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At the Rink blog
Posted On Tuesday, 02.05.2013 / 1:10 PM

By Erin Nicks -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Projected lineups for Sabres, Senators

OTTAWA -- Here are the projected lineups for the Buffalo Sabres and Ottawa Senators on Tuesday night at Scotiabank Place:

SABRES

Thomas VanekCody HodgsonJason Pominville

Marcus FolignoTyler EnnisDrew Stafford

Steve OttMikhail GrigorenkoJochen Hecht

John ScottCody McCormickNathan Gerbe

Jordan LeopoldMike Weber

Adam PardyTyler Myers

TJ Brennan – Alexander Sulzer

Jhonas Enroth

Ryan Miller

Injuries: Patrick Kaleta, Andrej Sekera, Robyn Regehr, Ville Leino, Christian Ehrhoff

Scratches: Matt Ellis

Enroth exited the ice first after practice, indicating that he is likely to get the start. He has a career record of 3-0-1 against the Senators, with a 2.16 goals-against average and a .939 save percentage.

Ehrhoff skated briefly at the beginning of practice, then left the ice and did not return. Pardy, who was recalled from Rochester on Monday, is expected to fill the hole in the lineup.

SENATORS

Mika ZibanejadKyle TurrisDaniel Alfredsson

Milan MichalekZack SmithJakob Silfverberg

Colin GreeningPeter ReginChris Neil

Erik CondraStephane Da CostaJim O'Brien

Marc MethotErik Karlsson

Andre BenoitChris Phillips

Patrick WierciochMark Borowiecki/Sergei Gonchar

Craig Anderson

Ben Bishop

Injuries: Guillaume Latendresse, Jason Spezza, Jared Cowen, Mike Lundin

Scratches: Kaspars Daugavins, Mark Borowiecki

Da Costa, who was called up from Binghamton on Monday, will see time on the fourth line, flanked by Erik Condra and Jim O'Brien.

Coach Paul MacLean said Gonchar (flu) is expected to play, and Borowiecki would likely come out of the lineup. Both will take warm-up Tuesday night.

With only one goal in their last two games, offense has become a serious issue for the Senators. The loss of Spezza, who required back surgery to repair a herniated desk, is significant. However, the team knows that they must make up for his absence by any means necessary.

"You can never replace [Jason Spezza]," Turris said. "He's one of the best players in the League. To fill that void, we've got to simplify things, and get pucks and bodies to the net. Everybody kinds of tenses up [with the lack of offense] -- that's when you’ve got to keep shooting. Hopefully one goes off somebody's butt and in, and they all start trickling in after that."

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Posted On Tuesday, 02.05.2013 / 11:52 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

DeBoer putting Zajac back on top line with Kovalchuk

NEWARK, N.J. -- New Jersey Devils coach Peter DeBoer will tweak his top two lines in preparation for the New York Rangers on Tuesday at Prudential Center.

During the team's morning skate, DeBoer flipped centermen Travis Zajac and Adam Henrique. Zajac was working the top unit alongside Dainius Zubrus and Ilya Kovalchuk. Henrique, meanwhile, was between Patrik Elias and David Clarkson. Henrique skated with Zubrus and Kovalchuk in New Jersey's 3-0 victory over the New York Islanders on Sunday.

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Posted On Tuesday, 02.05.2013 / 10:39 AM

By Adam Kimelman -  NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Projected lineup for Flyers

VOORHEES, N.J. -- The Philadelphia Flyers had a full lineup on the ice Tuesday for their morning skate at their suburban New Jersey practice site.

Based on practice drills, here is how the lineup could look when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN, RDS):

Tye McGinn - Claude Giroux - Danny Briere

Matt Read - Sean Couturier - Mike Knuble

Jakub Voracek - Brayden Schenn - Zac Rinaldo

Tom Sestito - Maxime Talbot - Ruslan Fedotenko

Braydon Coburn - Bruno Gervais

Kimmo Timonen - Luke Schenn

Kurtis Foster - Nicklas Grossmann

Ilya Bryzgalov

Michael Leighton

Scratched: Jody Shelley, Andreas Lilja

Injured: Scott Hartnell, Wayne Simmonds, Andrej Meszaros

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK

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Posted On Monday, 02.04.2013 / 6:16 PM

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

Wild's Coyle to make NHL debut

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Minnesota Wild will have a slightly different look when they take the ice Monday against the Phoenix Coyotes.

