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Posted On Saturday, 03.09.2013 / 3:47 PM

By Jerry Brown - Correspondent / - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Coyotes hope to end losing streak against Stars

GLENDALE, Ariz. – The Phoenix Coyotes look to avoid their first three-game losing streak of the season Saturday against the Dallas Stars and will have a new face in the lineup with Rob Klinkhammer making his Phoenix debut in place of injured Matthew Lombardi. Klinkhammer has 14 goals and 44 points in 53 games with Portland of the American Hockey League.

Mike Smith will be back in goal. One of his three shutouts this season has come in Glendale against Dallas, a 2-0 blanking on Feb. 2. But Smilth has struggled mightily of late, allowing 18 goals in his past four starts and watching his goals-against average soar to 3.09 and his save percentage sink to .894.

Posted On Saturday, 03.09.2013 / 3:35 PM - 2012-2013 Situation Room blog

WSH @ NYI - 12:43 of the Third Period

At 15:32 of the third period in the Capitals/Islanders game play was stopped after a Matt Moulson goal. However, video review determined that Jonathan Tavares' shot previously, at 12:43 of the third period, completely crossed the goal line. Therefore, only the earlier Tavares goal stands and the clock is reset back to 12:43 of the third period.

According to Rule 38.6 "In the event that a video replay shows a goal was scored prior to the play being stopped, the Video Goal Judge will inform the Game Timekeeper and Official Scorer of the time and the amount of playing time left to be reset on the game clock and penalty time clocks (if applicable)."

Posted On Saturday, 03.09.2013 / 3:24 PM

By Staff -  / - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Flames activate Backlund, assign Baertschi

The Calgary Flames announced Saturday they have activated center Mikael Backlund from injured reserve. The 23-year-old has been out of the Flames lineup since Feb. 7, when he suffered a Grade 2 MCL sprain during the team's 4-3 overtime win against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Prior to his injury, Backlund had three goals and four points in eight games this season.

In order to open a roster spot for Backlund, the Flames reassigned rookie Sven Baertschi to the Abbottsford Heat of the American Hockey League.

Posted On Saturday, 03.09.2013 / 2:56 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Sutter standing behind goaltender Quick

EL SEGUNDO, Calif.Los Angeles Kings coach Darryl Sutter continued Saturday to stand behind his star goaltender.

Jonathan Quick allowed four goals in a loss Thursday against the Dallas Stars, but Sutter liked what he saw from Quick when the netminder relieved Jonathan Bernier in a win Tuesday against the St. Louis Blues. Quick is expected to start Saturday when the Kings host the Calgary Flames at Staples Center.

Quick has not appeared as sharp as last season, posting a 7-7-2 record and 2.59 goals-against record. His backup, Bernier, is 5-1-0 with a 1.92 GAA.

“He’s got to get the swagger back,” Sutter said of Quick following his team's morning skate. “As well as Bernier’s played, the last guy that’s won us a game is Jonathan Quick. He came off the bench and won us a game. That’s character. That’s character in battle, so that’s a really good thing.”

The Kings held an optional skate but their lineup appears to be the same.

Here is their projected lineup against the Flames:

Posted On Saturday, 03.09.2013 / 12:29 PM

By John Kreiser - Columnist / - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Visnovsky back, game-time decision for Isles

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- The Washington Capitals make their only visit of the season to the Nassau Coliseum on Saturday afternoon as the New York Islanders wrap up a seven-game homestand. The Capitals are coming off a 7-1 win against Florida at home on Thursday, the same night the Islanders lost 2-1 in overtime to the New York Rangers.

Defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky, who missed the Islanders' last two games for person reasons, is back and will be a game-time decision.

Washington will give rookie Philipp Grubauer his first NHL start in goal, with Braden Holtby likely to play against the Rangers on Sunday (12:30 p.m. ET, NBC).

Here is the tentative lineup for the Islanders:

Matt MoulsonJohn TavaresBrad Boyes

Josh BaileyFrans NielsenKyle Okposo

Michael GrabnerMarty ReasonerDavid Ullstrom

Matt MartinCasey CizikasColin McDonald

Andrew MacDonald - Travis Hamonic

Mark Streit - Lubomir Visnovsky/Joe Finley

Thomas Hickey - Radek Martinek

Evgeni Nabokov

Kevin Poulin

Posted On Saturday, 03.09.2013 / 12:23 PM

By Lonnie Herman - Correspondent / - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Desjardins to get start for Lightning

TAMPA - In recent games, Tampa Bay Lightning starting goaltender Anders Lindback has occasionally been prone to allowing questionable goals. But coach Guy Boucher said that is not the reason he will turn to Cedrick Desjardins Saturday night when his team meets the Montreal Canadiens at Tampa Bay Times Forum.

It’s not exactly a shot in the dark for Boucher to look to Desjardins, who hasn't appeared in an NHL game since Jan. 1, 2011. A former Montreal prospect, Desjardins faced the Canadiens in his NHL debut on Dec. 30, 2010 and made 27 saves in a 4-1 Lightning win.

But Boucher discounted that as the reason he is turning to his backup netminder, who is actually three years older than 24-year-old Lindback.

“Lindback is a young guy that needs to grow through the hurts and successes that a young guy has to go through," Boucher said after the team's morning skate. "We told him we are going to manage his number of games. We played him probably too much for a while. As a young guy, we have to manage him like we do our forwards and defensemen: Give him his games but not give him too much to chew on.

“There are times he has been great and moments where it’s a learning process for him. He [Lindback] played two [straight] games and I would have changed him anyway. So it’s not about the Canadiens and it’s not even about Lindback. It’s just the fact that I was going to put someone else in after two games, so that’s why Desjardins is going in.”

This is Desjardins’ second time around with the Lightning. He was reacquired by Tampa Bay on Feb. 14 in exchange for netminder Dustin Tokarski. And although he played (and won) two games for the team during the 2010-11 campaign, Boucher isn't taking those appearances into consideration.

“We want to see what we have. We’ve been doing this since the beginning. We’re playing our young guys. We’re playing guys from our American League team. That’s for all positions," Boucher said. "We just feel like we have quality depth and we want this organization to grow. To do that, we don’t want to wait. We want to see what our young guys have. I feel like this is the moment to put him in. If I don’t do it now, I may not get a chance. [Mathieu] Garon will be returning soon and if I don’t put Desjardins in now, I may not get a chance.”

Here are the teams' projected lineups for Saturday's matchup:

Posted On Saturday, 03.09.2013 / 12:13 PM

By Staff -  / - 2012-2013 At the Rink blog

Salvador out, Larsson in for Devils

New Jersey Devils captain Bryce Salvador, one of five players to appear in each of the team's 82 games last season, did not make the trip to Raleigh, N.C., and will miss the Devils' game Saturday against the Carolina Hurricanes with an upper-body injury. Salvador, 37 was named captain in January and has one assist in 24 games this season.

He isn't the only Devils defenseman not to make the trip south. Henrik Tallinder has not played since Tuesday against Tampa Bay and remains out with a lower-body injury. The team's official Twitter feed confirmed Salvador's absence and noted that 20-year-old Adam Larsson would take his place in the lineup.

Here is the Devils projected lineup for the game against the Hurricanes, based on reports from the morning skate:

Posted On Friday, 03.08.2013 / 9:32 PM - 2012-2013 Situation Room blog

OTT @ NYR - 12:53 of the Third Period

At 12:53 of the third period in the Senators/Rangers game, video review upheld the referee's call on the ice that Eric Gryba's shot hit the crossbar and did not cross the goal line. No goal Ottawa.

Posted On Friday, 03.08.2013 / 8:22 PM - 2012-2013 Situation Room blog

WPG @ FLA - 19:47 of the First Period

At 19:47 of the first period in the Jets/Panthers game, video review upheld the referee's call on the ice that the puck deflected off of Jonathan Huberdeau and into the net in a legal fashion, completely crossing the goal line. According to Rule 78.4 "if an attacking player has the puck deflect into the net, off his skate or body, in any manner, the goal shall be allowed." Good Goal Florida.

Posted On Friday, 03.08.2013 / 7:52 PM - 2012-2013 Situation Room blog

WPG @ FLA - 2:35 of the First Period

At 2:35 of the first period in the Jets/Panthers game, video review supported the referee's call on the ice that Andrew Ladd's shot completely crossed the goal line. Good goal Winnipeg.

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Quote of the Day

In respect to the organization and my teammates, it was the best move. When I look back at my career and all the different things I had to overcome, I have no regrets. It was great.

— Devils captain Bryce Salvador on retiring from the National Hockey League Wednesday