Rinkside Roundup starts out west in Calgary where former Albany River Rats and New Jersey Devils checking forward John Madden registered his seventh goal and eighth assist of the year for the Minnesota Wild in their 7-0 rout of the Flames. Madden was parked out front and put home a feed from Andrew Brunette to put the Wild up 3-0 in the second. Wild netminder Niklas Backstrom made 37 solid saves in the shutout victory.
Speaking of Wild and former Wild alike, one-time Minnesota Wild All-Star Marian Gaborik caught fire for the New York Rangers, posting four goals in a 7-0 victory over the fellow Original Six member Toronto Maple Leafs at MSG. Gaborik now has 15 on the year. Also with impressive nights were Artem Anisimov with four helpers and Henrik Lundqvist recording 22 saves and a shutout win.
Down in Florida, R.J. Umberger’s power-play goal and 17th of the year in OT proved to be the winner as the Columbus Blue Jackets upended the Florida Panthers 3-2.
Around the “A”
It was a game that had trouble getting traction. Marred with penalties and missed opportunities, the Albany Devils weren’t allowed to catch their breath and hence couldn’t catch up to the Binghamton Senators Wednesday night. The disrupted flow caused by a barrage of penalties saw some Albany fans summon their inner Jim Schoenfeld in voicing their displeasure toward referee Jamie Koharski in the Devils 3-0 loss to the Senators.
Bingo got on the board early in the first with Roman Wick’s fifth goal past keeper Mike McKenna. Mid-way through the first the B-Sens cashed in on one of those extra-man opportunities off the stick of Geoff Kinrade for his fourth. Finally in the second Binghamton Captain Ryan Keller capped off the scoring with his 16th. The Senators had another goal waived off in the second as well. Bingo backstop Barry Brust stoned all 26 Devils shots sent his way for the shutout win, his fifth of the year.
The evening of touchy calls resulted in a night of nine power-plays for the Senators and six for the Devils. Albany Coach Rick Kowalsky tried valiantly to find the right combinations to break through for a goal, in addition to finding ways to keep his various units fresh enough to get the Devils offense started.
With the loss the Devils four-game winning streak has come to an end and they now stand eleven points back of the Senators for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot.
In Charlotte, former Albany River Rats Zach Boychuk (11th) and Jerome Samson (21st) both recorded tallies for the Checkers, while Oscar Osala, Nicolas Blanchard, Brett Carson and Zac Dalpe added helpers and Mike Murphy stopped 21 shots as they topped the Springfield Falcons 3-1.
East Greenbush native and Toronto Marlies defenseman Matt Lashoff got the scoring started in Toronto’s match with the Manitoba Moose for his fifth on the campaign. However Moose goalie and former River Rats keeper Tyler Weiman would get the last laugh behind the 20 shots he did stop in a 5-2 victory in Winnipeg.
In Wilkes-Barre Scranton, ex-Rats and Adirondack Phantoms blue-liner Joey Mormina capped off the scoring for the Pens with his first goal of the season in a 4-1 win over the Syracuse Crunch.
Finally out last stop is Worcester where ex-Rats forward Dan DaSilva picked up an assist for the Sharks in their 5-3 win over the Portland Pirates.