Awani Review

Complete News World

NHL: Nikita Kucherov also had 100 assists, Auston Matthews' quest for 70th goal came up short

NHL: Nikita Kucherov also had 100 assists, Auston Matthews' quest for 70th goal came up short

After Connor McDavid on Monday, it was Nikita Kucherov's turn to reach the 100 assists plateau this season on Wednesday, during the Tampa Bay Lightning's 82nd and final game.

In the second period of the confrontation between the Lightning and the Toronto Maple Leafs, Kucherov passed in the middle of the slot towards his faithful companion Brayden Point, who beat Martin Jones with one quick shot.

The Lightning eventually won 6-4 thanks to two-point performances from Kucherov, Steven Stamkos, Nick Paul, Anthony Duclair and Brandon Hagel.

“Coach” is the fifth skater in NHL history to score 100 goals for his teammates, after Bobby Orr, Wayne Gretzky (eleven times), Mario Lemieux and McDavid.

The league has not seen a season in which two players reached 100 assists since Gretzky and Lemieux did so in 1988-89 (114 each).

The Russian also scored in the first half, raising his priority over Nathan MacKinnon to six points at the top of the Pitman Tour points column, thanks to his 44 goals and 100 assists.

There's just one game left in the season for MacKinnon and the Colorado Avalanche, who host the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday.

Matthews has tried everything in the 70th

In this match, which does not affect the standings, midfielder Auston Matthews tried to make a good impression by adding the 70th goal to his tally this season, but he did not succeed.

Matthews, playing under his parents' watch, was trying to become the first player since Alex Mogilny and Teemu Selanne (76 each) in the 1992-93 season to score at least 70 goals.

See also  NHL: The defending champions, the Golden Knights, defeated the Kraken, 4-1, in their opener

It's not because he didn't try: Matthews, constantly fed by his teammates, fired eleven shots at reserve Matt Tomkins' cage, without succeeding in thwarting him.

Thus, the 26-year-old sniper stopped at 69 goals, as he was unable to hit the goal in his last two matches, in Sunrise and Tampa.

“This wasn’t supposed to happen,” Leafs No. 34 mused.

The last to score 69 goals in the NHL was Mario Lemieux, in 1995-96.

Ryan Reaves, TJ Brodie, Pontus Holmberg and John Tavares – in the final minute of play, while Sheldon Keefe did everything he could to get Matthews to score – scored for Toronto.

Tampa will begin its playoff campaign by facing its Florida rival, the Panthers, while Toronto will face the Boston Bruins.