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Posted On Wednesday, 05.08.2013 / 1:54 PM

By Tal Pinchevsky -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Capitals-Rangers series blog

Laich skates, still no timetable for return

NEW YORK -- After being limited to nine games this season and dealing with an aggravation of an injury that held him out of the first two months of the 2012-13 season, Brooks Laich's first practice in over a month didn't get off to a smooth start.

The Washington Capitals forward, who hasn't played since April 4, lost an edge and stumbled into the boards at the beginning of the team's morning skate prior to Game 4 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the New York Rangers, which the Capitals lead 2-1.

Laich and his teammates got a nice chuckle out of the fall.

"That was the first contact I've taken in a while. It felt good to get into that," Laich said following the skate. "It was a bit of a wake-up call, maybe. The guys had a good laugh at it. I had a good laugh at it too."

Posted On Wednesday, 05.08.2013 / 1:15 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Penguins-Islanders series blog

Report: Islanders' MacDonald out with broken hand

Defenseman Andrew MacDonald reportedly is out with a broken hand and could miss the rest of the postseason for the New York Islanders.

Arthur Staple of Newsday reported the nature of the injury, according to a source, Tuesday after the Islanders' 6-4 win in Game 4 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series with the Pittsburgh Penguins. The best-of-7 series is tied 2-2, with Game 5 set for Thursday at Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh (7 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN).

Posted On Wednesday, 05.08.2013 / 12:57 PM

By Barry Melrose -  NHL Network Analyst /NHL.com - Melrose Minute

Melrose on changing goalies

Posted On Wednesday, 05.08.2013 / 12:15 PM

By Mike Brophy -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Bruins-Maple Leafs series blog

Maple Leafs' trio using AHL experience for help

TORONTO -- A year ago they were immersed in the American Hockey League playoffs with the Toronto Marlies, well on their way to the Calder Cup final.

Although the Marlies were swept in the final by the Norfolk Admirals, forwards Nazem Kadri and Matt Frattin, along with defenseman Jake Gardiner, all gained valuable playoff experience. Now they are three players the Toronto Maple Leafs hope can help catapult them into the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The Maple Leafs trail the Boston Bruins 2-1 in their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series, with Game 4 here Wednesday (7 p.m. ET, CNBC, CBC, RDS).

Posted On Wednesday, 05.08.2013 / 11:59 AM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - Capitals-Rangers series blog

Rangers know Lundqvist is their 'backbone'

NEW YORK -- How do Henrik Lundqvist's teammates feel about him?

"He's the backbone of this team," New York Rangers forward Rick Nash said Wednesday from Madison Square Garden.

What about the coaching staff -- how do they feel about Lundqvist?

"He's the backbone of our club," coach John Tortorella said Wednesday in advance of Game 4 of the team's Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the Washington Capitals (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN, RDS2).

Sensing a trend here? For good reason, of course -- Lundqvist, who won the Vezina Trophy last year, again is a finalist for the award given to the NHL's best goalie.

Posted On Wednesday, 05.08.2013 / 10:51 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2013 NHL Draft blog

Drouin OK to play Game 4 of QMJHL final

Halifax Mooseheads general manager Cam Russell confirmed to NHL.com on Wednesday that top prospect Jonathan Drouin will be in the lineup Wednesday night when his team faces the Baie-Comeau Drakkar in Game 4 of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League championship series at Henry Leonard Centre in Baie-Comeau, Quebec.

The Mooseheads received a bit of a scare Tuesday when Drouin was involved in a knee-on-knee collision with Drakkar forward Alexandre Ranger six minutes into the second period. According to Willy Palov of The (Halifax) Chronicle Herald, Drouin grabbed his right leg in pain and left for the Halifax dressing room after the collision. No penalty was called on the play.

While Drouin, No. 3 on NHL Central Scouting's final ranking of North American skaters for the 2013 NHL Draft, did not return for the remainder of the second, he did play in the third of an eventual 3-1 loss, Halifax's first of the postseason. The Mooseheads lead the series 2-1.

Posted On Tuesday, 05.07.2013 / 10:17 PM

By Eric Gilmore -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Canucks-Sharks series blog

Canucks have faith in Schneider

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Vancouver Canucks goaltender Cory Schneider is back in net Tuesday at HP Pavilion for Game 4 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals against the San Jose Sharks (CNBC, TS, RDS).

The Canucks trail 3-0 in the best-of-7 series, and Schneider gave up five goals on 28 shots before being pulled 4:07 into the third period of a 5-2 loss Sunday in Game 3 after missing the first two games with an undisclosed injury.

Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said it wasn't a hard decision to stick with Schneider instead of turning back to Roberto Luongo, who relieved Schneider in Game 3 after losing Games 1 and 2.

"Cory, in my opinion, is our MVP," Vigneault said after the Canucks' morning skate. "He's one of the reasons why we got into the playoffs. He's had great bounce-back games and he's been outstanding this year, and I think our group has total faith in both goaltenders, but they've got a lot of faith in Cory and I've got a lot of faith in him. That's why we're going with him tonight."

Posted On Tuesday, 05.07.2013 / 10:02 PM

By Dan Myers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Pominville, Dowell in lineup for Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Despite a 3-2 win against the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 3 of their Western Conference Quarterfinal series, the Minnesota Wild made tweaks to their lineup in Game 4.

Right wing Jason Pominville returned from injury, and Jake Dowell, a former Blackhawks player, is centering the Wild's fourth line. Torrey Mitchell, who centered that line for Game 3, moves to right wing. Mike Rupp, who skated four shifts Sunday, was scratched.

Posted On Tuesday, 05.07.2013 / 9:49 PM

By Dan Myers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Blackhawks have Keith in Game 4 lineup

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith left the Twin Cities on Monday night to return to Chicago to be by the bedside of his wife Kelly-Rae, who gave birth to a baby boy Tuesday morning.

Keith returned in time to join the Blackhawks lineup for Game against the Minnesota Wild on Tuesday night in a Western Conference Quarterfinal series (NBCSN, CBC, RDS2).
Posted On Tuesday, 05.07.2013 / 9:33 PM

NHL.com - 2012-2013 Situation Room blog

MTL @ OTT - 11:55 of the Third Period

At 11:55 of the third period in the Canadiens/Senators game, video review upheld the referee's call on the ice that the puck deflected off Mika Zibanejad's left skate and into the net in a legal fashion. Good goal Ottawa.

According to Rule 49.2 "A puck that deflects into the net off an attacking player's skate who does not use a distinct kicking motion is a legitimate goal."

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Quote of the Day

I first met him when I was 19 years old and he coached me for 13 consecutive years. I don't know how many athletes who have had that pleasure. Al Arbour was a man that left us not only feeling like champions, but left us with a lot of great memories that we can carry on through life.

— Islanders Hall of Fame defenseman Denis Potvin on former coach Al Arbour, who passed away Friday at the age of 82