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Posted On Thursday, 01.24.2013 / 9:46 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Pens reshuffle minor-league depth with pair of deals

The Pittsburgh Penguins spent Thursday morning reshaping their depth with a pair of trades involving minor leaguers.

In the first, the Penguins obtained Chad Kolarik from the New York Rangers in exchange for forward Benn Ferriero. In the second, Pittsburgh moved defenseman Carl Sneep to the Dallas Stars in exchange for a conditional seventh-round pick.

Kolarik, who turns 27 later this week, is the second-leading scorer on the Connecticut Whale of the American Hockey League, putting up 16 goals and 35 points in 41 games. Selected by the Phoenix Coyotes (No. 199) in the 2004 NHL Draft, Kolarik has made six NHL appearances, going without a point in two games with the Columbus Blue Jackets and registering an assist in four games with the Rangers in 2010-11. He missed the 2011-12 season with a knee injury.

Ferriero, 25, had four goals and 18 points with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this season. He has played in 92 NHL games, all with the San Jose Sharks between the 2009-10 season and the 2011-12 season.

Sneep, 25, started the 2012-13 season in Wheeling of the ECHL, scoring three goals and 15 points in 29 games. He also played one game with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton before the trade. Sneep, a second-round choice of the Penguins in 2006, has made one NHL appearance, registering an assist in that game.

The Penguins will receive the Stars' seventh-round pick in the 2013 NHL Draft if Sneep plays 10 or more regular-season games with Dallas. It is also conditional on Sneep passing a physical by Friday.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.24.2013 / 9:16 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Avs' O'Reilly, Russian team mutually part ways

Colorado Avalanche forward Ryan O'Reilly, a restricted free agent, has left Russian team Metallurg Magnitogorsk after the player and Kontinental Hockey League team mutually agreed to terminate his contract Thursday.

The news comes jhours after Avalanche forward Steve Downie was ruled out for the season because of a knee injury that will require surgery.

According to rsport.ru, the club released O'Reilly from the deal because of fears he would return to North America at some point after the KHL signing window closes on Jan. 31. O'Reilly signed a two-year deal with Metallurg last month, but it contained an out clause allowing him to leave if offered more money by a NHL franchise, according to the report.

“Ryan did not rule out the possibility of a new contract overseas during February and he understood that this course of events would affect Metallurg’s preparations for the playoffs,” Metallurg said in a website statement.

In fact, according to rsport.ru, Metallurg already has a replacement lined up for O'Reilly.

"Ryan behaved honorably in allowing us to find another player to replace him," team vice president Gennady Velichkin told R-Sport. "We've been looking for a player to replace O'Reilly for a long time and we've already found him."

O’Reilly had five goals and four assists in 12 games for Metallurg, but reportedly reaggravated a foot injury in a game against Traktor Chelyabinsk on Wednesday.

Now, the focus turns to O'Reilly's future in Colorado.

With the injury to Downie, the Avalanche could use some more firepower on the forward lines, and the team's leading scorer from last season would certainly provide that.

O'Reilly, 21, had 18 goals and 37 assists in 81 games last season, more than doubling the 26-point campaigns he put up in each of his first two seasons in the NHL.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.23.2013 / 5:57 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Avalanche forward Downie out for season

Colorado Avalanche forward Steve Downie will miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL in his right knee, the team announced Wednesday.

Downie, who will have surgery, was injured in the second period of Tuesday's 3-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings at Pepsi Center.

The 25-year-old had an assist in two games this season. He had 13 points (11 assists) in 20 games for Colorado last season after he was acquired from the Tampa Bay Lightning.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.23.2013 / 5:10 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Gardiner back in the lineup for Leafs

The Toronto Maple Leafs have activated defenseman Jake Gardiner from injured reserve and will have him in the lineup Wednesday when they play the Pittsburgh Penguins at Consol Energy Center.

Gardiner hasn't played since sustaining a concussion during a game Dec. 8 while playing for the Leafs' American Hockey League team, the Toronto Marlies. In 22 AHL games, he had nine goals and eight assists.

The 6-foot-2, 184-pound blueliner had 30 points in 75 games as a rookie with the Maple Leafs last season.

The move likely means defenseman Korbinian Holzer will be sent to the AHL.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.23.2013 / 3:45 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Gomez signs one-year deal with Sharks

Forward Scott Gomez has signed with the San Jose Sharks, reportedly a one-year, $700,000 contract.

After Gomez's contract was bought out by the Montreal Canadiens last week, he joined the Sharks for practices. Gomez traveled with the Sharks to Sunday's game at the Calgary Flames.

"Everyone who plays in the NHL, you challenge yourself every day and you want to prove that you can contribute," Gomez told the Mercury News on Wednesday. "But the main things is I want to come here, I want to help out and I want to win another Stanley Cup."

The Sharks, who will play the Phoenix Coyotes on Thursday, also signed forward Tim Kennedy to a one-year contract. The 26-year-old center was the leading scorer for their American Hockey League affiliate in Worcester this season, posting 12 goals and 30 points in 31 games.

Gomez, 33, ended a disappointing three-year stint with the Canadiens when the final two years of his contract were bought out by general manager Marc Bergevin, who originally intended to have Gomez sit out this season in order to avoid injury and allow a buyout to happen in the offseason.

In 196 games with the Canadiens, Gomez had 21 goals and 87 assists.

The deal with San Jose will reunite Gomez with Sharks assistant coach Larry Robinson, who coached Gomez for parts of four seasons with the New Jersey Devils.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.23.2013 / 1:28 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Blues activate defenseman Redden

The St. Louis Blues activated defenseman Wade Redden, making the veteran blueliner a possibility for their next game, Thursday against the Nashville Predators.

Redden signed a one-year contract with the Blues on Sunday after his contract was bought out by the New York Rangers.

To make room on the roster, the Blues sent defenseman Ian Cole to their American Hockey League team, the Peoria Rivermen. Cole had one assist and two penalty minutes in three games this season.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.23.2013 / 12:57 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Commodore released from P.T.O. by Bulldogs

The Hamilton Bulldogs announced Wednesday they have released veteran defenseman Mike Commodore from his Professional Try-Out Contract with the team.

The 33-year-old has played for seven teams over 11 NHL seasons, including the 2011-12 campaign, which he split between the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning.

In 17 games with the Bulldogs, the American Hockey League affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens, Commodore registered two assists and 26 penalty minutes. He was invited to Canadiens training camp last week, where he said his wish was to "Come here, move my feet, play well in the intersquad scrimmage and see where it goes."

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.23.2013 / 12:47 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Flyers forward Hartnell hurting

The Philadelphia Flyers practiced Wednesday without top-line forward Scott Hartnell, who reportedly sustained a foot injury during Tuesday's 3-0 loss at the New Jersey Devils.

According to CSNPhilly.com, Hartnell took a shot off his left foot at 6:53 of the third period and was seen walking gingerly after the game.

If Hartnell, who tied for sixth in the League last season with 37 goals, is unavailable for Thursday's game against the New York Rangers, it could put a struggling team already in deeper trouble. Philadelphia has just three goals in three games and entered the season weakened by the offseason departures of James van Riemsdyk and Jaromir Jagr, as well as the wrist injury sidelining Danny Briere.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.23.2013 / 12:38 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Neuvirth to start in Caps' goal Thursday

Washington Capitals coach Adam Oates told reporters Wednesday that goalie Michal Neuvirth will make his season debut Thursday when the Caps host the Montreal Canadiens.

Braden Holtby had started Washington's first two games, allowing 10 goals on 73 shots in a 6-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday and a 4-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday.

Neuvirth, 24, went 13-13-5 in 38 games last season, with a 2.82 goals-against average, .903 save percentage and three shutouts.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.23.2013 / 12:15 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Report: Blues waive Woywitka

Multiple sources are reporting that St. Louis Blues defenseman Jeff Woywitka has been placed on waivers.

Woywitka, who broke into the NHL with the Blues during the 2005-06 season, hadn't skated in a game with the team this season. He played in 27 games for the New York Rangers last season.

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