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Posted On Tuesday, 12.31.2013 / 7:30 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic blog

Nieuwendyk has fun in Alumni Showdown

DETROIT -- Joe Nieuwendyk hasn't played in an NHL game since the 2006-07 season, but he was able to get the competitive juices flowing Tuesday.

Nieuwendyk represented the Toronto Maple Leafs in the second game of the Alumni Showdown at Comerica Park, where the Leafs rallied from a 5-1 deficit before suffering a 6-5 shootout loss to the Detroit Red Wings.

The 47-year-old was one of many Hall of Fame players to take the ice in the second game.


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Posted On Tuesday, 12.31.2013 / 7:23 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic blog

McCabe's scoring touch extends a magical day

DETROIT -- Bryan McCabe hadn't scored a goal in a competitive game since he played for the New York Rangers during the 2010-11 season, his last in the NHL.

But on Tuesday, his goal with two seconds remaining sent the second game of the Alumni Showdown at Comerica Park past regulation.

The Alumni Showdown was a big part of the festivities this week that will be capped by the 2014 NHL Bridgestone Winter Classic, which the Maple Leafs and Red Wings will play Wednesday in front of what is expected to be a record crowd at Michigan Stadium.


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Posted On Sunday, 12.29.2013 / 6:51 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - Road to Sochi blog

Islanders' Okposo in mix for U.S. Olympic roster spot

As a team, the New York Islanders have not been able to build off what they accomplished last season, when they qualified for the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time since 2007.

But right wing Kyle Okposo continues to make strides, so much so that the Minnesota native is meriting serious consideration to be named later this week to the United States roster for the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

Skating on the top line alongside Thomas Vanek and John Tavares, the 25-year-old ranks second on the Islanders with 34 points (12 goals, 22 assists) in 39 games. He had 24 points (four goals) in 48 games last season.

Okposo's 34 points have him in the top five among American skaters this season.

"It's in the back of your mind, obviously," Okposo said of making the Olympic team, which will be named immediately following the 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic on Wednesday. "World Junior tournament is going on right now, so I've been following that a little bit. You think about the international competition a little bit, but I'm here with the Islanders, and I'm still going to keep playing well."


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Posted On Saturday, 12.28.2013 / 3:00 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Devils captain Salvador returns from injury

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- After more than two months, the New Jersey Devils are expected to have their captain back in the lineup Saturday night.

Bryce Salvador, who injured his foot during a 4-1 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Oct. 22, skated Saturday morning and will return when the Devils face the New York Islanders at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

"It's been a while, so I'm excited to get back at it and just be back playing," Salvador said.

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Posted On Saturday, 12.28.2013 / 3:00 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Islanders' Tavares out with lower-body injury

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- John Tavares' streak of 246 consecutive games played will come to an end Saturday night.

A lower-body injury will force the New York Islanders captain to sit out against the New Jersey Devils at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, and Islanders coach Jack Capuano didn't want to discuss it in great detail.

The Islanders are listing Tavares as day-to-day. Capuano said the injury wasn't sustained during a 3-0 win against the Detroit Red Wings on Monday, but rather something that's been lingering.

"I'm concerned, obviously," Capuano said Saturday morning. "You know what Johnny is to our hockey club. He's not only our leader, but obviously his play speaks for itself. But at this particular time, he's not ready to go. We're not going to put him in a situation where he can further hurt himself.

"You just be cautious with it, and hopefully he'll feel better tomorrow."

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Posted On Tuesday, 10.29.2013 / 12:12 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Hagelin, Talbot eager to help Rangers get win

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- Carl Hagelin is tired of watching. He's ready to help the New York Rangers get out of their early-season funk.

The speedy forward was forced to watch the first 10 games, working his way back from offseason shoulder surgery. But there's a strong chance he'll be in the lineup when the Rangers (3-7-0) face the New York Islanders at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on Tuesday night.

