Found March 12, 2012 on
Red Light District Hockey:
Detroit Red Wings
Toronto Maple Leafs
New Jersey Devils
St. Louis Blues
Columbus Blue Jackets
San Jose Sharks
New York Islanders
New York Rangers
Welcome to another installment of "The Week Ahead" here at RLD Hockey. By now, you folks know the drill, so let's get started.Three Stars of the Week1) Ilya Bryzgalov, Philadelphia Flyers
Does everyone remember when Philadelphia Flyers netminder Ilya Bryzgalov could not stop a beach ball? Well, it appears that those days could be long behind the 9-year man between the pipes for the Flyers. Bryzgalov picked-up three wins, including two straight shutouts, this week over the Detroit Red Wings, Florida Panthers and Toronto Maple Leafs, stopping 94 of 96 shots in the process.2) Ilya Kovalchuk, New Jersey Devils
The New Jersey Devils are playing some excellent hockey right now and one of the main reasons for that has been the play of sniper Ilya Kovalchuk. Kovalchuk had 9 points on 5 goals and 4 assists, including a hat trick against the New York Islanders on Thursday night. Kovalchuk is now sixth in the league in scoring with 71 points.3) Jaroslav Halak, St. Louis BluesOne of the main reasons why the St. Louis Blues are No. 1 in the NHL right now is because of the play of their goaltenders. This week, it was Jaroslav Halak that got the job done between the pipes as he won games over the Chicago Blackhawks, Anaheim Ducks and Columbus Blue Jackets, and stopped 76 of 79 shots. On the season, Halak is now 24-10-5 with a 1.84 GAA, .928 save percentage and six shutouts.
Three Players to Keep an Eye On- Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh PenguinsThe Pittsburgh Penguins, already one of the league's best teams this season, might get better with the return of team captain and superstar Sidney Crosby this week.
Over the past week, Crosby was cleared for contact and took part in team practices throughout the course of the week. He looks ready to go and with the team just slightly behind the New York Rangers in both the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference, he will be more than a welcome addition to this Penguins' hockey club.
This week, Crosby and the Penguins will take on the Rangers, Devils, and Flyers.
- Ryan Miller, Buffalo SabresWith the Buffalo Sabres just two points out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, goaltender Ryan Miller will need to continue to play the way he has over the last few weeks in order to help get his team into the top eight.
Miller has won four of his last five games and has looked like the Miller of old in the process. He is challenging shooters, controlling his rebounds and looks confident between the pipes for his hockey club. Miller is now 24-18-5 on the season with a 2.59 GAA, a .915 save percentage and 5 shutouts.
This week, Miller and the Sabres will take on the Canadiens, Avalanche and Panthers.
- Joe Thornton, San Jose SharksBelieve it or not, the San Jose Sharks currently find themselves out of the top eight in the ever competitive Western Conference.
For team captain Joe Thornton, it is time to step up and lead this hockey club. In his last five games, Thornton has just 3 assists and 5 shots, stats that do not lead an NHL team to victory very often.
This week, Thornton and the Sharks will take on the Oilers, Flames, Predators and Red Wings.
Two Teams to Watch- New York RangersEveryone knows that the playoff stretch drive is one of the toughest times to play hockey because every team is going out and doing everything they can to either solidify their spot in the postseason or get into the top eight in their conference.
The New York Rangers have struggled with this over the last few weeks. They are playing inconsistent hockey, not getting the bounces that they were getting earlier in the season and are not playing with the swagger they had just over a month ago.
This week, the Rangers will take on the Hurricanes, Penguins and Avalanche.
- Colorado AvalancheFor a team that was not expected to do too much this season, the Colorado Avalanche have surprised many this year and currently find themselves in the eighth spot in the Western Conference.
The Avalanche are 7-3 in their last 10 games and have been getting terrific play from the likes of Gabriel Landeskog, Steve Downie, and Semyon Varlamov. If the Avalanche continue to get strong play from these players and the rest of the lineup, they could very well find themselves in the postseason come April.
This week, the Avalanche will take on the Ducks, Sabres, Devils, and Rangers.
Game of the WeekThursday, March 15 -- Pittsburgh @ New York RangersWith the New York Rangers' recent struggles and the potential return of Crosby, Thursday night's matchup between the Penguins and Rangers is easily the game of the week. These two clubs are two of the best in the Eastern Conference and NHL and have been playing terrific hockey all season long. Even if Crosby isn't in the lineup for that game, it should feature some terrific hockey.
Other Games to Keep an Eye OnMonday, March 12Nashville @ Phoenix
Tuesday, March 13
New Jersey @ PhiladelphiaSt. Louis @ ChicagoSan Jose @ CalgaryWednesday, March 14
Dallas @ Winnipeg
Phoenix @ VancouverThursday, March 15
Pittsburgh @ NY RangersBoston @ FloridaPhoenix @ CalgaryNashville @ San JoseFriday, March 16
Washington @ WinnipegChicago @ DallasLos Angeles @ AnaheimSaturday, March 17
Philadelphia @ BostonPittsburgh @ New JerseyDetroit @ San JoseSunday, March 18
Pittsburgh @ PhiladelphiaWashington @ ChicagoPhoto credit: Getty Images
BEST OF MAXIM
Well, that headline kinda wrote itself, didn't it?
