The Weather Network is calling for below-seasonal temperatures through next weekend, all of which will come as very bad news to many of the 11,480 who dropped by the Rona Centre on Friday night and Saturday afternoon.
A good number will be feeling the effects of the cold all week long after leaving the rink bare-headed courtesy of Ottawa 67’s forward Cody Lindsay.
For the second game in a row, the fifth-year player made it rain hats and toques Saturday, notching his second of back-to-back hat tricks in less than 24 hours.
His most-recent completed a perfect weekend for the 67’s (31-15-1-1) at they put in one of their more solid efforts in January, turning back the Kingston Frontenacs 3-2 before a crowd of 6,244.
The difference Saturday was the line of the barely-old-enough-to-drive Sean Monahan between two of the 67’s senior citizens in Lindsay and captain Thomas Nesbitt, both soon to turn 21.
Everyone worried what would happen to the 67’s first line when Shane Prince went down a week ago with a shoulder injury. What happened was the second line merely took off with Monahan rejuvenating Nesbitt and Linsday much like he did in a brief stay together just before the holiday break.
The line accounted for four goals and eight points Friday night in a 7-4 victory over the Barrie Colts as every member of the line finished a plus-4 in the plus/minus ratings. Against Kingston (23-20-3-2), the totals were all three of the 67’s goals and seven points with every one of the line a plus-2.
“(Monahan) just tells us what to do,” said Lindsay.
“He’s one of those rookies who is allowed to talk. He’s one rookie who knows when to talk.
“Nez and I always had chemistry and (Monahan) reminds me a little of (Tyler) Toffoli when he broke in “
The game was only slightly similar to the last meeting between the two clubs, back on Dec. 29, when Toffoli scored five goals in the first two periods and was sat down in the third period after a shouting match between Kingston coach Doug Gilmour and the Ottawa bench in a contest that ended 9-0 in favour of the 67’s.
Lindsay had his hat trick before the 17-minute mark of the second but, this time around, there was no sitting the hot hand as Lindsay showed signs of his 39-goal, 82-point team MVP perfromance of a year ago. He now has 25 goals and 46 points for the season.
With Monahan and Nesbitt doing the heavy lifting, Lindsay scored his first at 10:52 of the first on a perfect feed from Monahan, who hasn’t looked like a rookie since he returned from winning the gold medal at the World Under-17 Hockey Challenge at Christmas. The assist was No. 100 of Nesbitt’s tenure as a 67.
Linsday scored his second just past the midway point of the game, draining a rebound of a Cody Ceci shot from the point. And six minutes later, he completed a three-way passing play with Ceci and Nesbitt.
“Other teams have their top lines and best D up against our big line and that other line came up with
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