"All I've heard is that everyone that was on the ice is going to take the warmup, and then go from there," said Hagelin, who participated in the optional skate at the Coliseum on Tuesday morning. "I'm just going to prepare myself to play and then if I play, I'll play."


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Posted On Tuesday, 10.29.2013 / 12:00 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Capuano confident Islanders defensemen can improve

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- There is no doubt Andrew MacDonald and Travis Hamonic make up the New York Islanders' top defensive pairing. They play the most minutes each night and consistently go up against the opposition's top forwards.

But they can't do it alone. That's why the Islanders, who were sloppy in a 5-2 loss on home ice to the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday, need more from their other four defensemen -- on both ends of the ice -- if they're going to be a force in the Metropolitan Division.

"Those guys are going to play top minutes, none different than [Ryan] McDonagh and [Dan] Girardi," Islanders coach Jack Capuano said of MacDonald and Hamonic, who will receive top minutes again Tuesday night against the New York Rangers at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

"We just collectively back there have to play better. Guys are giving us what they have, [but] we're making mistakes that they see, they know and I've got the confidence in them that it's going to get better. But for us to be successful, we have to have better decisions with the puck on our stick. Our gaps have got to be better, our sticks have got to be better, we've got to defend harder. We've gone through this. I have the confidence they're going to rebound."


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Posted On Tuesday, 10.22.2013 / 12:30 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Islanders' Donovan ready to make most of his chance

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- The last thing Matt Donovan wants is to see one of his teammates get injured.

However, when New York Islanders defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky sustained a concussion during a 4-3 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday, Donovan knew it was going to provide him with an opportunity to get back into the lineup and show what he can do.

Donovan will get that chance Tuesday when the Islanders host the Vancouver Canucks at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

"Lubo [Visnovsky] is very offensive, he runs that first power play," Donovan said. "I'm going to get my chance to show what I can do offensively. Hopefully I can play well tonight."

Islanders coach Jack Capuano said Andrew MacDonald will receive the first crack at replacing Visnovsky on the team's top power-play unit but also said Donovan is expected to get playing time during the man-advantage too. Donovan has one goal, one assist and a plus-2 rating in five games this season.

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Posted On Tuesday, 10.08.2013 / 12:38 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Islanders to be cautious, sit Clutterbuck another game

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- Right wing Cal Clutterbuck is very close to making his debut with the New York Islanders, but it won't happen Tuesday night against the Phoenix Coyotes at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum.

Clutterbuck suffered a lacerated leg during a preseason game against the Calgary Flames on Sept. 17. Originally slated to miss 4-6 weeks, Clutterbuck could be in the lineup as early as Friday night, when the Islanders visit the Chicago Blackhawks.

"I could probably play today," Clutterbuck said after skating Tuesday morning. "But I think just in talking it over with the medical staff and the coaches, it's just probably better that I be more prudent at this point. I've lost two games, three tonight. In the grand of scheme of things, 82 games plus playoffs, I think it's maybe a little bit smarter to miss an extra one versus missing some more down the road."


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Posted On Monday, 09.23.2013 / 11:09 PM

By Brian Compton -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - Training Camp 2013 blog

Rangers GM Sather hoping for Stepan deal

New York Rangers general manager Glen Sather appears to be growing impatient with center Derek Stepan.

The restricted free agent has yet to sign a contract with the club and has held out of training camp. Stepan, 23, led the Rangers with 44 points (18 goals, 26 assists) in 48 games last season.

"I don't think Derek is going to let this thing linger that long," Sather said in an interview on MSG Network during the Rangers' preseason game against the Calgary Flames on Monday night. "I don't think he is a big enough fool to think that he will sit out the year and it will do any good. He is in a gap contract and every one of our players has signed a gap contract."

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Quote of the Day

It's time we got a break. People that have watched us, I'm sure they said, 'Finally, some things are going our way.' We'll take the breaks when they go our way.

— Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien after a 3-2 overtime win against the Minnesota Wild on Wednesday to snap a three-game losing streak
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