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At the Rink blog
Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 6:03 PM

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

Maple Leafs put Bozak on IR; Seguin back for Stars

The Toronto Maple Leafs placed center Tyler Bozak (oblique strain) on injured reserve Thursday. An MRI exam for Bozak revealed the injury, and coach Randy Carlyle told reporters at the morning skate it will keep him out for an "extended period of time."

Bozak was injured during a 4-2 loss to the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday. He recently returned from a hamstring injury that cost him 12 games. He has 11 points, a plus-5 rating and is averaging 21:04 of ice time in 16 games.

The injuries continue to pile up around the Maple Leafs, who play host to the Dallas Stars on Thursday. Although Phil Kessel (undisclosed) will play, Joffrey Lupul (groin strain) and Dave Bolland (severed Achilles tendon) are out. Colton Orr had a procedure done on a bursa sac in his elbow and was placed on IR.

"It's very frustrating and disappointing that we're going through the rash of injuries that we are now," Carlyle said. "But it's really not time to talk about the injured players. It's time to talk about the players that we have in our lineup; there's opportunities made available."

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Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 3:25 PM

By Derek Van Diest -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Oilers shake up defense group

EDMONTON -- The Edmonton Oilers plan on making a number of roster changes for their game Thursday against the Colorado Avalanche, but the reinforcements from Oklahoma City did not arrive in time for the morning skate.

Defensemen Martin Marincin and Corey Potter, along with center Anton Lander, were recalled from the Oilers' American Hockey League affiliate Wednesday, and despite flight delays the trio is expected to play.

"They got delayed [Wednesday] coming in," Oilers coach Dallas Eakins said. "They're either in the air or may have landed already. They'll be available for [Thursday night]."

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Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 2:51 PM

By Louie Korac -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Blues dealing with first adversity of season

ST. LOUIS -- Before they headed west to face a pair of familiar foes that had given them issues in the past, particularly the Los Angeles Kings, life was good for the St. Louis Blues.

The Blues (18-5-3) had not lost consecutive games in regulation all season before coming away empty handed in road losses to the San Jose Sharks and Kings.

The Blues have earned points in 21 of 26 games this season, but for the first time this season there is some adversity to deal with. How this team handles it is the big question moving forward.

"You can't dwell on it. We have a good team here," defenseman Jay Bouwmeester said. "If we play the way we can, more often than not we're going to get results. That's just the focus. You don't need to drag things along and make it too painful on yourselves."

Which is why when the Blues host the New York Islanders on Thursday, they'll do what they've always done: Move on and tackle the next challenge.

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Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 2:36 PM

By Dan Myers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Blackhawks, Wild shuffle lineups

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The Chicago Blackhawks and Minnesota Wild have each made adjustments to their lineups in advance of their game Thursday at Xcel Energy Center (8 p.m. ET, NHLN-US).

For the Blackhawks, Andrew Shaw and Michal Handzus did not make the trip to Minnesota and are unavailable Thursday. Handzus is sick and will miss his second consecutive game. Shaw sustained an upper-body injury when he was checked hard into the boards late in Chicago's game Tuesday against the Dallas Stars.

Each is considered day-to-day and Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said each could return to the lineup as soon as Friday when Chicago plays the Anaheim Ducks at United Center.

The Blackhawks also reassigned center Brandon Pirri to the Rockford Ice Hogs of the American Hockey League. Pirri had six goals and five assists in 24 games with Chicago, but Quenneville said Pirri needs to work on his game in the defensive end.

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Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 2:14 PM

By Arpon Basu -  Managing Editor LNH.com /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Canadiens, Bruins meet for division lead again

MONTREAL -- It has taken two months, but the Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins will finally resume their storied rivalry at Bell Centre on Thursday, and it again will be a game when first place in their division will be on the line.

The Canadiens have gone 7-0-1 in their past eight games to close within a point of the Atlantic Division-leading Bruins, with Boston holding two games in hand. A win in regulation time would give the Canadiens the division lead for the first time this season, though it would be tenuous because of the two extra games Montreal has played.

The game Thursday marks the fifth straight between the Canadiens and Bruins when first place in the division was at stake, with each of their four games last season being a meeting at the summit of what was then the Northeast Division.

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Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 1:11 PM

By Joe Yerdon -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

McBain returning to Sabres' lineup

BUFFALO -- The New York Rangers and Buffalo Sabres each held an optional morning skate ahead of their game at First Niagara Center on Thursday. However, both teams had news to share off the ice.

The Sabres announced they would loan forward Mikhail Grigorenko to Russia for the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship. He will leave the team Sunday to attend a pre-tournament camp in Russia. The 2014 WJC runs from Dec. 26 to Jan. 5, 2014.

"I can't be sitting in the press box. I need to play. Everybody understands this," Grigorenko said. "It's a really good opportunity because it's a really good level there. [It's] probably not as good as the NHL but I would say it's close. So it's going to be really good for me."

Sabres coach Ted Nolan said forward Cody McCormick will play against the Rangers after missing the past four games with an upper-body injury. Defenseman Alexander Sulzer (undisclosed) will be placed on injured reserve to make room for him.

Defenseman Jamie McBain also will return to the lineup after being a healthy scratch for the past four games; defenseman Brayden McNabb will be a healthy scratch.


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Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 1:01 PM

By Lonnie Herman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Cooper wants goal-starved Lightning to stick with it

TAMPA -- The Tampa Bay Lightning open a two-game homestand Thursday when the Ottawa Senators visit Tampa Bay Times Forum, and if the visitors are bringing any gifts, the Lightning hope it is in the form of a few scoring opportunities.

Tampa Bay has been shut out in consecutive games and three times in five games. Excluding an empty-net goal by Tyler Johnson against the Philadelphia Flyers on Nov. 27, the Lightning are scoreless in 135 minutes. Add to this the power play, which still ranks eighth in the NHL but is 4-for-46 in the past 15 games, and it is clear that the Lightning are enduring a significant power outage.

"Hopefully we can turn that around tonight," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "We're going to have to do that soon because there are too many teams that have closed the gap and are starting to pass us now.

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Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 12:57 PM

By Wes Crosby -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Penguins' Malkin out; Crosby hits milestone

PITTSBURGH -- Evgeni Malkin will miss the Pittsburgh Penguins' game Thursday against the San Jose Sharks at Consol Energy Center with a lower-body injury.

Malkin left midway through Pittsburgh's morning skate and is listed as day-to-day. He is one point behind Sidney Crosby in the NHL scoring race with 37 points and on a season-high nine-game point streak (four goals, 15 assists).

"[Malkin's] month of November, at least from the media's aspect, was maybe the least spectacular month of anyone's career," Bylsma said. "There was a lot of heat, pressure and question marks for the first 20 games of that month.

"He quietly put up multi-point games and assist games during that month and played maybe his best games against Anaheim, where he didn't get a point. He certainly caught fire near the end of the month."

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Posted On Thursday, 12.05.2013 / 12:41 PM

By Alain Poupart -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Jets minus Kane again; Kulikov back in for Panthers

SUNRISE, Fla. -- The Winnipeg Jets will play a second consecutive game without left wing Evander Kane on Thursday night against the Florida Panthers, but he should be back in the lineup before too long.

Kane, who was injured in a 2-1 loss against the Philadelphia Flyers this past Friday, will be evaluated on a daily basis after tests didn't reveal any structural damage.

"We didn't see anything there that would cause us to be alarmed," Jets coach Claude Noel said before his team's optional skate Thursday. "He's just day-to-day. He's got to work his way through this. He won't be a player in tonight's game, but we'll just take it one day at a time."

With Kane sitting out, the Jets beat the New York Rangers 5-2 Monday to improve to 3-1-0 on their season-long six-game road trip, which concludes Saturday with a game against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.04.2013 / 2:34 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Giordano to return to Flames' lineup

CALGARY -- Calgary's captain is set to return.

The Calgary Flames will have defenseman Mark Giordano back in the lineup when they host the Phoenix Coyotes at Scotiabank Saddledome on Wednesday.

"He'll be in the lineup," coach Bob Hartley said. "When you wear the 'C' not only are you a great player but you're a special person. Our best leader is coming back to our group and we're going to play him."

Giordano has missed the past 18 games with a broken ankle sustained in a 3-2 win against the Los Angeles Kings on Oct. 21. He had seven assists and nine points in eight games and was averaging more than 25 minutes of ice time per game before the injury.

The Flames went 5-11-2 in Giordano's absence.

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Quote of the Day

Great players need great players to play with. That's why we'll have a training camp and we'll find who the best two guys are suited to play with Stamkos.

— Tampa Bay Lightning associate coach Rick Bowness on Steven Stamkos' potential linemates for the 2014-15 season