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Posted On Thursday, 02.19.2015 / 6:20 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

Emelin out week, Subban likely to play for Canadiens

MONTREAL -- Montreal Canadiens defenseman Alexei Emelin is out with an upper-body injury, but P.K. Subban appears likely to play against the Florida Panthers at Bell Centre on Thursday.

Emelin will be sidelined at least for the next week after he was injured on his first shift in a 4-2 loss at the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday.

Therrien brushed aside a report that the 28-year-old defenseman will be sidelined for six weeks.

"He's going to be re-evaluated next week to see if he is going to be able to play," Therrien said. "We're there right now."

Subban, who is averaging 26:03 of ice time per game, was hobbled after he blocked a Bobby Ryan slap shot late in the second period Wednesday. Subban returned for the third period and finished with 30:13 of ice time.

Posted On Thursday, 02.19.2015 / 2:37 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Panthers at Canadiens

MONTREAL -- You can count Florida Panthers coach Gerard Gallant as another among his NHL brethren who believe Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price is having a Hart Trophy caliber season.

Though voting for the League's Most Valuable Player award will be held by the Professional Hockey Writers' Association, Gallant is the second NHL coach to put Price at the top of his list so far this season.

"He's been outstanding all year," Gallant said Thursday after Florida's morning skate at Bell Centre. "I mean, there's no doubt if you had to pick an MVP today, he's probably the guy. There's other guys, [Washington Capitals forward Alex] Ovechkin and them, having great seasons but what Carey Price has done for this team this year, and last year he had a great year but this year he's been outstanding, so I would think he's the MVP today."

Posted On Saturday, 02.14.2015 / 1:39 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Maple Leafs at Canadiens

MONTREAL -- Montreal Canadiens forward Brandon Prust is well aware of the turmoil surrounding the Toronto Maple Leafs these days, but he says his team has enough on its plate to deal with at the moment.

Saturday, Toronto is at Bell Centre to face Montreal for the first time since Oct. 8, when the Canadiens won the season opener against the Maple Leafs, 4-3 at Air Canada Centre.

Toronto has lost 21 of its past 25 games since starting 19-9-3.

Growing up in London, Ontario, Prust was a keen consumer of the media scrutiny that follows the Maple Leafs everywhere they go.

"I think they're definitely going through a rough time right now, and being in Canada, you see it all," Prust said. "I was a Leafs fan growing up, so I saw it all. We're not really worried about other teams right now, we've got to worry about ourselves."

Posted On Thursday, 02.12.2015 / 3:22 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2015 NHL Trade Deadline blog

Oilers' Eberle brushes off trade rumors, hopes to stay

MONTREAL -- Right wing Jordan Eberle feels right at home with the Edmonton Oilers, and that's where he hopes to remain after the 2015 NHL Trade Deadline on March 2.

Eberle has 15 goals and 36 points in 54 games in his fifth season with Edmonton, which selected him in the first round (No. 22) of the 2008 NHL Draft.

He said hearing his name in trade rumors is part of the game.

"You know, any time your team's in the position we are, we have been for the last few years, names come up," Eberle said Thursday after the Oilers morning skate at Bell Centre. "That's the obvious thing, so you've got to put that aside. A lot of the times you have to try and use it as a compliment, you know, other teams want you. And that being said, I want to be an Oiler, and I want to play here and I want to turn this thing around."

Posted On Thursday, 02.12.2015 / 2:18 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Oilers at Canadiens

MONTREAL -- Edmonton Oilers right wing Jordan Eberle will be challenged to produce on offense when he faces Montreal Canadiens defenseman P.K. Subban at Bell Centre on Thursday.

Eberle and Subban were teammates when Canada won a gold medal at the 2009 IIHF World Junior Championship in Ottawa.

"He's obviously one of the elite defensemen in the NHL," Eberle said after Edmonton's morning skate. "Usually as an offensive guy you play against the team's best defenders, but for him, he can defend and the big thing you've got to watch for is he's jumping in the rush a lot.

"So you always have to be watching your back and if he's coming in behind you, or whatever, so the biggest thing for him is offensively he can be a threat too and you're not usually used to that. As an offensive guy you usually get their defensive player."

