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2014 NHL Draft
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(Page 127 of 173)
Features

Super 16: Career year marks crossroad for Okposo

Friday, 03.21.2014 / 2:00 AM / Super 16: NHL Power Rankings

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

This has been a lost season for the New York Islanders, one that began with hope of building off a return to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in 2013, but is ending with losses piling up and more question marks about the lineup built around superstar John Tavares than when the campaign commenced.

There has been one potentially big development for the future of the Islanders in 2013-14, and that is the play of Kyle Okposo. Long considered a gifted but inconsistent forward with potential, Okposo has put together the best season of his career with 69 points in 69 games.

Though he has spent a lot of his career with the Islanders on the second line, he moved into the spot next to Tavares and either Matt Moulson or Thomas Vanek, and that trio proved to be one of the most productive in the NHL. The question moving forward is simple: Will 2013-14 be remembered as a breakout season for Okposo, or a career year?

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Wild gain confidence earning point in comeback

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 11:16 PM / NHL Insider

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

NEWARK, N.J. -- The Minnesota Wild trailed the New Jersey Devils by two goals in the third period, and it looked like they were certain to lose for the sixth time in eight games and score one goal or fewer for the third time in four.

But a comeback forced overtime, earned a point in the standings for a 4-3 loss, and gave the Wild a little swagger in their march toward the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"The points are important. We had an opportunity to get two," Wild forward Zach Parise said. "But I think given the way we came back a couple of times, this one could be important."

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Rangers' Nash back in Columbus battling for playoffs

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 4:39 PM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

Even though Rick Nash has maintained his home in Columbus, the New York Rangers forward is staying in the team hotel for his first trip back to the city where he grew up as a hockey player.

"Just like a regular road trip," Nash told reporters in Columbus after practice Thursday.

Nash may be saying that as a way to convince himself, or to deflect the nerves and emotions he's feeling leading up to his first game as a visitor in Nationwide Arena, but this road trip to face the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday is anything but regular for him.

Nash figured that out Thursday when he walked into the arena he called home for 10 years and saw familiar faces everywhere, including security guards and some members of the Blue Jackets training staff who tend to the visitors dressing room.

He has faced his former team twice this season at Madison Square Garden, scoring two goals on Jan. 6, but this is Nash's first game in Columbus since he was traded in the summer of 2012. The Rangers didn't make the trip last season and he was out with a concussion when they were there Nov. 7.

"It's tough to describe," Nash said when asked how he felt about his return. "Obviously it's the first time being here since the trade, and there's a lot of excitement for me coming back to play in front of the fans I played in front of for 10 years. There are a lot of good memories here, a lot of friends made."
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Stars meet young fan who knows Peverley's plight

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 3:19 PM / NHL Insider

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

PHILADELPHIA -- When Dallas Stars forward Rich Peverley collapsed on the bench during a game March 10 against the Columbus Blue Jackets, 9-year-old Philadelphia Flyers fan T.J. Ramos understood more than most exactly what was happening.

Ramos, a Philadelphia resident, was walking to baseball practice Sept. 12, 2013, when he collapsed. Doctors later said T.J. went into cardiac arrest because of a genetic condition called CPVT, the same condition that caused Peverley to go through his cardiac episode.

T.J.'s father Carlos said T.J. saw what happened on the news the morning after Peverley collapsed, and after they read stories online, T.J. immediately became concerned.

"He saw it and said, 'Oh my God, he had a cardiac arrest just like I did,'" Carlos said. "I said I don't know the whole story so let's just see what happens. Ever since he's been looking into it. He was a [Boston Bruins] fan and he knew [Peverley] played for Boston. He asked if he was going to be OK, does he need surgery like I needed surgery? Is he going to play hockey again? I feel bad for him. I said I don't know the condition, but we can follow the story."

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In the Cage: A deeper look at this year's rookie class

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 12:00 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Justin Goldman - NHL.com Correspondent

As of Thursday, a total of 88 goaltenders have made at least one NHL appearance this season.

