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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 1:31 PM

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

Panthers keeping Huberdeau for rest of the season

The Florida Panthers announced on their official Twitter feed that Jonathan Huberdeau will remain with the team for the remainder of the season.

The third pick of the 2011 NHL Draft, Huberdeau has a goal and two assists in four games. He had all his points on opening night and has been held off the score sheet since then. However, he's third on the team with 13 shots on goal and is averaging 15:49 of ice time per game.

Huberdeau had an outstanding preseason with the Panthers in September 2011, but the team sent him back to Saint John of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League for another season of development. With another half-season of junior hockey plus a solid turn at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship, the Panthers are reaping the reward for that decision.

"With Jonathan, the difference between an 18-year-old and a 19-year-old is huge," Panthers coach Kevin Dineen told the Miami Herald. "You see a difference in maturity, and he had that extra year to develop as a person and a player. He wasn't part of that important first step of us making the playoffs, but he's going to be with us for a long, long time."

The Panthers had before their sixth game, Tuesday at the Tampa Bay Lightning, to make a decision. Prior to Huberdeau playing in his sixth game, the team again could have sent him back to his junior team, delaying the start of his contract. Once he plays his sixth game, his contract officially stars. He still can be sent back to his junior team after that, but it would waste the first season of his deal.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 1:22 PM

By Kurt Dusterberg -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Hamilton still waiting on future

RALEIGH, N.C. -- The Boston Bruins will have a decision to make in the next 24 hours concerning the future of rookie defenseman Dougie Hamilton.

The 19-year-old blueliner will play his fifth game of the season Monday against Carolina. The first season of his three-year entry-level contract kicks in if he plays in a sixth NHL game, which for the Bruins is Tuesday against the New Jersey Devils.

"Upper management will make that decision, but from our end of it, he's been really good," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "He's better and better every game as he gains confidence. I've really liked his composure and vision of the game. He's been extremely good for us."

Before joining the Bruins at the start of the NHL season, Hamilton had 41 points in 32 games with the Niagara IceDogs of the Ontario Hockey League, and had a goal and an assist in six games for Canada at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championship.

He said he's looking forward to having his status resolved.

"It will be really nice," Hamilton said. "I'm trying not to think about it too much. I'm just trying to work my hardest and keep playing my game."

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 1:10 PM

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

Two-time Cup champ Sykora signs in Switzerland

Two-time Stanley Cup champion Petr Sykora has signed with Swiss club Bern for the remainder of the 2012-13 season.

Sykora, 36, had 21 goals and 44 points in 82 games with the Devils last season, and five points in 18 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

A 1995 first-round pick of the Devils, Sykora has 323 goals and 721 points in 1,017 games with the Devils, Anaheim Ducks, New York Rangers, Edmonton Oilers, Pittsburgh Penguins and Minnesota Wild. He won Stanley Cups with the Devils in 2000 and Penguins in 2009.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 1:10 PM

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

Melrose: Which teams are over early season slumps?

A week isn't always enough time to tell you which of the preseason favorites has a real shot at winning in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but it can be enough time to tell you which preseason favorite might not. This season several top contenders have exploded out of the gate (Boston, Chicago, San Jose), but others that we thought would be there right to the end have struggled early on.

Which of these teams are over their issues? Which of them still have reasons to be worried? Here is my take on which struggling contenders have righted the ship and which have tough sailing ahead.

Philadelphia Flyers

This is a team that really looked like it was having some problems after it lost to New Jersey last week to give it three straight regulation losses to open the season, but I think they're on the way back now. Yes, Scott Hartnell is out for an extended period, and so is Andrej Meszaros. And yes, I know they lost to Tampa Bay on Sunday night, 5-1. But this team also just got Danny Briere back and if you look at Saturday night when the Flyers beat the Florida Panthers 7-1, you'll see that the guys they were counting on to score started putting the puck in the net. Guys like Matt Read, Sean Couturier -- the young players the Flyers got so much out of last year. They had to start scoring and we saw that on Saturday.

Now, I don't think this is a team that's going to get in a groove and rip off 10 in a row. Just look at Sunday. But I do think they'll go through a stretch where they win two games and then lose one, or win three and then lose two. I don't think they're a team that will take off because of their injuries, but they are clearly a good team and I think they're certainly a playoff team. Another big reason to be positive is that Briere's return gives Claude Giroux someone to play on a line with that can finish. With the work ethic and talent they have on their team I think the Flyers are through the worst part of their slump.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 12:37 PM

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

Projected lineups for Stars, Blue Jackets

Here are the rosters the Dallas Stars and Columbus Blue Jackets likely will go with when the teams meet Monday at Nationwide Arena in Columbus:

STARS

Loui Eriksson - Jamie Benn - Jaromir Jagr

Ray Whitney - Cody Eakin - Michael Ryder

Eric Nystrom - Vernon Fiddler - Tomas Vincour

Brenden Morrow - Tom Wandell - Ryan Garbutt

Brenden Dillon - Stephane Robidas

Jordie Benn - Trevor Daley

Alex Goligoski - Philip Larsen

Kari Lehtonen

Richard Bachman

Scratched: Colton Sceviour, Reilly Smith, Aaron Rome

Injured: Cristopher Nilstorp, Derek Roy

BLUE JACKETS

RJ Umberger - Artem Anisimov - Derek Dorsett

Nick Foligno - Ryan Johansen - Vinny Prospal

Matt Calvert - Brandon Dubinsky - Derick Brassard

Colton Gillies - Mark Letestu - Jared Boll

Nikita Nikitin - Fedor Tyutin

Jack Johnson - James Wisniewski

John Moore - Adrian Aucoin

Sergei Bobrovsky

Steve Mason

Scratched: Derek MacKenzie, David Savard

Injured: Cam Atkinson

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 12:33 PM

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

Gretzky Fantasy Camp site for Cisco NHL Live

Today, Cisco NHL Live will be at the 11th annual Wayne Gretzky Fantasy Camp in Las Vegas. We'll hit the airwaves an hour early, at 4 p.m. ET on the NHL Network, with all of this special coverage from the Bellagio.

E.J. Hradek will sit down with Wayne Gretzky to get his opinion on the state of the NHL and give us an inside look at what the lucky campers experience all week. The "Great One" will also lend a hand in E.J.'s signature segment, The EJ5, as they count down the senior analyst's Top 5 favorite Gretzky moments. We will also hear from hockey legends; Mike Keenan, Rick Tocchet, Grant Fuhr among others.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 12:16 PM

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

Senators recall 2011 top pick Zibanejad

The Ottawa Senators have called up forward Mika Zibanejad, the team's 2011 top pick, from their American Hockey League affiliate.

Zibanejad, the sixth pick of the 2011 NHL Draft, has four goals and seven assists in 23 AHL games this season.

Zibanejad had one assist in nine NHL games at the start of last season.

He will be available for the Senators' next game, Tuesday against the Washington Capitals.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 10:57 AM

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

Galchenyuk sticking with Canadiens

Montreal Canadiens forward Alex Galchenyuk, the third pick of the 2012 NHL Draft, will remain with the team for the remainder of the 2012-13 season.

Galchenyuk had his best game of the season Sunday with a pair of assists in the Canadiens' 4-3 overtime win against the New Jersey Devils.

In four games, Galchenyuk has a goal and two assists, and is tied for the team lead with a plus-2 rating.

The Canadiens had five games to decide if Galchenyuk would remain with the team or be returned to his junior team, the Sarnia Sting of the Ontario Hockey League. Once a junior-eligible player skates in his sixth game, it starts the clock on the first season of his three-year, entry-level deal.

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Posted On Monday, 01.28.2013 / 9:44 AM

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

Flyers send Laughton back to junior team

Prior to their game Sunday, the Philadelphia Flyers sent Scott Laughton, the team's first-round pick in the 2012 NHL Draft, back to his junior team, the Oshawa Generals of the Ontario Hockey League.

Laughton had no points and 10 shots on goal in five games. He averaged 11:32 of ice time per game and won 44.2 percent of his faceoffs.

"It's a difficult one," Holmgren told the team's website of the decision. "He played very well, but at the end of the day it was something that we talked about and it was in the best interest of the Flyers and also Scott.

"He needs to play [and] he needs to play in all situations. He's going back to a good team and he will play a lot in all situations. He's a good young prospect and the little bit of time he had here with us was good for him and good for us."

The Flyers had to decide prior to Laughton playing in a sixth game, which would have started the first season of his entry-level contract.

Laughton, the 20th pick of the draft, was the youngest player to skate in a game this season.

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Posted On Sunday, 01.27.2013 / 10:34 PM

NHL.com - 2012-2013 Situation Room blog

MIN @ STL - 15:52 of the Third Period

At 15:52 of the third period in the Wild/Blues game, video review proved inconclusive, therefore the referee's call on the ice that Minnesota Wild forward Dany Heatley deflected the puck into the net with his stick below the crossbar stands. According to Rule 60.5 "The determining factor is where the puck makes contact with the stick. If the puck makes contact with the stick below the level of the crossbar and enters the goal, this goal shall be allowed." Good Goal Minnesota.

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Quote of the Day

We're buyers. We're committed to winning. That's what [owner Vinnie Viola] has said all along and what we've said all along. We want to win. We want to win a championship. We're putting the pieces together, step by step, and we're hopeful that Jaromir can lead these young guys to the promised land. It's a win-win for us.

— Panthers GM Dale Tallon on Jaromir Jagr, who he traded for from the Devils on Thursday
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