Posted On Tuesday, 02.10.2015 / 1:48 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Flyers at Canadiens

MONTREAL -- The Philadelphia Flyers' recent hot streak has revived their hopes of making the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but they've still got a lot of ground to make up as they get ready to face the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre on Tuesday.

Philadelphia (23-22-8) is 5-0-1 in its past six games, including a 3-1 win at the Washington Capitals on Sunday. The Flyers are in fifth place in the Metropolitan Division with 54 points, nine points behind the Boston Bruins for the second wild-card spot.

"We have big faith in our dressing room that we can make this push," Philadelphia right wing Wayne Simmonds said after the morning skate. "We didn't start off the season the way we wanted to. We've been flirting with .500 the whole year but we've been playing our best hockey lately and that's what you want. So we've just got to continue to play good hockey and hopefully the cards fall our way and we win our hockey games."

Posted On Saturday, 02.07.2015 / 1:52 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Devils at Canadiens

BROSSARD, Quebec -- The New Jersey Devils are on a roll and will play the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre on Saturday.

Patrik Elias became the second Czech Republic born player in NHL history to score 400 goals Friday in New Jersey's 4-1 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Devils have won three in a row, and five of their past six games.

Jaromir Jagr, the all-time Czech leading scorer, scored his 716th goal into an empty net to move within one of Phil Esposito for fifth place on the all-time list. Jagr is the fifth leading scorer all-time with 1,783 points, 15 behind Ron Francis.

Posted On Tuesday, 02.03.2015 / 2:33 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Sabres at Canadiens

MONTREAL -- With a 14-game losing streak, the Buffalo Sabres have it rough enough already. It only gets tougher facing the Montreal Canadiens and red-hot goalie Carey Price at Bell Centre on Tuesday.

Buffalo's 5-2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Arena on Friday leaves it with the longest losing streak in the NHL since 2003. All of the losses are in regulation and the Sabres are three shy of matching the NHL record set by the expansion 1974-75 Washington Capitals and matched by the second-year San Jose Sharks in 1992-93.

Price was rested Sunday when Montreal ended a five-game winning streak with a 3-2 loss to the Arizona Coyotes. The Canadiens goalie has not allowed a goal in 153:03, including a pair of 1-0 shutout wins at the New York Rangers on Thursday and against the Capitals on Saturday. He was named the NHL's First Star of the Week thanks to a 0.66 goals-against average and .980 save percentage in three starts, including a 40-save effort in a 3-2 win against the Dallas Stars on Jan. 27.

Posted On Sunday, 02.01.2015 / 12:48 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Coyotes at Canadiens

MONTREAL -- The Arizona Coyotes will have a goalie making his first NHL start against the Montreal Canadiens when they bid for their first win at Bell Centre since 1996 on Sunday.

Rookie Louis Domingue will start for Arizona after making his debut Saturday in relief of Mike Smith. Domingue, 22, allowed two goals on 11 shots over the final 17:43 of the Coyotes' 7-2 loss to the Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre after he was recalled from Portland of the American Hockey League earlier in the day.

"We were going to wait and see how Smith was [Saturday] and just the way the game turned out [Saturday] we decided that we were going to put [Domingue] in," Coyotes coach Dave Tippett said. "It will be very exciting for a young player to get his first start in Montreal. He had a great camp for us. He went down to the minors, played well and got injured, and then came back after the All-Star Game and played one game, so the situation our team is in it's a great opportunity for a young player. It will be a great memory for him and hopefully he does very well."

Posted On Saturday, 01.31.2015 / 12:12 PM

By Sean Farrell - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Capitals at Canadiens

MONTREAL -- Washington Capitals superstar Alex Ovechkin is on the verge of a tenth straight 30-goal season as he gets ready to face the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre on Saturday.

Ovechkin has seven goals in his past five games, including his 28th and 29th in Washington's 4-0 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday.

Capitals coach Barry Trotz has enjoyed working with Ovechkin in his first season behind the Washington bench.

"He's a rare athlete," Trotz said. "He's one of the best goal scorers in the National Hockey League in probably this last seven or eight years and he's probably the most physical superstar that you're going to find up front as well. I mean, I know Marshawn Lynch and the Super Bowl's happening, but he gets into that beast mode where he wants to run people over and be the alpha male out there.

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