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NHL Insider

Horcoff's return could be help young Oilers need

Saturday, 11.13.2010 / 6:38 PM / NHL Insider

Sergei J. Feldman - NHL.com Staff Writer

NEW YORK -- Shawn Horcoff is used to having the best seat in the house every night -- beside his teammates on the Edmonton Oilers' bench before taking to the ice for his shifts.

Not as of late, however. The 32-year-old captain has spent the past three games sitting in the worst seat -- the press box.

After being sidelined with a leg injury during a game against the Chicago Blackhawks last Sunday, Horcoff has seen his team go 1-2-1 during their current five-game road trip, which ends Sunday against the Rangers at Madison Square Garden.

Their only win came in that Blackhawks game, a 2-1 come-from-behind victory.

Heritage Jersey highlights Rangers' rich tradition

Friday, 11.12.2010 / 11:54 PM / NHL Insider

David Kalan - NHL.com Staff Writer

NEW YORK -- Before the puck drops every night at Madison Square Garden, the fans hear a phrase so simple and yet so important to the men on the ice wearing blue.

"I am a Ranger."

As the franchise kicked off a week of celebrations for its 85th anniversary Friday night, players past and present reflected on what that statement meant to them as they gathered at the NHL Powered by Reebok Store on New York's Sixth Avenue and at the ice rink in Rockefeller Center a few blocks north to get the organization's birthday party underway. The highlight of Friday night's event was the unveiling and release of the Rangers' new Heritage Jersey, which will be worn for the first time when Original Six rival Boston comes to Madison Square Garden on Nov. 17.

As crowds bedecked in blueshirts packed both events, Rangers memorabilia on loan from the Hockey Hall of Fame, as well as game-used jerseys dating back more than six decades lined the walls, and the impact was not lost on the players who currently call the Garden home.

L.A. legend Dionne likes look of present-day Kings

Friday, 11.12.2010 / 1:17 PM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

Marcel Dionne never made it past the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs during his 11-plus seasons in Los Angeles; but if his old team doesn't advance beyond the Western Conference Semifinals this season the "Little Beaver" would be stunned.

"I think this year is the year," Dionne told NHL.com Monday from the Hockey Hall of Fame. "They haven't lost at home yet and if (Anze) Kopitar even manages 35 to 40 goals that's going to be huge for them."

Kopitar only has 4 goals through 14 games so far this season, so asking for 40 at this rate is probably a bit much. However, Dionne, who tries to watch the Kings as much as he can, is a big believer in the overall team that GM Dean Lombardi has built.


Brodeur, Rolston back in, Langenbrunner out

Friday, 11.12.2010 / 1:10 PM / NHL Insider

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

NEWARK, N.J. -- New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur will return between the pipes Friday against the Edmonton Oilers after missing the last two games while recovering from a bruised right elbow.
The two-game absence was the longest for Brodeur since being sidelined for 50 games during the 2008-09 season when he needed surgery to repair a torn biceps muscle in his left arm.
Brodeur, 38, practiced with the team Thursday for the first time since being injured Nov. 3 against the Chicago Blackhawks. He declared himself ready to go following Friday's morning skate.
"It's a bruise," Brodeur told the media. "It's a little tender, but moving-wise, I'm doing stuff I need to do to be able to perform and I feel all right. I pretty much can do everything. I feel it once in a while, but that's the tenderness of the arm. I'm good enough to shoot the puck, play the puck, poke check; it's been all right, no problem."


Ovi-Stamkos scoreless after 2 periods

Thursday, 11.11.2010 / 10:30 PM / NHL Insider


It took more than two periods, but both Tampa Bay's Steven Stamkos and Washington's Alex Ovechkin finally hit the scoresheet during their meeting at the Verizon Center on Thursday night.
Both players had multiple points in the third period, with Stamkos getting a goal and an assist and Ovechkin a goal and a pair of assists as the Caps beat the Lightning 6-3.

Stamkos got on the board first when scored his League-leading 14th goal at 12:43 of the third period, bringing the Lightning within 4-3. He used a quick snap of his wrists to lift a 10-footer over Michal Neuvirth's shoulder. But Ovechkin matched him at 15:08, taking a pass from Alexander Semin and beating Dan Ellis from the left circle for a 5-3 lead.

Davidson's goal: Build a Cup winner

Thursday, 11.11.2010 / 8:12 PM / NHL Insider


John Davidson became the first goaltender to go from junior hockey to the pros when he was taken by the St. Louis Blues with the fifth pick in the 1973 NHL Amateur Draft.