Hours after the team traded Darroll Powe to the New York Rangers, rookie Charlie Coyle will make his NHL debut. A 2010 first-round pick of the San Jose Sharks acquired by the Wild as part of the Brent Burns trade, had 14 goals and 24 points in 44 games with the Wild's American Hockey League team, the Houston Aeros.

Here is where Coyle fits into the Wild lineup tonight:

Zach Parise - Mikko Koivu - Dany Heatley

Pierre-Marc Bouchard - Matt Cullen - Charlie Coyle

Cal Clutterbuck - Kyle Brodziak - Torrey Mitchell

Mikael Granlund - Zenon Konopka - Devin Setoguchi

Ryan Suter - Jonas Brodin

Clayton Stoner - Tom Gilbert

Marco Scandella - Justin Falk

Niklas Backstrom

Josh Harding

Scratched: Matt Kassian, Nate Prosser

Injured: Jared Spurgeon

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Posted On Monday, 02.04.2013 / 3:36 PM

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

Ducks without Fowler on Monday; Fasth to start

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- The Anaheim Ducks will be without defenseman Cam Fowler for at least one game, but the good news was that it might not be a long-term injury.

Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said Monday morning that he didn't get the feeling that Fowler would be out for an extended time after he was driven into the boards from behind by Los Angeles Kings center Jarret Stoll on Saturday night. Fowler left the game with an apparent head injury and did not return.

"There's no sense of that right now," Boudreau said. "We'll see as time goes on as this week prolongs. I know just today that he's not playing today [against the San Jose Sharks]."

Going into Saturday, Fowler led Anaheim with 22:28 minutes of average ice time. His spot will be filled by rookie Sami Vatanen, who made his NHL debut last Friday. Listed at 5-foot-10, Vatanen made a name for himself in the Finnish league as an undersized, risk-reward defenseman, and he was close to a point-per-game player with Norfolk of the American Hockey League this season.

Boudreau said he's OK with the risk factor. He also said that, "I don't anticipate Cam being out for very long," and indicated he wants Vatanen to keep it simple.

"To me, he just wants to play the game that he played last time and nothing more," Boudreau said. "I'm not going to sit there and send pictures of [Patrick] Marleau and [Joe] Thornton to his house all afternoon saying, 'Be prepared for these guys.' He's just got to do what he does best, and we'll do the rest."

Vatanen was put on the first power play unit in his debut and looked comfortable. Part of that poise was honed overseas, where he carried his team from the blue line.

"Of course it helps playing with the big guys there the last three years," Vatanen said. "It helps me get ready for this league. If you come in the juniors to here, it's a little bigger jump than from the pro league there. I think I was ready to come here."

Veteran defenseman Toni Lydman likes the fellow Finn.

"He's got some natural talent and vision for this game that, you know, not many young kids have," Lydman said. "You have to realize he's played in the Finnish league for a while now and has been the best defenseman there the past two years. It shows – he's not out of junior. I think he looked better than most kids that age."

Boyle expected to play: Dan Boyle did not participate in the morning skate, but coach Todd McLellan said it was a precautionary measure. Boyle missed the Jan. 29 game against Anaheim with flu.

"[He's] still fighting the cold and flu bug and that type of stuff, so he doesn't need to be skating in pre-game skates in the morning, and [I] anticipate him playing," McLellan said.

SHARKS

Patrick MarleauJoe ThorntonJoe Pavelski

James SheppardLogan CoutureRyane Clowe

Tommy Wingels - Michal HandzusMartin Havlat

Andrew DesjardinsScott GomezAdam Burish

Brad StuartDan Boyle

Jason DemersMarc-Edouard Vlasic

Douglas MurrayJustin Braun

Thomas Greiss

Antti Niemi

Injured: Brent Burns

Scratched: T.J. Galiardi, Matt Irwin

Greiss is expected to make his second start of the season in the first of a back-to-back situation. San Jose can use Niemi against the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday.

