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Posted On Tuesday, 12.17.2013 / 2:23 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Gudbranson back, Huberdeau a question for Panthers

Defenseman Erik Gudbranson will return to the lineup for the Florida Panthers after missing a game because of a cut from a skate blade, while forward Jonathan Huberdeau remains questionable for the team's game Tuesday night against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre.

George Richards of the Miami Herald reported Gudbranson is in the lineup. Huberdeau, who blocked a shot off his foot two games ago and also missed Florida's win Sunday in Montreal, remains a game-time decision.

Richards also reported that although Tim Thomas joined the morning skate partway through, Scott Clemmensen will make his third straight start in net. Clemmensen has stopped 40 of 43 shots to win his past two starts after starting the season with losses in his first five appearances.

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Posted On Tuesday, 12.17.2013 / 2:14 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Islanders searching for offensive spark

The New York Islanders enter their game Tuesday against the Tampa Bay Lightning in search of offense they hope will end a 3-14-3 slide that's landed them at the bottom of the Metropolitan Division.

Out of the 16 goals the Islanders have scored in their past 11 games (1-7-3), 11 are from the top line of Thomas Vanek, John Tavares and Kyle Okposo. The second unit of Michael Grabner, Frans Nielsen and Josh Bailey is struggling. Grabner has no goals in 30 straight games. Nielsen has none in his past 12 after scoring 10 in his first 22. Bailey hasn't scored in 23 games.

Coach Jack Capuano kept his lines intact during the morning skate. Ryan Strome, who will play in his second NHL game, will center the Islanders' third line. Strome was recalled from Bridgeport of the American Hockey League last week after leading the AHL in points (33) and assists (24) with the idea that he'll add scoring punch. Although he went scoreless Saturday in his debut, Strome believes that it's a matter of time before the goals begin to arrive.


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Posted On Tuesday, 12.17.2013 / 1:08 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Hutton, Predators chase fourth consecutive win

Carter Hutton will make a fourth consecutive start in goal for the Nashville Predators as they try to extend their winning streak to four games Tuesday in a game against the Central Division-leading Chicago Blackhawks.

Hutton has stopped 97 of 101 shots (.960 save percentage) in leading the Predators to wins over the New York RangersDallas Stars and San Jose Sharks.

Marek Mazanec, the NHL's Rookie of the Month for November, wasn't feeling well Tuesday morning but was expected to dress as Hutton's backup against the Blackhawks, who lead the overall League standings with 53 points and also have the No. 1-ranked offense at 3.64 goals per game.

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Posted On Tuesday, 12.17.2013 / 10:54 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Live blog

NHL Live talks to hockey author Jody Anderson

There are 12 games on the Tuesday schedule and NHL Live with Bill Pidto and E.J. Hradek, at 5 p.m. ET on NHL Network, will get you set up for a night full of hockey.

Eddie Olczyk will join us on set to discuss who's hot and who's cold in the League.

In addition, hockey mom and writer Jody Anderson joins us from the Arena Cam at Xcel Energy Center prior to the Minnesota Wild hosting the Vancouver Canucks to talk about her new book, "Hockey Moms Aren't Crazy!"

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Posted On Monday, 12.16.2013 / 10:58 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Live blog

Flyers forward talks 'Hartnell Down' on NHL Live

Four games on the NHL schedule get the week started and NHL Live with Bill Pidto and E.J. Hradek, at 5 p.m. ET Monday on NHL Network, will have you covered. Steve Mears will be in Minnesota with Dave Starman for the latest from the U.S. selection camp for the upcoming IIHF World Junior Championship.

Philadelphia Flyers forward Scott Hartnell has penned a children's book entitled "Hartnell Down" and the new author will call in to talk about the book and the recent play of his resurgent team.

In the latest segment of Behind the Bench with Barry Melrose, our NHL analyst will discuss the best and worst coaching moves of the week.

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Posted On Monday, 12.16.2013 / 9:40 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Penguins recall Samuelsson, Zolnierczyk

Defenseman Philip Samuelsson, a second-round pick of the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 2009 NHL Draft and son of two-time Stanley Cup winner Ulf Samuelsson, was recalled by the team Monday from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League.

The Penguins also recalled forward Harry Zolnierczyk. Both could be available for Pittsburgh's game Monday against the Toronto Maple Leafs (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US).