More than enough has been said about Ilya Bryzgalov's struggles in his first season in Philadelphia, which seemed to curiously coincide with his Stephen Hawking-like insight into how big the universe is in comparison to everyone's problems on HBO's Road to the Winter Classic. Bryzgalov, who signed a nine-year,...
No one can deny how well Ilya Bryzgalov has played for the Philadelphia Flyers as of late. After months of waiting for Bryz to play like the goalie he was expected to be, he has finally stepped up. With 3 shutouts in his last 4 games, and 5 straight wins, it appears the ship is righting itself. But is it possible that some of the bumps Bryzgalov has sustained along the way could...
Ilya Bryzgalov stopped 17 shots for this third straight shutout and fourth in five games to lead the Philadelphia Flyers to a 3-0 win over the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday night.
Sean Couturier, Jakub Voracek and Danny Briere scored to provide the offense.
After an underwhelming start to the season, Bryzgalov has dominated of late and proved worthy of the nine-year, $51 million...
Ilya Bryzgalov recorded his third straight shutout and fourth in five games by turning aside 17 shots as the host Philadelphia Flyers regained sole possession of fifth place in the Eastern Conference with a 3-0 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday.
Jakub Voracek scored in his return from a head injury and rookie Sean Couturier tallied for just the second time in 24 contests...
Ilya Bryzgalov made 29 saves for his third shutout in the past four games and Claude Giroux scored the only goal in the shootout and the Philadelphia Flyers earned a 1-0 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday.
Bryzgalov made his 11th straight start in goal for Philadelphia. His biggest save came on a Phil Kessel breakaway in overtime. He also denied the Leafs forward in the...
NEW YORK - Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov, New
Jersey Devils left wing Ilya Kovalchuk and St. Louis Blues goaltender Jaroslav Halak have been named the NHLs Three Stars for the week ending March 11.
FIRST STAR ILYA BRYZGALOV, G, PHILADELPHIA FLYERS
Bryzgalov posted a 3-0-0 record, 0.65 goals-against average and .979 save
percentage in three starts as the Flyers ...
Last night Ilya Bryzgalov shutout the New Jersey Devils in Philadelphia. It was Bryzgalov's fourth shutout over his past five starts. Here are some notes on last night's game, the Devils scoring depth and more.
- Last night's Devils / Flyers game was a perfect example of one team just wanting it more. Unfortunately for New Jersey, it was their opponents that wanted...
After an up and down season, the Philadelphia Flyers $51 million man has caught fire. Ilya Bryzgalov has heard the boo birds this season on his own home ice, has found celebrity and promptly lost it again, has been benched for the Winter Classic, has given the press a boatload of amazing quotes, and was even “lost in the woods.” However, the enigmatic Russian has found his game...
PHILADELPHIA — The Philadelphia Flyers signed Ilya Bryzgalov to a huge contract last summer in hopes he would end their goaltending problems. Right now, he’s play even better than they could have expected.
Bryzgalov, the reigning First Star of the Week, stopped 17 shots for his third straight shutout and fourth in five games as the Flyers blanked New Jersey 3-0 on Tuesday night...
Last night the New Jersey Devils took on the Philadelphia Flyers at 'The Rock' and came out with a big 4-1 win over their division rivals. Here are some notes the Atlantic Division, last night's game and Ilya Kovalchuk, among others.
- This stat you're about to read is absolutely mind boggling: The Devils are fourth in the Atlantic Division with 85 points, yet...
The New Jersey Devils fell to the Philadelphia Flyers in the second game of a home-and-home series tonight by a score of 3-0. After a strong defensive first period, the Devils had a hard time getting anything going offensively. Flyers' goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov collected his fourth shutout in five games; the Flyers now sit alone in fifth place in the Eastern Conference with 87...
There was something lost in all this Ilya Bryzgalov talk and that of course would be Kari Lehtonen. Sure Bryzgalov has a shutout streak that seems to keep going at around ten periods or so, Lehtonen quietly plays on a team that faces a ton of shots and high quality chances. Not all numbers are created equal as we know and right now it just seems that Dallas...
Match-up - Devils (40-24-5 - 85 points) @ Flyers (39-22-7 - 85 points)
Road/Home records - 21-12-2 -------------- 17-10-5
TV - MSG Plus 2, TCN-Philly
Puck drop - 7:00 PM ET
Season series - Devils lead 3-2
Last 10: New Jersey 5-4-1 / Philadelphia 7-3-0
Projected starting goalies - Martin Brodeur (NJ) vs. Ilya Bryzgalov (PHI)
Battle of the stats
Goals for/against per...