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At the Rink blog
Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 4:00 PM

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

Projected lineups for Avalanche, Oilers

Here are the lineups the Colorado Avalanche and Edmonton Oilers likely will use tonight when they meet at Rexall Place in Edmonton. The Avs lineup is in flux a bit, as the team will be without team captain Gabriel Landeskog.

AVALANCHE

Matt Duchene - PA Parenteau - Mark Olver

Jamie McGinn - Paul Stastny - David Jones

Chuck Kobasew - John Mitchell - Milan Hejduk

Cody McLeod - Brad Malone - Patrick Bordeleau

Erik Johnson - Ryan Wilson

Ryan O'Byrne - Jan Hejda

Greg Zanon - Matt Hunwick

Scratched: Shane O'Brien, Tyson Barrie

Injured: Gabriel Landeskog, Steve Downie

OILERS

Taylor Hall - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Jordan Eberle

Nail Yakupov - Sam Gagner - Ales Hemsky

Ryan Smyth - Shawn Horcoff - Lennart Petrell

Teemu Hartikainen - Eric Belanger - Magnus Paajarvi

Ladislav Smid - Jeff Petry

Nick Schultz - Justin Schultz

Ryan Whitney - Corey Potter

Devan Dubnyk

Yann Danis

Scratched: Darcy Hordichuk, Mark Fistric

Injured: Nikolai Khabibulin

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 3:38 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Kings need some big names to start contributing

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Kings are four games into the season and still waiting for some big guns to get going.

Anze Kopitar scored two goals in L.A.'s first win last Saturday, but captain Dustin Brown, linemate Justin Williams and second-line center Mike Richards have combined for no goals and two assists going into the game Monday against the Vancouver Canucks.

Asked about Richards, coach Darryl Sutter said, "It's been an adjustment for some of our guys in terms of getting up to pace. He's one of those guys that need to get up to pace."

Sutter will likely bench Dustin Penner for a third straight game. Sutter was typically blunt when asked about Simon Gagne playing out of his usual role, as the fourth line left wing.

"He better get used to it or it will be a totally different role," Sutter said.

The Kings have basically picked up where they left off in the Stanley Cup Playoffs with an 0-for-23 drought on the power play. A lot of times it's a matter of getting that first goal out of the way.

"We've created some good chances on the power play, I think everyone can see that," Drew Doughty said. "But the bottom line is, it doesn't matter how many chances you're creating, you need to put the puck in the net. It's something that all of us on the power play are frustrated with right now. Going into tonight, we've just got to be hungry to score that goal."

The bright spot on offense is, of all players, usual fourth line wing Kyle Clifford, who leads the team with five points. Clifford emerged as a scorer two postseasons ago and played in the ECHL during the lockout.

Clifford is a Sutter-type player and Sutter naturally had no reservations putting him on the second line with Richards and Jeff Carter.

"He was so happy that he won [the Stanley Cup], he was still disappointed because he didn't get to play after he got [concussed] in the Vancouver series," Sutter said in reference to last season's Western Conference Quarterfinals.

"That was his whole purpose when he left -- to put himself in a position to play regularly."

Sutter predictably downplayed the rematch against the Canucks, who were the sixth Presidents' Trophy winner to lose in the first round. But Doughty acknowledged the subplot.

"They're a good team, so you kind of learn to hate them," Doughty said. "Tonight's going to be a full-out battle and we're all looking forward to it.

"Waking up this morning, knowing that we're playing them, everyone's so pumped to get out there and get after them. It's going to be a physical matchup -- which everyone loves -- you're getting banged, but at the same time you're giving it back. We love that, and there's nothing more rewarding than beating a team that's won the conference the last couple of years in a row, so we're really looking forward to hopefully doing that tonight."

Dustin BrownAnze KopitarJustin Williams

Kyle CliffordMike RichardsJeff Carter

Dwight KingJarret StollTrevor Lewis

Simon GagneColin FraserJordan Nolan

Rob ScuderiDrew Doughty

Alec MartinezSlava Voynov

Jake MuzzinDavis Drewiske

Jonathan Quick

Jonathan Bernier

Injuries: Willie Mitchell, Matt Greene

Scratches: Dustin Penner, Brad Richardson, Andrew Bodnarchuk

Roberto Luongo is expected to start in goal for Vancouver. Luongo was replaced by Cory Schneider after he allowed seven goals against the Kings in the first two games of the 2012 Western Conference Quarterfinals.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 2:50 PM

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

Landeskog out tonight for Avalanche

The Colorado Avalanche will be without team captain Gabriel Landeskog for Monday's game against the Edmonton Oilers due to head and leg injuries.

The 20-year-old forward likely was hurt when he was hit hard by the San Jose Sharks' Brad Stuart late in the first period of the Avalanche's game Saturday. Landeskog was skating through the neutral zone when Stuart stepped into him.

Landeskog returned to the game early in the second period and played 16:23, just two minutes below his season average.

In four games this season, Landeskog has one goal. As a rookie last season, he had 22 goals and 52 points while playing all 82 games.
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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 2:14 PM

By Jerry Brown -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Projected lineups for Predators, Coyotes

Here's how the lineups could look Monday night when the Phoenix Coyotes host the Nashville Predators:

PREDATORS

Colin Wilson - Mike Fisher - Martin Erat

Gabriel BourqueDavid LegwandSergei Kostitsyn

Nick SpalingPaul GaustadBrandon Yip

Rich Clune -- Craig SmithMatt Halischuk

Roman Josi -- Shea Weber

Scott Hannan -- Ryan Ellis

Hal GillKevin Klein

Pekka Rinne

Chris Mason

Scratches – Jonathon Blum, Brian McGrattan

Injuries – Patric Hornqvist (lower body)

The Predators being without Hornqvist will force some shifting of the lines. Kostitsyn takes over for Hornqvist on the second line.

COYOTES

Steve SullivanAntoine VermetteShane Doan

Mikkel BoedkerMartin HanzalRadim Vrbata

Lauri KorpikoskiBoyd GordonDavid Moss

Alexandre BolducKyle ChipchuraNick Johnson

Zbynek Michalek – Oliver Ekman-Larsson

Keith YandleDerek Morris

David SchlemkoMichael Stone

Chad Johnson

Jason LaBarbera

Scratches – Paul Bissonnette. Mike Smith

Injuries – Matthew Lombardi (upper, IR), Rostislav Klesla (lower IR), Smith (lower)

With Mike Smith still out with an upper-body injury and LaBarbera ineffective in losses to San Jose and Los Angeles, Johnson will make his Coyotes debut in goal tonight against the Predators.

Johnson has appeared in six NHL games with the New York Rangers from 2009-11, starting once against the Coyotes on Jan. 30, 2010, in Glendale and taking the loss to LaBarbera, 3-2.

In 24 games with Portland of the American Hockey League, Johnson was this year 14-8-2 record with a 2.80 goals-against average and .912 save percentage.

Smith returned to the ice on his own Sunday and did the same on Monday. He remains day-to-day with no timetable for his return.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 2:05 PM

By Kurt Dusterberg -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Khudobin to start for Bruins vs. Hurricanes

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Here are the projected lineups for Monday's game between the Boston Bruins and Carolina Hurricanes:

HURRICANES

Jiri Tlusty - Eric Staal -Alexander Semin

Jeff Skinner - Jordan Staal - Zac Dalpe

Chad LaRose - Drayson Bowman - Jussi Jokinen

Kevin Westgarth - Tim Brent - Patrick Dwyer

Tim Gleason - Joe Corvo

Jamie McBain - Joni Pitkanen

Jay Harrison - Bobby Sanguinetti

Cam Ward

Dan Ellis

Scratched: Zach Boychuk

Injured: Justin Faulk

BRUINS

Milan Lucic - David Krejci - Nathan Horton

Brad Marchand - Patrice Bergeron - Tyler Seguin

Chris Bourque - Rich Peverley - Chris Kelly

Shawn Thornton - Gregory Campbell - Daniel Paille

Zdeno Chara - Johnny Boychuk

Andrew Ference - Aaron Johnson

Dougie Hamilton - Dennis Seidenberg

Anton Khudobin

Tuukka Rask

Scratched: Lane MacDermid

Injured: Adam McQuaid

Bruins goaltender Anton Khudobin will make his first start of the season Monday. He is 5-1-0 in seven career NHL games, with a 1.32 goals against average. In his only previous action with Boston, he posted a 3-1 win against Ottawa last April.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 1:31 PM

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

Panthers keeping Huberdeau for rest of the season

The Florida Panthers announced on their official Twitter feed that Jonathan Huberdeau will remain with the team for the remainder of the season.

The third pick of the 2011 NHL Draft, Huberdeau has a goal and two assists in four games. He had all his points on opening night and has been held off the score sheet since then. However, he's third on the team with 13 shots on goal and is averaging 15:49 of ice time per game.