To put that number in perspective, it's the highest total since the 2011-12, 2008-09, and 2007-08 seasons, when 89 goalies appeared in an NHL game. But that doesn't trump the 2005-06 season, when a whopping total of 91 goalies were used.

Of this season's 88 goalies, 19 of them comprise the rookie class. Eddie Lack's shutout in a 2-0 win over Nashville on Wednesday pushed their record to 88-62-23, a solid .575 point percentage. The rookie class also has a cumulative .914 save percentage, stopping 4,690 of 5,133 total shots on goal.

Last season, the rookie class of 14 goalies went 32-32-7 with a .906 cumulative save percentage. In the 2011-12 season, 20 rookies combined for a 63-72-16 record with a .913 save percentage.

With so much emerging goalie talent being used so often this season, we wanted to provide you with a top-10 keeper league ranking. This will not only help you pinpoint some of the best long-term goalies to own in a keeper league, but it will show you just how deep the talent pool has become.

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Clinching scenarios: Idle Blues can secure berth

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 11:11 AM / Drive to the Playoffs

NHL.com

The St. Louis Blues (idle) would become the first team to clinch a berth in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs if the Dallas Stars lose in regulation to the Philadelphia Flyers AND the Phoenix Coyotes lose in any fashion to the Florida Panthers.

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Daily Primer March 20: Pacific powers square off

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

First place in the Pacific Division is on the line Thursday night.

The San Jose Sharks' 8-2-1 surge following the 2014 Sochi Olympics has coincided with a so-so 4-3-2 stretch by the Anaheim Ducks, meaning that the team that skates off the ice at SAP Center with the victory will go home with the top spot in the division. Each team has 97 points, but the Ducks have a game in hand.

History is on the Sharks' side: They have won the past four games between the teams in San Jose and are 12-4-1 against the Ducks at home since the start of 2008.

Here's a look at all of the action Thursday:

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Prospector Files: USHL draft-eligible All-Star team

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / Prospector Files

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

The selection of right wing Michael McCarron of the United States Under-18 National Team Development Program in the first round of the 2013 NHL Draft marked the ninth straight year at least one player from the United States Hockey League was among the top 30 picks.

As it turned out, 32 players competing in the USHL in 2012-13 were chosen last June, the most players selected from the league in one year. There's no question the USHL has been churning out NHL-caliber athletes in recent years; a total of 94 USHL alumni competed in the League in 2012-13. More than 300 players on USHL rosters last season committed to NCAA Division I schools and more than 200 are currently under NHL contract.

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Sault Ste. Marie's McCann seeks consistency in game

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2014 NHL Draft - Philadelphia - June 27-28, 2014

Aaron Vickers - NHL.com Correspondent

Hockey Hall of Fame defenseman Ray Bourque reportedly changed his skate laces before every game and between each period.

Patrick Roy carefully laid out every piece of his equipment on the floor of the locker room before putting them on in a specific order, in addition to chatting up his goal posts during games. Joe Nieuwendyk apparently would sprinkle a bit of baby powder on his sticks before hitting the ice.

Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds center Jared McCann, No. 11 on NHL Central Scouting's midterm list of the top North American skaters eligible for the 2014 NHL Draft, has his own superstition.

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Minnesota headlines first Big Ten hockey tournament

Thursday, 03.20.2014 / 1:23 AM / On Campus

Dan Myers - NHL.com Correspondent

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Other than the Minnesota Wild, who call the facility home, few teams at any level have played more games at Xcel Energy Center than the University of Minnesota.

The Gophers, the nation's top-ranked team, are 2-0 this season at the arena, which is located seven miles from campus this season and where they've played 33 times. Minnesota will headline the inaugural Big Ten Tournament beginning with first-round play Thursday afternoon in downtown St. Paul.

"It's been cool all season, playing in new rinks and against new teams," Gophers captain Nate Condon said. "It's setting the groundwork for what are going to be some really good rivalries and hopefully one of the best leagues in the country."

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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