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Posted On Wednesday, 11.02.2011 / 12:05 PM

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

Parise back in familiar spot

NEWARK, N.J. -- Zach Parise's brief career as an NHL center appears to be over.
 
Forced into the role due to an offseason injury to Travis Zajac and one during the season to Jacob Josefson, the Devils moved Parise from left wing to center in an effort to generate offense.
 
It didn't have the desired effect.
 
The Devils were held to one goal on 24 shots against the Penguins on Oct. 22, one night after losing Josefson for 3-4 months due to a broken collarbone. In the three games that followed, coach Peter DeBoer had Parise center a line with Ilya Kovalchuk on the left wing.
 
The Devils went 1-2-0 in those games and scored just seven goals, so DeBoer decided to move Parise back to left wing for tonight's home game against the Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m. ET, TSN).
 
Despite the team's struggles offensively -- they are tied for 28th in the League with an average of 2.00 goals per game -- DeBoer feels the Devils are on the verge of breaking out.
 
"We just have to continue what we're doing. I think they're going to come," DeBoer said. "We're not getting 15 shots a night. We're getting 30-plus. Kovalchuk had seven the other night (against Dallas). I believe they're going to come. We have to get a little grittier around the net."
 
After struggling at the position last season, DeBoer will try Kovalchuk at right wing tonight. Here are the rest of the Devils' projected lines:
 
Zach Parise - Adam Henrique - Ilya Kovalchuk
Petr Sykora - Patrik Elias - Dainius Zubrus
Mattias Tedenby - Ryan Carter - David Clarkson
Cam Janssen - Brad Mills - Nick Palmieri
 
Henrik Tallinder - Adam Larsson
Andy Greene - Mark Fayne
Bryce Salvador - Anton Volchenkov
 
Martin Brodeur will start in goal, with Johan Hedberg the backup.
 
For more on tonight's game, check out the preview here.

Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DaveLozo

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Posted On Wednesday, 11.02.2011 / 11:55 AM

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

Injuries mean new look for Flyers

We had the Sabres lines a bit earlier, and here's a look at the lineup the Flyers could put on the ice tonight in Buffalo (7:30 p.m. ET, Versus, TSN2).

Scott Hartnell - Claude Giroux - Jaromir Jagr
James van Riemsdyk - Sean Couturier - Jakub Voracek
Andreas Nodl - Maxime Talbot - Wayne Simmonds
Jody Shelley - Ben Holmstrom - Zac Rinaldo

Braydon Coburn - Kimmo Timonen
Matt Carle - Erik Gustafsson
Andrej Meszaros - Andreas Lilja

Ilya Bryzgalov will start in goal, with Sergei Bobrovsky backing him up.

It's almost a completely new look for the Flyers up front, as Danny Briere and Matt Read will be out with upper-body injuries.

The only line that remains the same is the top line, and why not? Jagr was Third Star of the Week with 5 goals in four games, and Giroux is tied for second in the League with 15 points.

For more on tonight's game, check out the preview here.
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Posted On Wednesday, 11.02.2011 / 11:14 AM

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

Leino on top line part of potential Sabres lineup

Here is what the Buffalo Sabres' lineup could look like tonight when the host the Philadelphia Flyers (7:30 p.m., Versus, TSN2).

Thomas Vanek - Ville Leino - Jason Pominville
Luke Adam - Derek Roy - Drew Stafford
Nathan Gerbe - Paul Gaustad - Patrick Kaleta
Cody McCormick - Matt Ellis - Brad Boyes

Robyn Regehr - Mike Weber
Andrej Sekera - Tyler Myers
Jordan Leopold - Christian Ehrhoff

Ryan Miller will start in goal, with Jhonas Enroth backing him up.

The big change for the Sabres comes on the top two lines, where Leino gets the chance to play between Vanek and Pominville, while Adam switches to the second line. The rookies skated at left wing with Roy in the middle Tuesday, but they could flip-flop for the game.

