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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 4:58 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Live blog

NHL Live welcomes Ducks coach Boudreau

Hockey is back and so is NHL Live, which kicks off another season Monday at 5 p.m. ET from the NHL Powered by Reebok Store in New York City.

NHL training camps are under way, and Steve Mears and EJ Hradek will commence their daily season previews with a look at the Pittsburgh Penguins and Chicago Blackhawks. NHL Network insider Darren Dreger also joins the show with the latest news from around the League, including the status of unsigned restricted free agents.

The Anaheim Ducks are among the projected top contenders for the Stanley Cup. NHL Live welcomes coach Bruce Boudreau to discuss what's ahead for a recalibrated Ducks team that bulked up at center with the addition of Ryan Kesler.

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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 4:40 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Flames' Bennett practices, Backlund remains out

Calgary Flames center Sam Bennett, the fourth player taken in the 2014 NHL Draft, skated during a practice session Monday. It was his first time on the ice with the main group at training camp.

Bennett, No. 8 on NHL.com's Top 60 prospect ranking, had been out with a groin injury.

The 18-year-old forward said the injury likely was a result of him pushing too hard too early in the season.

"I think it's just probably a little overuse," he told the team's website. "I've got a good program now that I'm definitely going to be aware of my groin."

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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 4:34 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Red Wings' DeKeyser hopes bigger gets him better

The Detroit Red Wings told defenseman Danny DeKeyser they wanted to him to get bigger and stronger during the summer, and he responded by adding five pounds. The hope is the extra weight makes him stronger and better equipped to handle forechecking forwards in the Detroit zone.

DeKeyser, who's 6-foot-3, said his weight is up to 195 pounds.

"It's just kind of eating nonstop for me," he told the Detroit Free Press. "Every time I can get a protein shake or get some food in me, that's what I've got to do."
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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 4:31 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Devils' Zajac excited to work with Jagr, Cammalleri

New Jersey Devils center Travis Zajac, who produced his highest point total in four seasons working alongside right wing Jaromir Jagr on the top line in 2013-14, should get another boost this season with the addition of left wing Mike Cammalleri.

The trio will likely be playing together in New Jersey's preseason opener against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Monday.

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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 4:26 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Lightning's Stamkos feeling good after return to ice

After he was held out Sunday because of a scheduled off day, Tampa Bay Lightning center Steven Stamkos returned to the ice Monday to skate with Ondrej Palat and Ryan Callahan in the team's second Blue vs. White intrasquad scrimmage.

Stamkos had a shot on goal during the scrimmage. Lightning coach Jon Cooper was encouraged with what he saw from the Lightning captain, who missed 45 games last season with a broken tibia.

"There's no sense to put more burden than he has to have," Cooper told the Lightning website. "We're really happy with where he's at. Clearly, he's got much more jump, confidence than he ever had during that last stretch of the year when he came back after the injury."

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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 3:53 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Lightning's Drouin could miss at least another week

Tampa Bay Lightning rookie forward Jonathan Drouin could miss at least another week with an upper-body injury, coach Jon Cooper said Monday.

Cooper said Drouin skated on his own before the rest of the team hit the ice. He said Drouin was scheduled for further medical evaluation later Monday.

"You'll have a much clearer indication, as will we, to find out where he's at," Cooper said. "Because I don't know if he saw much progress. We'll find out when he sees the doc."

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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 3:52 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Ducks' Ritchie, Heatley prepare for preseason debuts

Anaheim Ducks forward Nick Ritchie is looking forward to making his preseason debut Monday against the Colorado Avalanche at Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.

Ritchie, a first-round selection (No. 10) of the Ducks in the 2014 NHL Draft and No. 35 on NHL.com's ranking of the Top 60 prospects in the League, will likely begin the game on left wing alongside Emerson Etem and Rickard Rakell.

"It's my first game, and I guess there would be nerves," Ritchie told the Ducks website. "It's just like any other game. It's hockey. It should be fun, and it's going to be cool. We've got some great players playing, so it's going to be cool following them on the ice, working hard and having a good game."

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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 3:17 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Diaz makes good first impression with Flames

Raphael Diaz's attempt to break training camp with the Calgary Flames is off to a good start. He had five shots on goal, a takeaway and four blocked shots in a team-high 23:27 of ice time in the Flames' 3-1 loss to the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday.

"He played very good," associate coach Jacques Cloutier told the Flames website. "He was under control. He moved the puck extremely well. A very simple game, but very effective."

Diaz, 28, has played for three teams in four NHL seasons, most recently with the New York Rangers. He has six goals and 45 points with a minus-5 rating in 145 NHL games, and was invited to Flames camp on a professional tryout.

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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 2:33 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Capitals' biggest battle at second-line center

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Arguably the most intriguing internal competition in the Washington Capitals training camp will be on display Monday against the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia: Marcus Johansson vs. Evgeny Kuznetsov for second-line center.

"They're going head-to-head in my mind [Monday]," Capitals coach Barry Trotz said before boarding the bus for Philadelphia.

Johansson and Kuznetsov are among four players who are vying for the No. 2 center position to start the season. The other two are Brooks Laich and Andre Burakovsky, neither of whom will be in the lineup against the Flyers.

Kuznetsov is No. 3 on the NHL.com Top 60 prospect ranking and got one first-place vote. Burakovsky is No. 14.

Burakovsky scored the only goal in Washington's 1-0 win against the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday at Verizon Center, but he's the longshot of the group to be the No. 2 center because he didn't start playing center until Washington's development camp in July and because he's a 19-year-old who has yet to play a professional game in North America.

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Posted On Monday, 09.22.2014 / 1:37 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - NHL Training Camps blog

Stars defenseman Gonchar out with ear laceration

Dallas Stars defenseman Sergei Gonchar will miss his team's preseason opener against the St. Louis Blues at American Airlines Center on Monday with an ear laceration, according to coach Lindy Ruff.

Gonchar sustained the injury after getting hit in the ear during a scrimmage Sunday.

"He's just going to miss a couple of days," Ruff said. "It's a severe laceration of his ear."

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Quote of the Day

I downplayed the first one because I thought it's just a hockey game. We just want to win the game; it's against our rival and we want the two points. I downplayed it, but now having gone through the first one I look back and say, 'Geez, that was really cool.' I think as I've grown a bit older I've got a lot more appreciation for what we're allowed to do every day.

— Capitals forward Brooks Laich on the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic, the second one of his career after 2011 in Pittsburgh