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(Page 212 of 254)
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Blackhawks' Keith leads race for Norris Trophy

Friday, 02.28.2014 / 3:00 AM / Trophy Tracker

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

With three-quarters of the 2013-14 season complete, NHL.com looks at some of the biggest storylines and award contenders. Today we predict the winner of the James Norris Memorial Trophy, an annual award presented by the Professional Hockey Writers Association to the NHL's best defenseman.

Duncan Keith's skating, awareness and puck movement have been as good this season as they were throughout the 2009-10 season. The Chicago Blackhawks defenseman was good enough to win the Norris Trophy then, just as he is now.

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Modano, Stars get behind Try Hockey for Free Day

Friday, 02.28.2014 / 3:00 AM / Hockey Weekend Across America

Jon Lane - NHL.com Staff Writer

Twenty-one years ago, the Minnesota North Stars franchise took a leap of faith by leaving the State of Hockey for uncharted territory in Dallas. That's when Mike Modano took the lead on a grassroots campaign to educate Big D about the game, knowing full well the learning curve would be steep.

Fans grew to enjoy the speed and contact of the game over time, but they had a lot of help along the way. Stars public address announcers noted each time a whistle was blown for offsides or icing. According to Modano, it seemingly took 10 years to explain a plus-minus rating to the new hockey fans.

"Trying to explain the rules and offsides and icing, and people cheering when guys got penalties on our own team … just because they announced our team and our player, they cheered," Modano said. "There was a lot of crash-course teaching we had to do."

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Special bond unites USA Warriors, Blackhawks

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

It was six years ago when U.S. Marine Corps veteran and Purple Heart recipient Paul Schaus was lying in a hospital bed wondering what the future would hold.

"I had a moment there in the hospital where I didn't want to leave the room; just wanted to be a homebody or something. I didn't want to get out," Schaus told NHL.com.

At the time, Schaus was coming off a bilateral above-knee amputation after losing both legs to an improvised explosive device during a routine patrol while serving his country in Afghanistan in 2009.

"We were supporting another patrol and I stepped on the IED, but my whole team remembered their training and took care of me, got me out of there and saved my life," he said. "The men you serve with in the military aren't guys you normally grow up with, but we all have the same mindset, thoughts and go through the same stuff. That's what bonds the group together and becomes a lifetime brotherhood. You don't forget."

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Mike Craig says Heritage Classic ice is on schedule

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

VANCOUVER -- NHL senior manager of facilities operations Mike Craig hasn't actually been working on making ice outdoors for two straight months. It just feels that way sometimes.

After prepping ice for three outdoor games since Jan. 1, Craig and his crew took over BC Place this week and have been building the playing surface for the 2014 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic between the Vancouver Canucks and Ottawa Senators on Sunday. Despite the long hours, Craig is enjoying certain comforts at the stadium, which features a retractable roof.

Craig has been busy for the past two months. Before coming to Vancouver, he worked on the ice for the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Mich., on New Year's Day, as well as the two Coors Light NHL Stadium Series games at Yankee Stadium in late January.

His crew has been especially busy in Vancouver, where two groups have been alternating 12-hours shifts. Since Monday, the ice crew has been working 24 hours each day in preparation for the Heritage Classic.


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Stadium Series Chicago by the numbers

NHL.com

CHICAGO – A look at the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series Chicago outdoor game at Soldier Field "By the Numbers":

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2014 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic to feature salute to Canada's gold medal-winning women's team

Team captain Caroline Ouellette, eight teammates will take part in pre-game festivities

VANCOUVER, B.C. – The 2014 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic™ game between the Vancouver Canucks™ and Ottawa Senators™ at BC Place on Sunday, March 2 (1:00 p.m. PT / 4:00 p.m. ET on CBC and RDS in Canada; NBCSN in the U.S.) will feature a salute to Canada's 2014 Olympic gold medal-winning National Women's Team. Team captain Caroline Ouellette and teammates Hayley Wickenheiser, Meghan Agosta-Marciano, Laura Fortino, Rebecca Johnston, Meaghan Mikkelson, Lauriane Rougeau, Natalie Spooner and Shannon Szabados will be honoured before the game.

Prior to puck drop at BC Place, Canada's National Women's Team players will take part in a Q&A on the main stage and an autograph session at the Molson Beer Garden inside the Canadian Tire NHL Spectator Plaza, the free outdoor hockey and entertainment festival from 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. in the parking lot outside the Plaza of Nations.

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Canucks' Diaz recalls playing outdoors in Switzerland

Kevin Woodley - NHL.com Correspondent

VANCOUVER -- Raphael Diaz didn't just get traded to the Vancouver Canucks on Feb. 3.

Diaz got dealt back to his youth.

The trade that sent the 28-year-old defenseman from the Montreal Canadiens also put Diaz into the 2014 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic on Sunday (4 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, RDS). It brought back memories of playing outside in his native Switzerland, as a child and a professional.

"When I was younger we played a lot outside, tournaments and stuff," Diaz said. "When the sun was shining you put on zinc -- what do you call it here? Eye black? The team manager was waiting at the door before you went out and everybody got a swipe under the eyes. If it was snowing or even raining, as a kid you just played and had fun."

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NHLPA and NHL agree to multi-year exclusive trading card licenses with the Upper Deck Company

Thursday, 02.27.2014 / 3:28 PM / News

NHL.com

TORONTO, ON – The National Hockey League (NHL) and the National Hockey League Players' Association (NHLPA) announced today that each have agreed to terms with The Upper Deck Company on multi-year agreements to be the exclusive licensed manufacturer of NHL Trading Cards, beginning with the 2014-15 season.

Upper Deck had been the exclusive trading card partner from 2004 through 2009-10, and is currently one of two licensed manufacturers through the 2013-14 season. Upper Deck has held NHL and NHLPA trading card licenses since the 1990-91 season, and will release the 25th edition of Upper Deck Series One Hockey this coming fall.

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Avalanche sign Cliche to two-year extension

Thursday, 02.27.2014 / 2:30 PM / News

NHL.com

The Colorado Avalanche on Thursday signed forward Marc-Andre Cliche to a two-year contract extension through the 2015-16 season. Terms were not disclosed.

Cliche, who was claimed off waivers from the Los Angeles Kings prior to the 2013-14 season, has one goal and six points in 53 games. He leads the Avalanche in shorthanded ice time per game, averaging 2:35 on the penalty kill.

"Marc-Andre has been a solid addition to our hockey club," Avalanche executive vice president of hockey operations Joe Sakic said. "He has done a tremendous job on the penalty kill, has a great work ethic and we're excited to have him under contract for the next two years."

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NHL Green, TeamSnap partner to 'recycle the game'

Fans encouraged to donate used equipment at Canadian Tire NHL Spectator Plaza

NHL.com

VANCOUVER – NHL Green has partnered with TeamSnap (www.teamsnap.com) to collect used hockey equipment from fans prior to the 2014 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic.

Before the puck drops between the Ottawa Senators and Vancouver Canucks on Sunday, March 2, the parking lot outside the Plaza of Nations will transform into the 2014 Canadian Tire NHL Spectator Plaza. All fans are encouraged to visit the NHL Green presented by TeamSnap activation at Spectator Plaza and drop-off their used hockey gear in the one-of-a-kind equipment donation net.

Donated items will be delivered by the NHL to HEROS Hockey in Vancouver, a charitable organization dedicated to empowering children through ice hockey. HEROS is a member of the NHL's Hockey is for Everyone program, which uses hockey as a way to support education, build self-esteem, and develop life skills.

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Quote of the Day

We want to make sure that whoever makes our team really makes our team by earning it and not putting them in situations where they get preference because of their status as a first-round pick or whatever it might be. That's not going to happen. Everybody has to earn their way on our team.

— Columbus Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen on the team's prospects at development camp