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Posted On Thursday, 12.18.2014 / 11:53 AM

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

Senators goalie Anderson laments miss at empty net

NEWARK, N.J. -- Ottawa Senators goalie Craig Anderson nearly provided a highlight of the year Wednesday night at the end of a game that was devoid of great moments.

A little harder and a little to the left and Anderson would have had done it.

"It was so close," Anderson said of his shot attempt at an empty net that went wide right with 51.8 seconds remaining in Ottawa's 2-0 win against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center. "You wait a whole career for a chance like that and it may never happen again, a chance to take a shot at the end. It's just unfortunate. It wasn't my day."

Anderson definitely shot to score. He said he had thoughts in his head of Patrick Roy talking about the missed opportunities he had during his career. He thought this was his moment.

Anderson caught Eric Gelinas' 80-foot slap shot in his glove, quickly dropped the puck to the ice, and from the top of his crease lifted it down toward the empty net almost 200 feet away.

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Posted On Thursday, 12.18.2014 / 9:00 AM

By Mike G. Morreale - Staff Writer / - 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship blog

Compher determined to earn place among junior elites

BOSTON -- University of Michigan sophomore JT Compher has certainly experienced his share of untimely injuries.

In December 2013, the hard-nosed wing sustained a foot injury while attempting to block a shot in a practice during the United States National Junior Team selection camp in Minneapolis, Minn. The injury left him in a walking boot and gave the managerial team no other choice but to leave him off the U.S. roster headed to Sweden for the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship.

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Posted On Thursday, 12.18.2014 / 9:00 AM

By Noah Hanifin -  Special to / - Noah Hanifin blog

Hanifin provides insight into U.S. selection camp

Noah Hanifin, who was given an A rating on NHL Central Scouting's November players to watch list, is a freshman at Boston College in Hockey East. The 6-foot-3, 203-pound defenseman, who has two goals and seven points in 17 games for the Eagles this season, was one of 30 players invited to the United States National Junior Team selection camp on the campus of Boston University from Dec. 16-19. He had eight goals and 33 points in 45 games for the United States Under-18 National Team Development Program in 2013-14. Hanifin, considered by many to be the best defenseman available at the 2015 NHL Draft, had one goal and five points for the United States at the IIHF 2014 World U-18 Championship. The native of Norwood, Mass., has offered to maintain a blog for leading up to the 2015 NHL Draft in Sunrise, Fla.

Hello from Boston!

It's been an extremely competitive camp so far and everyone here is so talented. I don't want to say it's easier, but it's such a high tempo that I really feel like I fit in here. I like to play an up-tempo game and play the game fast and it's been nothing but that, so it's been really competitive and everyone is fighting for a spot. And no spot is guaranteed. It's been great so far and I just can't wait to get back on the ice for the next drill and practice in order to prove myself.

Every single day it's a battle and we all know someone is going to cut (beginning Friday night). Obviously I don't want it to be me so every day I'm going to go out there and work as hard as I can to make certain it's not me. At the same time you don't want to think about that too much and just focus on the drill. I'm trying to do what I can to get better that day, impress the coaching staff and help the team win a gold medal if given the chance.

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.17.2014 / 11:13 PM

By Staff -  / - Fantasy Spin Blog

Fantasy Spin: Krejci, Elias return from injury

Boston Bruins center David Krejci and New Jersey Devils forward Patrik Elias each returned to action Wednesday.

Krejci, who had an undisclosed injury, possibly to his groin, played 18:22 in his 12th game of the season. He skated with usual linemate Milan Lucic and Seth Griffith in a 3-2 overtime win against the Minnesota Wild.

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.17.2014 / 10:19 PM - 2014-2015 Situation Room blog

BOS @ MIN - 9:45 of the Third Period

At 9:45 of the third period in the Boston Bruins/Minnesota Wild game, the Situation Room initiated a video review to further examine a play at the Minnesota net. The referee informed the Situation Room that Boston forward Chris Kelly pushed Minnesota goaltender Niklas Backstrom's pad and puck across the goal line. According to Rule 78.5 (ix) "Apparent goals shall be disallowed by the Referee when a goaltender has been pushed into the net together with the puck after making a save." This is not a reviewable play therefore the referee's call on the ice stands - no penalty and no goal Boston.

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.17.2014 / 6:08 PM

By Jon Lane - Staff Writer / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Senators at Devils

NEWARK -- Hit hard by injuries and illness for much of the season, the New Jersey Devils will get a key component back in their lineup Wednesday against the Ottawa Senators when forward Patrik Elias returns after missing five straight games and six of the past seven with a groin injury.

Elias was on a line with Travis Zajac and Martin Havlat at the morning skate.

"I'm better than I was before I came back," he said.

