NHL Morning Skate for March 4th

* A total of 21 trades involving 34 players were completed on the NHL Trade Deadline Day presented by OFX. among the moves, Vladislav Namestnikov (to WPG) was dealt on record date for the fourth time of his career, most shared by any player (since 1979-80) and the Ritchie brothers (Brett and Nick) went opposite ways – presumably the first brothers-versus – on the same deal -Brother swap in NHL history.

* The Golden Knights-Devils game saw a franchise record (one-game saves by a VGK goaltender) and another draw (longest scoring streak in NJD club history) as Vegas advanced to the top of the Western Conference.

* Carolina gained a slight advantage in their Metropolitan Division title bid, while one of their potential contenders, Pyotr Kochetkov, scored the last goalkeeping goal while playing for the club’s AHL affiliate.

* More than six Czech-born players could take to the ice when the Bruins host Rangers as part of the first-ever Hockey Day in the Czech Republic. The competition will also be part of a doubleheader in North America on ABC, ESPN+ and Sportsnet.

The rush for the playoffs will intensify as the trade deadline passes
The focus around the league is now shifting to the rush to the playoffs as the 2022-23 NHL trade deadline presented by OFX came and went on Friday. Although there were 21 trades on Deadline Day, much of the heavy lifting came in the weeks leading up. Including the trades made on March 3rd, a total of 74 trades were made in the six weeks before the deadline – 70 of them in the last two weeks alone (most ever in the 14 days before the deadline).

Below is a recap of some key acquisitions by current playoff teams as we enter the final six weeks of the regular season:

Eastern Conference
* The NHL-leading Bruins (48-8-5, 101 points), the fastest team in NHL history to reach 100 points in a single season, added several pieces before the deadline, including Tyler Bertuzzi. Bertuzzi is the sixth player in the Boston squad with at least one 30-goal season in his career; only four other teams have as many (FLA: 7; NYR: 6; PIT; 6; & CGY: 6).

* Stanley Cup champions Ryan O’Reilly (2019 with STL & Conn Smythe Trophy winner) and Luke Nice (2020 & 2021 with TBL) were added to the Maple Leafs roster ahead of the trading deadline. Schenn, who has won two trophies with Tampa Bay, is looking to help Toronto — who are currently up against the Lightning in the first round for the second time in as many seasons — to their first win in the playoff series since the 2004 Conference Quarterfinals.

* The Rangers also won the Stanley Cup champion before the deadline and reunited the 2013 Conn Smythe Trophy winner Patrick Kane with former Blackhawks teammate Artemi Panarin and also adds the champion of 2019 Vladimir Tarasenko. The 2022-23 campaign is only the second with three Conn Smythe Trophy winners traded in the same season (also Jonathan Schnell to CBJ & VGK) after 1995-96 (Bill Ranford, Patrick Roy & Wayne Gretzky). Notably, Claude Lemieux was dealt by the Devils to the Islanders and then by the Islanders to the Avalanche on October 3, 1995 — three days before the start of the 1995-96 campaign.

Western Conference
* The Kings continue to chase the Golden Knights – who now have Jonathan Quick on their roster – for the top spot in the Pacific Division and added Joonas Korpisalo accompany Phoenix Copley between the pipes in Los Angeles. Korpisalo delivered one of the greatest single-game playoff performances of all time while with Columbus, making 85 saves in Game 1 of the 2020 first round against Tampa Bay — the most by a goaltender in a playoff game since 1955 in Kelly Hrudey eclipsed. 56

* The Oilers added a defenseman Matthew Ekholm ahead of deadline and trying to build an appearance in the 2022 Western Conference Finals. Ekholm has appeared in 75 career playoff games — including a run to the 2017 Stanley Cup Finals with Nashville (1-10-11 in 22 GP) — ranking as the most successful and 14-more than the next best among all players on Edmonton’s current roster is (Mattias Janmark: 61 GP).

* The Jets added to their playoff push with the acquisition Vladislav Namestnikov from the sharks. Namestnikov traded for the fourth time in his career (also in 2018, 2020 and 2022) on deadline day, and tied Alan May (1988, 1989, 1994 and 1995) for the highest such total by an NHL player since 1979-80.

PACIFIC DIVISION STRENGTHENS WHILE HURRICANES MOVE AHEAD IN METROPOLITAN
The Golden Knights (37-19-6, 80 points), Kraken (35-21-6, 78 points), and Oilers (34-21-8, 76 points) all won in an increasingly close Pacific Division playoff race The Hurricanes extended their lead over the Metropolitan Division.

