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Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 4:16 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Rangers to face Ducks without Nash

ANAHEIM -- Brad Richards stated the obvious when it comes to the state of the New York Rangers.

Coming off an ugly 9-2 loss to the San Jose Sharks, the Rangers will be without Rick Nash for at least Thursday against the Anaheim Ducks and reportedly Saturday as well.

"It's not ideal, that's for sure," Richards said. "That's about all I can really say. We want him back. We need him, but we don't have him. People got to step up and we've got to find another way to play that even more simple [game]. We can't dwell on it. We hope he's back as quick as possible, obviously.

"It looked like he was just getting his game together there against L.A. [on Monday]. He's pretty dominant when that happens. We want him back ASAP."

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 4:00 PM

By Pete Jensen - Fantasy Insider / - Fantasy Spin Blog

Fantasy Spin: Monahan on cusp of ownership spike

The Calgary Flames had one player in's preseason top 200 rankings, making them the League's least represented team entering the season from a fantasy standpoint.

That player was Mike Cammalleri (C/LW, 38 percent owned), who has yet to play a game due to an upper-body injury. Only defenseman Dennis Wideman (average draft position: 129.1), left wing Sven Baertschi (156.1) and goalie Karri Ramo (173.3) have been drafted on average in Yahoo leagues.

But whether or not a player is selected in fantasy leagues should not always dictate his value moving forward. Therefore, rookie center Sean Monahan could end up boosting your team off the waiver wire if he continues to impress during his nine-game NHL tryout.

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 3:22 PM

By Steve Mears -  NHL Live host / - NHL Live blog

NHL Live talks to Boreanaz, previews Penn State

Ten games on the ice Thursday night in the NHL and NHL Live, at 5 p.m. ET on NHL Network, will get you ready for the action and bring you live into the arena for the 7 p.m. starts in our Ice Pass.

In our College Hockey Report, we'll be joined by Penn State men's ice hockey captain Tommy Olczyk as the team gets set to open their new arena and the Big 10 Ice Hockey season.

Also, a great friend of the show and huge hockey fan, David Boreanaz will stop by our studio at the NHL Store in New York City. David is currently in his ninth season starring on the Fox drama "Bones" and has played numerous other roles in TV and film. He's also a huge Philadelphia Flyers fan and enjoys playing hockey as well. Plus, we've got game previews from all around the League on a very busy Thursday.

Remember to submit your #AskEJ questions through Twitter via @NHLNetwork or @EJHradek_NHL, and join the conversation on Twitter as we ask you to pick the game of the night.

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 3:15 PM

By Derek Van Diest - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Oilers' Dubnyk still has team's confidence

EDMONTON -- Despite giving up 10 goals in their past two games, the Edmonton Oilers still have confidence in Devan Dubnyk.

The Oilers goaltender was pulled in the second period of a 6-2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday, and then served as a backup in the Oilers' 5-4 shootout win against the New Jersey Devils on Monday. But Dubnyk will get his shot at redemption Thursday as he starts against the Montreal Canadiens at Rexall Place.

"We've always had confidence in Devan," Oilers forward Taylor Hall said. "You look back at this summer when there were rumors we were after [Cory] Schneider, I always thought that Dubnyk was the guy for us. I've always believed that and I still do. Other guys in here feel the same way.

"Any goalie can have a couple of bad stretches, a couple of bad games. It's how you rebound, and we need him to be good this season. It's good for him to try and get his game back. He's capable of that and we have confidence in him."

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 3:14 PM

By Kevin Woodley - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Canucks brace for Hertl, rest of red-hot Sharks

VANCOUVER -- As if the Vancouver Canucks weren't already having enough trouble handling the San Jose Sharks, now they have to deal with the hottest player in the NHL, rookie Tomas Hertl.

San Jose has already beaten the Canucks eight straight, including a first-round sweep in last season's Stanley Cup Playoffs and the season opener for both teams Oct. 3.

The Sharks will be without defenseman Brad Stuart, who begins a three-game suspension for an illegal hit on New York Rangers forward Rick Nash. But Stuart was also out with a lower-body injury when the Sharks handed the Canucks a 4-1 loss to start the season in San Jose.

