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(Page 114 of 172)
Features

Top pick MacKinnon of Avalanche deserves Calder

Tuesday, 04.08.2014 / 1:30 AM / Trophy Tracker

Jon Lane - NHL.com Staff Writer

With the 2013-14 regular season rapidly coming to a close, NHL.com looks at some of its biggest storylines and award contenders.

During a close race for the Calder Trophy, Colorado Avalanche rookie Nathan MacKinnon often found himself mentioned in the same breath as Wayne Gretzky, even breaking a record held by "The Great One" for 34 years along the way.

Combine that with MacKinnon's standing at or near the top of most major scoring categories and his role in Colorado's stunning turnaround from Western Conference basement dwellers to legitimate Stanley Cup contenders, and the Avalanche forward is NHL.com's pick as the League's top rookie.

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Rangers ride new system, road success into playoffs

Monday, 04.07.2014 / 9:56 PM / Drive to the Playoffs

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

The New York Rangers are back in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. They clinched their eighth playoff berth in nine seasons when the New Jersey Devils lost 1-0 to the Calgary Flames on Monday night.

The play of goaltender Henrik Lundqvist keyed New York's road to the postseason, but the similarities to past Rangers teams generally end there. The 2013-14 Rangers were propelled by some relatively fresh faces that excelled once they adjusted to the new plan installed by incoming coach Alain Vigneault.

It's an impressive turnaround considering the difficult transition New York had to make at the start of the season. There was a new coach, a new system, a number of players entering their first full season with the team and even a newly-renovated Madison Square Garden. That transition was magnified by a season-opening nine-game road trip on which New York went 3-6-0.

Six months after that challenging trip, the Rangers sit second in the Metropolitan Division. They are two points ahead of the Philadelphia Flyers, who hold a game in hand and could face New York in the Eastern Conference First Round.

Here are five reasons the Rangers are headed back to the playoffs.

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Rinaldo suspended four games for illegal check

Monday, 04.07.2014 / 6:05 PM / NHL Department of Player Safety

NHL.com

NEW YORK -- Philadelphia Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo has been suspended for four games, without pay, for an illegal check to the head of Buffalo Sabres defenseman Chad Ruhwedel during NHL Game No. 1173 in Philadelphia on Sunday, April 6, the National Hockey League’s Department of Player Safety announced today.

The incident occurred at 4:29 of the third period. Rinaldo was assessed a match penalty for illegal check to the head.

Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement and, based on his average annual salary, Rinaldo will forfeit $15,384.60. The money goes to the Players' Emergency Assistance Fund.

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Fantasy All-Access: Keeper candidates to retain

Matt Sitkoff - NHL.com Contributor

We have hit the final week of the NHL regular season and some of our readers are preparing for their fantasy league's championship. For the others, don't worry, we will look at some top young players' keeper value going into next season, because how someone finishes can help you decide if they are worth building your team around.

For those fighting for bragging rights with your friends all summer and that engraving of your name on the league trophy, here are some schedule facts you need to know when setting your lineup this week. Twenty of the 30 NHL teams have four games scheduled, so you will have plenty of good players to choose from.

The Colorado Avalanche play all four games on the road while the Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers and Pittsburgh Penguins play all three of their games at home. Pay attention to those teams' home and road splits when deciding on lineup decisions.

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Stanley Cup Playoffs clinching scenarios: April 7

Monday, 04.07.2014 / 10:32 AM / Drive to the Playoffs

NHL.com

The New York Rangers are the only NHL team that can secure a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs on Monday. Here is the scenario:

NEW YORK RANGERS

The Rangers (idle) would clinch a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs if the New Jersey Devils lose to the Calgary Flames in any fashion.

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Flyers' Rinaldo to have hearing for hit on Ruhwedel

Monday, 04.07.2014 / 6:48 AM / NHL Department of Player Safety

NHL.com

Philadelphia Flyers center Zac Rinaldo will have a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety Monday for a hit on Buffalo Sabres defenseman Chad Ruhwedel on Sunday Night at Wells Fargo Center.

At 4:29 of the third period, Rinaldo was assessed a match penalty for hitting Ruhwedel near the blue line in the Philadelphia defensive zone. Ruhwedel left the game and did not return.

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Avalanche's Roy deserves Jack Adams Award

Monday, 04.07.2014 / 3:00 AM / Trophy Tracker

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

With the 2013-14 regular season rapidly coming to a close, NHL.com looks at some of its biggest storylines and award contenders.

