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(Page 155 of 161)
Features

Daily Primer March 28: Rangers head West

Friday, 03.28.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

The New York Rangers boosted their hopes of finishing second in the Metropolitan Division earlier this week with home victories against the Phoenix Coyotes and Philadelphia Flyers. They'll get a different kind of test when they begin a four-game road trip Friday night with a game against the Calgary Flames (9 p.m. ET).

The Rangers (41-29-4) are three points in front of the Flyers as they begin their trip, which also includes games against the Edmonton Oilers, Vancouver Canucks and Colorado Avalanche. They've actually played much better on the road (23-13-0) than at home (18-16-4), and they are 3-2-0 in their past five visits to Scotiabank Saddledome.

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Top 2014 NHL Draft prospects offer self-evaluations

Friday, 03.28.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2014 NHL Draft - Philadelphia - June 27-28, 2014

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

TORONTO -- Prior to the start of every season, NHL Central Scouting already has evaluated hundreds of the top prospects available in the upcoming NHL draft.

In addition to putting together meticulous reports that detail a player's good and bad points, and then sharing them with their colleagues, it's also required that each prospect file some paperwork to Central Scouting.

So long before Samuel Bennett of the Kingston Frontenacs, Leon Draisaitl of the Prince Albert Raiders, Sam Reinhart of the Kootenay Ice and Aaron Ekblad of the Barrie Colts begin a new season, they've already completed the NHL Central Scouting questionnaire.

One of the more intriguing parts of the questionnaire happens to be the section that requires each prospect to admit their strongest asset, weakest area and the NHL player they most resemble. The self-assessments, for the most part, are pretty accurate. They also provide the scouts with a gauge as to what type of player each prospect expects to become.

Here's a summary of what each of the top five North American prospects, top North American goalie and top European skater provided on their questionnaire, followed by an evaluation of that response by NHL Central Scouting.

Players are listed in the order they were ranked in Central Scouting's midterm release in January.

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Johansen enjoying breakout season with Blue Jackets

Friday, 03.28.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Craig Merz - NHL.com Correspondent

COLUMBUS -- There was a plenty of buzz surrounding Columbus Blue Jackets center Ryan Johansen following a 3-2 victory March 20 against the Montreal Canadiens.

Most people wanted to talk about the third-year player's first NHL fight when he squared off against Max Pacioretty early in the game and how Johansen would respond after wading into unknown territory.

The answer came with 3:01 left in regulation when he showed the skill and savvy that made him the No. 4 pick by the Blue Jackets in the 2010 NHL Draft.

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Super 16: Chara should be Norris favorite

Friday, 03.28.2014 / 3:00 AM / Super 16: NHL Power Rankings

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara has not had the help of teammate Dennis Seidenberg since he was lost to a serious knee injury in the first game after the December holiday break.

The Bruins, who have built a reputation as an elite goal-prevention club, wobbled for a few games as they adjusted to not having one of the NHL's best defensive defensemen. Now they are back to their stifling ways and back in the hunt for the Presidents' Trophy.

While Chara may not possess the traditional offensive numbers of some of his closest competitors, the mountainous Boston defenseman should be the frontrunner for the Norris Trophy.

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In the Cage: Lack proving worth down the stretch

Thursday, 03.27.2014 / 12:00 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Justin Goldman - NHL.com Correspondent

On Wednesday night, while New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist was busy earning his 30th win of the season for the eighth time in his legendary career, a rookie Swedish goalie was also making some big saves in a key conference matchup for his team.

Eddie Lack stopped 29 shots in a 5-2 win against the Minnesota Wild, which placed his Vancouver Canucks just four points behind the Phoenix Coyotes for the final wild-card spot into the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the Western Conference. The win also pushed Lack to 4-1-0 in his past five games with only 11 goals against on 138 shots, a .920 save percentage.

With eight games remaining in the regular season, Lack is currently 15-14-4 with a 2.32 goals-against average and .915 save percentage. His four shutouts are eighth overall in the NHL, while his GAA is 11th overall.

Things did not go well for Lack leading up to and directly following Roberto Luongo's surprising trade to the Florida Panthers. In fact, prior to this recent five-game surge, Lack was just 2-5-0 in March with 22 goals against on 181 shots, a meager .878 save percentage. But now, with all of the chaos and controversy behind him, Lack's play could become the driving force behind a late-season push for one of two wild-card spots.

But does he have what it takes to get the job done in such a pressure-filled market?

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Red Wings' Nyquist sees accelerated development

Thursday, 03.27.2014 / 10:16 AM / NHL Insider

Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

DETROIT -- The numbers are impressive when you break down the tear Gustav Nyquist is on right now.

