Sergei Bobrovsky ranks second in the NHL with 32 wins. He's fourth in goals-against average (2.18) and fifth in save percentage (.926). Just don't tell his coach.
Columbus Blue Jackets bench boss John Tortorella wasn't too thrilled with the praise being lavished on his netminder after Tuesday night's 1-0 overtime loss to the Montreal Canadiens. And he wasn't shy about making that clear.
"Yeah, he played good. It's his job," Tortorella said postgame, according to NHL.com's Arpon Basu. "At this time of year, that's his job. I don't think we should keep saying it's spectacular."
It was a tough line to take regarding a goaltender who's been tremendous for one of the league's best teams this season. The Jackets currently rank second in the Metropolitan Division and third in the league with 84 points thus far.
But Tortorella said his players are simply doing what's expected of them.
"This is what goalies do for teams that are going to try to get there at the end of the year," Tortorella said. "So this is his responsibility. I thought both (he and Carey Price) made some key saves for their team."
Bobrovsky turned aside 29 of 30 shots in the overtime loss, while Price kept out an even 26 of 26.
John Tortorella, the fiery bench boss of the Columbus Blue Jackets, has turned a new leaf with the Ohio club. But he wasn't so calm and collected right after his team's overtime loss to the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday.
Following the Canadiens' game-winner, scored on the power play with Blue Jackets defenseman Seth Jones in the penalty box, Tortorella was visibly upset with the on-ice officials.
In his postgame media conference, though, Tortorella was more even-keeled.
"It was a hard-fought point for us," he told reporters. "I thought we played hard and I like where we're going as a team."
Encouraged to share his thoughts on the penalty, the coach wasn't having it.
"Guys, don't try to work me into what went on," Tortorella said. "We played a good, hard game, so don't try to bait me into anything else. Just let me answer the questions about the game."
The Blue Jackets entered Tuesday's contest with wins in four of their last five, their lone defeat coming against the Nashville Predators, a 4-3 loss Feb. 19. The Blue Jackets now return home to face the Minnesota Wild on Thursday.
"I understand where we're at and everything, but there's a pride you have to play with and there wasn't enough of that tonight," Tippett told reporters, pointing to a host of mistakes.
"When you turn the puck over and make as many poor puck mistakes as we make, there are two ways you have a chance to win," he said. "One, if you outscore your mistakes, or your goalie cleans up your mistakes, and we did neither of those tonight."
Mike Smith got the start in net, but his night ended after two periods, after he allowed four goals on just 14 shots. Louis Domingue played the final frame, turning aside 11 shots.
Tippett wanted more from his key players against the Bruins, singling out veteran defensemen Oliver Ekman-Larsson and Alex Goligoski, who both finished the night with minus ratings.
Veteran winger Radim Vrbata was one of the few bright spots for the Coyotes, picking up an assist on Peter Holland's goal to extend his point streak to 10 games.
It turns out Matt Duchene isn't a big fan of the trade deadline frenzy.
The Colorado Avalanche pivot has repeatedly seen his name come up in deadline conversations, with his club in free fall and the front office looking to spark a better effort in 2017-18.
It seems Duchene has been well aware of the chatter, and the 26-year-old said he's ready to move on.
"It's hard. It's just so unpredictable," he said to NHL.com's Adam Kimelman. "I think tomorrow I will be relieved either way with what happens. I'm just ready for this to be over and I can move on with my life. I don't think I am expecting much to happen, but you never know. You never know. It's just part of the business."
The trade deadline isn't the only thing irking the Avalanche centerman, who said the team's last-place ranking has been weighing on him.
"We're playing meaningless and we have been playing meaningless games since December," Duchene said. "It's something that kind of creeps up on you at times."
Colorado has won just 17 of 61 games this season, the fewest of any team in the NHL. The Avalanche added to their loss column Tuesday night, getting stomped 4-0 by the Philadelphia Flyers.
Duchene has 16 goals through 56 appearances this season, leading the team in that regard while ranking second in points (36) behind Nathan MacKinnon.
With the NHL's trade deadline set for 3 p.m. ET on Wednesday, the pending unrestricted free agent is reportedly drawing a ton of interest from numerous suitors:
Vrbata's bounced back after an underwhelming 2015-16 season. He has 15 goals and 47 points in 62 games, and will surely be looked upon to provide offense for a playoff contender this spring.
With another assist Tuesday, he extended his career-high point streak to 10 games. Good timing.
The 35-year-old's playing out his one-year, $1-million contract, though he has already earned bonus money for his strong performance. His deal also includes up to $1.25 million in playoffs-related bonuses, according to Cap Friendly.
The 22-year-old rookie started off strong with two goals in his first NHL game, and he's managed to stay afloat and establish himself as a consistent contributor among the Penguins' veteran group.
He was gifted a golden opportunity earlier this month when Sheary was sidelined with an upper-body injury, leaving an open spot on the Penguins' top line - a chance to skate with one of the all-time greats. Head coach Mike Sullivan did some juggling, but eventually gave Guentzel a chance to continue the club's growing trend of surprising rookie performances.
And the young gun has thrived. He entered Tuesday night's game with seven points in 11 February tilts - the latter two points coming on the biggest of stages, the club's Stadium Series win over the rival Philadelphia Flyers.
Guentzel continued his run by stepping up with a hard-fought goal midway through the second frame of his team's eventual 3-2 loss to the Dallas Stars.
With the tally in tow, Guentzel's season now stands at 15 points through 24 games. Not bad for a 2013 third-round pick getting his first taste of the NHL. But for those paying attention, the impressive run isn't surprising.
Guentzel was tearing through the AHL prior to his NHL call-up. His 21 goals still rank as the most among all Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins skaters, despite Guentzel having played roughly 20 fewer games than the club's other top scorers.
The future is looking bright in Pittsburgh, with Guentzel, Sheary, Rust, Scott Wilson, and Tom Kuhnhackl all rising up the ranks. That's a cruel twist of fate for the rest of the Metropolitan Division, as the club's past and present don't look too bad either.
McDavid has been the league's best offensive weapon all season, but it's been Talbot's exceptional play in the cage that has kept the Oilers alive as they've grown into a legitimate force in the West.
Talbot earned his 32nd win of the season Tuesday night, as Edmonton took down the St. Louis Blues in a close 2-1 tilt. The Oilers netminder did his part, turning aside 25-of-26 shots.
With 32 wins on his 2016-17 resume, he's now tied for second in the league, sitting level with Braden Holtby and Sergei Bobrovsky - fine company to be keeping at this point in the season.
He's also in good company in terms of team history, as the win helped him climb another rung on the Oilers' all-time single-season list. He now sits level with Curtis Joseph in fourth place, and unless Edmonton falls apart down the stretch, he'll undoubtedly move even higher.
1. Grant Fuhr
2. Tommy Salo
3. Andy Moog
4. Curtis Joseph
*4. Cam Talbot
The Oilers have 18 games left, and considering Talbot has started 57 of their first 64 tilts, it's likely he'll get a fair amount of chances to improve on his total. There's a good chance he'll post the most single-season wins in franchise history by year's end.
It's safe to say Edmonton has finally sorted out its starting goaltender problems.