this season (44 GP). His plus-15 rating is tied for fourth among all defensemen . . . Blue Jackets defenseman David Savard (49 GP) and Islanders defenseman Brian Strait (41 GP) scored to halt lengthy goalless droughts . . . Cedar Rapids forward Ross Colton, who is eligible for the 2016 NHL Draft, scored a hat trick and finished with five points to power Team East to a 6-2 victory against Team West in the 2016 United States Hockey League/NHL Top Prospects Game. Click here for a recap.