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NHL Insider

Devils name Hedberg starting goal vs. Wild

Monday, 01.03.2011 / 7:01 PM / NHL Insider

Martin Brodeur's days as the undisputed No. 1 goaltender for the New Jersey Devils could be over.

Johan Hedberg will get the start for the Devils on Tuesday night against the Minnesota Wild. Brodeur was pulled Saturday against the Carolina Hurricanes after allowing 3 goals on 7 shots. He lasted just 8 minutes in that game, the shortest outing of his 17-season career.

Coach Jacques Lemaire explained his decision to go with Hedberg to reporters Monday: "My thinking? I went with Marty (in Carolina). We didn't win. I'll come back with (Hedberg). And we'll see after that."

Brodeur has played less than 70 games once since 1996-97, and that was only because of a biceps tendon tear he suffered early in the 2008-09 season. This season, Brodeur is 5-18-1 with a 3.15 goals-against average and .882 save percentage.

Canada-Switzerland, Russia-Finland in quarterfinals

Saturday, 01.01.2011 / 12:03 PM / NHL Insider

The second step in the road to the 2011 World Junior Championship gold medal starts Sunday with a pair of quarterfinal matchups.

In the first game, Canada faces Switzerland (3:30 p.m. ET, NHLN-US, TSN). It's the first time the teams have faced each other in medal-round play since the 2002 WJC semifinals, won 4-0 by Canada.

Canada is led by Brayden Schenn, the tournament leader with 7 goals and 14 points. He's 4 points shy of tying Canada's single-tournament record of 18 points, set by Dale McCourt in 1977.

The game also will feature a matchup of Portland Winterhawks teammates Ryan Johansen (Canada) and Nino Niederreiter (Switzerland), who also were taken fourth and fifth, respectively, at the 2010 Entry Draft. 

Revealing first NHL Guardian: The Penguin

Friday, 12.31.2010 / 11:01 PM / NHL Insider

"The Penguin" as a character mirrors the recent history of the city of Pittsburgh. He was raised the son of a steel worker and he grew up watching his dad work in the steel mills. The toughness and gritty determination to provide left an indelible imprint on him.

However, he's a visionary and he loves thinking about how to improve the world around him especially when it comes to his native Pittsburgh. He is a gifted inventor and has a love of science and innovation.

Not even overtime could save Crosby's streak

Wednesday, 12.29.2010 / 11:41 PM / NHL Insider

John Kreiser - Columnist

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- The clock ticked mercilessly toward the end of Sidney Crosby's 25-game point streak Wednesday night as the New York Islanders and Pittsburgh Penguins battled through a hard-fought third period, followed by a five-minute overtime.

The crowd of 14,345, the largest (and loudest) this season at the old barn on Hempstead Turnpike, was revved up in hopes their Islanders could beat the big, bad Penguins -- the top team in the League standings and a club that has dominated the Isles for the last four-plus seasons.

But they were also conscious of something else. Every second that ticked down was one second closer to the end of Sidney Crosby's 25-game point streak, the longest in the NHL since 1992-93.

Crosby's coach cites his consistency

Wednesday, 12.29.2010 / 6:44 PM / NHL Insider

John Kreiser - Columnist

UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- Sidney Crosby had a career's worth of accomplishment -- scoring title, MVP, Stanley Cup, Olympic gold medal -- before the first puck dropped in the 2010-11 season. He and Washington's Alex Ovechkin were widely regarded as the best players in hockey; the answer to the question of who was No. 1 often depended on which team you rooted for.

But like a rocket that has ignited its second stage, Crosby has taken his game to a whole new level -- and carried the Pittsburgh Penguins with him.

Crosby's coach says the key to his captain's improvement has been the fact that this season, he's been great on a nightly basis.

Sid misses hat trick but extends streak to 25 games

Tuesday, 12.28.2010 / 11:07 PM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

PITTSBURGH -- Hats flew from the packed stands at the Consol Energy Center. They landed on the white ice and were immediately scooped up by the Penguins' staff.