* Adin Hill set a franchise record with 47 saves and Jonathan Marchessault (2-1-3) counted every Vegas goal in regulation to help the club overtake idle Dallas (33-16-13, 79 points) for first place in Western Conference scoring. The Golden Knights have a two-point lead over the Pacific Division, where the top four clubs are separated by just four points.

* Jared McCann (1-1-2) became the first player to score 30 goals in a season for the Kraken as Seattle secured their third straight win, narrowing to within two points of idle Los Angeles (35-20-8, 78 points) for second place in the Pacific Division.

* Ryan Nugent Hopkins (2-2-4) became the third Oilers player to reach the 30-goal mark this season, marking the first time Edmonton had at least three 30-goal scorers since 1989-90. The Oilers, who continue to hold the Western Conference’s first wildcard spot, have a chance on Saturday to play a home-and-home game against the Jets (35-25-2, 72 points), who hold the second wildcard spot .

* Brent Burns (37 years, 359 days) recorded his first four-assist streak of his career and became the fourth-oldest defenseman in NHL history to field four assists in a game, as Carolina (40-12-8, 88 points) two Points ahead of New Lay Jersey (40-15-6, 86 points). The Hurricanes have spent 74 straight days at the top of the Metropolitan Division in a bid to fend off the Devils — the only other team to top the division since late October. Despite New Jersey’s defeat DawsonMercer extended his scoring streak to eight games — the second longest in NHL history by a player aged 21 or younger — as he set a new benchmark for longest in the NHL this season and equaled the Devils franchise record.

Friday’s Hurricanes-Coyotes game marked exactly three-fourths of the 2022-23 NHL season. Click here to view the Final Quarter: 2022-23 NHL Season document.

WEEKLY NHL PODCAST REVIEW

* NHL Fantasy: Effects of Timo Meier Trading with devils
* La Tasse de café LNH: special date for transactions
* Draft class: Brayden Yager joins; Adam Fantilli & NTDP Analysis
* The Chirp with Daren Millard: Joining Pete DeBoer; Showtime on Broadway
* NHL Fantasy: Fantasy spin in a flurry of trades
* NHL @ The Rink: Mike Rupp joins; Trade deadline frenzy

FAST CLICKS

* Friday’s #NHLStats: Live Updates
* Seth Jarvis Sports mullet in honor of the Hurricanes trip to Mullett Arena
* Mark Wahlberg hypes trade from Max Domi to stars, says Dallas has ‘a warrior’
* NHL Buzz: Alexander Barkov is expected back for the Panthers on Saturday
* Pyotr Kochetkov scores goalkeeping goal for the Chicago Wolves

ABC, ESPN+ DOUBLE INVOICE FULL OF CONTRACTORS
A few afternoon games on ABC, ESPN+ and Sportsnet are packed with teams smack in the middle of the playoff picture. The double record begins with the NHL leaders Bruins (48-8-5, 101 points) hosting the Rangers (35-18-9, 79 points) and their new signing, three-time Stanley Cup champion Patrick Kane. Rounding out the reigning Stanley Cup winner Avalanche (34-20-5, 73 points), who has won six of their last seven competitions and joins the leading stars of the Central Division (33-16-13, 79 points). can.

* The Bruins, who were No. 1 in the Atlantic Division for the entire 2022-23 season, are entering a nine-game winning streak that extends through February 14. They can achieve their first double-digit winning streak in nine years (12 GPs in 2013-14).

KARVINA WILL HOST THE FIRST HOCKEY DAY IN THE CZECH REPUBLIC
The NHL, Nova Group and the Czech Ice Hockey Federation together with community organizations will host the first ever “Hockey Day In Czechia” in Karvina on Saturday. The schedule of free events and activities open to the public at the sports complex includes a youth hockey tournament, an exhibition game featuring former NHL players including Michal Neuvirth, Pavel Brendl and Jaroslav Svoboda, as well as interactive activities and a coaching seminar.

* The day will culminate with a viewer party of the SAP-presented NHL game broadcast of the Rangers-Bruins game, which will be broadcast on Nova Sport 1 in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

* A total of 253 Czech-born players have played at least one NHL game (regular season or playoffs) in NHL history, including 37 this season and six who will be in Saturday’s Bruins-Rangers competition.

Click here for more #NHLStats ahead of the first-ever Hockey Day in the Czech Republic

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