DUCKS

Daniel WinnikRyan GetzlafCorey Perry

Matt BeleskeyBobby RyanTeemu Selanne

Andrew CoglianoSaku KoivuKyle Palmieri

Emerson EtemNick BoninoBrad Staubitz

Sheldon SourayFrancois Beauchemin

Bryan AllenToni Lydman

Luca SbisaSami Vatanen

Viktor Fasth

Jonas Hiller

Injured: Hampus Lindholm

Scratched: Rickard Rakell, Devante Smith-Pelly

Fasth was first off the ice and the move makes sense given he is the hotter goalie at 2-0 with a 1.44 goals-against average. Hiller has allowed at least four goals in three of his past four starts.

Boudreau has liked Bobby Ryan at center the past two games and indicated he will stick with it. Boudreau did shake up his lines in practice, though, notably with Winnik on the top line.

It appears that Brad Staubitz will draw in on the fourth line and make his second appearance this season.

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Posted On Monday, 02.04.2013 / 3:04 PM

By Rick Sadowski  -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Projected lineups for Stars, Avalanche

DENVER -- Here are the projected lineups for Monday night’s game between the Dallas Stars and Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center:

STARS

Brenden MorrowJamie BennJaromir Jagr

Loui ErikssonDerek RoyTomas Vincour

Reilly SmithCody EakinMichael Ryder

Eric Nystrom/Antoine RousselVernon FiddlerTom Wandell

Brenden DillonStephane Robidas

Aaron RomeTrevor Daley

Alex GoligoskiJamie Oleksiak

Kari Lehtonen

Richard Bachman

Scratched: Jordie Benn

Injuries: Ray Whitney (foot)

AVALANCHE

Jamie McGinnMatt DuchenePA Parenteau

John MitchellPaul Stastny -- Milan Hejduk

Cody McLeodMark OlverChuck Kobasew

David Van Der GulikMichael Sgarbossa -- Patrick Bordeleau

Ryan O'Byrne -- Jan Hejda

Erik JohnsonMatt Hunwick

Greg ZanonShane O'Brien

Semyon Varlamov

Jean-Sebastien Giguere

Scratches: Tyson Barrie

Injuries: Steve Downie (knee), David Jones (knee), Gabriel Landeskog (head), Ryan Wilson (ankle)

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Posted On Monday, 02.04.2013 / 2:51 PM

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

Stars expected to have Roy back vs. Avalanche

Derek Roy is expected to return to the Dallas Stars lineup Monday night in Colorado after missing the five previous games with a groin injury.

Roy had two assists and a plus-1 rating in four games before leaving the lineup with his injury.

The Stars also announced that goalie Cris Nilstorp was activated from injured reserve and along with Jordie Benn was assigned to the Texas Stars, Dallas' American Hockey League affiliate.

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Posted On Monday, 02.04.2013 / 2:38 PM

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

Sullivan returning to Coyotes' lineup

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- For the third straight game, the Phoenix Coyotes will be welcoming back a key player for Monday's game with the Minnesota Wild at Jobing.com Arena.

After getting goalie Mike Smith and center Martin Hanzal back for Friday's overtime loss in Dallas and Raffi Torres back prior to Saturday's win against the Stars in Arizona, forward and leading goal-scorer Steve Sullivan will return after missing the last three games with a lower-body injury.

Sullivan will be playing with Antoine Vermette and Shane Doan and will allow coach Dave Tippett to put one of his top lines back in place.

Defenseman Rostislav Klesla (lower body) and forward Matthew Lombardi (shoulder) are the only Coyotes still out with injuries. Both were on the ice taking part in limited practice Monday. Klesla is day-to-day, while Lombardi could take a bit longer. However, the hope is he will be able to return by the end of the month.

The Coyotes have points in four straight games (2-0-2) and can even their record at 4-4-2 after a 1-4-0 start. Here is the lineup they'll likely use in their attempt to continue their strong play:

Steve Sullivan - Antoine Vermette - Shane Doan

Mikkel Boedker - Martin Hanzal - Radim Vrbata

Lauri Korpikoski - Boyd Gordon - David Moss

Raffi Torres - Kyle Chipchura - Nick Johnson

Oliver Ekman-Larsson - Zbynek Michalek

Keith Yandle - Derek Morris

David Schlemko - Michael Stone

Mike Smith

Jason LaBarbera

Scratched: Paul Bissonnette, Alexandre Bolduc, David Rundblad

Injured: Rostislav Klesla, Matthew Lombardi

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Posted On Monday, 02.04.2013 / 2:30 PM

By Neil Acharya -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Leafs' Gunnarsson out with hip injury

TORONTO -- After being ruled out of Saturday's game against the Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Carl Gunnarsson remains sidelined with a hip injury.

