Welcome to the NHL On Tap. Three NHL.com writers will share what they are most looking forward to on the schedule each day. Today, their choices from four games on Friday.
Hurricanes look to win 10th straight, break franchise record
The Carolina Hurricanes will try to win their 10th straight game and break the franchise record when they host the Florida Panthers (7:30 pm ET; ESPN+, HULU, SN NOW). They will also try to extend their point streak to 16 games, which would make it the longest in the NHL this season. At 13-0-2 in their past 15 games, the Hurricanes haven’t lost in regulation since the Arizona Coyotes defeated them 4-0 on Nov. 23. The Hurricanes (23-6-6), second to the Boston Bruins in the NHL standings, have lost in regulation only six times in 35 games this season. One of those regulation losses, however, came against the Panthers, 3-0, on Nov. 9 in the teams’ only previous meeting this season. — Nicholas J. Cotsonika, columnistt
Battle in the Pacific, as McDavid tries to tie career high
At various points this season, the Seattle Kraken and Edmonton Oilers have each looked like they might be serious contenders. And, well, at other points they have looked a bit less than that. But the Oilers (19-15-2) and Kraken (18-11-4) have each taken a downturn of late, with the Oilers losing four of their last six (2-2-2) and the Kraken losing seven of 10 (3-6-1). They face off at Climate Pledge Arena (10 pm ET; ESPN+, HULU, TVAS, SNW, SN NOW) where Oilers forward Connor McDavid tries to extend his 16-game point streak and each team tries to get some momentum. McDavid’s streak reached 16 games Tuesday with a goal in his third straight game. During the stretch, the forward has 32 points (15 goals, 17 assists) and, if he gets a point Friday, he will tie the NHL career-high he set last season. McDavid, who has an NHL-leading 31 goals and 67 points, is the first player to have a point streak of at least 16 games in consecutive seasons since Dany Heatley (22 games in 2005-06; 16 games in 2006-07). — Amalie Benjamin, staff writer
The Pittsburgh Penguins play the New Jersey Devils at PPG Paints Arena (7 pm ET: SN, TVAS, ATTSN-PT, MSGSN) in their final game before the 2023 Discover NHL Winter Classic against the Boston Bruins at Fenway Park on Monday. The Penguins (19-10-6) are desperate for a win, having lost three in a row (0-1-2), including a 5-4 overtime loss to the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday in which they blew a four- goal lead Pittsburgh has allowed 14 goals in the skid. The Devils (22-11-2) might be more desperate, coming off consecutive losses to the Bruins as part of a stretch that has seen them go 1-7-1. –– Shawn P. Roarke, senior director of editorial
Nashville Predators at Anaheim Ducks (5 p.m. ET; BSSC, BSSO, ESPN+, SN NOW)
Forward Matt Duchene missed the Predators’ last game, a loss to Dallas on Tuesday, because of the birth of his third child. The Predators (14-14-5) are 2-5-3 in their past 10 games. The Ducks (10-22-4) play the fourth game of a 10-game homestand. They are 1-1-1 in the first three.
New Jersey Devils at Pittsburgh Penguins (7 p.m. ET; SN, TVAS, ATTSN-PT, MSGSN, ESPN+)
Forward Jack Hughes leads the Devils with 81 points (36 goals, 45 assists) in 69 games since Jan. 1, 2022. It is the most in a calendar year by a Devils player since 2018 when forward Taylor Hall had 94 points (38 goals, 56 assists) in 73 games. With his goal score, Penguins forward Sidney Crosby will reach 20 for the 15th time in his career, the second most prolific streak among active NHL players. Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin has 18 seasons of 20 or more goals
Florida Panthers at Carolina Hurricanes (7:30 p.m. ET; ESPN+, HULU, SN NOW)
The Panthers (16-16-4) ended a three-game losing streak with a 7-2 win against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday. Forward Alexander Barkov had a hat trick and two assists after missing three games with a knee injury. Matthew Tkachuk leads Florida with 43 points (17 goals, 26 assists) in 33 games. Martin Necas leads Carolina with 34 points (15 goals, 19 assists) in 35 games.
Edmonton Oilers at Seattle Kraken (10 p.m. ET; ESPN+, HULU, TVAS, SNW, SN NOW)
The Oilers and Kraken teams are tied for fourth in the Pacific Division with 40 points each, behind the Vegas Golden Knights, Los Angeles Kings and Calgary Flames. Forward Matty Beniers is third on the Kraken in scoring, with 25 points, behind only Andre Burakovsky and Jordan Eberle, but leads all NHL rookies in points. Oilers defenseman Tyson Barry has 15 points (one goal, 14 assists) since Dec. 1, becoming the first Oilers defenseman with 15 points in a month since Boris Mironov did it in November 1996.