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Features

Emrick: Devils without Brodeur will 'seem strange'

Wednesday, 10.01.2014 / 6:32 PM / 2014-2015 Season Preview

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

NBC broadcaster Mike "Doc" Emrick admitted it's going to be odd not seeing goaltender Martin Brodeur in a New Jersey Devils jersey for the first time in 23 seasons.

"It will seem strange, but there's always that handoff," Emrick said. "The same question was raised when Steve Yzerman wouldn't be in Detroit anymore. Who takes over? As it turns out, it was Nicklas Lidstrom, not only as captain but as the face of the franchise.

"So that will be the intriguing thing; who will be the new face in New Jersey?"

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NBC crew sees obstacles in Kings' quest to repeat

Wednesday, 10.01.2014 / 6:30 PM / 2014-2015 Season Preview

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

A new NHL season begins in seven days and inquiring minds would like to know whether or not the Los Angeles Kings have what it takes to become the first team in almost two decades to deliver back-to-back Stanley Cup titles.

The question was posed to NBC Sports Group's lead NHL broadcast team of veteran play-by-play man Mike "Doc" Emrick, analyst Eddie Olczyk and "Inside the Glass" analyst Pierre McGuire during a conference call Wednesday previewing the 2014-15 season.

"The Kings won't win because the numbers say we haven't had a repeat winner in a long time," Olczyk said. "You need a lot of things to go right and have some luck, and look at the hole they dug themselves out of last year."

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EA Sports' simulation predicts repeat by Kings

Wednesday, 10.01.2014 / 10:00 AM / 2014-2015 Season Preview

David Kalan - NHL.com Staff Writer

The NHL routinely saw teams win championships in clusters until the 1990s, but dynasties have all but disappeared during the past two decades. Nine teams have won the Stanley Cup in the past 11 seasons, and no franchise has successfully defended the Cup since the Detroit Red Wings won back-to-back championships in 1997 and 1998.

According to EA Sports, that trend will come to an end this season.

In its annual NHL season simulation released Wednesday, EA Sports predicts the defending-champion Los Angeles Kings will defeat the Boston Bruins in six games in the 2015 Stanley Cup Final for their second straight championship and third in the past four seasons, giving the NHL its first bona fide dynasty in more than a decade. The Conn Smythe Trophy will go to Kings forward Anze Kopitar, who is also predicted to win the Selke Trophy for his regular-season play in the simulation.

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Key questions facing Eastern Conference teams

Wednesday, 10.01.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2014-2015 Season Preview

John Kreiser - NHL.com Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2014-15 season, which begins Wednesday, Oct. 8.

The calendar has turned to October, and that means NHL teams already are brainstorming to figure out what they'll have to do to be successful when the regular season starts next week.

As they get ready for 2014-15, all 30 teams have questions. Will that big rookie make an impact right away? Will the free-agent signee fill the hole he was brought in to plug? Will the offense/defense/goaltending/special teams improve?

With that in mind, here's a look at a key question facing the 16 teams in the Eastern Conference:

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Who's on the hot seat in the Eastern Conference

Wednesday, 10.01.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2014-2015 Season Preview

John Kreiser - NHL.com Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2014-15 season, which begins Wednesday, Oct. 8.

It's almost time for another NHL season, and the pressure is already starting to build for some players who know they'll have to be big-time producers for their teams to push for a Stanley Cup Playoff berth or contend for the Stanley Cup.

Here's a look at a player from each of the 16 teams in the Eastern Conference who'll be under pressure to perform as soon as the puck drops:

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Maple Leafs forward Clarkson eager to turn it around

Wednesday, 10.01.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2014-2015 Season Preview

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

TORONTO -- As the story of his first season with the Toronto Maple Leafs rapidly unfolded like a tragicomedy, right wing David Clarkson could have started asking a lot of questions that begin with why.

As in why did I sign to play in Toronto, one of the most demanding markets in the NHL? Or the reflective why can't it be like it was with the New Jersey Devils, where my role was defined, the results were positive, and mistakes, slumps and errors in judgment never burn a player publicly the way they do here?

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How East's playoff outsiders get back in this season

Wednesday, 10.01.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2014-2015 Season Preview

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2014-15 season, which begins Wednesday, Oct. 8.

