MILESTONES IN SIGHT, STREAKS AT STAKE ON 11-GAME NIGHT
Several significant milestones and streaks look to be reached and extended with 22 teams in action Thursday:
* Sidney Crosby (368-630-998 in 753 GP) resumes his hunt to become the third player in Pittsburgh Penguins history -- and the 86th player in NHL history -- to earn 1,000 points when Pittsburgh (33-13-6, 72 points) visits the Colorado Avalanche (15-33-2, 32 points). Crosby (30-30-60) leads the League in goals and is tied with Connor McDavid (18-42-60) in the Art Ross Trophy race. The Penguins have earned a point in each of their past four games (3-0-1) and are one point back of the Columbus Blue Jackets (34-13-5, 73 points) for the second-most points in the Eastern Conference.
* The League-leading Washington Capitals (37-11-6, 80 points) aim for their 11th consecutive home win when they face the Detroit Red Wings (22-21-10, 54 points) at Verizon Center. The Capitals have earned shutouts in each of their past two home games and a five during their home winning streak, outscoring opponents 50-12. Washington has won more than 10 consecutive home games twice before: from Jan. 5 - March 6, 2010 (13-0-0) and Nov. 21, 2015 - Jan. 17, 2016 (12-0-0).
* Brent Burns, who leads all defensemen and ranks third in NHL scoring with 57 points (22 goals, 35 assists), looks to extend his road point streak to 15 games (10-13-23 in 14 GP) when the San Jose Sharks (33-17-4, 70 points) visit the Boston Bruins (26-23-6, 58 points), who will play their first game under coach Bruce Cassidy. Elias notes that only two defensemen in NHL history have longer such runs: Ray Bourque (Nov. 7, 1993 - Jan. 25, 1994: 7-18-25 in 16 GP) and Paul Coffey (March 6 - April 27, 1995: 8-13-21 in 15 GP).
Home Team in Caps
Chicago 4, MINNESOTA 3 (OT)
Video: Toews, Crawford lift Hawks to 4-3 OT win against Wild
TOEWS SETS FRANCHISE RECORD IN OVERTIME WIN
The Minnesota Wild tied the game with 3:03 remaining in the third period, but Jonathan Toews (1-2-3) scored at 3:09 of overtime and the Chicago Blackhawks (33-17-5, 71 points) won their third straight game to move within five points of the Wild (35-12-6, 76 points) for the top spot in the Western Conference.
* Toews scored his ninth NHL overtime goal and first of the season. Per Elias, he passed Marian Hossa and Patrick Sharp for the most regular-season overtime goals by a Blackhawks player since the League instituted the five-minute tiebreaker in 1983-84.
* Duncan Keith (0-2-2) earned his ninth multi-point game of the season to move into sole possession of fourth place in scoring among NHL defensemen (4-34-38).
* Ryan Hartman scored for the third consecutive game and ranks sixth among rookies with 13 goals this season (13-10-23).
Forward Charlie Coyle (0-1-1) played in his 284th consecutive regular-season game to surpass Antti Laaksonen for the longest such streak in Wild history . . . The Capitals welcomed Fatima Al Ali of the United Arab Emirates women's national team to practice, while the Avalanche and Bruins each held community initiatives as part of Hockey Is For Everyone month.
SNEAK PEEK AT THURSDAY'S ACTION
All Times Eastern
San Jose @ Boston, 7 p.m., SN360, SNW, TVA Sports, NESN, CSN-CA
Anaheim @ Buffalo, 7 p.m., MSG-B, PRIME
Nashville @ NY Rangers, 7 p.m., MSG, FS-TN
NY Islanders @ Philadelphia, 7 p.m., NBCSN, TCN-PH
Detroit @ Washington, 7 p.m., CSN-DC, FS-D
Vancouver @ Columbus, 7 p.m., FS-O, SNP
St. Louis @ Toronto, 7:30 p.m., SNO, FS-MW
Dallas @ Ottawa, 7:30 p.m., RDS2, TSN5, FS-SW+
Los Angeles @ Florida, 7:30 p.m., FS-F, FS-W
Pittsburgh @ Colorado, 9 p.m., ALT, ROOT
Montreal @ Arizona, 9 p.m., FS-A, SNE, RDS
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