In the years since, Davidson has gone from an NHL goalie who played for the Blues and led the Rangers to the 1979 Stanley Cup Final to a longtime broadcaster for the Rangers and numerous national TV outlets to his current position as the Blues' team president.

In a wide-ranging interview on Thursday's "NHL Hour With Commissioner Gary Bettman," he talked about making those various traditions, weighed in on current issues like head hits and the new All-Star format and addressed the trade that brought goalie Jaroslav Halak to St. Louis and continued the franchise's resurgence in the state of Missouri.

Avs persevere despite rash of injuries

Thursday, 11.11.2010 / 6:03 PM / NHL Insider

Rick Sadowski  -  NHL.com Correspondent

CENTENNIAL, Colo. – The Colorado Avalanche trainer's room is beginning to resemble a hospital ward.

With 10 players sidelined with injuries, including No. 1 goalie Craig Anderson, four regular defensemen and three of the Avalanche's top-six forwards, it would be natural for players to wonder if the team is jinxed.

"I think sometimes it may feel like that," defenseman John-Michael Liles told NHL.com. "It's never easy, but it gives other guys opportunities to step in and fill the void. At the same time, it has to be up to each and every guy to step up. It can't be, 'Well, this guy goes down so that guy has to step in and fill his shoes.' It's got to be everyone, not just one player."

Caps know improved Bolts pose big challenge

Thursday, 11.11.2010 / 1:37 PM / NHL Insider

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

"He's just a natural goal-scorer, that guy. His release is just incredible. He competes and he can make plays, too, but he's just a goal scorer. The way he shoots the puck and his vision toward the net is incredible." -- Mike Green on Steven Stamkos

WASHINGTON -- Growing up in Calgary, Mike Green never had to worry about being one of the last kids picked on the schoolyard in any competition.

If Green is selected for the 2011 NHL All-Star Game presented by Discover, the talented offensive defenseman probably won't have to wait very long to have his name called, either.

This year's game has a new wrinkle with the introduction of a fantasy draft to decide how the players will be divided into teams, and Green's skill set probably makes him a desired commodity in the offensive-minded contest.

"I think it is interesting. I think it throws a little bit of a curveball into it and it will be exciting," said Green, who has yet to appear in an All-Star Game. "I was a bit of a freak when I was young. I was really tall and big and now I'm just kind of average. When I was young I didn't grow after I was 13 or 14. Yeah, I was always picked. I was lucky."

Kovalchuk's frustrations build as Devils lose again

Wednesday, 11.10.2010 / 11:10 PM / NHL Insider

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

NEWARK, N.J. -- Ilya Kovalchuk has never looked this downcast.
The New Jersey Devils' forward was at a loss for words following one of the most frustrating games of his nine-season career, a 5-4 shootout loss to the Buffalo Sabres at Prudential Center on Wednesday night.
On two occasions with the game on the line and the puck on his stick, Kovalchuk, who signed a 15-year, $100 million contract with the Devils this summer, couldn't get the job done.
When asked after the game if he's ever experienced anything like this before, he replied, "No."
With less than two minutes remaining in regulation, Kovalchuk broke in on Sabres rookie goalie Jhonas Enroth on a breakaway but fired high and over the net. 

NHL teams take time to honor the military on Nov. 11

Wednesday, 11.10.2010 / 7:23 PM / NHL Insider


On any other game day, the Vancouver Canucks would be holding a morning skate prior to their game that evening. But Nov. 11 is not just any game day -- it's Remembrance Day in Canada and Veterans Day in the United States -- and the Canucks are skipping their morning skate prior to their game against the Senators in Ottawa.

Instead of getting ready for their game that night, the Canucks have canceled their morning skate in Canada's capital and will take the entire team to the Remembrance Day ceremony in downtown Ottawa -- one of the largest ceremonies in Canada.

Before the game, the Senators will host a special ceremony with several veterans and alumni taking part, including Tony Licari (a World War II veteran and who played for the Detroit Red Wings); Howard Riopelle (a former Montreal Canadien and World War II veteran); and Bombardier Karine Moreau and Capt. Pierre Maillet (Canadian Forces members).
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Quote of the Day

The groove of being behind a bench is going to be interesting at first, but thank God we have a few exhibition games to get rid of those cobwebs. Overall the excitement of it all and the freshness and coming back refreshed, all those things are going to be assets. If [the players] come ready to give their best effort in practice and games, good things are going to happen. I'm always looking for results. It's not always on the scoreboard. It's winning and building something.

— Bryan Trottier on making his return to coaching as an assistant with the Sabres