Malkin Scores in Return to Lead Pens to Win
Pittsburgh — Evgeni Malkin scored in his return from a lower-body injury, Sidney Crosby added his 16th goal, and the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-1 on Monday night.
Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 32 shots for the Penguins, who won their sixth straight home game.
Malkin missed two games last week after being injured during a morning skate. He looked fine while bulling his way toward the net 4:16 into the second period for his eighth goal of the season. Crosby pushed his season-point total to an NHL-best 43 when he deflected in a shot by Pascal Dupuis midway through the third.
Matt Calvert scored with less than a minute left for Columbus.
Senators 5, Flyers 4, SO
Ottawa, Ontario — Jason Spezza scored the winning goal in the shootout to lift Ottawa over Philadelphia.
Ottawa earned its first shootout win of the season after dropping its first four in the tiebreaker. The Senators snapped a five-game skid at home,
Clarke MacArthur had two regulation goals for the Senators (12-14-5), and Patrick Wiercioch and Kyle Turris also scored. Craig Anderson made 25 saves.
Michael Raffl, Jakub Voracek, Luke Schenn and Kimmo Timonen had goals for the Flyers (13-14-3). Steve Mason stopped 30 shots.
Turris gave the Senators a 4-3 lead with his first in eight games. He carried the puck from his end, moved in along the side boards and sent a shot in off Schenn at 8:21 of the third.
NHL Salary Cap to Rise
Pebble Beach, Calif. — The NHL salary cap is expected to rise to about $71 million next season, an increase of more than 10 percent.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman made the optimistic announcement Monday at the league’s board of governors meeting. The ceiling of the salary cap is determined by hockey-related revenue generated this season, so the new figure is merely an estimate, Bettman said.
The minimum amount for teams to spend is expected to be about $52 million. The NHL has had a major recovery one season after the lockout-shortened campaign.
The upper cap for this season is $64.3 million.
Teams were allowed to spend up to $70.2 million during the lockout-shortened 2013 season as part of a transition year before the cap went down in accordance with the 50-50 split of hockey-related revenue that was agreed to as part of the new collective bargaining agreement.
By no surprise, the board on Monday unanimously approved the $5.2-billion, 12-year Canadian television rights deal with Rogers Communications Inc., which begins next season and runs through the 2025-26 season.
The lucrative deal is expected to boost the salary cap even further beginning in the 2015-16 season. The money from that agreement will start coming into the NHL beginning next year.