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At the Rink blog
Posted On Tuesday, 02.26.2013 / 1:20 PM

By Alain Poupart -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Weiss missing as Theodore returns to Panthers' net

SUNRISE, Fla. — The injury-riddled Florida Panthers will be further shorthanded Tuesday against the Pittsburgh Penguins with the absence of center Stephen Weiss, who flew to Toronto to attend his grandmother’s funeral.

Weiss will be one of six regulars missing from the lineup, along with defensemen Ed Jovanovski (knee) and Filip Kuba (upper body) and forwards Scottie Upshall (ankle), Kris Versteeg (upper body) and Sean Bergenheim (lower body).

That doesn’t even include veteran forward Alex Kovalev, who coach Kevin Dineen said would be evaluated Tuesday afternoon. Dineen declined to address the nature of Kovalev’s injury, going as far as telling reporters to call him a healthy scratch.

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Posted On Tuesday, 02.26.2013 / 1:10 PM

By Lonnie Herman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Malone on ice for Lightning, not ready to return yet

TAMPA -- Injured forward Ryan Malone was on ice with his Tampa Bay Lightning teammates at Tuesday's morning skate, though he wore an orange "no-contact" jersey.

"Ryan Malone is on the ice; that's a good step," Lightning coach Guy Boucher said. "That's the second step. Off-ice he's doing really well and we'll get him ready on-ice, and I'm sure we'll see him soon. Soon is not tonight. It's hard to say when he'll be back. He's got a few days to work with the therapist, and after that we'll get him in a real practice. Step three in the recovery will be an actual game. I wouldn't say he's three weeks away, but it's not today or the next game."

As Malone, who has missed eight games with a lower-body injury, works toward a return, Boucher faces an interesting dilemma when it comes to finding a spot for him.


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Posted On Tuesday, 02.26.2013 / 12:58 PM

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

Noel proclaims Byfuglien good to go against Rangers

NEW YORK -- Dustin Byfuglien will be in the lineup for the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday night after leaving Sunday's game with a lower-body injury.

"He's in the game," said Jets coach Claude Noel, whose team will look to finish its five-game road trip with a 4-1 record when they face the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. "He's a player. He's ready to go. He feels good. He's a big contributor to our team and he's played with a little bit more control of late, and that's something we're trying to sort through. But that's OK."

Byfuglien suffered a lower-body injury in the third period of the Jets' 4-2 victory against the New Jersey Devils on Sunday. But the 6-foot-5, 265-pound defenseman/forward took part in the team's Tuesday morning skate at MSG and looked completely healthy.

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Posted On Tuesday, 02.26.2013 / 12:39 PM

By Alain Poupart -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Vokoun to start against former team in Florida

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Former Florida Panthers goalie Tomas Vokoun, whose family still lives in South Florida, will get the start against his former team Tuesday night when the Pittsburgh Penguins play at BB&T Center.

Vokoun, who spent four seasons with the Panthers (2008-2011), will be making his seventh start of the season. He began his career with the Nashville Predators before moving to Florida in a 2008 trade and has a 4-2-2 career record against the Panthers with a 1.79 goals-against average and .936 save percentage.

Defenseman Mark Eaton, signed by the Penguins on Monday, will not be in the lineup. The 35-year-old veteran of 627 NHL games was signed after playing six games with the team’s American Hockey League affiliate in Wilkes-Barre.

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Posted On Tuesday, 02.26.2013 / 12:20 PM

By Alain Poupart -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

No physical activity or timetable yet for Malkin

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said Tuesday that star forward Evgeni Malkin is still refraining from physical activity while he recovers from a concussion sustained in Friday night's 3-1 victory against the Florida Panthers.

Bylsma said there was no timetable as to when Malkin could start skating again.

"There's not a specific schedule for that right now in terms of physical activity," Bylsma said. "The protocol and resting with a concussion, he's following that right now."