The 24-year old Detroit Red Wings forward has 25 goals and 17 assists for 42 points in 47 games, but that's only the big picture. Narrowing the scope shows Nyquist, who was named the NHL first star this past week, has scored nine goals with one assist during a career-high six-game goal streak heading into a game against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday at Joe Louis Arena (7 p.m. ET, TSN, RDS, FS-D).

That's Detroit's longest of the season and it topped his own mark of four straight games during a hot spell that began Jan. 20 with a goal in a 4-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues. Since that point, Nyquist leads the NHL with 20 goals in 24 games, including his most recent two in a 4-2 loss Tuesday at the Columbus Blue Jackets. He's also tied during that span with Philadelphia Flyers forward Claude Giroux for most points in the League (31).

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Stanley Cup Playoffs clinching scenarios: March 27

Thursday, 03.27.2014 / 10:00 AM / Drive to the Playoffs

NHL.com

There will be more than just two points at stake when the Chicago Blackhawks play the Boston Bruins on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US). Chicago, the Pittsburgh Penguins and Colorado Avalanche can clinch a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Boston can become the first team to win a division title. Here are the scenarios:

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Daily Primer March 27: Cup Final rematch in Boston

Thursday, 03.27.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

The Boston Bruins are on the verge of securing the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference. The Chicago Blackhawks are battling just to have home-ice advantage in the opening round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The Original Six franchises will get together in a rematch of the 2013 Stanley Cup Final as part of the NHL's 10-game schedule Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US). Thanks to its recent 12-game winning streak, Boston (49-17-6) has built a seven-point lead on the Pittsburgh Penguins atop the East; Chicago (42-16-15) trails the St. Louis Blues by six points in the Central Division but is three points ahead of the Colorado Avalanche for second place; Colorado has a game in hand.

The Detroit Red Wings continue their pursuit of a 23rd consecutive postseason appearance Thursday when they host the Montreal Canadiens (7 p.m. ET, TSN, RDS). Detroit (33-25-14) is one of four teams in the East with 80 points; Montreal is in second place in the Atlantic Division, two points ahead of the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Lightning host the New York Islanders on Thursday.

Later Thursday the Vancouver Canucks aim for their fourth straight win when they face the Avalanche at Pepsi Center. The surging Canucks have moved within four points of the Phoenix Coyotes for the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference.

The San Jose Sharks, who are two points ahead of the Anaheim Ducks in the Pacific Division and trail St. Louis by two for the conference lead, host the Winnipeg Jets at SAP Center. 

Here's a closer look at the action Thursday:

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Rangers prospect Duclair eager to make jump

Thursday, 03.27.2014 / 3:00 AM / In the Pipeline

James Murphy - NHL.com Correspondent

Quebec Remparts forward and New York Rangers prospect Anthony Duclair missed the last seven games of the regular season and has not played in the first four Quebec Major Junior Hockey League playoff games due to a concussion sustained Feb. 28.

While sitting in the stands at the most exciting time of the year is obviously frustrating, Duclair has had a season to remember and likely made the Rangers very happy they took the skilled left wing in the third round (No. 80) of the 2013 NHL Draft. After Duclair scored 20 goals and added 30 assists in the 2012-13 season despite missing five-plus weeks with a sprained ankle, he more than doubled his goal total this season with 50 in 59 games; he fell one point shy of 100 points.

"Missing the last seven games of the season because I was there at 99 points and one point shy of 100, so that was pretty frustrating," Duclair said. "Then just watching the boys battle it out from the stands, you want to be down there and now the playoffs being the most exciting time of the year, it's definitely tough to watch from the outside."


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Reinhart poised to become third brother drafted

Thursday, 03.27.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2014 NHL Draft - Philadelphia - June 27-28, 2014

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Center Sam Reinhart of the Kootenay Ice in the Western Hockey League takes pride in the little things that culminate in success.

Possessing great leadership, work ethic and a hockey IQ that is simply off the charts, the 6-foot-0.75, 185-pound right-handed shot could be the highest-drafted Reinhart to lace on the skates.

That's saying a lot, considering he no doubt has quite the hockey pedigree. His two older brothers and father were drafted.

Max Reinhart, 21, was taken by the Calgary Flames in the third round (No. 63) of the 2010 draft. The only defenseman of the three Reinhart brothers, Griffin, 19, was selected fourth overall by the New York Islanders in 2012. His father, Paul Reinhart, was chosen No. 12 by the Atlanta Flames in 1979.

"Over the years, all of us talked to my dad after every game," Reinhart told NHL.com. "He'd give us advice. Max and Griffin went through the same things I am going through, so being able to watch them has had a huge positive influence on my career; it's nice having both of them."


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We think that Randy is a very good coach. Our players think that Randy is a very good coach. We think that he's going to get the most out of this group. With the addition of the two assistants, a bit of a different dynamic, we're very comfortable that this is a quality coaching staff that's going to maximize the potential of this team.

— Maple Leafs GM Dave Nonis on head coach Randy Carlyle and his staff