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NHL Insider

Analysis: Blackhawks will go patchwork without Keith

Tuesday, 10.20.2015 / 3:12 PM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

Losing defenseman Duncan Keith for an extended period of time does not mean the Chicago Blackhawks season is ruined, but dealing with the absence of the two-time Norris Trophy winner and reigning Conn Smythe Trophy winner will test them in a way that is new.

Keith will miss at least four weeks while recovering from surgery he had to repair a right knee meniscal tear, the Blackhawks announced Tuesday. If Keith misses six weeks, he'll miss 18 games. He's in his 11th NHL season and has missed 20 games total.

For as good as captain Jonathan Toews is and as important as he is to the Blackhawks, it can be argued that nobody on the roster is as important as Keith because of the lack of depth Chicago has on the blue line and for the role he plays as a top defenseman who does everything at an elite level.

McDavid, Eichel already have had dazzling moments

Tuesday, 10.20.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

MCDAVID EICHEL
6 Games 5
3 Goals 2
2 Assists 0
5 Points 2
12 Shots on goal 12
27.9 (17/44) FOW% (W/L) 44.1 (26/33)
72 SATF 63
2.79 P/60 1.25
17:56 Avg. TOI 19:14

Now that Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid and Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel each have scored their first NHL goal, don't expect the pressure that comes with being the first two players picked in the 2015 NHL Draft to subside anytime soon.

But there has been some sense of relief that the two projected generational talents have cleared that hurdle early.

Eichel got his first, scoring Oct. 8 in the Sabres' season-opener. He took a pass from Marcus Foligno low in the left circle and ripped a high shot into the short-side corner with 10:49 left in the third period of a 3-1 loss to the Ottawa Senators. The call made by Sabres television broadcaster Rick Jeanneret was as exhilarating as the goal itself.

Twenty years later, Travis Roy still making impact

Tuesday, 10.20.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

Travis Roy had three goals for himself growing up in Augusta, Maine.

He wanted to play Division I college hockey, he wanted to play in the NHL and he wanted to represent the United States at the Olympics. It was a common wish for any young hockey player from New England.

Eleven seconds into his first shift for Boston University, on Oct. 20, 1995, skating on a line with future NHL players Chris Drury and Mike Grier, Roy's life changed forever.

While attempting to check a player on the University of North Dakota in the right-wing corner, Roy went headfirst into the boards and fell to the ice. The impact shattered his fourth and fifth vertebrae, leaving him a quadriplegic.

Roy, who turned 40 years old on April 17, has been in a wheelchair ever since. Tuesday marks 20 years since that injury.

Blues eager for task against undefeated Canadiens

Monday, 10.19.2015 / 9:36 PM / NHL Insider

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

MONTREAL -- Players and coaches love to talk about measuring-stick games.

At this early stage of the 2015-16 season, you won't see a much bigger one.

The Montreal Canadiens host the St. Louis Blues at Bell Centre on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET, FS-MW, RDS, CITYM), a game featuring the NHL's top two teams in the overall standings, and in many statistical measures as well.

The Canadiens (6-0-0) are the only undefeated team remaining and the Blues (5-1-0) are right behind them in wins and points.

"They're a team that hasn't lost yet," Blues captain David Backes said Monday. "No one's found the kryptonite to put them away and find a way to steal points from them. But we've played pretty good hockey and it should be one heck of a matchup."

Sharks goalie Jones making most of shot at No. 1 job

Monday, 10.19.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

NEWARK, N.J. -- Marc Crawford remembers the confidence and calmness exhibited by a young Martin Jones. He remembers never seeing the goalie out of breath and rarely out of position. He vividly recalls his post-save recovery being quick, cat-like and effortless.

But mostly, Crawford, like anybody who followed Jones growing up in North Vancouver, remembers the winning. All that winning, from atom to pee-wee to bantam to midget to the Western Hockey League to the American Hockey League, and now to the NHL.

"Martin doesn't know anything but winning," said Crawford, the former NHL coach who watched Jones grow up playing with his son, Dylan, in Vancouver's North Shore Winter Club. "All this kid does is win."

Jones is winning with the San Jose Sharks now, and they're thrilled.

Canadiens showing they're more than Carey Price

Sunday, 10.18.2015 / 12:25 AM / NHL Insider

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

MONTREAL -- As the Montreal Canadiens opened their dressing room for the media Saturday following their sixth straight win to open the season, goaltender Carey Price was getting undressed at his locker.

The reporters rushed by Price to allow him to remove his equipment, which is not unusual.

What was unusual was that they didn't come back to Price's locker until he was long gone because, as has been the case more often than not this season, he wasn't the main story behind the Canadiens' 4-1 victory against the Detroit Red Wings.

Sharks' fast start typical, but fresh energy abounds

Saturday, 10.17.2015 / 10:30 AM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

NEWARK, N.J. -- That the San Jose Sharks are still perfect this season at 4-0-0 isn't all that different from what they're used to in the Silicon Valley.

The Sharks, who face the New York Islanders on Saturday at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, have a reputation for being fast starters. They even have proof in the form of an NHL record they set this season. San Jose became the first team to start a season with three consecutive wins in four straight seasons.

What is different is how the Sharks feel about their hot start this season as opposed to, say, last season, when they were 4-0-1 out of the gate but couldn't build on it and missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time in a decade.

"There has just been a good energy, a different energy," Sharks captain Joe Pavelski said Friday, when San Jose beat the New Jersey Devils 2-1 in a shootout at Prudential Center. "You can feel it. You can feel it through the fans and the players. Last year was tough at times, just up and down, a rollercoaster ride, but we have confidence.

"Last year we found a lot of ways to lose, but now it's about getting that winning feeling back. That's part of the energy."

Blue Jackets' Saad has moved on from Blackhawks

Saturday, 10.17.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Craig Merz - NHL.com Correspondent

COLUMBUS -- There's no bitterness for Columbus Blue Jackets left wing Brandon Saad looking ahead to his first game against the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday at United Center.

Saad won the Stanley Cup for the second time in three seasons with the Blackhawks when they defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final. He was then traded to Columbus on June 30 as part of a seven-player deal.

Saad thinks he will receive his championship ring this weekend.

"I'll imagine I'll get it throughout the day sometime or after the game," he said. "I'm not sure."

When Saad has it in hand, the memories will not be of how his time with the Blackhawks ended but what he accomplished there.

"It's not bittersweet," Saad said. "Just sweet. You're celebrating getting a championship. Then you're onto hockey."

McDavid feeling pressure during Oilers' losing streak

Saturday, 10.17.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Derek Van Diest - NHL.com Correspondent

EDMONTON -- Each scoreless game that Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid plays and his team does not win, the pressure grows.

Four games into his NHL career, McDavid, the No. 1 pick in the 2015 NHL Draft, has one goal, his only point of the season. He did not score in a 4-2 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Thursday in the Oilers' home opener, finishing minus-3.

It is not the start envisioned for the most anticipated player to join the League since Sidney Crosby in 2005.

"There is pressure, but as much as the pressure this team has from the outside, internally we're putting more pressure on ourselves to succeed," McDavid said Friday. "We had high expectations for this year, and obviously, starting 0-4 is not where we want to be, so we want to get this thing turned around."

Unbeaten Canadiens prepared for visit by Red Wings

Saturday, 10.17.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

BROSSARD, Quebec -- A 5-3 home loss to the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday made the Detroit Red Wings the second-to-last Eastern Conference team to lose this season.

The Red Wings have an opportunity to knock off the last team Saturday.

The Montreal Canadiens are off to their first 5-0-0 start and will try to extend that team record against the Red Wings at Bell Centre (7 p.m. ET: NHLN, CBC, TVA Sports, FS-D).

After Montreal started the season with wins at the Toronto Maple Leafs, Boston Bruins and Ottawa Senators, all games it was favored to win, the streak was extended with a 3-2 win at the Pittsburgh Penguins and a 3-0 win against the New York Rangers in the Canadiens' home opener Thursday.

"It's early in the season but we've played a lot of good teams," Canadiens coach Michel Therrien said Friday. "We had Pittsburgh, then last night we had the Rangers, and now it doesn't stop because we've got Detroit tomorrow night."

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