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Latest Headlines

Devils forward Elias tests positive for mumps: report

Friday, 12.26.2014 / 1:51 PM / News

NHL.com Staff

New Jersey Devils forward Patrik Elias has tested positive for the mumps, general manager Lou Lamoriello told NorthJersey.com on Friday. Elias did not play Tuesday in a 2-1 shootout loss to the Carolina Hurricanes.

Right wing Martin Havlat was also tested but results came back negative. Havlat and Elias will each miss the game Saturday against the New York Rangers.

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Peter DeBoer fired as Devils coach

Friday, 12.26.2014 / 1:39 PM / News

NHL.com

The New Jersey Devils have fired coach Peter DeBoer.

The Devils (12-17-7) are seventh in the Metropolitan Division with 31 points. DeBoer was in his fourth season as New Jersey's coach.

General manager Lou Lamoriello did not comment on the reasons behind the move or a possible replacement for DeBoer. In a release, the Devils said there would be no further comment until Lamoriello addresses the team Saturday.

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Panthers prospect Grimaldi fine-tuning game in AHL

Friday, 12.26.2014 / 12:07 PM / AHL Update

Kinsey Janke - Special to NHL.com

Before Rocco Grimaldi arrived under his tutelage, San Antonio Rampage coach Tom Rowe already knew a fair amount about what exactly the 5-foot-6 wing could do on the ice.

"I watched him on video quite a bit, and I'd watch him on TV, which sometimes isn't the best way to do it, but it gives you a good idea," Rowe said. "I loved the fact that he's quick, and he moved the puck well and could beat guys one-on-one. Those were the things that stood out to me."

Finding Grimaldi wasn't hard. A product of the U.S. National Team Development Program and the University of North Dakota, the California-born 21-year-old had already won three gold medals in international play before the Florida Panthers selected him No. 33 at the 2011 NHL Draft. He added a fourth gold medal with the United States at the 2013 IIHF World Junior Championships, scoring twice in a 3-1 win against Sweden in the final game.

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Penguins' Downie, Greiss test positive for mumps

Friday, 12.26.2014 / 11:20 AM / News

PittsburghPenguins.com

Steve Downie and Thomas Greiss have tested positive for the mumps and remain in isolation, Pittsburgh Penguins General Manager Jim Rutherford announced.

Brandon Sutter tested negative and has been cleared to return to the team.

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Resilient Crawford focused ahead of Winter Classic

Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

CHICAGO -- It's difficult to find a word that adequately describes the season Corey Crawford is having for the Chicago Blackhawks.

Impressive, steady and dazzling could all work for the majority of his outings. In 20 games, Chicago's No.1 goalie is 12-6-2 with a 2.00 goals-against average, a .923 save percentage, and one shutout. He's playing noticeably better under the guidance of first-year Blackhawks goaltending coach Jimmy Waite, and is a big reason Chicago is leading the NHL in penalty-killing.

"Commend him on getting off to a great start," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said of Crawford earlier this season. "His focus has been excellent every day on the ice, the practice days as well, but he really seems like he’s concentrating on the next shots, the next situations. His preparation has been excellent."

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Super 16: Plenty to play for at the holiday break

Friday, 12.26.2014 / 3:00 AM / Super 16: NHL Power Rankings

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

If recent history is correct, the number of teams that can win the Stanley Cup is quite large. Expand "recent history" to the past 15 years, and it looks more like the pool of potential Cup winners is a little smaller.

Three times in the past five years, the eventual NHL champion was far from the top of the League standings at the holiday break. In 2012, the Los Angeles Kings had just changed coaches when everyone scattered for a few days in late December. In 2009, the Pittsburgh Penguins were still two months from hiring Dan Bylsma to replace Michel Therrien.
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Fantasy top 30 goalies: Schneider needs time

Thursday, 12.25.2014 / 12:00 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Evan Sporer - NHL.com Staff Writer

Every Thursday during the season, NHL.com's Evan Sporer will provide you with in-depth analysis of goaltenders. From updated weekly top-30 rankings to trending players and more, Sporer will be your go-to guy for advice on fantasy goalies all season long.

Of the items on the checklist for New Jersey Devils coach Peter DeBoer to begin the regular season was to make sure goaltender Cory Schneider knew he was the team's starting goalie.

He's accomplished that and more. Schneider started the Devils' first 20 games of the season, a stretch that broke Martin Brodeur's New Jersey record for most consecutive starts.
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Finland faces challenge for World Juniors repeat

Thursday, 12.25.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2015 World Junior Championship

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

The Finland National Junior Team will look to become the first in seven years to win back-to-back gold medals when the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship takes center stage this week in Montreal and Toronto.

Canada was the most recent repeat champion, winning five straight golds between 2005 and 2009. They'll be one of nine other teams looking to deny the Finns a second straight gold medal at the 11-day event, which runs Dec. 26 through Jan. 5, 2015. 

The Group A field, which consists of Finland, Canada, the United States, Slovakia and Germany, will play preliminary-round games at Bell Centre in Montreal.

The schedule-makers provided quite an offering for fans on opening day with the defending champion Finns playing against the United States at 3 p.m. ET (NHLN-US, NHL.com).

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Unmasked: Canada playing catch up in goal

Thursday, 12.25.2014 / 3:00 AM / Unmasked

Kevin Woodley - NHL.com Correspondent

There may not be the crisis declared by some observers after Canada stretched its gold-medal drought to five years at the IIHF World Junior Championship with a non-podium finish in 2014. But as the country prepares to host the 2015 tournament after two years without any medal, there is little question Canada has lagged behind in the goaltender arms race.

The fact Hockey Canada has spent two years building a national goaltending development model, which will include the country's first goalie-coach certification program, is as strong an admission as possible.

Sweden instituted a similar national plan a decade ago and its formation is credited for its rise up the international goaltending ranks, just as Finland improved its goaltending with the introduction of their groundbreaking program almost 20 years earlier.

So it's not surprising Hockey Canada recently sent a six-person advisory group to those countries to learn more about their goaltending programs.

"This is stuff that should have been done 10 years ago but better late than never," said Corey Hirsch, a former NHL goalie and goalie coach who is now consulting for Hockey Canada and was on the trip to Scandinavia. "We recognized it and we're doing something about it."

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Group B favorite Sweden aims to reclaim WJC gold

Thursday, 12.25.2014 / 3:00 AM / 2015 World Junior Championship

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

The journey is different but the destination remains the same for Sweden.

As the host nation for the 2014 IIHF World Junior Championship, Sweden was counted among the favorites. And they lived up to challenge, reaching the gold-medal game for the third straight year.

But much like 2013, when Sweden lost to the United States in the championship game in Russia, Sweden this time lost to Finland 3-2 in overtime.

While the 2014 WJC didn't end the way Sweden wanted, it's something the players and coaching staff have no intention of reliving heading into the 2015 tournament, which will be held in Montreal and Toronto.

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Quote of the Day

I remember the first time at Wrigley Field all of us had the long johns, the turtlenecks and the extra equipment because we were afraid of being cold. Halfway through the first period everybody's ripping everything off and we just ended up wearing what we would normally wear for a game at the United Center.

— Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Sharp on the 2009 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic