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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 9:05 PM

By Jerry Brown - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

Dubnyk starts in goal for Coyotes vs. Kings

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Goalie Devan Dubnyk will start for the Arizona Coyotes against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.

Coyotes coach Dave Tippett opted to start Dubnyk in favor of Mike Smith, who allowed six goals on 27 shots in Arizona's 6-2 season-opening loss to the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday, despite Smith's 11-4-1 career regular-season record against the Kings.

“I wanted to give Dubnyk one of these first four games at home, and this was a good time to do it,” Tippett said. “(Smith) wanted to get some work with (goalie coach Sean Burke) today, so that worked out well."

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 8:23 PM - 2014-2015 Situation Room blog

PIT @ TOR - 1:48 of the Second Period

At 1:48 of the second period in the Pittsburgh Penguins/Toronto Maple Leafs game, video review supported the referee's call on the ice that David Clarkson's stick was above the height of the crossbar when he deflected the puck into the Pittsburgh net. According to Rule 60.5 "An apparent goal scored by an attacking player who strikes the puck with his stick carried above the height of the crossbar of the goal frame shall not be allowed. The determining factor is where the puck makes contact with the stick." No goal Toronto.

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 7:09 PM

By Louie Korac - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

Berglund scratched for Blues against Flames

ST. LOUIS -- St. Louis Blues forward Patrik Berglund was a late scratch Saturday against the Calgary Flames.

Berglund, who took a slash in the home opener Thursday against the New York Rangers, took part in the optional morning skate Saturday after missing practice Friday.

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 5:22 PM

By Kevin Woodley - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Oilers at Canucks

VANCOUVER -- Radim Vrbata knows how important chemistry is for a line to have sustained success, and the Vancouver Canucks forward likes the early synergy he's found with Daniel and Henrik Sedin.

Vrbata followed up a promising preseason alongside the Sedins by scoring a goal as the new top line combined for four points in a 4-2 season-opening win against the Calgary Flames on Wednesday. Vrbata's decision to sign a two-year, $10-million free agent contract in Vancouver this summer in large part to play with the identical twins is looking prescient.

"The reason I came here was I thought they play a similar style I do and I thought it could work, and since the first day we seem to be on the same page," said Vrbata, who scored three goals in the preseason. "The patience, the vision, the skill, it's everything I thought and maybe even better."

If history is any indication, it could be better against the visiting Edmonton Oilers on Saturday (10 p.m. ET; CBC, TVA2).

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 4:55 PM

By Jerry Brown - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Kings at Coyotes

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Friday was a busy day off the ice for the Arizona Coyotes, with New Jersey hedge fund owner Andrew Barroway agreeing to purchase 51 percent of the team to become the primary owner pending approval by the NHL's Board of Governors. But there was work to do on the ice as well after the Coyotes were embarrassed 6-2 Thursday by the Winnipeg Jets, allowing four goals in the first 14 minutes of a nightmarish first period.

Coyotes coach Dave Tippett won't make many cosmetic changes for their game Saturday against the Los Angeles Kings. Rob Klinkhammer will move to a line with Czechs Martin Hanzal and Martin Erat, while David Moss moves down to play with Lauri Korpikoski and Sam Gagner. But the work ethic and goaltending effort of Mike Smith, who struggled mightily against the Jets, needs some serious upgrades with the defending Stanley Cup champions in town.

"Everyone is obviously extremely disappointed with this start and it just goes back to us having to be ready for the next game," Arizona captain Shane Doan said. "It really doesn't matter if you lose 3-2 or 6-2 or whatever it is, it's the next game you have to win and that's where we're at. You just know you have the chance to answer those questions, and you got 81 more games to do it."

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 4:22 PM

By Staff -  / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Jets at Sharks

SAN JOSE -- The Winnipeg Jets will begin adjusting to life without injured forward Evander Kane on Saturday night when they face the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center (10 p.m. ET; SN360).

Kane will be sidelined for at least two weeks and probably longer, but coach Paul Maurice said Saturday he considered that "better news" than he expected.