On defense, Weber will make his season debut tonight, playing alongside Regeher. Weber's insertion into the lineup makes Marc-Andre Gragnani a healthy scratch.

With injuries sidelining Flyers forwards Danny Briere and Matt Read tonight, it'll be interesting to see how the Flyers' lines shape up when they skate later this morning.

For more information on the game, check out the preview here.

Contact Adam Kimelman at akimelman@nhl.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK
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Posted On Wednesday, 11.02.2011 / 9:40 AM

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

Weekes: Top 5 goalie masks this season

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Posted On Tuesday, 11.01.2011 / 7:26 PM

NHL.com - 2011-2012 Situation Room blog

OTT @ BOS - 5:19 of the first period

Video review was used to determine that the puck shot by Ottawa forward Nick Foligno entered the net in a legal fashion and crossed the goal line before the net became dislodged. Video review confirmed that the puck was deflected into the net off of a Boston defender and the net was completely on its moorings when the puck crossed the goal line. Call on the ice stands, good goal Ottawa.

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Posted On Tuesday, 11.01.2011 / 6:42 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - At the Rink blog

Thomas to start for Bruins

BOSTON -- Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas is back in net on Tuesday after not starting in Montreal on Saturday night. He will be opposed by Ottawa veteran Craig Anderson, who like Thomas, was rested by his team in its last game -- a 3-2  home win against Toronto on Sunday.

Thomas brings a 3-4-0 record with 2.14 goals-against average and .929 save percentage into the Bruins-Senators game at TD Garden. Anderson has a 6-2-0 record wit a 3.66 GAA and .881 save percentage for the surprising Sens.
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Posted On Tuesday, 11.01.2011 / 3:45 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - At the Rink blog

Potential lineups for Flames, Canucks

CALGARY -- Against the Flames tonight, the Canucks are expected to use the same lineup they went with in Saturday's 7-4 win against the Washington Capitals. That means defenseman Alexander Sulzer, who signed as a free agent with Vancouver in July, will draw into his third consecutive game of the season after sitting out the first nine games of the season.

"I've really liked what I've seen from him on the right side," Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said. "He seems to be the most comfortable out of the possibilities we have. I like the way he competes 1-on-1 and I like the way he moves the puck. As a (defenseman), when you're dependable and the coach knows what you're going to do on the ice, there's a confidence and a trust. So far with him we definitely have that."

For the Flames, their big change is dressing a 12th forward, which means Matt Stajan comes back into the lineup after sitting out the last two games as a healthy scratch.

Here's what the lineups for both teams likely will look like, based on this morning's practices:

FLAMES
Alex Tanguay - Brendan Morrison - Jarome Iginla
Curtis Glencross - Olli Jokinen - David Moss
Rene Bourque - Roman Horak - Lee Stempniak
Tom Kostopoulos - Matt Stajan - Tim Jackman

Jay Bouwmeester - Chris Butler
Mark Giordano - Scott Hannan
Derek Smith - Cory Sarich

Miikka Kiprusoff will start in goal, with Henrik Karlsson backing him up.

CANUCKS
Daniel Sedin - Henrik Sedin - Alexandre Burrows
David Booth - Ryan Kesler - Cody Hodgson
Chris Higgins - Manny Malhotra - Jannik Hansen
Aaron Volpatti - Maxime Lapierre - Dale Weise

Dan Hamhuis - Kevin Bieksa
Alexander Edler - Sami Salo
Keith Ballard - Alexander Sulzer

Roberto Luongo will be in goal, with Cory Schneider the backup.

For more on tonight's game, check out the preview here.

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Posted On Tuesday, 11.01.2011 / 3:40 PM

By Aaron Vickers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - At the Rink blog

Stajan back in tonight for Flames

CALGARY -- Despite winning the last two games using a formula combining 11 forwards with seven defensemen, the Calgary Flames hope to extend their winning streak to three games with a win against the Vancouver Canucks tonight by returning to the more conventional 12-6 configuration.
That means welcoming center Matt Stajan back into the lineup.