After finishing with the second-fewest points in the NHL in 2012-13, the Colorado Avalanche experienced major changes in the front office and, ultimately, behind the bench last summer.

Two of the greatest players in the history of the franchise were placed in roles that would help change the culture. Joe Sakic, the former captain and all-time leading scorer, was named executive vice president of hockey operations last May.

Less than two weeks later, Sakic named Patrick Roy, the former goaltender who led them to two Stanley Cup championships, as the sixth coach in Avalanche history. He replaced Joe Sacco after the Avalanche missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs for a third straight season.

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Playoff Countdown: Questions abound in final week

Monday, 04.07.2014 / 12:35 AM / Drive to the Playoffs

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

The conclusion to 2013-14 NHL regular season is fast approaching. After game play Sunday, the League is down to 55 games remaining on the schedule, with three to be played Monday. Yet, much remains to be decided in the frantic run to the finish line, including playoff qualification, playoff positioning and numerous individual accomplishments and milestones. To celebrate the seven-day countdown to the end of the season April 13 and the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs on April 16, NHL.com will provide a piece of playoff-related content each day.

The 2013-14 regular season ends Sunday, but there are still plenty of questions that need answers in the final week of games before the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs on April 16.

We know the Boston Bruins are the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference, but the St. Louis Blues have not secured that spot in the West. The Anaheim Ducks, who led the Pacific Division for much of the season, could still finish second in the division and be faced with the task of playing their heated rival, the Los Angeles Kings, in the first round.

The Toronto Maple Leafs, who were in prime position to make the playoffs for much of the season, are in serious danger of seeing their season end Saturday night.

Here are seven questions to be answered in the final week of the regular season:

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Daily Primer April 7: Devils out for key points

Monday, 04.07.2014 / 12:02 AM / Drive to the Playoffs

The New Jersey Devils were hoping the New York Islanders could do them a favor and knock off the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday, but they had no such luck. Instead, the Devils woke up Monday morning three points behind the Blue Jackets for the second wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference in the Stanley Cup Playoff race.

New Jersey (34-28-16) will play the first of its four remaining games Monday night when it hosts the Calgary Flames at Prudential Center. A victory would pull the Devils back within a point of the Blue Jackets, who are idle. New Jersey has won back-to-back games and has earned points in eight of its past 10 (5-2-3).

The Minnesota Wild (40-26-12) continues its pursuit of the first wild-card spot in the Western Conference against the Winnipeg Jets at MTS Centre. Wild goalie Ilya Bryzgalov is expected to get the start Monday; he is 5-0-3 with a 1.87 goals-against average since joining Minnesota prior to the NHL Trade Deadline.

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Sylvan Lake, Alberta wins Kraft Hockeyville 2014

Sunday, 04.06.2014 / 11:16 AM / Kraft Hockeyville 2014

NHL.com

TORONTO - Forty days of nominations, millions of votes and countless rallying cries for support in communities across the country has culminated in the announcement made by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman that Sylvan Lake, Alberta is Kraft Hockeyville 2014. In a live spot last night on CBC's Hockey Night in Canada, representatives from Sylvan Lake cheered as they received the news that their local arena will benefit from $100,000 in upgrades, the opportunity to host an NHL® pre-season game between the Calgary Flames and the Phoenix Coyotes, and a visit from CBC. To mark its eighth season, Kraft Hockeyville came back bigger than ever, awarding a total of $1 million in prizing to 16 different hockey loving communities from coast-to-coast.

"Everyone at Kraft Canada sincerely congratulates Sylvan Lake on winning the title of Kraft Hockeyville 2014," said Jack Hewitt, Vice-President, Consumer Insights & Portfolio Marketing, Kraft Canada. "The passion Canada has, not only for its national sport, but for the communities across this great country is astounding. Sixteen amazing communities now have the funds to upgrade their local rinks – and that means there are 16 rinks that will continue to be the heart of their communities."

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Quote of the Day

I'm just excited about the opportunity. I've been on the ice earlier than usual and in the weight room, pushing around a little more weights than usual. Every day I go into a workout with a smile on my face and ready to go. When you do have a little more responsibility, you want to take your lunch pail and get ready to work.

— Brian Elliott to Jeremy Rutherford of the Post-Dispatch on being the Blues' No. 1 goalie