The Columus Blue Jackets head into the holiday break as the hottest team in the NHL, as they edged the first-place Canadiens, 2-1, on Friday night. The win helps them hang on to the league's best record at 23-5-4, which is their best start in frachise history. The Canadiens loss despite out-shooting the Blue Jackets, 37-24, as they sit at 21-9-4. Sam Gagner scored his 15th of the season with his sixth power-play goal in the first period, while Brandon Saad's 13th of the year proved to be the game-winner. Goalie Sergei Bobrovsky got the win between the pipes, and now has a 10-game winning streak of his own. Columubus has not loss since November 26th.
Wild Rout Rangers For 10th Straight Win
Meanwhile, the Minnesota Wild sit as the second-hottest team in the NHL, as they took care of the Rangers, 7-4, on Friday for their 10th straight win. The Wild chased Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist with goals by Mikko Koivu, Nino Niederreiter, and Marco Scandella in a five-minute span of the second period. Mikael Granlund, Jason Zucker, Matt Dumba, and Charlie Coyle also scored for the Wild, who sit at 21-8-4. Lundqvist surrendered four goals on 13 shots before exiting. Coyle also had three assists, while Koivu and Zucker had three points apiece, and Eric Staal and Granlund with two points, as the Wild got contributions all over the ice.
Westbrook's 40-Point Streak Continues in Win
Russell Westbrook has a new streak going during his stellar season, as he recorded his third-straight 40-point game on Friday night, as the Thunder got past the Celtics, 117-112. Westbrook also had his 14th triple-double of the season, finishing with 45 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 assists, leading the Thunder down the stretch. He scored the team's final 15 points in the game, including eight during a crucial 10-0 run. Enes Kanter and Domantas Sabonis each scored 20 for the Thunder, who had loss three of their last five. Isaiah Thomas had 34 points and 10 assists, while Al Horford had 23 points for Boston in the losing effort.