April 5 — Iron Men, Getting Fooled & Keith Yandle Trivia

Yesterday’s NHL Scores

Last Night’s News 📰

MATTY’S HISTORIC HATTY: On Monday, the explosive offense was on full display for the Toronto Maple Leafs in a critical 6-2 road win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. Auston Matthews recorded a hat trick to tie the franchise record for most goals in a season (54). Matthews added a helper, while Mitch Marner also contributed with a goal and two assists, as Toronto moved two points ahead of the Lightning and Boston Bruins for second in the Atlantic Division. 

BRUINS BUMP BOLTS: Boston also jumped ahead of the Lightning in the Atlantic Division standings after the Bruins defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2. Although both teams have 93 points, the Bruins have one more win than Tampa, giving Boston the edge in the standings. Jake DeBrusk opened and closed the scoring in overtime for the Bruins, who are 8-2-0 in their last 10 games. 

SCHENN SEVENTH FOR ST. LOUIS: Brayden Schenn became the seventh St. Louis Blues player to reach the 20-goal plateau, scoring the third of four second-period goals in the Blues’ 5-1 win over the Arizona Coyotes last night. Vladimir Tarasenko added two tallies, including the game-winner, giving him the team lead with 25 on the year.

WAITING FOR GAUDREAU: Contributing to all three scores, Johnny Gaudreau tallied two goals and an assist to lead the Calgary Flames past the Los Angeles Kings 3-2. Adrian Kempe notched both Kings’ markers as the Flames earned some much-needed space in a tight race for the Pacific Divison. 

Trivia Tuesday

How Well Do You Know Keith Yandle?

Keith Yandle, Philadelphia Flyers (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)
  1. Yandle broke whose consecutive games played streak earlier this season when he played in his 965th game?
    • Phil Kessel
    • Patrick Marleau
    • Doug Jarvis
    • Garry Unger

  2. How many seasons did Yandle earn at least 50 points?
    • Four
    • Six
    • Three
    • Five

  3. Yandle made his NHL debut on Oct. 11, 2006, against which team?
    • Dallas Stars
    • Pittsburgh Penguins
    • Florida Panthers
    • Detroit Red Wings

Answers can be found at the bottom of the email.

No Foolin’

Look, it’s been pretty easy to get caught up in a playoff race that is evolving by the day, but that doesn’t mean we can’t take a break to focus on other things now and then. Last Friday was April 1, and you better believe that the NHL got in on some of the April Fool’s Day festivities.

We might be a bit late on this one, but here’s a rundown of some of the best pranks we saw pop up across the league:

We’ve Got a Mascot Trade!

Bernie’s on the move? (NHL/Avalanche.com)

The Colorado Avalanche and Columbus Blue Jackets decided they needed a shakeup in the mascot department. Therefore, the two clubs announced a swap that saw the Avalanche ship Bernie to Columbus for Stinger. Of course, we all know how ridiculous a mascot trade sounds—after all, the trade deadline passed nearly two weeks prior!

Your Friendly Neighbour(s)

Blues “superfan” Jake Neighbours (Photo by Jeff Bottari/NHLI via Getty Images)

St. Louis Blues 2020 first-round pick Jake Neighbours enjoyed a cup of coffee with the big club early this season, but how much of an impression did he make on his St. Louis teammates? That question formed the basis for Neighbours’ prank on his past and future teammates, as the Edmonton Oil Kings forward disguised himself as a diehard Blues fan ahead of their Friday clash with the Oilers to see who would recognize him. It was a mixed bag, but he did score two pucks and a stick for his troubles.

Can’t Spell “Nordiques” Without N-O

Quebec Nordiques jersey (THW Archives)

Sportsnet came out firing on April Fool’s Day, leaving the province of Quebec in their wake. The Canadian sports broadcaster took to its social media platforms to announce the return of the Quebec Nordiques 26 years after the franchise uprooted and became the Colorado Avalanche. Given that there are currently no plans to resurrect the Nordiques, this prank seemed like a cruel tease for fans of the defunct organization.

Iron Men in Waiting

On Friday, Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Keith Yandle was a healthy scratch, ending his NHL-record consecutive games played at 989. He is the NHL’s “Iron Man” right now, but his reign may be short-lived. The second-longest games played streak in NHL history is still active, and it’s not very far behind.

Some younger players have also begun to build streaks that could surpass the 33-year-old Yandle (or whoever is the record holder at that point) if they continue to stay healthy and play at a high level. With that in mind, here is a look at the current longest active streaks in the NHL.

Phil Kessel (969 Games)

The 34-year-old Arizona Coyotes winger has not missed a game since Nov. 2, 2009. In the 12-plus years since, he’s been a consistent offensive contributor, playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs until 2015 and winning two Stanley Cups as a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins, with whom he played until 2019.

Phil Kessel, Arizona Coyotes (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Kessel is in his third season with the Coyotes, and if he plays all of the remaining 13 games this season, he will be just seven games away from Yandle’s record mark. Although Arizona is out of playoff contention, it doesn’t appear that Kessel’s streak is in danger of being snapped via a healthy scratch like Yandle’s.

Brent Burns (665 Games)

There is quite the drop-off after the top two, which says more about Yandle and Kessel than other active players, as the next on the list is Burns. The 37-year-old San Jose Sharks defenseman started his current streak on Nov. 21, 2013, already in his 10th season in the NHL.

Brent Burns, San Jose Sharks (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Burns has played every game during his streak in a Sharks uniform, the team he has been with since 2011. He’s put up strong offensive and defensive numbers with San Jose, winning the Norris Trophy in 2016-17 as the league’s best defenseman. He won’t catch Yandle and Kessel, but he has plenty of cushion over the next-closest active player.

Leon Draisaitl (354 Games)

The gap between Burns and Draisaitl is more prominent than between Kessel and Burns, but the 26-year-old Edmonton Oilers center has plenty of time to make up the deficit. He hasn’t missed a game since Oct. 23, 2017, his third year in the NHL. He has performed at an incredibly high level during the streak, registering three 100-point seasons.

Leon Draisaitl, Edmonton Oilers (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

This season, Draisaitl has 101 points (50 goals, 51 assists), ranking second in the league and four behind teammate Connor McDavid. He’s not currently in the same conversation as Yandle and Kessel (or even Burns), but at 26, Draisaitl could potentially enter the chat if he can stay healthy.

Trivia Answers

  1. Doug Jarvis
  2. Four
  3. Detroit Red Wings

NHL Standings

NHL’s Leading Scorers

Today’s NHL Schedule