Kane was injured Thursday night early in the first period of a 6-2 victory against the Arizona Coyotes in a knee-on-knee collision with linemate Mark Scheifele. He underwent tests on Friday.

"Evander's got a lower-body injury that's going to keep him out of the lineup for a period of time," Maurice said after the Jets' morning skate at SAP Center. "He's going to get reevaluated in two weeks and after that it will be on a week to week basis. There's a big area on how long it takes to heal these things up. To be quite honest with you, it's actually better news than I was expecting. I really was not hopeful yesterday. … So, better news, but he is going to be out of our lineup for the near future."

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 3:22 PM

By Rick Sadowski  - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Wild at Avalanche

DENVER -- It didn't take long for Colorado Avalanche coach Patrick Roy to make lineup changes.

After watching the Avalanche get outshot 48-16 in a 5-0 loss to the Minnesota Wild on Thursday in the season opener, Roy will shuffle all four line combinations for the rematch Saturday at Pepsi Center.

"Looking at the guys, they were not happy with their performance," Roy said after the morning skate. "We know we have to be better than what we did. We didn't compete the way we wanted and the guys know that. This is the first test for it. We're going to have to regroup and be ready. We have to be a lot different."

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 2:50 PM

By Brian Hedger - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Sabres at Blackhawks

CHICAGO -- It was only one game and it went to a shootout, but the Chicago Blackhawks still used their top defensemen more than they probably wanted to Thursday at the Dallas Stars.

Duncan Keith played a game-high 29:40 in the 3-2 win, up about five minutes from what he's logged per game the past two seasons, while Niklas Hjalmarsson played 25:06 and Johnny Oduya soaked up 25:02.

Brent Seabrook played 23:50, about his usual amount, but coach Joel Quenneville backed off rookie Trevor van Riemsdyk (11:43) and David Rundblad (6:25), who are getting the first crack at filling the gap following the trade of Nick Leddy to the New York Islanders a week ago.

"That's on us, kind of, to get [the coaches'] trust and confidence to put us out there in some different situations, maybe, that in Game 1 maybe we don't have that trust built up that you only get from playing in games and showing them you can do it," said van Riemsdyk, who made his NHL debut against the Stars. "I think it would be best for everyone if we could take a couple minutes away from some of those guys and let them get a little extra rest, so they have a little more fuel in the tank. But it's on us to get that confidence built up [with] the coaches."

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 2:25 PM

By Robby Stanley - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Stars at Predators

NASHVILLE - It was an offseason of change in the Central Division that led to it becoming arguably the toughest division in the NHL.

The Dallas Stars and Nashville Predators, two teams that underwent big changes, will square off Saturday night at Bridgestone Arena in an important early-season division game.

Dallas is coming off of a 3-2 shootout loss to the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night, while the Predators completed a 3-2 comeback win against the Ottawa Senators. It will be the second straight division game to open the season for the Stars.

“These games are the first ones of the year, but they’re going to mean a lot coming down the stretch,” Stars center Jason Spezza said. “To open against two divisional teams makes it important points for us.”

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Posted On Saturday, 10.11.2014 / 1:58 PM

By Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Canadiens at Flyers

PHILADELPHIA -- The Philadelphia Flyers are in the same place they were last season, but the feeling among the players is vastly different.

Last season the Flyers started 0-2-0, then after falling to 0-3-0 coach Peter Laviolette was fired. Players were confused and frustrated and it showed on the ice.

"I think last year at this time after two games it was a huge panic in here," captain Claude Giroux said. "Guys were trying to figure out what was going on, our coach got fired. It was a big panic."

While they again are 0-2-0, the players are more confident a turnaround could start as soon as their game Saturday against the visiting Montreal Canadiens (7 p.m. ET, TVA, CITY).

"I think we can learn from last year," Giroux said. "Last year after a few games we hit the panic button and tried to change everything. Finally we came back to playing our game, having fun and come to the rink and enjoy being here. When we did that we started winning games. We're going to start with that [Saturday]."

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It was pretty unbelievable...I think (my family in France) is pretty much in front of the TV right now. I don't think I have to wake them up.

— 29-year-old Flyers forward Pierre-Edouard Bellemare after scoring his first NHL goal
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