Things are heating up on and off the ice in the NHL. With teams fighting for playoff position, general managers aren't waiting around for the Mar. 3 trade deadline to strike deals.
The trade market was active over the weekend with Timo Meier finding his new home and the Nashville Predators choosing to be sellers after announcing significant changes to the franchise. On the ice, William Nylander and Kirill Kaprizov turned in some spectacular performances that led to a couple of thrilling overtime wins.
Let's check out the biggest news and the best highlights from this past weekend in the NHL.
Goal of the weekend: Linus Ullmark shoots his shot and scores
You read that above headline correctly: Linus Ullmark became just the 14th goaltender to score a goal in an NHL game on Saturday night. With just under a minute remaining in the third period, the Boston Bruins held a 2-1 lead, and the Vancouver Canucks emptied their net for the extra attacker.
The Canucks dumped the puck into the Bruins' zone, but they didn't get it far enough away from Ullmark. So, he took one stride out of the crease to play the puck, looked up and saw his chance at glory, Ullmark flung the puck down ice and into the middle of the Canucks' empty net.
GOALIE GOAL!— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) February 26, 2023
GOALIE GOAL!!! pic.twitter.com/bBmSn2HpOs
Not only has Ullmark been one of the leaders for the Vezina Trophy all season, but now he is gunning for the Rocket Richard Trophy as well. When you're hot, you're hot.
Robbery of the weekend: Laurent Brossoit channels his inner Dominik Hasek
Dominik Hasek was one of the most entertaining goaltenders in NHL history, and Laurent Brossoit did his best Hasek impression on Saturday night. With the Vegas Golden Knights and Dallas Stars locked at 2-2 in overtime, Jason Robertson and Tyler Seguin got a 2-on-1.
Brossoit made the initial save on Robertson, but the chaos was only beginning. With Brossoit laying on his side in the crease, Robertson was able to get the puck to Seguin in the slot. Seguin was staring at 24 square feet of open net when he fired his shot, but Brossoit rolled over onto his back, threw out his glove and got enough of the puck to knock it away.
we didn't win the game, but Laurent Brossoit had the save of the year 😱 pic.twitter.com/VwiJDRauVu— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) February 26, 2023
It was the type of save that only happens in video games and makes you yank your console out of the wall.
NHL trade market heats up
Normally, the NHL trade deadline is all bark and not much bite. That has not been the case this year, and we still have three days until the actual deadline on Friday afternoon.
NHL general managers were working overtime this past weekend, and they made a number of notable trades. The San Jose Sharks moved star forward Timo Meier to the New Jersey Devils, and the Nashville Predators officially entered the seller's market.
Here is a recap of the weekend's biggest trades
- Feb. 25: Jets acquire forward Nino Niederreiter from the Predators in exchange for a 2024 second-round pick.
- Feb. 26: Stars acquire forward Evgeni Dadonov from the Canadiens in exchange for forward Denis Gurianov.
- Feb. 26: Golden Knights acquire forward Ivan Barbashev from the Blues in exchange for forward Zach Dean.
- Feb. 26: Devils acquire forwards Timo Meier and Timur Ibragimov, defensemen Scott Harrington and Santeri Hatakka, goalie Zachary Emond, and a 2024 fifth-round pick from the Sharks in exchange for a conditional 2023 first-round pick, a conditional 2024 second-round pick, a 2024 seventh-round pick, forwards Fabian Zetterlund and Andreas Johnsson, and defensemen Shakir Mukhamadullin and Nikita Okhotiuk.
- Feb. 26: Lightning acquire forward Tanner Jeannot from the Predators in exchange for defenseman Cal Foote, a conditional 2025 first-round pick, a 2024 second-round pick, and third-, fourth-, and fifth-round picks in the 2023 draft.
- Feb. 27: Maple Leafs acquire defenseman Jake McCabe, forward Sam Lafferty, a conditional 2024 fifth-round pick, and a conditional 2025 fifth-round pick from the Blackhawks in exchange for a conditional 2025 first-round pick, a 2026 second-round pick, and forwards Joey Anderson and Pavel Gogolev.
