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From the Branches: Score goals without the puck in the net using this one weird trick

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Kessel stick :(
Kessel stick :(
Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, and TGIF! It's been one of those weeks. The Leafs are in Montreal tomorrow. Until then there isn't much news. Still no word exactly what is Jake Gardiner's "injury".

Maple Leafs’ top outcome is a learning season filled with ‘good’ losses - Mirtle
The team is taking in coach Babcock’s system and displaying grit, but a high draft pick will likely be Toronto’s reward for the 2015-16 campaign


There were 8 games last night and, as always, some interesting things happened. So let's get to it!

The Blue Jacket's lost 3-2 to the Wild in John Tortorella's debut. I assume he was not happy with how the team played. Sergei Bobrovsky was definitely not happy with Dalton Prout. The Blue Jackets are struggling early on this year, and it's natural for Bobrovsky to be getting frustrated -- it comes with the territory. Torts has his hands full, and the ship is sinking. Time to get going.

The Kings trounced the Sharks 4-1 thanks to some great goals like this one, which found its way into the highlight reels. The Kings have played well early on this season, and it was only a matter of time until they started to show it on the scoreboard.

The Predators destroyed the Ducks 5-1 despite Pekka Rinne having trouble staying upright. Oh boy.

Could Jagr wind up with the Art Ross this year? He scored his fifth goal of the season with this little poke. He's at 8 points in 7 games and well on his way to finishing second in all-time scoring before he retires. It's not out of the question.

Rick Nash used this one weird trick to be awarded his first goal of the season without actually scoring.

Last night's games

Rangers Vs. Coyotes Recap: Rangers Top Coyotes With Third Period Surge - Blueshirt Banter
The New York Rangers won their second straight game.

Stars Demoralize Penguins, May Never Lose Again - Defending Big D
This game had about 2 minutes of extremely rare 6 on 3 hockey.

Lee Stempniak Makes & Completes New Jersey Devils Comeback in Ottawa - All About The Jersey
Lee Stempniak! LEE STEMPNIAK! Paging Cliff Fletcher. Cliff Fletcher please pick up the white courtesy phone.

Nashville Steamrolls the Ducks - On the Forecheck

Wild Break Early Struggles, Hand Jackets 8th Consecutive Loss - Hockey Wilderness
Perfect header image on this recap.

Blackhawks vs. Panthers final score 2015: Chicago rides power plays to 3-2 win - Second City Hockey
Lots of penalties on both sides in a 3-2 win for Chicago on Thursday night.

Capitals vs. Canucks Recap: Late Ovi Blast Gives Caps the 3-2 Win - Japers' Rink
Ovechkin still at a a goal per game pace.

Other News

Solar Bears not perfect but still win | Pro Hockey News
Our own Achariya couldn't be at last night's Solar Bears game, but will have a recap later. In the meantime, check out Don Money's coverage.

Bruins' Zac Rinaldo avoids suspension for Sean Couturier hit -
What!?!? I guess this means Kadri's chin check on E. Kane will be ignored too.

James Mirtle has gone crazy, and Justin Bourne reads PPP and (presumably) loves Reimernier.

There will be an ALCS gamethread up late this afternoon.

Have a nice weekend!