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Capitals expect Oshie to flourish on Ovechkin line

Saturday, 10.03.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Katie Brown - NHL.com Correspondent

ARLINGTON, Va. -- The Washington Capitals are confident forward T.J. Oshie will bring more than his shootout skills to the table this season.

Capitals coach Barry Trotz said playing Oshie on a line with captain Alex Ovechkin will open up more scoring opportunities for Oshie than ever before. And coming from the Western Conference, Oshie has the advantage of being unfamiliar to Eastern Conference opponents.

"Playing with a megastar like [Ovechkin], he's not going to get as much attention as he did in St. Louis because everyone's worried about [Ovechkin], so he may have a little more room on that side," Trotz said. "Teams will go stand by [Ovechkin] and that's OK, it just means Oshie's open."

Bruins' Bergeron preseason pick for Selke Trophy

Saturday, 10.03.2015 / 3:00 AM / Trophy Tracker

David Satriano - NHL.com Staff Writer

Boston Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron has won the Selke Trophy each of the past two seasons and three of the past four. A win this season would tie him with Hockey Hall of Fame member Bob Gainey for the most all-time. And with the way Bergeron has excelled in the defensive aspects of the game the past five seasons, it's no surprise he is the preseason favorite for the Selke Trophy for the 2015-16 season.

Enhanced statistics have become the norm in the NHL, and Bergeron has been at the top of most of the important categories. His shot-attempts percentage (SAT%) last season at 5-on-5 was 58.09, which was sixth among forwards to play at least 50 games. Bergeron's SAT Relative, a ratio of his on-ice SAT% vs. his off-ice SAT%, was second at 8.9 percent.

Bergeron led the League in faceoff winning percentage at .602 while taking (1,951) and winning (1,175) the most faceoffs in the League.

Ducks hoping additions lead to Stanley Cup Final

Saturday, 10.03.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2015-16 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams.

ANAHEIM -- Change is good for the Anaheim Ducks.

At least that was the thinking of general manager Bob Murray, who brought in four forwards, a defenseman and a goalie after the Ducks fell one win short of the Stanley Cup Final last season.

Some of those moves were because of the NHL salary cap. But Murray never is satisfied when it comes to upgrading his team's roster. Will it be improved enough to get Anaheim to the Cup Final in 2015-16? That will be played out during the coming months.

The players understood the changes and liked them in what has been an all-business training camp.

"The pieces [Murray] brought in are definitely pieces of the puzzle that we need to get over the hump to move forward," said forward Corey Perry. "The guys have come in and jelled well together. Everybody's getting along with everyone. Everybody's kind of fitting in. That's kind of the atmosphere we want here."

Stewart's ability to contribute among Ducks' X-factors

Saturday, 10.03.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

ANAHEIM -- There are not a lot of question marks with the Anaheim Ducks lineup. They remain deep at all positions after replacing integral pieces from a roster that last season reached the Western Conference Final.

Here are three X-factors showing how some of those lesser-known pieces could make significant impacts for Anaheim this season:

Blues feel pieces are in place for long postseason

Saturday, 10.03.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Louie Korac - NHL.com Correspondent

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2015-16 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams.

ST. LOUIS -- It's business as usual for the St. Louis Blues as they enter the 2015-16 season.

Business as usual from a standpoint of continuing regular-season success, which has been a staple the past four seasons under coach Ken Hitchcock; their 389 points are more than any other team.

But despite all the regular-season success, the Blues have one Stanley Cup Playoff series win to show for it, including last season's loss to the Minnesota Wild in a Western Conference First Round series.

Change was expected during the offseason, but much of the core remains in place. The biggest change was the acquisition of right wing Troy Brouwer, goalie prospect Pheonix Copley and a third-round pick in the 2016 NHL Draft from the Washington Capitals for right wing T.J. Oshie.

With a few other minor alterations, the Blues feel they're in a good position to be among the Stanley Cup contenders again. And with a new season starting Oct. 8, Hitchcock, who signed a one-year contract May 26, wants his players looking ahead and not back.

Picking No. 1 goalie, Stastny among Blues' X-factors

Saturday, 10.03.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015-2016 Season Preview

Louie Korac - NHL.com Correspondent

ST. LOUIS -- The St. Louis Blues want to prove they are more than just a regular-season success.

Here are three X-factors that will impact whether the Blues can have success in the Stanley Cup Playoffs and reward a fan base that has been waiting for a Stanley Cup for 49 years:

Who's on the hot seat in the Eastern Conference

Saturday, 10.03.2015 / 3:00 AM / 2015 Molson Canadian NHL Face-Off

John Kreiser - NHL.com Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2014-15 season, which begins Wednesday, Oct. 7.

With the start of another season days away, the pressure is already starting to build for some players who know they'll have to be big-time producers for their teams to push for a berth in the Stanley Cup Playoffs or contend for a championship.

Here's a look at a player from each of the 16 teams in the Eastern Conference who'll be under pressure to perform as soon as the puck drops:

Red Wings top Maple Leafs in Babcock's return

Saturday, 10.03.2015 / 12:05 AM / News

Paul Harris - NHL.com Correspondent

DETROIT -- Mike Babcock was focused on what was happening on the ice, not the fact this was his first game behind the visiting team's bench at Joe Louis Arena in 11 years.

"I didn't think much about that," he said after watching his former team, the Detroit Red Wings, defeat his new team, the Toronto Maple Leafs, 4-2 on Friday in a preseason game.

"I was saying tonight when I got here it's been 12 years I guess since I was with another team when you think about the lockout," said Babcock, whose last time behind the visitors bench here was Jan. 3, 2004, during his second and last season as coach of the Anaheim Ducks.

Babcock coached the Red Wings for the past 10 seasons before signing an eight-year contract with the Maple Leafs on May 20.

"I talked to [Red Wings general manager] Kenny Holland before the game; he gets to deal with new people, that's energizing for him. I'm doing a bunch of new stuff that's energizing for me," Babcock said. "And as much as I loved it here, I think for me, in the end, it was probably time to go, and I think they're in a great situation."

Roundup: Capitals score late, top Bruins in shootout

Friday, 10.02.2015 / 10:19 PM / News

NHL.com

Alex Ovechkin had the tying goal with 2:34 remaining in the third period, and T.J. Oshie and Evgeny Kuznetsov scored in the shootout to give the Washington Capitals a 2-1 preseason win against the Boston Bruins at Verizon Center on Friday.

The Bruins took a 1-0 lead 4:06 into the game on a goal by Loui Eriksson and held it until Ovechkin finished a passing play from Oshie and Kuznetsov by beating Bruins backup goalie Jeremy Smith.

Washington killed a Boston power play during the 3-on-3 overtime.

AHL announces four for 2016 Hall of Fame class

Friday, 10.02.2015 / 5:23 PM / News

NHL.com

Bruce Cline, Ralph Keller, Jean-Francois Labbe and Bruce Landon were announced as the American Hockey League Hall of Fame class of 2016.

The honorees will be enshrined Feb. 1, 2016, in Syracuse, N.Y., at the 2016 AHL All-Star Classic.

"The foundation of the American Hockey League has been formed by the outstanding achievements and contributions of those who have excelled here over the last eight decades," AHL president David Andrews said. "The AHL Board of Governors is proud to unanimously approve the Selection Committee's recommendation for the induction of these four individuals into the American Hockey League Hall of Fame."

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