For updates on all of the latest deadline rumors and biggest trades, follow along with the CBS Sports NHL trade deadline tracker.
Regime change in Nashville
After 26 years as the general manager of the Nashville Predators, David Poile announced he will be officially retiring on June 30. His successor will be the first head coach in Predators franchise history, Barry Trotz.
Poile is already the winningest general manager in NHL history with 1,520 regular season wins to his name, and he has built the Predators into a franchise with Stanley Cup expectations. Under Poile's guidance, Nashville went to the Stanley Cup final in 2016-17 and won the President's Trophy in 2017-18.
However, the Preds have been stuck in neutral for the last few years, and they are in serious jeopardy of missing the playoffs for the first time since 2013-14. It was time for change in Nashville, but a familiar face will be replacing Poile.
Trotz was the head coach of the Predators for 15 seasons, and he took them to the playoffs seven times despite being outmatched more often than not. After being fired by the Predators in 2014, Trotz cemented himself as one of the greatest coaches of the modern era by winning a Stanley Cup with the Washington Capitals in 2018 and taking the New York Islanders to back-to-back conference finals in 2020 and 2021.
As the Predators' office transitions from one regime to another, their rebuild is off to an aggressive start. Nashville has already traded Nino Niederreiter and Tanner Jeannot, and more moves may be on the way in the next few days.
Kirill Kaprizov single-handedly leads Wild to comeback win
The Wild were on track for a disappointing loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday but Kirill Kaprizov dragged them to an overtime win. Minnesota was down 2-0 early in the third period when Kaprizov got rewarded for being in the right place at the right time.
Giving up is not in his vocabulary 😤#mnwild pic.twitter.com/mafNxwoFKV— Minnesota Wild (@mnwild) February 26, 2023
Roughly five minutes later, with the Wild on a 5-on-3 powerplay, the puck trickled loose to Kaprizov off the faceoff. With a clean look at the Columbus net, Kaprizov ripped a shot past Elvis Merzlikins to tie the game.
Will never shut up about this man 🤑#mnwild pic.twitter.com/8YAVXV1Oy1— Minnesota Wild (@mnwild) February 26, 2023
In overtime, Kaprizov and Wild defenseman Calen Addison were going to work in the offensive zone when Addison found Kaprizov all alone on the backdoor. Not one to pass up a good scoring chance, Kaprizov slammed the puck into the net to complete the hat trick and deliver a 3-2 win for Minnesota.
Brb rewatching this until further notice 🔁— Minnesota Wild (@mnwild) February 26, 2023
KAPRIZOV HATTY 🎩🎩🎩#mnwild pic.twitter.com/XfhHAxFKl4
Appointment viewing this week
Maple Leafs at Oilers | Wednesday, March 1: This one has the potential for some fireworks. Auston Matthews, Ryan O'Reilly, Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl will be all sharing the ice. It could be a high-scoring affair that has the entire country talking.
Devils at Avalanche | Wednesday, March 1: This will mark the Devils debut of new acquisition Timo Meier, so hockey fans will be glued to their televisions to see how he gels with his new team. The Devils have won four of their last five and will look to continue their winning ways as they attempt to establish themselves as one of the East's top teams.
Hurricanes at Golden Knights | Wednesday, March 1: The Hurricanes have a slim lead on the Devils for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division, so every game is paramount. Meanwhile, the Golden Knights are also in a dogfight in the Pacific Division. These are two teams that may be flying under the radar in their respective conferences.
Sabres at Bruins | Thursday, March 2: At this point, Tage Thompson is enough reason to tune in, no matter who the Sabres are playing. He has a mind-boggling seven points over his last three games and could prove to be a handful for a Bruins blue line that recently added Dmitry Orlov.
Rangers at Bruins | Saturday, March 4: Could this be Patrick Kane's Rangers debut? Reports suggest that the deal is going to get done, but New York is just trying to make the numbers work at this point. Regardless of if the deal happens or not, these are still two of the top teams in the East and that makes it must-see TV.