Huberdeau had an outstanding preseason with the Panthers in September 2011, but the team sent him back to Saint John of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League for another season of development. With another half-season of junior hockey plus a solid turn at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship, the Panthers are reaping the reward for that decision.

"With Jonathan, the difference between an 18-year-old and a 19-year-old is huge," Panthers coach Kevin Dineen told the Miami Herald. "You see a difference in maturity, and he had that extra year to develop as a person and a player. He wasn't part of that important first step of us making the playoffs, but he's going to be with us for a long, long time."

The Panthers had before their sixth game, Tuesday at the Tampa Bay Lightning, to make a decision. Prior to Huberdeau playing in his sixth game, the team again could have sent him back to his junior team, delaying the start of his contract. Once he plays his sixth game, his contract officially stars. He still can be sent back to his junior team after that, but it would waste the first season of his deal.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 1:22 PM

By Kurt Dusterberg -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Hamilton still waiting on future

RALEIGH, N.C. -- The Boston Bruins will have a decision to make in the next 24 hours concerning the future of rookie defenseman Dougie Hamilton.

The 19-year-old blueliner will play his fifth game of the season Monday against Carolina. The first season of his three-year entry-level contract kicks in if he plays in a sixth NHL game, which for the Bruins is Tuesday against the New Jersey Devils.

"Upper management will make that decision, but from our end of it, he's been really good," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "He's better and better every game as he gains confidence. I've really liked his composure and vision of the game. He's been extremely good for us."

Before joining the Bruins at the start of the NHL season, Hamilton had 41 points in 32 games with the Niagara IceDogs of the Ontario Hockey League, and had a goal and an assist in six games for Canada at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship.

He said he's looking forward to having his status resolved.

"It will be really nice," Hamilton said. "I'm trying not to think about it too much. I'm just trying to work my hardest and keep playing my game."

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 1:10 PM

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

Two-time Cup champ Sykora signs in Switzerland

Two-time Stanley Cup champion Petr Sykora has signed with Swiss club Bern for the remainder of the 2012-13 season.

Sykora, 36, had 21 goals and 44 points in 82 games with the Devils last season, and five points in 18 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

A 1995 first-round pick of the Devils, Sykora has 323 goals and 721 points in 1,017 games with the Devils, Anaheim Ducks, New York Rangers, Edmonton Oilers, Pittsburgh Penguins and Minnesota Wild. He won Stanley Cups with the Devils in 2000 and Penguins in 2009.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 12:37 PM

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

Projected lineups for Stars, Blue Jackets

Here are the rosters the Dallas Stars and Columbus Blue Jackets likely will go with when the teams meet Monday at Nationwide Arena in Columbus:

STARS

Loui Eriksson - Jamie Benn - Jaromir Jagr

Ray Whitney - Cody Eakin - Michael Ryder

Eric Nystrom - Vernon Fiddler - Tomas Vincour

Brenden Morrow - Tom Wandell - Ryan Garbutt

Brenden Dillon - Stephane Robidas

Jordie Benn - Trevor Daley

Alex Goligoski - Philip Larsen

Kari Lehtonen

Richard Bachman

Scratched: Colton Sceviour, Reilly Smith, Aaron Rome

Injured: Cristopher Nilstorp, Derek Roy

BLUE JACKETS

RJ Umberger - Artem Anisimov - Derek Dorsett

Nick Foligno - Ryan Johansen - Vinny Prospal

Matt Calvert - Brandon Dubinsky - Derick Brassard

Colton Gillies - Mark Letestu - Jared Boll

Nikita Nikitin - Fedor Tyutin

Jack Johnson - James Wisniewski

John Moore - Adrian Aucoin

Sergei Bobrovsky

Steve Mason

Scratched: Derek MacKenzie, David Savard

Injured: Cam Atkinson

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 12:16 PM

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

Senators recall 2011 top pick Zibanejad

The Ottawa Senators have called up forward Mika Zibanejad, the team's 2011 top pick, from their American Hockey League affiliate.

Zibanejad, the sixth pick of the 2011 NHL Draft, has four goals and seven assists in 23 AHL games this season.

Zibanejad had one assist in nine NHL games at the start of last season.

He will be available for the Senators' next game, Tuesday against the Washington Capitals.

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I remember the first time at Wrigley Field all of us had the long johns, the turtlenecks and the extra equipment because we were afraid of being cold. Halfway through the first period everybody's ripping everything off and we just ended up wearing what we would normally wear for a game at the United Center.

— Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Sharp on the 2009 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic