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Fantasy top 100 forwards: Lightning stacked up front

Tuesday, 11.04.2014 / 12:00 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Pete Jensen - Fantasy Insider

Every Tuesday during the season, fantasy hockey insider Pete Jensen will provide you with in-depth forward analysis. From updated weekly top 100 rankings to trending players and more, Jensen will be your go-to guy for fantasy forward advice all season long.

Coming into the season, the Tampa Bay Lightning were a complete team on paper -- from their forward group to their blue line to their goaltending.

Tampa Bay has been ravaged by injuries early on, so the fact that the Lightning are still tied atop the Eastern Conference standings through 12 games speaks volumes about their depth. The injury bug started with prospect Jonathan Drouin in training camp, escalated with defenseman Victor Hedman the second week of the season, and continued with Ryan Callahan, Alex Killorn and Brett Connolly in recent weeks.


Blues' Tarasenko combining talent with drive, humility

Tuesday, 11.04.2014 / 9:40 AM / NHL Insider

Louie Korac - Correspondent

HAZELWOOD, Mo. -- The day after Vladimir Tarasenko scored his first NHL hat trick, the St. Louis Blues held an optional skate. More times than not, top-end players in particular typically are inclined take advantage of an off day.

Not Tarasenko.

If it weren't for Alexander Steen stepping onto the ice at the Blues' practice facility that day, Tarasenko would have been first on the ice. Continuous improvement is what matters to the right wing most.

It wasn't just another workout for Tarasenko, who in a 4-3 win against the Dallas Stars last Tuesday became the first Blues player to score a hat trick on an overtime goal since Brett Hull did it Oct. 9, 1997. Tarasenko was spending time improving his craft by shooting pucks -- lots of them. Wrist shot after wrist shot, snapping off a plethora of pucks. It's what turns good shooters into great shooters.


Five Questions: Hitchcock on special teams, goalies

Monday, 11.03.2014 / 11:55 PM / Five Questions With…

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer's Q&A feature called "Five Questions With …" runs every Tuesday. We talk to key figures in the game and ask them questions to gain insight into their lives, careers and the latest news.

The latest edition features St. Louis Blues coach Ken Hitchcock:

NEW YORK -- The St. Louis Blues carry a five-game winning streak into Prudential Center on Tuesday because they're finding ways to win the hard way despite a below-par penalty kill and injuries to some key forwards.

"That's what it's about," Blues captain David Backes said. "Plugging holes and getting guys to step up with bigger responsibilities. We're gutting it out and getting back to our roots in how we play and how we have success, and that's playing in their end, mucking and grinding, and finding ways to get dirty goals."


Around the League notebook for Monday, Nov. 3

Monday, 11.03.2014 / 10:49 PM / News

NHL Public Relations


Vladimir Tarasenko scored a highlight reel, one-handed goal, added an assist and notched the shootout clincher to lead the St. Louis Blues to their fifth straight win, a 4-3 shootout decision against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. Tarasenko now has 6-2-8 in his past four games and leads his team in goals (7) and points (13) this season. The game was a back-and-forth affair with each team leading on two separate occasions (including the Blues' shootout clincher).

* The Blues have won eight of their past nine trips to Madison Square Garden (8-0-1), and haven't lost in regulation there since Jan. 20, 1998.


Blue Jackets activate Jenner off injured reserve

Monday, 11.03.2014 / 5:15 PM / News

COLUMBUS, OHIO - The Columbus Blue Jackets have activated left wing Boone Jenner off Injured Reserve, recalled defenseman Frederic St. Denis from the American Hockey League's Springfield Falcons and placed center Artem Anisimov and defenseman Cody Goloubef on Injured Reserve, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced today.

Jenner, 21, will make his season debut after suffering a broken hand in practice on September 27. He recorded 16-13-29, 45 penalty minutes and a +6 plus/minus rating in 72 games as a rookie in 2013-14. The Dorchester, Ontario native was the club's first pick, 37th overall, in the 2011 NHL Draft. He recorded 111-135-246, 265 penalty minutes and was +22 plus/minus rating in 227 career games with the Oshawa Generals of the Ontario Hockey League from 2009-13.


Julien has shown steady hand in guiding Bruins

Monday, 11.03.2014 / 4:00 PM / NHL Insider

Matt Kalman - Correspondent

BOSTON -- Despite a whirlwind of circumstances that might sink a lesser team -- most notably an injury to defenseman Zdeno Chara and the trade of top-four defenseman Johnny Boychuk days before the start of the season -- the Boston Bruins have stayed afloat in the standings, in part because of the coaching of Claude Julien.

Through 13 games the Bruins are a respectable 7-6-0, as Julien has again proven he can handle rosters with different levels of experience, age and talent. Through his eight seasons as the Bruins coach, Julien has compiled a 317-171-65 record, won the Stanley Cup in 2011 and has guided the Bruins to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in seven straight seasons.

He was rewarded over the weekend with a multiyear contract extension by general manager Peter Chiarelli.

"In general I think he's done a very good job," Chiarelli said in response to a question about Julien’s work this season Monday. "This year, there's been a lot of flux I guess with either contract situations or trades, trades within training camp, so he's had to deal with that. You know he's had to deal with some younger players coming up. We're one game over .500. We've played better the last four or five games. He's done a good job. You give a coach a contract extension based on the job that he's done globally. And globally, for us over the years, he's done a very good job."


Canadiens not panicking despite some trouble spots

Monday, 11.03.2014 / 3:40 PM / NHL Insider

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor

BROSSARD, Quebec -- The Montreal Canadiens will enter their game Tuesday against the Chicago Blackhawks tied for the second-best record in the National Hockey League, their 8-3-1 mark through 12 games sitting behind only the Anaheim Ducks.

Despite that, the Canadiens find themselves in the middle of their first mini-crisis situation of the 2014-15 season.

Such is life when you play professional hockey in Montreal.

The Canadiens are in the midst of their first losing streak of the season, their 6-2 loss to the Calgary Flames on Sunday coming after a 3-2 overtime loss on the road to the Vancouver Canucks last Thursday.


Perry, Crosby, Seguin named 'Stars of the Month'

Monday, 11.03.2014 / 3:00 PM / News

NEW YORKAnaheim Ducks right wing Corey Perry, Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby and Dallas Stars center Tyler Seguin have been named the NHL's "Three Stars" for the month of October.


Perry led the League with 10 goals in 12 games, helping the Ducks (9-3-0, 18 points) finish October with the top record in the NHL. He began the season with points in each of his first five outings (5-2—7), including his sixth career hat trick in Anaheim's season-opener Oct. 9 against the Pittsburgh Penguins.


Kings' Pearson named NHL Rookie of the Month

Monday, 11.03.2014 / 2:00 PM / News

NEW YORK – Los Angeles Kings left wing Tanner Pearson, who led all rookies with seven goals and nine points in 11 games, has been named the NHL Rookie of the Month for October.

Pearson edged Washington Capitals left wing Andre Burakovsky (2-6—8 in nine games), Nashville Predators center Filip Forsberg (1-7—8 in 10 games) and New Jersey Devils defenseman Damon Severson (4-3—7 in 10 games) for the honor.

Pearson, the 30th overall selection by the Kings in the 2012 NHL Draft, scored the team's first goal of the season Oct. 11 against the Arizona Coyotes. He followed that up with consecutive multi-point performances: 1 1—2 Oct. 12 against the Winnipeg Jets and 2-1—3 Oct. 14 against the Edmonton Oilers, setting career highs for goals and points in one game. Pearson then capped the month with his second career multi-goal game Oct. 26 against the Columbus Blue Jackets (2-0—2).


Fantasy All-Access: Best October performances

Matt Sitkoff - Contributor

The first month of the fantasy season has come and gone, so now is a perfect time to give out some awards to the standout players of October.

The "Category Hog" award goes to Anaheim Ducks right wing Corey Perry, the top-rated player who led the NHL with 10 October goals, was a plus-9, had 25 penalty minutes, four power-play points and had 37 shots on goal.

The "Glad I Drafted That Guy In The Late Rounds" award goes to Vancouver Canucks right wing Radim Vrbata, who was selected on average in the 14th round in Yahoo leagues. He was the 20th-ranked player for the first month with 11 points in 10 games.

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Quote of the Day

Now we have an 'X' next to our name, which is nice. Now we have to keep trying to climb and catch these guys.

— Lightning goalie Ben Bishop on clinching a Stanley Cup Playoff berth and trailing the Canadiens by one point for the division lead
AMP No Bull Moment of the Week