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Posted On Tuesday, 02.26.2013 / 12:06 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Nash back on ice, but unlikely to face Jets

For the first time in nine days, Rick Nash returned to the ice in a regular practice jersey for the New York Rangers' morning skate Tuesday. However, Nash sidestepped questions about when he will be able to return to the lineup and did not specify the nature of his injury.

The Rangers, who also have not disclosed Nash's injury, play the Winnipeg Jets at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night. Nash missed the past three games due to the injury and it's unlikely he will play against the Jets, although he wouldn't rule himself out completely.

"I'm feeling good, getting better," Nash told reporters at the team's training facility in Greenburgh, N.Y. "It's a positive day for sure when you get back out and skate with the guys. I don’t know about tonight. Obviously, I'll talk to the trainers. But it was a good day to get a good skate in."

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Posted On Tuesday, 02.26.2013 / 10:43 AM

By Alain Poupart -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Weiss to miss Tuesday's game for personal reasons

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Florida Panthers center Stephen Weiss will miss Tuesday night's game against the Pittsburgh Penguins to attend his grandmother's funeral.

The Panthers on Tuesday recalled center Scott Timmins from San Antonio of the American Hockey League.

Timmins centered a line with Shawn Matthias and Tomas Kopecky at the Panthers' morning skate.

Timmins, a sixth-round pick of the Panthers in the 2009 NHL Draft, had 16 points (nine goals, seven assists) in 47 games with San Antonio this season. He has played in 19 NHL games, all with Florida (2010-11), scoring one goal.


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Posted On Monday, 02.25.2013 / 7:29 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Despite streak, Blackhawks know they can improve

CHICAGO – They haven't lost a single game in regulation through the first 18 games, their goal differential is an astounding plus-23 prior to playing the Edmonton Oilers on Monday night at United Center, and still the Chicago Blackhawks insist they can take it up a notch.

"We should think we're not anywhere near as good as we can be – and have to be – [in order] to be effective," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said following a tough 1-0 home win on Sunday night against the Columbus Blue Jackets. "There's not a lot of negative things [to criticize], but there were some things [against Columbus] … we want to look to improve our team situation, game in and game out. Let's want to get better."

The win against Columbus upped Chicago's current National Hockey League record string of games to start a season with at least a point to 18 straight, but the Blackhawks sound tired of talking about it.

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Posted On Monday, 02.25.2013 / 7:16 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Emery gets the nod for Blackhawks against Oilers

CHICAGOCorey Crawford didn't allow a goal and picked up his eighth victory on Sunday night at United Center, but Ray Emery will be in goal for the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday night against the Edmonton Oilers.

Chicago (15-0-3) still hasn't lost a game in regulation and is riding a National Hockey League record streak of 18 games with at least a point earned to start a season.

Emery (7-0-0) and Crawford (8-0-3) have both been outstanding options for Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville, who watched the latter pick up his second shutout of the season in a 1-0 victory against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday – which was his first game back since the injury occurred Feb. 12 against the Anaheim Ducks.

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Posted On Monday, 02.25.2013 / 5:20 PM

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

Hurricanes recall Dalpe, Gragnani from AHL

The Carolina Hurricanes recalled forward Zac Dalpe and defenseman Marc-Andre Gragnani from the Charlotte Checkers of the AHL on Monday.

Forward Andreas Nodl and defenseman Michal Jordan have been reassigned to Charlotte.

This marks the second NHL stint of the season for Dalpe, 23, who made the team’s roster out of training camp. He had two assists in six games with the Hurricanes before being assigned to Charlotte on Feb. 3.

Gragnani hasn't played in the NHL this season.

The Hurricanes' next game is Tuesday night against the Washington Capitals at Verizon Center.

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Quote of the Day

It's pretty crazy, but believe me when I say we didn't draft these players with the mindset we had to because they had good hockey-playing dads. It just turned out that way. But we're certainly glad they're a part of our organization.

— Arizona Coyotes director of amateur scouting Tim Bernhardt regarding the coincidence that six of the organization's top prospects are sons of former NHL players