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Posted On Tuesday, 06.24.2014 / 8:40 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - 2014 NHL Awards Blog

Red Wings' Babcock hopes Alfredsson returns

LAS VEGAS -- If 41-year-old forward Daniel Alfredsson takes care of his back problems this summer, the Detroit Red Wings will welcome him back next season. Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said Tuesday that the order can't be the other way because of the uncertainty regarding Alfredsson's injury.

Alfredsson can become an unrestricted free agent on July 1, but Babcock said if he plays next season he will play for the Red Wings.

"[Alfredsson] had a tough time last year staying healthy, so it's real hard to commit to a guy when he doesn't know for sure," Babcock said from the red carpet for the 2014 NHL Awards. "We'd love to have him. We'd love for him to get healthy, but at this point things haven't turned in the right direction for him. We'll see what happens."

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Posted On Tuesday, 06.24.2014 / 4:29 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2014 NHL Draft blog

Hextall focused on building Flyers through draft

VOORHEES, N.J. -- Philadelphia Flyers general manager Ron Hextall is a staunch advocate of building an organization by way of the NHL Draft.

"Your core pieces, or your homegrown pieces, are big," Hextall said during a pre-2014 NHL Draft press conference at the Flyers practice facility on Tuesday.

The 2014 NHL Draft will be held at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia with the first round on Friday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN) and the remaining six rounds on Saturday (10 a.m. ET; NHL Network).

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Posted On Monday, 06.23.2014 / 9:16 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - 2014 NHL Awards Blog

DeKeyser excited to represent Red Wings at Awards

LAS VEGAS -- Detroit Red Wings defenseman Danny DeKeyser may one day gain entrance into the NHL Awards show for what he did on the ice. For now, though, he'll have to settle for a free trip to Las Vegas to be a presenter at the 2014 NHL Awards (7 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC).

"Why not?" DeKeyser told NHL.com on Monday. "This is pretty nice."

DeKeyser is representing the Red Wings in presenting the Jack Adams Award during the show Tuesday at Encore Theater in Wynn Las Vegas. Red Wings coach Mike Babcock is one of the three nominees for the award, along with Colorado Avalanche coach Patrick Roy and Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper.

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Posted On Monday, 06.23.2014 / 9:06 PM

By Shawn Roarke -  Director, Editorial /NHL.com - 2014 NHL Awards Blog

Bruins' Chara progressing from finger injury

LAS VEGAS -- Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara says the injury he sustained to one of the fingers on his left hand during the Stanley Cup Playoffs is getting progressively better.

"It's good. It's healed," Chara said Monday during Media Day for the 2014 NHL Awards. "Still looking to get full feeling back, but it is something we'll stay on top of and see that it gets better."

The exact injury has never been revealed, but Chara said that he sustained a fracture.

"It was a break and a big cut," he said.

Chara said no surgery will be necessary, but admitted he does not yet have full feeling in the injured digit. He also stressed the injury is not an excuse for why the Bruins crashed out of the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the second round, upset in seven games by the Montreal Canadiens.

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Posted On Monday, 06.23.2014 / 8:00 PM

By Shawn Roarke -  Director, Editorial /NHL.com - 2014 NHL Awards Blog

Devils' Jagr excited to see Hasek enter Hall of Fame

LAS VEGAS -- Not many people know Dominik Hasek better than New Jersey Devils forward Jaromir Jagr. They were fixtures on the Czech national team during the past two decades. They shared incredible highs together while wearing the national team jersey.

So it is of little surprise that Jagr was genuinely pleased to find out Hasek was elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame, part of a Class of 2014 that also features Peter Forsberg, Mike Modano and Rob Blake.

"I didn't even know. He truly deserves it," said Jagr, who was at Media Day for the 2014 NHL Awards. "He was one of the best. He's a little bit older than me, but I had a chance to play with him in Nagano and some national team games. He was a wall."

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Posted On Monday, 06.23.2014 / 7:41 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - 2014 NHL Awards Blog

Marleau hopes to remain with Sharks

LAS VEGAS -- San Jose Sharks forward Patrick Marleau is prepared for general manager Doug Wilson to attempt to make changes to the club's roster, leadership hierarchy and dressing-room culture this offseason.

