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(Page 14 of 246)
Latest Headlines

No. 1 pick Ekblad leads Panthers' top 10 prospects

Sunday, 08.17.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

The Florida Panthers have been extremely busy building quite a formidable pool of prospects after choosing in the top five of the NHL Draft four of the past five years.

The time has come to begin reaping the benefits of those picks.

"I think bringing in [new coach] Gerard Gallant and his staff, coupled with the dynamic of what our roster looks like right now and what's coming through the pipeline will be a springboard moving forward," Panthers director of scouting Scott Luce told NHL.com. "I think we're going to be a significantly improved team this year. With the way our roster is set up and the great push of players set to come in, that combination will help us get to the next level."

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With Gallant at helm, Panthers eye quick turnaround

Sunday, 08.17.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Alain Poupart - NHL.com Correspondent

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2014-15 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout August.

The Florida Panthers' blueprint of building around their talented high draft picks hasn't changed. What general manager Dale Tallon is hoping is the addition of a coach with NHL experience and veterans who have won the Stanley Cup can get his team out of a two-year funk.

Florida finished last and next-to-last in the overall standings the past two seasons, but Tallon is thinking about the Stanley Cup Playoffs in 2014-15.

"My goal is to compete for a playoff spot all the way right to the bitter end," Tallon said. "That's what we're looking to do. I think if everybody has years that live up to their potential and the players develop and come together as a team and with our new coach, our goaltending and another year of experience for our younger guys, I think this team has got the ability if we stay healthy to compete for a spot."

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Panthers need Kulikov, Gudbranson to take next step

Sunday, 08.17.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Alain Poupart - NHL.com Correspondent

Dmitry Kulikov
Defense - FLA
GOALS: 8 | ASST: 11 | PTS: 19
SOG: 127 | +/-: -26
Because of their great promise and their unique abilities, forwards Aleksander Barkov, Nick Bjugstad and Jonathan Huberdeau have become focal points for the Florida Panthers. They're also among the biggest reasons for optimism for a fan base that has had to constantly re-learn the meaning of patience.

But there are a couple of other first-round picks from past years upon whom the Panthers will rely heavily in the upcoming season, two players at the core of Florida's youth movement on defense.

Dmitry Kulikov was the last Panthers first-round pick before Dale Tallon became the team's general manager, while Erik Gudbranson was Tallon's first No. 1 pick. Each was a restricted free agent this summer before being re-signed, Kulikov to a three-year contract and Gudbranson to a two-year contract.

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Finding offense among Panthers' five questions

Sunday, 08.17.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Alain Poupart - NHL.com Correspondent

After making an improbable run to the Southeast Division title in 2011-12, the Florida Panthers stumbled badly the past two seasons, finishing with the worst record in the NHL in 2012-13 and the second-worst last season.

The Panthers still have an abundance of highly touted prospects, either on their roster or in the system, and they also have a new coach in former Columbus Blue Jackets coach and former Montreal Canadiens assistant Gerard Gallant. But they also have a lot of question marks heading into next season, and here are five that jump out:

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Commissioner Bettman takes Ice Bucket Challenge

Saturday, 08.16.2014 / 5:41 PM / NHL Insider

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

With so many charitable causes seeking much-needed donations, who knew a series of videos showing people dunking ice water over their heads could make such a difference?

The exponential growth of the Ice Bucket Challenge through social media has helped raise overall awareness of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, and members of the hockey community have done their part.

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman accepted the challenge Thursday while in Columbus to help promote the 2015 NHL All-Star Game at Nationwide Arena. Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs, Winnipeg Jets executive chairman Mark Chipman and ESPN host John Buccigross were among those who issued the challenge, the Commissioner said.

Commissioner Bettman challenged Toronto Maple Leafs president Brendan Shanahan, Calgary Flames president Brian Burke, Los Angeles Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake and Columbus Blue Jackets owner John McConnell.

Burke accepted the challenge on Friday, as did McConnell.

NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly accepted the challenge Saturday.

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Kane highlights NHL players in Buffalo summer league

Saturday, 08.16.2014 / 10:51 AM / NHL Insider

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

Patrick Kane
Right Wing - CHI
GOALS: 29 | ASST: 40 | PTS: 69
SOG: 227 | +/-: 7
Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane has won the Stanley Cup twice and the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2013. But the NHL star added to his trophy case this summer when he raised the Father Charles Cup in his hometown of Buffalo.

He even paid $265 for the honor.

This is the Fattey Hockey League, the finest summer league in Western New York, where high school players skate against some from the NHL.

"There's never been a great skate in Buffalo in the summer. The concept was, 'How do we make it?" said Nik Fattey, the founder and namesake of the FHL. "There are so many good hockey players in Western New York. So how do we get everybody together to play in a league?"

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Sabres hope veterans help prospects adjust to lineup

Saturday, 08.16.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

The Buffalo Sabres finished 2013-14 with the fewest points in a full 82-game NHL season since the New York Islanders had the same amount, 52, in 2000-01.

Buffalo needed to rebuild, but it went beyond just bottoming out in the standings for the first part of the season. Coach Ted Nolan arrived in November and at least helped make the club's losses more competitive.

For Nolan, success next season might not be defined by wins or points, but by how some of the franchise's top young players develop at the NHL level. In an effort to help those young players, the Sabres added several veterans while expunging some bad contracts.

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Sabres expect rapid improvement after summer moves

Saturday, 08.16.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Jon Lane - NHL.com Staff Writer

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2014-15 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout August.

Buffalo Sabres general manager Tim Murray set the bar at his season-ending news conference in April while evaluating the NHL's worst team in 2013-14. On the job for three months, Murray made it clear that change was coming — and lots of it.

"A lot of nights, this team was hard to watch," Murray said.

It wasn't pretty. Coach Ron Rolston and GM Darcy Regier were fired following a franchise-worst 4-15-1 start. The Sabres finished last in wins (21) and points (52) and their 150 non-shootout goals was the lowest total in the expansion era. Following what he called a "completely unacceptable" season, Murray refused to buy into a five-year rebuild and accelerated the Sabres' reconstruction with the signing of five free agents on July 1.

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Offense, battle in goal highlight Sabres' five questions

Saturday, 08.16.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Jon Lane - NHL.com Staff Writer

The Buffalo Sabres weren't going to sit back and wait for their young talent to fully mature over time. General manager Tim Murray revamped the roster with the intention of escaping the Eastern Conference basement and perhaps making a little noise in the race to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The road to contention may be long and winding, but days appear brighter in Buffalo if the Sabres can answer five questions heading into the 2014-15 season:

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Sabres' Stewart seeks consistency in contract year

Saturday, 08.16.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL.com's 30 in 30 package: 2014-15

Jon Lane - NHL.com Staff Writer

Chris Stewart doesn't care about the prophecies that the Buffalo Sabres will be vying for gifted prospects Connor McDavid or Jack Eichel at the top of the 2015 NHL Draft. Defiant enough to proclaim the Stanley Cup Playoffs a "realistic goal" for the NHL's worst team in 2013-14, he's moved past what was a disappointing season for both the franchise and the 26-year-old forward.

After scoring 15 goals and 26 points in 58 games, the lowest totals since his rookie year in 2008-09, Stewart is entering this season brimming with confidence. The sweeping changes made in Buffalo have Stewart, acquired in the trade that sent goalie Ryan Miller to the St. Louis Blues in February, primed for a bounceback season.

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Quote of the Day

I'm hoping Bob [Murray] didn't go out and get Dany Heatley just to get someone. I'm sure he's excited and motivated.

— Anaheim Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau on general manager Bob Murray's decision to sign Dany Heatley