Summer may be the most enjoyable season for many people, but when it comes to NHL teams, they want to put off the start to their summers as long as possible.

But for the eight Eastern Conference teams that missed out on the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoff party, their goal since the second week of April has been figuring out how to extend their seasons into May -- or even June, like the conference champion New York Rangers.

So how can the teams that missed the fun turn into postseason hits? As opening night of the regular season nears, NHL.com today examines why fans of the unlucky eight can hold onto their playoff hopes:

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NHL.com, Yahoo Sports team up for fantasy show

Tuesday, 09.30.2014 / 12:20 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

NHL.com Fantasy Hockey Staff

On Thursday, Oct. 2, NHL.com and Yahoo Sports will team up to produce a one-hour fantasy hockey draft special that will air at 7 p.m. ET online at NHL.com and Yahoo.com.

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The event will be hosted by NHL Network's Andi Petrillo and on-air talent will include NHL.com fantasy expert Matt Cubeta and Yahoo Sports Puck Daddy writer Greg Wyshynski. It will be accompanied by an interactive chat with NHL.com fantasy writer Pete Jensen. Fans will have a chance to submit questions to the show's hosts directly through the CoveritLive chat, which begins at 5 p.m. ET, or via Twitter using the hashtag #NHLFantasyShow.

With the 2014-15 NHL season approaching quickly, it's time to get ready for fantasy hockey and the experts are here to help. From positional rankings to sleepers and predictions, this one-hour fantasy hockey draft special is a great way to prepare for your fantasy draft.

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50 players with added fantasy value in hits leagues

Pete Jensen - NHL.com Fantasy Insider

Standard Yahoo Fantasy formats don't take hits into account, but it's worth noting that the incorporation of this category is reaching many leagues.

We're at the point where one-third of all Yahoo leagues use hits, and many of those fans choose to use that statistic instead of penalty minutes as a category. Though PIMs often gauge the physicality of a player, the stat takes many tactical penalties into account, which are detrimental to their team in reality and reflect undisciplined play. Physical players who use clean body checks on opponents can help their team regain possession of the puck, which in turn helps generate offense.

Fantasy owners have become well aware of standard-league category specialists, but hits-league participants are always looking for difference-makers in their specific formats.

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The Tragically Hip to headline free concert presented by SiriusXM at 2014 Molson Canadian NHL Face-Off

Tuesday, 09.30.2014 / 8:55 AM / 2014 Molson Canadian NHL Face-Off

NHL.com

TORONTO / NEW YORK -- Canadian rock band, The Tragically Hip, will headline the 2014 Molson Canadian NHL Face-Off™, the National Hockey League's free hockey and music festival to celebrate the start of the 2014-15 season, at Yonge-Dundas Square in downtown Toronto on Wednesday, Oct. 8.

The Tragically Hip (@thehipdotcom) will perform a 45-minute performance set as part of the free concert, presented by SiriusXM Canada, at Yonge-Dundas Square prior to the 7:00 p.m. Toronto Maple Leafs®-Montreal Canadiens® game. Portions of the band's set will be featured in Sportsnet's live national broadcast of the game. Critically acclaimed for more than two decades, The Tragically Hip has been at the heart of the Canadian musical zeitgeist for evoking a strong emotional connection between their music and their fans that remains unrivalled in this country. A five-piece group of friends including Robby Baker (guitar), Gordon Downie (vocals, guitar), Johnny Fay (drums), Paul Langlois (guitar) and Gord Sinclair (bass), who grew up in Kingston, Ontario, The Hip has achieved the enviable status of a band that enjoys both mass popularity with more than 8 million albums sold worldwide, as well as peer recognition through 14 Juno Awards from more than a dozen recordings. Their studio catalogue includes their self-titled debut album "The Tragically Hip" (1987), "Up To Here" (1989), "Road Apples" (1991), "Fully Completely" (1992), "Day For Night" (1994), "Trouble At The Henhouse" (1996), "Phantom Power" (1998), "Music @ Work" (2000), "In Violet Light" (2002), "In Between Evolution" (2004), "World Container" (2006), "We Are The Same" (2009) and "Now For Plan A" (2012).

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Quote of the Day

One player does not make your team. One player can help your team, but one player does not make your team. We're not a bare-bones organization.

— Columbus Blue Jackets president John Davidson
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