Samuelsson has six assists, a plus-3 rating and 35 penalty minutes in 26 AHL games this season. The Penguins are battling numerous injuries on their blue line that have sidelined Kris Letang, Brooks Orpik, Rob Scuderi and Paul Martin.

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Posted On Sunday, 12.15.2013 / 2:00 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Flames stick with Ramo in net against Rangers

The Calgary Flames will start Karri Ramo in goal for the second consecutive game Sunday against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. Ramo stopped 27 shots in the Flames' 2-1 overtime victory against the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday.

Ramo has 131 saves on 138 shots in his past six games. He is 4-1 in his past five, allowing only a goal in each of his victories. For the season he is 6-5-1 with a .907 save percentage and a 2.67 goals-against average in 14 games.

"It's a progression rather than a change," coach Bob Hartley told the Flames' official website. "I think for him, it was important that he got a feel back for the league, size of the rinks, the shooters.

"We have two great students in net. They work very hard with [goalie coach] Clint [Malarchuk], they watch tape, they look at other team's lineup, they work on the ice. It's nice. Plus I think our total team game is getting better also."

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Posted On Saturday, 12.14.2013 / 5:12 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Detroit native Zatkoff to start for Penguins vs. Wings

Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender and Detroit native Jeff Zatkoff admits he grew up watching the Detroit Red Wings play at Joe Louis Arena and dreaming of one day playing in the NHL. As a backup to Marc-Andre Fleury this season, the 2006 third-round pick (No. 74) of the Los Angeles Kings has already realized his dream of becoming an NHL player.

But a new chapter in his hockey career could be added Saturday, when Zatkoff is expected to start for the Penguins against his hometown Red Wings.

"I think that would be a special moment for me," Zatkoff told the Penguins website. "As a kid, you grow up going to those games and dream of playing in the NHL."

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Posted On Saturday, 12.14.2013 / 3:02 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Lightning star Stamkos on ice at morning skate

Tampa Bay Lightning star Steven Stamkos was on the ice Saturday at Prudential Center, 33 days after breaking his right leg in a collision with a goal post.

Stamkos joined his Lightning teammates at their morning skate before a game against the New Jersey Devils. He was wearing a track suit and doing some stickhandling drills in a Vine video posted on the team's official Twitter account.

"Medical advances, I guess," Stamkos told the Lightning website when asked how he is back on the ice so quickly. "I'm feeling good. Everything is on track. My four-week X-ray looks good. I'm just starting to progress, and obviously make sure there are no setbacks, but I'm feeling really good.

"I thought I might have an issue with that bottom screw in there but I don't. There's still a little bit of swelling in the ankle and the leg, so you feel that a little bit, but I don't think I'm going to have a problem with the screw, so that's a good thing."

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Posted On Friday, 12.13.2013 / 1:28 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Live blog

NHL Live highlights the 'unlucky' on Friday the 13th

It's Friday the 13th, and NHL Live with Steve Mears and E.J. Hradek, at 5 p.m. ET on NHL Network, will celebrate the superstitious day by taking a look at some of the "unluckiest" moments of the season.

Three games are on the NHL schedule, including the Pittsburgh Penguins hosting the New Jersey Devils. We'll go out to Consol Energy Center on our Arena Cam and talk to Phil Bourque about the recent play of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin and the matchup with the Devils.

Bill Lindsay will call in to talk Florida Panthers hockey ahead of their game with the Washington Capitals, and E.J. faces off against analyst Kevin Weekes to debate some of the game's hottest topics. We'll also be joined by Matt Duchene of the Colorado Avalanche.

Leading up to the 2014 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs on Jan. 1 from The Big House at the University of Michigan, we'll start our countdown of the top outdoor moments at No. 20.

Remember to submit your #AskEJ questions through Twitter via @NHLNetwork or @EJHradek_NHL, and join the conversation on Twitter as we ask you to pick the game of the night.

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There's no discouragement in that room. There's no issues there at all to be honest with you. It's more about, 'Hey, it's opportunities for players.' And if we become that bad of a team because of one player, it's not a real good sign for our hockey club. So this is part of sports. It's part of hockey.

— Bruins coach Claude Julien on the loss of Zdeno Chara to injury
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