Maple Leafs coach Randy Carlyle revealed the nature of the injury this morning.

"[Gunnarsson] had an MRI done and he has an ailment in his hip area that is causing a little bit of discomfort," Carlyle said. "There is no muscular tear. He irritated it probably when he first came over after lockout … he should be back with us shortly."

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Posted On Monday, 02.04.2013 / 2:09 PM

By Neil Acharya -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Maple Leafs looking for home improvement

TORONTO -- The Toronto Maple Leafs and Carolina Hurricanes meet Monday at the Air Canada Centre, where the Toronto is just 1-3-0 so far this season.

"Obviously we would like to win more games in our building … it's imperative that we have a strong home record to qualify for the playoffs. It's as simple as that," Maple Leafs coach Randy Carlyle said after the morning skate.

James Reimer will start in goal for the Maple Leafs after stopping 33 of 34 shots in a 1-0 loss to the Boston Bruins on Saturday. It will be Reimer's fifth consecutive start, and after a tumultuous 2011-12 season, he's looking more comfortable in goal.

"I feel like being healthy is maybe the biggest thing," Reimer said of his stronger play so far. In six games, he's 3-2-0 with a 2.47 goals-against average and .922 save percentage.

Forward Clarke MacArthur may return to the line-up, as Carlyle referred to him as being "available" for Monday's game. The 27 year old has missed three games with a lacerated finger.

Cam Ward will start in net for Carolina. He has had a slow start to the season with a 1-3-0 record and 4.05 GAA, but did stop 11 of 12 shots after relieving Dan Ellis in a 5-3 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday.

"I think he has got that bug in him that he wants to show people how good of a goalie he can be," Hurricanes coach Kirk Muller said of Ward's mindset. "Technique-wise he has always had it, that drive to be the number-one goalie, and that will drive him right now."

Hurricanes captain Eric Staal said he feels his team has played well at even-strength but has been hurt by poor special-teams play. "We've got to get better on the power play and be sharper on the penalty kill," he said.

The Hurricanes enter the week 26th in the League with the man-advantage (11.1 percent), and 27th on the penalty kill (69.7 percent).

"[At even strength] our game has been pretty good besides the first two when we were adjusting at the start," Staal said. "We've got some new faces, and I think we've been a pretty good team and [have] stacked up with anybody."

Forward Tim Wallace, recalled Sunday from the AHL, will play Monday on the fourth line. The 28-year-old will skate for the first time in a Hurricanes uniform. He has played 73 NHL games, totaling three goals and eight assists, with the Pittsburgh Penguins, Tampa Bay Lightning and New York Islanders.

Here is how the lineups likely will look:

MAPLE LEAFS

James Van Riemsdyk - Tyler Bozak - Phil Kessel

Jay McClement - Mikhail Grabovski - Nikolai Kulemin

Matt Frattin - Nazem Kadri - Leo Komarov

Clarke MacArthur - David Steckel - Colton Orr

Dion Phaneuf - Michael Kostka

Mark Fraser - John-Michael Liles

Cody Franson - Mike Komisarek

James Reimer

Ben Scrivens

Scratched: Frazer McLaren, Korbinian Holzer

Injured: Mike Brown, Joffrey Lupul, Carl Gunnarsson

HURRICANES

Jiri Tlusty - Eric Staal - Alexander Semin

Jeff Skinner - Jordan Staal - Patrick Dwyer

Drayson Bowman - Jussi Jokinen - Chad LaRose

Tim Wallace - Tim Brent - Kevin Westgarth

Tim Gleason - Justin Faulk

Joni Pitkanen - Jamie McBain

Jay Harrison - Bobby Sanguinetti

Cam Ward

Dan Ellis

Scratched: Andreas Nodl, Joe Corvo

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Quote of the Day

We've got a team filled with captains, that's what I think. With these first two games we got in, we're really dominating and moving the puck really fast, and it's worked out really good.

— U.S. goalie Brandon Halverson after a 6-0 win against Germany in the World Junior Championship on Sunday