Lightning top Red Wings, Blue Jackets sign first round pick Yegor Chinakhov, and NHL stars of the month

lightning red wings
May 2, 2021; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Detroit Red Wings defenseman Marc Staal (18) shoves Tampa Bay Lightning center Anthony Cirelli (71) after he hits center Luke Glendening (41) in the second period at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The NHL had only one game slated on Sunday. The Tampa Bay Lightning took down the Detroit Red Wings 2-1 in an afternoon showdown. Blake Coleman opened the scoring for Tampa just 16 seconds into the contest. The goal came off a turnover deep in the Wings zone which Barclay Goodrow turned into a center feed for the opening tally.

Mikael Sergachev scored the eventual game-winner in the second period while Christopher Gibson made 22 saves for his second start of the season. Tampa is undefeated when leading going into the third period this season at 25-0-0. They currently sit two points behind the Hurricanes for first in the Central.

“That’s a stat that shows the growth of our team,” Tampa’s head coach Jon Cooper said. “To win consistently, you have to learn how to close out games, and we’ve been finding ways to do it.”

Blue Jackets sign first round pick

Adding a little bright spot late into this abysmal season, the Columbus Blue Jackets have signed their 2020 first round selection, Yegor Chinakhov. The 20 year-old was selected 21st overall and his three year Entry-Level deal starts next season.

“I think he has a very high skill level, great on-ice awareness, he can see the ice, make plays, he has good one-on-one skills and a tremendous shot,” Columbus general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said when the pick was made. “He has a lot of different qualities that we think are going to translate to the North American game and the NHL game, and that’s why we drafted him where we did and that’s why we had him so high on our list.”  

Blue Jackets website

Chinakhov was a key player for his hometown team Avangard Omsk in the KHL that just won the Gagarin Cup. In 21 playoff games he finished with five goals and seven points.

Auston Matthews leads pack for the NHL’s Stars of the Month for April

nhl stars of the month
Apr 28, 2021; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews (34) celebrates his goal against the Montreal Canadiens with teammates left wing Nick Foligno (71) and center Mitchell Marner (16) during the first period at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Per NHL:

Carolina Hurricanes center Sebastian Aho and Wake County chief operating officer Johnna Sharpe (Discover NHL Central Division), Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon and associate nurse manager Alyssa Laabs (Honda NHL West Division), Boston Bruins left wing Brad Marchand and registered nurse Meaghan Quinn (MassMutual NHL East Division), and Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews and clinical resource leader Sarah Rumbolt (Scotia NHL North Division) have been named the NHL’s “Stars of the Month” for April.