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Latest Headlines

NHL announces changes to Draft Lottery format

Under phase-in plan, odds will be adjusted to reflect increasing competitive balance in 2015; Lottery will be expanded to determine first three selections in 2016

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 3:00 PM / News

NHL.com

NEW YORK -- The National Hockey League announced today changes to its Draft Lottery, a weighted system implemented and utilized to determine the order of selection in the first round of the NHL Draft for the 14 Clubs not qualifying for the Stanley Cup Playoffs (or the Clubs that have acquired the first-round drafting positions of those non-playoff teams).

These changes will be phased in over a two-year period, beginning with the Draft Lottery in 2015.

2015 NHL Draft Lottery

The odds of winning the first overall selection in the NHL Draft for the 14 non-Playoff teams will be adjusted to more appropriately reflect the current state of competitive balance in the League. This will result in a more evenly-balanced allocation of odds, with the 10 highest-finishing non-Playoff qualifying teams receiving higher (better) Draft Lottery odds than they received previously and the four lowest-finishing teams receiving lower (worse) odds. The revised set of odds will remain in effect year-to-year in the future.

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Gretzky hopes '84 Oilers can 'rub off' on current group

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 10:27 AM / News

NHL.com

Wayne Gretzky stood front and center during the Edmonton Oilers' glory days, which began 30 years ago with their Stanley Cup Final win against the New York Islanders that sparked a run of five championships in seven seasons.

The Oilers made their share of appearances in the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the years after the trade of Gretzky and the dynasty's end following a 1990 Cup triumph against the Boston Bruins, even coming within a win of a sixth title in 2006, when they lost Game 7 to the Carolina Hurricanes.

But the franchise hasn't tasted a postseason game since and has spent the past eight seasons perennially near the bottom of the NHL standings. As the 1984 Oilers get set to reunite Oct. 10 at Rexall Place, the day after Edmonton's season opener against the Calgary Flames, Gretzky would like to see the hoopla surrounding the event have a positive effect on the current players.

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Veteran defenseman Mottau decides to retire

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 8:40 AM / News

NHL.com

Veteran NHL defenseman Mike Mottau has decided to retire, he told CSN New England's Joe Haggerty on Tuesday.

"It was time," Mottau said. "I'm happy with my decision, and it's on to the next thing."

A seventh-round pick (No. 182) of the New York Rangers, Mottau spent the bulk of his career with the New Jersey Devils, playing in 235 of his 321 games over his three seasons there.

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Over the Boards: Bruins believe in Ferguson's ability

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / Over the Boards

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

John Ferguson Jr.'s major miscalculation eight years ago as the general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs has served to stabilize the Boston Bruins goaltending for what should be years to come. Now that Ferguson has joined the Bruins as executive director of player personnel, he finally can cash in on the ability of the best player he drafted in his nearly five years in Toronto.

Yes, we're talking about the trade of Tuukka Rask for Andrew Raycroft from June 24, 2006. Maple Leafs fans can proceed with caution through the next several paragraphs.

Ferguson thought he was doing the right thing when he traded Rask to the Bruins for Raycroft. He thought Justin Pogge was the future No. 1 goalie in Toronto, meaning Rask, the No. 21 pick in the 2005 NHL Draft, was expendable, especially if the return was Raycroft, a goalie who was supposed to be entering his prime.

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Red Wings counting on 'kids' to maintain playoff run

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

The Detroit Red Wings used to rely solely on their veteran stars to guide them into the Stanley Cup Playoffs and to sometimes take them on a deep run. They also used to play in the Western Conference. Those are memories now.

Change came to Hockeytown last season, when the Red Wings moved to the Eastern Conference and made the playoffs for a 23rd consecutive season on the backs of young players coach Mike Babcock still calls "kids."

They struggled in the playoffs and Detroit was knocked out quickly, losing in five games to the Boston Bruins in the Eastern Conference First Round, but for the development of the team, how the Red Wings got there was as important as getting there.

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Healthy Zetterberg, Datsyuk keys to Red Wings lineup

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

The Detroit Red Wings' move to the Eastern Conference was expected to be met with domination by a franchise that has been a stalwart among the elite in the Western Conference for years.

Detroit pushed the eventual champion Chicago Blackhawks to the limit in 2013, and the reloaded Red Wings, complete with the additions of Daniel Alfredsson and Stephen Weiss and a few younger players who played so well in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, were expected to challenge for the top spot in the conference.

It didn't go that way, in part because of an avalanche of injuries to key players. The Red Wings kept their incredible postseason streak (23 seasons) alive, but lost in the first round to the Boston Bruins.

General manager Ken Holland has been trying to upgrade the defense corps through free agency for three years but hasn't been able to. The forward group looks deep and talented, as several prospects have proven they can play at this level in the past two seasons.

Whether Detroit can be more than a fringe playoff team could depend on better health and possibly an addition on defense at some point during the season.

Here's a look at the projected 2014-15 lineup for the Red Wings:

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Veterans' health tops Red Wings' five questions

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock told anyone who would listen last season that even with significant injuries to veteran stars his team was going to reach the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Babcock was right. The Red Wings went to the playoffs for a 23rd consecutive season.

To extend the streak to 24 seasons, and to give Babcock a jolt of confidence to add to his optimism, the Red Wings will need positive answers to the following five questions:

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Red Wings' Weiss ready to leave last season behind

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

Bring up last season during a phone conversation with Detroit Red Wings center Stephen Weiss and as he talks you can picture him squirming on the other end, recalling the pain that used to shoot through his lower body and the multiple surgeries he had to hopefully correct it.

"I really have tried not to think about last year at all," Weiss said. "I don't really know why that happened. I try to do everything in my power to make sure those things don't happen, and when they do it's pretty frustrating."

The Red Wings signed Weiss to a five-year, $24.5 million contract last summer thinking he would be their No. 2 center, affording coach Mike Babcock the ability to play Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg together on the first line.

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Mantha leads list of Red Wings' top 10 prospects

Wednesday, 08.20.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

To say the Detroit Red Wings struggled with injuries last season is putting the deluge of trips to the trainer's room lightly.

However, there was a silver lining to all the ailments. It meant 12 rookies got into the lineup at some point, including nine who made their NHL debuts. It might not have been ideal, but general manager Ken Holland, coach Mike Babcock and their staffs got ample opportunity to see what the future could look like.

"It was a great learning experience about our prospects," Red Wings director of player development Jiri Fischer said. "We got a firsthand glimpse of what guys can really do. Thanks to so many injuries and so many voids to be filled in one season, we really got to learn about our guys, what they potentially can bring at the next level."

Here's a look at the Red Wings' top 10 prospects, according to NHL.com:

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Jordan Subban scores alley-oop on brother Malcolm

Tuesday, 08.19.2014 / 9:29 PM / NHL Insider

NHL.com

Jordan Subban was asked to do something unique in the practice-ending shootout Tuesday.

Did he ever.

The Vancouver Canucks defenseman prospect scored an alley-oop goal against his brother Malcolm Subban, a Boston Bruins goalie prospect, at a preseason conditioning camp in Toronto.

"That was the first time I tried it; we just made it up as we went along," Jordan told the Canucks website. "We were told to have fun and do something silly, like the NBA dunk contest, so I guess that was my inspiration."

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Quote of the Day

He seemed to thrive on his own and didn't really need any push from me. I certainly don't want to get in the way of the coaches. You see how that goes sometimes. I never really worried about it and just enjoyed the ride.

— David Ekblad on his son's [Aaron Ekblad] journey to the NHL, signing with the Florida Panthers