"Well we are going to dress 12 forwards tonight so Matt's going in to play center ice for us," Flames coach Brent Sutter said. "We need Matt to come in and he's got to bring us some juice and he's got to be a real solid, competitive player for us. I'm not putting any expectations on him or anything like that. I just want him to come in and play well."

Stajan draws into the lineup after spending the last two games as a healthy scratch.

"I'd be lying if I said I'm not frustrated," Stajan said. "Obviously I'm not happy with the situation because I want to play -- every player does. I get my chance tonight and go in there and do a job. The good thing is we're starting to roll now. We're starting to win as a team."

The formula for staying in the lineup is simple, Stajan said.

"I've been pretty happy with my game so far this year and talking to Brent, obviously we'd like more production, but do the little things and the rest will come," he said. "I'm making sure I'm not turning the puck over and get the puck in deep and win faceoffs when I'm out there. Take care of the little things and hopefully the rest follows."

More in a bit with lineups for both teams.
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Posted On Tuesday, 11.01.2011 / 2:58 PM

By Corey Masisak -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - At the Rink blog

Caps' Eakin to make NHL debut

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Cody Eakin nearly made the Washington Capitals’ opening-night roster at the start of last season, so the fact that it took him 10 games with the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League in his first professional season to earn his first NHL promotion should not be much of a surprise.

Eakin was recalled this morning by the Capitals and is scheduled to make his NHL debut against the Anaheim Ducks tonight at Verizon Center (7:30 p.m. ET, Versus, TSN2).

“I’m pretty happy. Obviously it is pretty exciting,” Eakin said. “It was pretty exciting. It wasn’t a call I was expecting to get or anything. I was actually hanging out at a movie theater when I got the call. It is always a nice call to get, and I am looking forward to it.”

Eakin was a 2009 third-round pick, and actually helped the Bears win the Calder Cup in 2010 despite being a junior-age player (he was allowed to play for them after his junior season ended). Last season began with him having a great training camp with the Capitals, a solid effort for Canada at the World Junior Championships and another dominant season in the Western Hockey League.

He did not make the NHL to start this season, but 3 goals and 8 points in 10 AHL games was enough to earn him a call-up -- even though the Capitals do not need him right now.

“Every report we’ve gotten is that he’s played really, really well down in Hershey,” Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau said. “He’s a guy that we’ve really wanted to take a look at. Hershey only has one game this week, so this was a good opportunity to take a look at him.”

Eakin is Washington’s second-best forward prospect after Russian starlet Evgeny Kuznetsov, and after scoring 95 goals in the past two seasons in the WHL (including the postseason), he is someone who has enough offensive talent to play as top-six forward someday.

For now, he’ll likely skate on the fourth line, although that trio is expected to include Mike Knuble against the Ducks.

"(They said) the next little while depends on me," Eakin said of the message when he was sent to Hershey. "They said I could be in Hershey for a while, or I could be there for a short time. I’ve just tried to work hard and get the systems right and get comfortable with the game. I am lucky to have this opportunity -- this early especially."

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Posted On Tuesday, 11.01.2011 / 2:38 PM

By Louie Korac -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - At the Rink blog

Huskins: Ankle not broken

The St. Louis Blues got good news today on defenseman Kent Huskins.

Huskins, who some feared had a broken bone in his left ankle suffered in Saturday's loss in Calgary, instead only has a deep bone bruise, and is listed as day to day.

He sat out Sunday's loss to Edmonton, since the Blues don't play again until Friday, that could be the extent of his absence.

Huskins has 2 goals and 2 assists in nine games, and his plus-6 rating is tied for second on the team. He's also tied for the team lead with 19 blocked shots.

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Quote of the Day

We think that Randy is a very good coach. Our players think that Randy is a very good coach. We think that he's going to get the most out of this group. With the addition of the two assistants, a bit of a different dynamic, we're very comfortable that this is a quality coaching staff that's going to maximize the potential of this team.

— Maple Leafs GM Dave Nonis on head coach Randy Carlyle and his staff