NHL Three Stars: Depleted Preds handle Pens; Vesey leads comeback

No. 1 Star: Juuse Saros, Nashville Predators

A handful of Nashville players came down with food poisoning prior to the game. This group included goaltender Pekka Rinne. Saros was called up from Milwaukee on an emergency basis and ended up starting against the Pittsburgh Penguins. In his second ever NHL game, Saros earned his first win in the NHL, stopping 34 of 35 Pittsburgh shots.

No. 2 Star: Jimmy Vesey, New York Rangers

After the end of the first period, the Rangers were down 2-0 to the Washington Capitals. Brandon Pirri scored early in the second to get the Rangers going. Then Jimmy Vesey notched the game tying goal and what would stand as the game winning goal in the Blueshirts 4-2 victory.

No. 3 Star: Artemi Panarin, Chicago Blackhawks

The Blackhawks overcame a 4-2 deficit to the Toronto Maple Leafs. They scored the final two goals to tie it within a minute of each other late in the third. Panarin assisted on both goals by Artem Anisimov, and scored in the shootout to give the city of Chicago another reason to party tonight. Check out the slick setup by Panarin for Anisimov’s first goal.

Honorable Mention: Auston Matthews assisted on both of William Nylander’s goals. Brian Campbell had three assists and a was a plus-4 for Chicago … The Montreal Canadiens improved to 4-0-1 on the season with a 4-2 victory against the Boston Bruins. Carey Price made 19 of 21 saves. Torey Mitchell was plus-3 and scored a goal despite taking a nasty slash.

… The Philadelphia Flyers and Carolina Hurricanes combined for seven goals in the second period. Philly came out on top in a 6-3 win. The Flyers blueline had seven points in the game. Shane Gostisbehere (1G, 2A) and Ivan Provorov (2A) leading the group … David Perron did not have point in his first five games back in St. Louis. He made up for lost time on Saturday with a four point night (including a hat trick) against the Calgary Flames … The Vancouver Canucks came back from a 3-0 deficit to tie the Los Angeles Kings. Despite dropping the game in the shootout, the Canucks remain perfect in regulation at 4-0-1. Peter Budaj picked up the win for the Kings … The Tampa Bay Lightning’s power play was 2-for-4 against the Ottawa Senators as the Bolts beat the Sens, 4-1. Andrei Vasilevskiy made 26 of 27 saves in the win … The Florida Panthers beat the Colorado Avalanche 5-2 on the back of rookie Shane Harper’s first and second NHL goals of his career … Jimmy Howard shutout the San Jose Sharks on a 30 save performance. Gustav Nyquist scored two goals in the 3-0 win … Filip Forsberg, Kevin Fiala, Viktor Arvidsson, and P.K. Subban led the Preds with 2 points each … Sergei Bobrovsky picked up a shutout against the Dallas Stars with 32 saves … Minnesota’s Joel Eriksson Ek netted his first NHL goal in his first NHL game. Taylor Hall scored the overtime game winning goal for the New Jersey Devils in the team’s comeback win over the Wild.

Did You Know? Per Capitals PR, Alex Ovechkin has scored 21 goals against Henrik Lundqvist in his career; the most against any goaltender in the league. No. 21 on King Henrik was a beauty as Ovi used Marc Staal as a screen.

Dishonorable Mention: Joe Pavelski was hit with a double-minor penalty for spearing Steve Ott. For his involvement, Ott received an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. Steve Ott? Unsportsmanlike? Shocking … Jamie Benn (a minus-3, along with Tyler Seguin, against Columbus) and Brandon Dubinsky dropped the gloves. Those are some expensive hands hitting Dubinsky’s face. From HockeyFights.com:

Marc-Andre Fleury was mercifully pulled to start the third period against Nashville after allowing 5 goals on 23 shots. Mike Condon replaced him and made all seven saves … Ottawa was credited with 12 giveaways to Tampa’s one … Cody McLeod played a game low 6:50 for Colorado … Due in part to his recent struggles, Brian Elliott did not get the start in net against the St. Louis Blues for their first meeting since he was traded from the team … Derek Dorsett left the game against LA in the second period and did not return. The team cryptically tweeted out a GIF of what could have caused his injury.