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 2:56 PM

By John Manasso - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Franson reminisces on time with Weber, Predators

NASHVILLE -- Like a lot of former players who got their start with the Nashville Predators, Cody Franson spoke fondly Thursday of the team that selected him in the third round in the 2005 NHL Draft (No. 79) and with which he began his NHL career.

The 26-year-old Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman shares a special bond not only with the organization, but with its captain, Shea Weber. Weber and Franson grew up three houses apart in Sicamous, British Columbia, and have been close ever since.

"He was always a guy that I looked up to," Franson said of Weber. "He was doing what I wanted to do. He played for the [Kelowna] Rockets when I wanted to play in the [Western Hockey League]. He played in the World Junior [Championship] when I wanted to play in the World Juniors. He was a guy who was always doing the exact same things I wanted to do and he was always a guy I could talk to when it came time for me to be able to do that kind of stuff.

"He's always been there for me. He's a great friend. He took me under his wing when I first started and I can't thank him enough for that."

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 2:53 PM

By John Manasso - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Stalberg could make Predators debut Saturday

NASHVILLE -- Nashville Predators coach Barry Trotz told reporters Thursday that injured forward Viktor Stalberg could play Saturday against the New York Islanders.

Stalberg took part in the team's morning skate Thursday ahead of its game against the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs, but isn't quite ready yet to make his regular-season debut with the team. He has been on injured reserve since Sept. 29, about a week after he sustained an injury to his right shoulder during training camp.

Stalberg signed a four-year, $12 million contract with the Predators during the summer.

Here are the lineups the teams will use Thursday:

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 2:42 PM

By Staff -  / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Coyotes shake up lineup after consecutive losses

After losing the first two games of a season-long five-game road trip by a combined score of 10-2, the Phoenix Coyotes are shaking up their lineup just three games into the 2013-14 season.

That will happen when you start a road trip with losses of 4-1 to the San Jose Sharks and 6-1 to the New York Islanders.

The shakeup started Wednesday, when the team announced prior to their practice that rookie forwards Chris Brown and Lucas Lessio had been assigned to the team's American Hockey League affiliate in Portland. To take their places on the roster, Phoenix called up the veteran pair of Tim Kennedy and Brandon Yip.

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 1:55 PM

By Dan Myers - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Wild juggle lines in search of offense, balance

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- It's only a three-game sample size, but it's enough for Minnesota Wild coach Mike Yeo to know his team needs more offense.

Through three games, the Wild have scored just seven goals -- including only two playing 5-on-5. With the top-line of Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu and Jason Pominville generating a vast majority of the team's quality chances, Yeo has decided to move some parts around in the hopes of balancing his lineup and getting his second line going offensively as his team hosts the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday at Xcel Energy Center.

The most prominent change comes on that top line, where right wing Pominville has been moved to the second line and replaced with Nino Niederreiter.

Posted On Thursday, 10.10.2013 / 1:39 PM

By Lonnie Herman - Correspondent / - 2013-2014 At the Rink Blog

Lightning look to get more consistency out of Panik

TAMPA -- With Tom Pyatt out with a broken collar bone suffered during the Tampa Bay Lightning's win over the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night, coach Jon Cooper is turning to Richard Panik to fill the gap.

Panik made the team out of training camp but did not look effective in the first two games and was a healthy scratch against the Sabres. He is a player Cooper knows well, having played for the coach previously in the American Hockey League.

"Richard is a high-end talent and he’s just got to -- he knows it, we've talked about this -- whether you are new to the League or old, you have to bring it every single night," Cooper said, "and there are times he's been exceptional for us and times he hasn't. He's just growing as a young player. It's not to the point where he doesn't belong in the League. Maybe for one night he didn't belong in the lineup.

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Quote of the Day

He is, in my opinion, one of the best defensemen in the NHL and continuing to grow. I think his game, from an offensive standpoint, he continues to drive our offense... I think there's still tremendous upside for Oliver.

— Coyotes GM Don Maloney on defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson