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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 6:37 PM

By Staff -  / - NHL Live blog

Hanifin reflects on WJC, looks forward to Beanpot

Boston College freshman defenseman Noah Hanifin joined NHL Live to discuss playing for the United States at the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship and to look ahead to the 63rd annual Beanpot Tournament.

Hanifin scored two points in five games at the WJC for the United States, which did not reach the medal round.

"It was a great experience," Hanifin said. "Obviously we didn't get the outcome we wanted, but just being able to play with great players every day … being able to measure myself against players around the world at such a high level was awesome. Coming back to BC I think it really helped me a lot. I think I got better over the course of that tournament. I think I gained confidence from it."

Ranked third in NHL Central Scouting's midterm ranking of the top North American skaters for the 2015 NHL Draft, Hanifin has three goals and 14 points in 24 games for the Eagles.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 6:30 PM

By Adam Vingan - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

Penguins captain Crosby will play against Capitals

WASHINGTON -- Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby will return from a lower-body injury and be in the lineup against the Washington Capitals at Verizon Center on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVA Sports, SN1).

Crosby missed the 2015 Honda NHL All-Star Game and Pittsburgh's 5-3 victory against the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday. He sustained the injury Jan. 10 against the Montreal Canadiens, but played through it until taking an injection last week.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 5:28 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Blackhawks at Kings

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Kings will likely get right wing Tyler Toffoli back for a crucial stretch of their season that starts Wednesday against the Chicago Blackhawks at Staples Center (10:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, SN1).

Toffoli, who skated in line rushes the past two days, was activated off injured reserve. He missed six games with mononucleosis and coach Darryl Sutter said, "It will take him a bit to get up to speed."

Sutter referenced Toffoli's inconsistency. Toffoli scored 10 goals in his first 25 games but has two goals in his past 16 games.

"I think he had a tougher time in the middle of November, middle of December," Sutter said. "It's his first full year in the NHL … he ran out of gas. A lot of them young guys [do that]. They went a long playoffs, those kids, and probably didn't have as much training and didn't put as much work in. They came back excited and had a really good start and leveled off."

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 4:36 PM

By Fantasy Hockey Staff -  / - Fantasy Spin Blog

Daily projected fantasy hockey goalies

Projected goalie starters are based on reporting of staff and correspondents at morning skates, team announcements and media reports. While last-minute lineup changes are possible, these projections provide fantasy owners with the most up-to-date information available.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 4:30 PM

By Pete Jensen - Fantasy Insider / - Fantasy Spin Blog

Fantasy Spin: Isles' Grabovski takes Okposo's spot

With Kyle Okposo sidelined for the next 6-8 weeks, fantasy owners would be wise to jump on the Mikhail Grabovski train.

Tri-eligible in Yahoo leagues (LW/C/RW), Grabovski (13 percent owned in Yahoo leagues) passed his first test Tuesday in his return from injury with a goal against the New York Rangers. He tied his season-high with four shots on goal in the game and filled in nicely for Okposo on the right side of New York's top line with top-15 fantasy forward John Tavares and Josh Bailey (eight percent owned).

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 1:12 PM

By Mike G. Morreale - Staff Writer / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Maple Leafs at Devils

NEWARK, N.J. -- The Toronto Maple Leafs will look to set the tone for a second-half push for a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs without the services of captain Dion Phaneuf on Wednesday when they visit the New Jersey Devils.

It will mark the first time in four seasons that Phaneuf (hand) will miss a game because of an injury, one he apparently sustained at some point against the Ottawa Senators on Jan. 21. Maple Leafs coach Peter Horachek said Phaneuf, who has not missed a game because of injury since Dec. 8, 2010, is week-to-week.

The loss of Phaneuf comes at the most inopportune time for Toronto, which also is without defenseman Stephane Robidas (upper body), and has lost six straight games and 14 of its past 17.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 12:32 PM

By Adam Vingan - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Penguins at Capitals

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby is expected to be a game-time decision against the Washington Capitals on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVA Sports, SN1).

Crosby, who missed the 2015 Honda NHL All-Star Game because of a lower-body injury, did not play in Pittsburgh's 5-3 win against the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday. He skated Wednesday morning at Verizon Center and coach Mike Johnston will address his status prior to the game.

Crosby's return would further boost a Pittsburgh lineup that recently has been overwhelmed by injuries.

Against the Jets, forward Patric Hornqvist and defenseman Kris Letang returned from lower-body and head injuries, respectively. The length of forward Evgeni Malkin's recovery from a lower-body injury is undetermined, Johnston said Monday.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 10:50 AM

By Dan Rosen - Senior Writer / - Over the Boards blog

Rosen's mailbag - Jan. 28, 2015

Here is the Jan. 28 edition of Rosen's weekly mailbag, which will run every Wednesday during the season. If you have a question, tweet it to @drosennhl and use #OvertheBoards.

Let's get to it:

Where do you see the Los Angeles Kings finishing and can they make a Stanley Cup run? -- @_ewok

I'm starting to worry about the Kings. I really am. I'm not saying they don't have a run in them because all indications are that they do, particularly with their fancy stats domination. They are one of the best puck possession teams by the proxies we have available in Corsi and Fenwick. That typically means betting on long-term success is a good idea despite short-term failures. But time is ticking and the Kings haven't been able to turn their strong fancy stats into points in the standings, at least not enough points in the standings. It's very possible that the amount of hockey they have played since the 2011-12 season (322 games) is finally catching up with the Kings.

The Calgary Flames are the team that won't go away. I still think the San Jose Sharks and Winnipeg Jets have some fragility, but they too have cushions on the Kings.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.28.2015 / 3:00 AM

By Kevin Weekes -  NHL Network Analyst / - Weekes on the Web

Weekes: Penguins-Capitals could be playoff preview

We could be seeing a Stanley Cup Playoff preview Wednesday at Verizon Center.

It's always fun and unpredictable when the Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals get together, as they will for the first half of this week's Wednesday Night Rivalry doubleheader (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TVA, SN1). In the second game, the Los Angeles Kings host the Chicago Blackhawks at Staples Center (10:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, SN, SN1).

It'll be another great night for hockey.

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Posted On Tuesday, 01.27.2015 / 8:09 PM - 2014-2015 Situation Room blog

DET @ FLA - 10:16 of the First Period

At 10:16 of the first period in the Detroit Red Wings/Florida Panthers game, the Situation Room initiated a video review to further examine Brandon Pirri's shot on the Detroit net. Video review determined that the puck completely crossed the goal line. Good goal Florida.

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Quote of the Day

I mean, hockey had to change the rules because of Marty, and that's impressive. I got two Stanley Cup rings because of the guy. Look at the banners of [Scott Niedermayer, Scott Stevens and Ken Daneyko] and Marty is right up there when you think about the New Jersey Devils; he was part of the core group and he'll go down as one of the greatest goalies ever.

— New Jersey Devils center Scott Gomez on former teammate Martin Brodeur, who will announce his retirement Thursday