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Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 3:53 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Report: Boudreau expects Fowler back soon

The Orange County Register reported Friday that Anaheim Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said he expects defenseman Cam Fowler to return to the lineup in one of the team's next two games.

According to the report, Boudreau said Fowler should be available for either the Ducks' game Sunday at home against the Colorado Avalanche or their game Monday at the Los Angeles Kings.

Fowler has missed the last eight games with an upper-body injury sustained Feb. 2 in a game against the Kings when he was hit into the boards in the second period by the Los Angeles forward Jarret Stoll.

Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 3:14 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Thigh contusion sidelines Wild's Clutterbuck

The Minnesota Wild will be without forward Cal Clutterbuck for at least one game when they play at the Calgary Flames on Saturday.

Clutterbuck was injured in a collision with Edmonton Oilers forward Taylor Hall in the third period of Thursday's game and suffered what coach Mike Yeo called a thigh contusion. Hall was assessed a major penalty for kneeing and a game misconduct, and has a disciplinary hearing scheduled for Friday with the NHL Player Safety Department.

The Wild also recalled forward Charlie Coyle from Houston of the American Hockey League and will have him available for Saturday's game. Coyle had no points and six shots on goal in five games with the Wild earlier this season.

Minnesota also announced forward Johan Larsson had been sent to the AHL.

Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 3:07 PM

By Matt Sitkoff -  NHL.com Contributor /NHL.com - NHL Live blog

NHL 13 Prediction: Sharks vs. Blackhawks

Unbeaten in regulation and looking to set the record for consecutive games with a point to start the season, the Chicago Blackhawks - despite recent injury troubles – will look to continue their success against the once-dominant San Jose Sharks. Although the Sharks won their last game against the St. Louis Blues 2-1, it remains their only win in a forgettable February that includes 5-3 and 4-1 losses to the Chicago Blackhawks in their only two meetings this season.

Find the Official NHL®13 Game Prediction below. Watch as the San Jose Sharks face the Chicago Blackhawks tonight at 8:30pm ET on NHL Network.

Blackhawks’ Keys to the Game

• Healthy Hossa – Marian Hossa left the game Tuesday against the Vancouver Canucks after receiving a blow to the head from Jannik Hansen (who received a one-game suspension). Although Hossa practiced Thursday and is likely to play today, will he feel any lingering effects from the hit?

• Eminent Emery – As Corey Crawford recovers from an upper-body injury, Ray Emery must continue his stellar play in goal if Chicago hopes to remain unbeaten in regulation. Emery has posted a .925 SV% through six starts this season.

Sharks’ Keys to the Game

• Where’s the Frenzy? – Having lost four one-goal games and only allowing two or fewer goals in five out of eight games in the month of February, the Sharks simply have to find a way to put more pucks in the back of the net.

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Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 2:35 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Rangers rule Nash out of Saturday's game

The New York Rangers on Friday announced forward Rick Nash will miss his third straight game when the Rangers play at the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday.

The Rangers have not given a reason for Nash's absence.

The team also announced defenseman Steve Eminger has been recalled from the Connecticut Whale of the American Hockey League.

Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 2:31 PM

By Chris Adamski -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Markstrom could make start in goal for Panthers

PITTSBURGH -- Well into his third season of playing in North America, Jacob Markstrom has found his comfort level. A 2008 second-round pick of the Florida Panthers, Markstrom believes he's ready to make his mark in the National Hockey League.

Recalled from the team's American Hockey League affiliate in San Antonio earlier this week, Markstrom reportedly will make his NHL season debut for the Panthers on Friday against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Florida coach Kevin Dineen was not available to confirm who will start in goal Friday for the Panthers, who are coming off a win against the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday. The Miami Herald reported Thursday that Markstrom will be in goal against the Penguins. Dineen is expected to announce the starter 90 minutes before game-time.

Markstrom played seven of his eight NHL games last season, going 2-4-1 with a 2.66 goals-against average and .923 save percentage. But he says he's a different goalie now than he was last season.

Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 2:30 PM

By Matt Sitkoff -  NHL.com Contributor /NHL.com - NHL Live blog

Cisco NHL Live previews Blackhawks-Sharks

The Chicago Blackhawks seek the longest consecutive point streak to begin a season as they face the San Jose Sharks on Friday night on the NHL Network. Cisco NHL Live with Steve Mears and EJ Hradek, at 5 p.m. ET on the NHL Network, will get you ready for that game and your hockey weekend. We'll get expert analysis from NBC Sports' Eddie Olczyk, and NHL Network analyst Barry Melrose.

With the Oscars around the corner, we'll put on our bow ties and hand out our own awards around the NHL. Plus, the red-hot Montreal Canadiens forward Max Pacioretty, will also stop by the show.

Don't forget, it's the anniversary of the 1980 Miracle on Ice. Mike Eruzione will join us to reflect on the game that changed the face of hockey in the USA.

Submit your #AskEJ questions to @NHLNetwork or @EJHradek_NHL, and stick around for the shootout as EJ picks the winners for Friday's games.

Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 2:18 PM

By Chris Adamski -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Penguins' Jeffrey wants to secure regular spot

PITTSBURGH -- Dustin Jeffrey doesn't sugarcoat it. It hasn't been easy sitting and watching, playing in only one game for the Pittsburgh Penguins through the first three weeks of February.

He hopes to show enough Friday night that he won't be a healthy scratch much more.

Jeffrey skated with Tanner Glass and Craig Adams on the Penguins' fourth line during the morning skate Friday and likely will be in the lineup when Pittsburgh faces the Florida Panthers.

"Obviously, you want to play every night," said Jeffrey, a 2007 sixth-round pick of the club who turns 25 next week. "So it's an opportunity tonight, if I have a good game hopefully I can stay in the lineup. You want to play every night you don't like sitting out [13] out of [17] games [so far this season]."

Jeffrey likely will replace Joe Vitale as the center on the line with Glass and Adams. His game differs slightly from that of Vitale, who is smaller and quicker but doesn't possess the skill package the 6-1, 205-pound Jeffrey does.

Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 2:08 PM

By Brian Hedger -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Hawks also get good news on Crawford, Seabrook

CHICAGO -- There were 24 players who participated in Friday's morning skate for the Chicago Blackhawks, which meant good news for a number of injured players in various stages of the recovery process.

The biggest news of the day was star forward Marian Hossa skating for the second straight day after taking a big blow to the back of his head on Tuesday night against Vancouver, but there were other storylines of note. One was starting goalie Corey Crawford (undisclosed upper-body injury), who will return to the bench to back up Ray Emery on Friday night against the San Jose Sharks (8-4-3) at United Center.

It was his second straight team workout and first morning skate since leaving the lineup four games ago.

"I feel good," Crawford said. "I had a pretty good practice [Thursday] and I had to get the timing down a little bit. I felt better today for timing, so I feel ready. I'm 100 percent now."

Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 1:56 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Report: Rinne, Gill in for Predators

The Tennessean is reporting Pekka Rinne will start in goal for the Nashville Predators when they host the Vancouver Canucks on Friday.

Rinne had missed practice Wednesday due to an illness.

The newspaper also is reporting veteran defenseman Hal Gill will return to the lineup after being a healthy scratch the last two games and four of the last five.

Coach Barry Trotz said he has not been happy with the team's defensive play recently and without confirming Gill would be in, he said a lineup change was in order. Gill is the Predators' only healthy extra player.
Posted On Friday, 02.22.2013 / 1:49 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Sharks want to keep focus on what they need to do

CHICAGO -- As much as the Chicago Blackhawks want to set a record Friday at United Center, the San Jose Sharks don't want to be the team on the wrong side of history.

That alone is reason enough for the Sharks to view this game as something bigger than just another regular-season game. Even though it's still only for two points, the outcome means more to them than just that.

"Of course you want to say that every game is just as important, but obviously certain games are a little easier to get up for and this is one of them," Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle told NHL.com. "They're going for a NHL record and we'd love to put a stop to it. If anything it motivates you to not want to be that team. You don't want to be that team that goes down in the record books on the losing side of anything."

"It's a pretty impressive streak and obviously we're happy with the chance to stop it," added Sharks forward Joe Pavelski. "We'd like to end it."

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