Elias was injured Dec. 2 at the Pittsburgh Penguins. After sitting out the next game against the Toronto Maple Leafs he attempted to return Dec. 6 at the Washington Capitals. He scored a goal in 15:15 of ice time in New Jersey's 4-1 loss but said he came back too soon.

"I wanted to get back and play and help out," Elias said. "Ten minutes in I started getting the same issue again. I tried to go through it again but I couldn't really push. It got worse. The situation we're in, you want to be part of the team, you want to play. I didn't feel horrible, but obviously playing games, doing stops and starts, battling and shooting, it's different than if you go on the ice doing laps. We were a lot smarter this time."

Elias has three goals and 12 points in 26 games.

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.17.2014 / 5:25 PM

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

At the Rink: Stars at Canucks

VANCOUVER -- Dallas Stars coach Lindy Ruff wasn't surprised to hear the Vancouver Canucks talking about tightening their defense after a 5-1 loss against the New York Rangers on Saturday.

Ruff has expressed similar concerns this season about his Stars, who enter play Wednesday allowing 3.48 goals per game, most in the League, as they start a three-game road trip in Vancouver on Wednesday.

"I watched their last game so I think that's an obvious statement," Ruff said of the Canucks. "When you see 2-on-1s, 3-on-1s and sometimes when you get caught being too aggressive and you don't have the cover, it can look pretty bad. But I think they have made a living so far being really aggressive and having their [defensemen] involved."

The focus in Vancouver now is finding a better balance between that attacking style without also giving up the odd-man rushes that have plagued them during a season-worst four-game losing streak (0-3-1).

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.17.2014 / 4:17 PM

By Matt Kalman - Correspondent / - 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship blog

DeAngelo determined not to let nerves get best of him

BOSTON -- Defenseman Anthony DeAngelo has made a career out of foiling oncoming forecheckers and disappointing determined shot blockers.

The only thing that sometimes gets in the way of the defenseman achieving his goals is nerves. After the second day of the USA Hockey evaluation camp for the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship on Wednesday, DeAngelo said anxiety cost him last year when he was cut from this camp in Minnesota.

The 19-year-old is more comfortable this time competing against nine other defensemen at Walter Brown Arena on the campus of Boston University for a spot on the 2015 team.

"I had to be [more comfortable]," said DeAngelo, who was drafted in the first round (No. 19) by the Tampa Bay Lightning last June. "Last year, kind of, I was a little too nervous and just trying to be too simple and not playing the game that they brought me in to play. So I changed it around a little bit this year."

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.17.2014 / 2:55 PM

By Dan Myers - Correspondent / - 2014-2015 At the Rink blog

At the Rink: Bruins at Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Boston Bruins forward David Krejci could return to the lineup Wednesday as the Bruins play on the second half of back-to-back games against the Minnesota Wild (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN).

Krejci hasn't played since Nov. 18; the Bruins have gone 3-7-1 in his absence. He has three goals and seven assists in 11 games this season.

"Been trying to stay positive throughout whole process," Krejci said, according to the Bruins website. "This is just another step forward. Got to wait and see."

He said he's being cautious to make sure once he does return to the lineup, he's able to stay there.

"I've worked hard to get back where I am," he said. "I don't want to any setbacks anymore. Want to keep playing from now on until the end of the season."

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Posted On Wednesday, 12.17.2014 / 1:38 PM

By Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor / - 2015 NHL Draft blog

McDavid, Crouse headline Top Prospects Game roster

Top 2015 NHL Draft prospect Connor McDavid of the Erie Otters of the Ontario Hockey League will play for Team Orr at the 2015 CHL/NHL Top Prospects game, which will be played Jan. 22 in St. Catharines, Ontario at Meridan Centre, home of the Niagara IceDogs of the Ontario Hockey League.

The Top Prospects Game features 40 of the top players eligible for the 2015 draft playing in the Canadian Hockey League. NHL Central Scouting coordinates the rosters, with input from all 30 NHL teams.

"The CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game is an event that all NHL scouts and general managers circle on their calendars," Director of NHL Central Scouting Dan Marr said. "The 40 players competing in this game were chosen by our 30 NHL clubs and provides a unique opportunity for them to evaluate top CHL talent for the 2015 NHL Draft. This is also a unique opportunity for the players, who can take advantage of the spotlight to promote their play in this exciting and highly competitive single-game best-on-best contest."

The Top Prospects Game will be televised by NHL Network in the United States, and Sportsnet and TVA Sports in Canada.

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Quote of the Day

When I first became captain here, Monsieur Beliveau came to me and said, 'You're going to be fine. You don't have to change, you got selected because of who you are.'

— Saku Koivu on Thursday, recalling what he was told by the late Jean Beliveau when he was named Canadiens captain in 1999
2015 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series