Nikita Kucherov Extends Point Streak, Jamie Benn Hat Trick, Top Highlights

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistFebruary 12, 2020

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov, right, of Russia, celebrates his game-winning goal against the Columbus Blue Jackets with teammate defenseman Victor Hedman, of Sweden, during overtime of an NHL hockey game in Columbus, Ohio, Monday, Feb. 10, 2020. The Lightning won 2-1. (AP Photo/Paul Vernon)
Paul Vernon/Associated Press

As the Tampa Bay Lightning keep winning, Nikita Kucherov continues to play a role in the team's goals. 

The Russian extended his scoring streak to 12 games in Tuesday's 2-1 overtime win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, which was Tampa Bay's eighth consecutive victory. 

Kucherov, 26, produced his 43rd assist of the campaign on Mikhail Sergachev's second-period tally in the battle of Eastern Conference contenders.

Over in the Western Conference, Jamie Benn of the Dallas Stars put up the lone hat trick during a Tuesday slate that featured a handful of multi-goal performances. 

           

Tuesday NHL Scores

Buffalo 3, Detroit 2

Toronto 3, Arizona 2 (Final/Overtime)

Florida 5, New Jersey 3

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New York Islanders 5, Philadelphia 3

Tampa Bay 2, Pittsburgh 1 (Final/Overtime)

Minnesota 4, Vegas 0

New York Rangers 4, Winnipeg 1

Dallas 4, Carolina 1

Colorado 3, Ottawa 0

Edmonton 5, Chicago 3

St. Louis at Anaheim (postponed)

                       

Nikita Kucherov's Assist Extends Point Streak

         

Jamie Benn's Hat Trick

        

Kasperi Kapanen's Overtime Winner

           

Yanni Gourde Extends Lightning Winning Streak

        

Kevin Fiala Continues Hot Scoring Run

        

Ryan Pulock Earns Win For Islanders

           

John Tavares' Backhanded Assist From His Knee

          

Mike Matheson's 3-Point Night

         

Chris Kreider Scores Twice

       

Kailer Yamamoto Bags A Pair For Oilers

       

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins Stays Hot

           

Nikita Kucherov Extends Point Streak In Lightning's 8th Straight Win

Kucherov's power-play feed to Sergachev in the second period provided an answer to Evgeni Malkin's first-period strike.

By extending his point streak to 12 games, Kucherov moved within three games of tying the franchise's current record set by Steven Stamkos during the 2009-10 season, per NHL Public Relations: 

Tampa Bay now owns the most victories in the NHL with 37, as well as the longest winning streak, which is three games longer than the next best held by the Colorado Avalanche. 

Goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy was one of the stars of the 2-1 win, as he held the Penguins scoreless for two regulation periods and overtime. 

"[Vasilevskiy] saves our team," Sergachev said, per NHL.com's Wes Crosby. "Sometimes, we're just like, 'Oh, it's a goal.' But there he is. Blocker, glove, chest, whatever. ... He's a tough goalie to score on."

Unfortunately for the Lightning, Kucherov left the contest with a lower-body injury, when his leg jammed into the boards late in the second stanza, according to Brian Burns of the team's official website. 

Tampa Bay finished the game with 10 forwards after Anthony Cirelli was also ruled out of the game with a lower-body injury. 

The Lightning came away with the win thanks to Yanni Gourde, who scored for the first time since November 25. 

The second-place team in the Atlantic Division can extend its winning run to nine games Thursday at home against the Edmonton Oilers. 

              

Jamie Benn Leads Dallas To Win With Hat Trick

Benn's sixth career hat trick propelled the Stars past the Carolina Hurricanes in a meeting of postseason contenders in each conference. 

The 30-year-old opened the scoring in the first period, scored on the man advantage in the second and finished off the hat trick and win with a late tally in the final stanza. 

Benn said Dallas wanted to start fast, and after conceding an equalizer, it responded properly, per the team's official Twitter account

"We wanted to have a good start and we did that. We played our game and took it to them," he said. 

The victory was crucial to keep the Stars in the mix for the top two Central Division playoff places. 

While scoring Tuesday was nice, Benn is looking to help in any way possible down the stretch.

"I'm just trying to do my part to help this team win, and right now with the tight standings and how good this league is, it's doing whatever we can to get two points every night," he said. 

Dallas has 69 points and sits three points behind the Colorado Avalanche and four back of the St. Louis Blues in the Central Division.

                

Wednesday NHL Schedule

Montreal at Boston (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN) 

Calgary at Los Angeles (10 p.m. ET, NBCSN) 

Chicago at Vancouver (10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN+) 

          

Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.