Former NHL star Todd Bertuzzi was arrested on suspicion of DUI in Auburn Hills, Michigan last weekend.
(Dream Gap - image credit) The Dream Gap tour returned with a flourish on Saturday. After nearly 12 months of inactivity, the Professional Women's Hockey Players Association (PWPHA) showcase series kicked off its second year as Team Minnesota defeated Team New Hampshire 5-2, in Somerset, N.J. The PWHPA was formed after the collapse of the Canadian Women's Hockey League in 2019. While pandemic-related restrictions have kept players living north of the border out of action, the PWPHA is pushing ahead with its Dream Gap Tour with two U.S.-based teams for now. Made up primarily of Canadian and U.S. athletes, the action picked up in the second period after a slow opening frame. Hayley Scammura was the first to break the ice, streaking down the wing before pulling the puck back onto her backhand to beat Minnesota goalie Nicole Hensley to give New Hampshire a 1-0 lead. WATCH | Minnesota routs New Hampshire in Dream Gap Tour opener: But with 20 seconds to go in the second, Savannah Harmon pulled Minnesota level with a wrister from the slot. Then the floodgates then opened, with Abby Roque — who had an assist on Harmon's goal — leading the charge. After feeding Winnipeg's Ryleigh Houston for her second helper of the night, Roque would pot two of her own. Her second, courtesy of a nearly impossible-to-stop wrister, befuddled New Hampshire goalie Katie Burt as it sailed top shelf from a tight angle. Minnesota's fifth of the night came courtesy of Kendall Coyne Schofield, before Gigi Marvin finally added New Hampshire's second to close out the box score at 5-2. This year's edition of the Dream Gap Tour features a unique scoring system; teams are awards two points for a win, one for a win in overtime and half a point for an overtime or shootout loss. Emphasis is also being placed on hat tricks, shorthanded goals, shutouts and an additional point for teams that score five or more goals in a game. Historic game ahead Saturday's game was the first of two this weekend. Both teams set to return on Sunday for the second half of their back-to-back series — except this time, they will be playing at Madison Square Garden, a historic first for professional women's hockey and its goal of creating a viable women's pro league. PWHPA players are currently training out of five hubs: Minnesota, New Hampshire, Toronto, Calgary and Montreal. The next stop for the tour is Chicago, which will host games on March 6-7. The Toronto Maple Leafs have previously issued their support and plan on hosting a Dream Gap Tour stop once Canada's COVID-19 restrictions are lifted. CBC Sports will live-stream all Dream Gap Tour games not being broadcast on TV by Sportsnet or the NHL Network.
(File/Getty Images - image credit) Connor McDavid and Darnell Nurse caution hockey fans looking forward to an old-fashioned, 80's-style track meet in a three-game series that opens Saturday between the Edmonton Oilers and Toronto Maple Leafs. For McDavid and Nurse say their Oilers know better than to give players like Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner and John Tavares on-ice real estate to work their magic. "Every time we play Toronto, the games have been pretty low scoring," McDavid says. "People expect these big offensive nights and I think both teams have that respect for each other where neither of them want to open it up and let the other offensive guys get going. "I think you can expect a tight-checking little series." Tight checking or not, the baseball-style set in Edmonton represents a rare mid-season opportunity – thanks to the creation of the NHL North Division due to the COVID-19 pandemic – to witness two of the league's best clash in a mini-playoff. And the stakes are high. The first-place Leafs (15-4-2) hold a four-point lead over the Oilers (14-8) in the North. League-leading Toronto has a game in a hand. The Oilers are the hottest team on the entire circuit, riding a five-game winning streaking with victories in 11 of their last 13. WATCH | Week 6 roundup of the NHL's North Division: "We're obviously playing better," McDavid says. "Special teams have helped. Goaltending has helped. Everyone's buying in and starting to really believe. I think that's the main thing. When everyone believes in what we're doing, that's when it gets real dangerous." On the line: North Division supremacy. "A team like Edmonton has played as good or better than anybody in the league here the last while," says Toronto head coach Sheldon Keefe. "They've been picking up a lot of points here. 'But we feel like we've been going pretty well as a team here and it's still real close. You can't take any games or any days off and certainly this week, that's going to be the case going head-to-head." The series promises some amazing hockey featuring four of the top five most prolific offensive stars in the game. McDavid (14 goals, 40 points) leads the league in scoring. His Oiler teammate Leon Draisaitl is right behind in second (10 goals, 34 points.) WATCH | Connor McDavid earns 500th career point: Matthews is the league's top goal scorer (18) and tied for third in points with 31, but won't be suiting up in Saturday's game due to a lingering wrist injury, according to Keefe. Marner is fifth in league-scoring with 30 points. "They're a team with a lot of really, really good offensive weapons that can score at will if you give them time and space," Nurse says of the Leafs. "We want to check hard and not give free ice and free space to their creative players. "Because they will make you pay." Toronto defenceman Jake Muzzin feels the same about the McDavid and the Oilers. "You have to be aware when he's on the ice," Muzzin says. "You try to take away his speed, try to take away his time. You give him open ice and boom, he makes plays. And he's pretty good at it." WATCH | McDavid powers Oilers past Flames with 5 points: On defence, Nurse, for Edmonton, and Toronto's Morgan Rielly are two of the brightest stars in the game – with both in the conversation for inclusion on the Canadian Olympic team at the 2022 Beijing Winter Games. In goal, Jack Campbell should be ready to start for Toronto for the first time since injuring his leg last month against Montreal. Fiery veteran Mike Smith is splitting time with Mikko Koskinen in the net for Edmonton. At age 38, Smith is a perfect 6-0 to start the season after missing the first month due to injury. "I just really want to play well for this group," Smith says. "I feel like we've done a lot of good things this year to put us in a good spot right now, and I don't want that to slide away because of goaltending. "It's a mission I'm on." WATCH | I was in net for... Auston Matthews' 4-goal debut: In a season with no training camp, both the Leafs and the Oilers have established themselves as contenders. Now they get to see where they stand against the best. "We're going to have to be ready," Muzzin says. "They're a team that's firing right now. They've got good goaltending. Their defence is playing well, and their stars are playing hard. It's going to be a challenge." Let the puck drop.