He isn't prepared to be a victim of those changes.

"I want to play in San Jose," Marleau said Monday at Media Day for the NHL Awards, where he is up for the Lady Byng Trophy. "I want to win there."

Marleau said he and San Jose captain Joe Thornton, the Sharks' longest tenured players, have already discussed next season and getting back to the Stanley Cup Playoffs to make amends for the team's collapse against the Los Angeles Kings. San Jose blew a 3-0 lead and lost to the Kings in seven games in the Western Conference First Round.

"We're looking forward to next year," Marleau said of him and Thornton. "It's going to [stink] having to go through all the 82 games to get back in the playoffs to get to that point to actually do something about it."

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Posted On Monday, 06.23.2014 / 4:08 PM

By Barry Melrose -  NHL Network Analyst /NHL.com - Melrose Minute

Melrose Minute: Picking the NHL Awards winners

We have a big weekend coming up with the 2014 NHL Draft in Philadelphia, but before everyone heads to the City of Brotherly Love, one of the League's other major events will be happening Tuesday in Las Vegas at the annual NHL Awards (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC).

Here is who I think will take home the hardware.

Hart Trophy

Nominees: Sidney Crosby, Ryan Getzlaf, Claude Giroux

Pick: Crosby. It's important to remember that these awards are voted on before the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and are meant to reflect achievement in the regular season. If you look at the regular season, Crosby's League-leading 104 points (36 goals, 68 assists) was just so dominant you've got to think he's the pick. Getzlaf had a great season and Giroux was fantastic for two-thirds of the season, but I think Crosby is the guy. People might love him or hate him, but if you're being objective you can't ignore his accomplishments.

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Posted On Monday, 06.23.2014 / 3:33 PM

By Pete Jensen -  NHL.com Fantasy Insider /NHL.com - Fantasy Spin Blog

Fantasy Spin: Hartnell can hit 'refresh' in Columbus

Neither the Philadelphia Flyers nor the Columbus Blue Jackets took on a salary cap-friendly contract in swapping left wings Scott Hartnell and R.J. Umberger on Monday.

Hartnell and Umberger have five and three years remaining on their respective contracts. Each is 32 years old and has seen a dip in productivity over the past few years. But from a fantasy standpoint, contract terms don't come into play as much.

The big takeaway from this deal is that Hartnell has waived his no-trade clause to join one of the deepest, most promising forward arsenals in the League. His category coverage helped fantasy owners win their leagues during his time in Philly, and the potential is there for him to hit the "refresh" button in Columbus.

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Posted On Monday, 06.23.2014 / 2:58 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2014 NHL Draft blog

German-born Draisaitl set for draft, soccer match

Prince Albert Raiders center Leon Draisaitl is scheduled to arrive in Philadelphia on Wednesday to prepare for all the pomp and circumstance that will accompany the 2014 NHL Draft at Wells Fargo Center this weekend.

Draisaitl, No. 4 on NHL Central Scouting's final ranking of the top North American skaters eligible for this year's draft, is projected to hear his name in the early stages of the first round on Friday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS). Considered a power-forward with good touch around the net, Draisaitl finished with 38 goals and 105 points in 64 regular-season games in the Western Hockey League in 2013-14. He also played for Germany at the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship and IIHF World Championship.

"I'm so excited and I can't wait for [draft] day," Draisaitl told NHL.com. "The last couple of weeks have gone by so quick and this will be pretty much the most exciting time of my life."

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Posted On Monday, 06.23.2014 / 10:56 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2014 NHL Draft blog

Islanders GM Snow open to trading No. 5 pick in draft

New York Islanders general manager Garth Snow told Newsday he's open to trading the fifth pick at the 2014 NHL Draft if the return is a player that can have an immediate impact on the roster.

"We're open to trading the pick for someone we think can come in and help us right away," Snow said recently.

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Quote of the Day

He seemed to thrive on his own and didn't really need any push from me. I certainly don't want to get in the way of the coaches. You see how that goes sometimes. I never really worried about it and just enjoyed the ride.

— David Ekblad on his son's [Aaron Ekblad] journey to the NHL, signing with the Florida Panthers