NHL Roundup: Marc-Andre Fleury get career win 485, J.T. Miller says he’s not ready after COVID battle, and all of yesterday’s action
Marc-Andre Fleury has passed Eddie Belfour for fourth all-time in career NHL wins. The charismatic goaltender earned victory 485 by making 20 saves as his Golden Knights beat the L.A. Kings by a 6-2 margin. He is now just 5 wins away from passing Roberto Luongo for 3rd all-time, a feat he should be able to accomplish this season.
“Looking back, to be able to be here now and having passed Eddie, who’s a guy I loved watching and have a lot of respect for, it’s pretty cool and I’m very humbled by that,” Fleury said.NHL.com
J.T. Miller speaks out; Canucks worried about coming back too soon from COVID
The Vancouver Canucks have not played in nearly three weeks. Players are still coming off the COVID list with some having experienced harsh symptoms due to the variant strain. According to Elliotte Friedman’s latest 31 Thoughts podcast, some players are unhappy with the media coverage of the situation but it sounds like many of them are concerned about coming back too soon.
J.T Miller voiced those concerns yesterday as they prepare to play tomorrow night after just one practice. “I don’t feel ready at all,” he said candidly and even used the word “dangerous” as they rush back to play. “Skating a couple of times my lungs are screaming,” he explained even though he did not get COVID. “I never thought I’d be in this scenario in my career – it’s not ideal but we have a job to do I guess.”
The frustration was evident as Miller spoke with the press via video conference. He called coming back challenging but also said he felt it was “not safe.” Elliotte Friedman noted last night that the return and schedule was agreed to by all parties which included the Canucks, Medical Experts, NHL and NHLPA. However, there’s now some talk that the schedule could change and we should learn more today.
The Colorado Avalanche edged the St. Louis Blues by a 4-3 score. Devan Dubnyk won his debut and will need to shoulder the load for the Avs as Phillip Grubauer has now entered COVID protocol and is expected out at least two weeks. Colorado’s victory keeps them 4 points up on Vegas for first in the West.
Fortunately for the Blues, the Arizona Coyotes fell to the Minnesota Wild by a 5-2 margin. St. Louis holds the last playoff spot by a point with 2 games in hand. The Ducks also beat the Sharks 4-1.
In North action, the Calgary Flames won their third straight by beating the Montreal Canadiens 4-1. The Flames are giving the Habs a little scare as they cut Montreal’s hold on fourth to 3 points. It should be noted the Habs have 3 games in hand.
Finally, the Winnipeg Jets beat the Ottawa Senators by a 3-2 score as they narrow the first place gap with the Maple Leafs to five points.