Can they give them back?

Sidney Crosby and Matt Cooke laughed on the bench because they already knew what the 18,322 inside the building would soon find out -- that Crosby didn't get a hat trick Tuesday night, and that hundreds of fans had given away their hats for nothing.

Instead, the Penguins' 186th straight sellout crowd was treated to a 2-goal, 2-assist performance from their superstar center, treated to watching him extend his point-scoring streak to 25 games in a 6-3 romp over the Atlanta Thrashers.

Osgood takes another crack at 400 vs. Avalanche

Monday, 12.27.2010 / 4:36 PM / NHL Insider

Rick Sadowski  - Correspondent

DENVER -- Chris Osgood has played some significant games against the Colorado Avalanche, especially in the playoffs, and he will add another one to the list Monday night at the Pepsi Center when he attempts to become the 10th goalie in NHL history to win 400 games.

This will be the Detroit Red Wings' veteran’s third crack at the milestone, after a 4-3 loss to St. Louis on Thursday and a 4-3 overtime defeat to Dallas on Dec. 19 in his previous two games.

Osgood, 38, has posted a 3-3-2 record in eight games this season with a 2.84 goals-against average and .895 save percentage. In 25 regular-season games against the Avalanche, he owns a 10-8-6 record with a 2.67 GAA and .901 save percentage.

Blues beat Wings, deny Osgood 400th win

Friday, 12.24.2010 / 1:05 AM / NHL Insider

For Chris Osgood, getting win No. 400 is proving to be harder than most of the first 399.

Osgood came up short for a second time in his quest to become the 10th goaltender in NHL history to reach the milestone when the Detroit Red Wings' comeback effort came up short in a 4-3 loss at St. Louis on Thursday night.

Patrik Berglund broke a 10-game drought by scoring twice in St. Louis' three-goal first period and Matt D'Agostini's breakaway goal early in the second made it 4-1. That proved to be just enough for the Blues, as Detroit got second-period goals by Nicklas Lidstrom and Patrick Eaves to get within one, then outshot St. Louis 15-4 in the third period -- only to see Jaroslav Halak stop all 15 shots en route to a 35-save performance.

Lemaire not used to watching Devils struggle

Thursday, 12.23.2010 / 11:08 PM / NHL Insider

Mike G. Morreale - Staff Writer

NEWARK, N.J. -- In his first game back as coach, Jacques Lemaire sensed something he had never before experienced behind the New Jersey Devils' bench -- a feeling of defeat.
Needless to say, it bothered Lemaire, who returned Thursday for a third stint as coach of the team he has led to five postseason appearances and a Stanley Cup in 1995.
"I saw so many things," Lemaire told the media following his team's 5-1 loss to the New York Islanders.
"When I was first behind the bench, I was looking at the players trying … not working as hard as I thought they would," he said. "They were trying and they looked like they lost their ability to play the game, which is very strange. I have never seen this in the past, never."

Wang, Snow talk Isles on 'NHL Hour'

Thursday, 12.23.2010 / 8:36 PM / NHL Insider

In spite of their struggles in the standings this season, interest in the New York Islanders has hardly waned if phone calls to the "NHL Hour with Commissioner Gary Bettman" are any indication.

Virtually all season long, Islanders fans have been clamoring as to when Bettman would get either owner Charles Wang or GM Garth Snow as a guest on his show. On Thursday night, the fans got both.

Wang and Snow addressed issues regarding the team's future on Long Island and attempts to rebuild the team, first with Bettman and then nine callers who waited patiently through the show to have their questions answered and concerns heard.

Wang, who has owned the Islanders for the past decade, said he felt it was his "civic responsibility," as someone who moved to New York at the age of 8 to buy the team and attempt to make it successful in Nassau County.
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You could see out there that everybody was willing to compete, to sacrifice, even blocking shots to the end. Even in the third when we were up 5-0, guys were still working hard and blocking shots That's a nice feeling also for the future.

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