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NHL Insider

Blackhawks' Teravainen looks to carve permanent role

Wednesday, 10.14.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Brian Hedger - Correspondent

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks needed someone to break the ice.

Trailing the Tampa Bay Lightning 1-0 late in Game 1 of the 2015 Stanley Cup Final, it was starting to look like goalie Ben Bishop would lead the Lightning to a shutout at Amalie Arena.

Instead, in a flash, a 20-year old Finnish rookie changed the script. Teuvo Teravainen, Chicago's baby-faced forward, scored the tying goal and then followed it with a defensive play that led directly to the eventual game-winner scored by Antoine Vermette, all in a 1:58 span.

Asked about the diminutive Teravainen (5-foot-11, 178 pounds) after the Blackhawks won 2-1, right wing Marian Hossa delivered a quote that went viral.

"He doesn't have a heartbeat," said Hossa, a veteran of 18 NHL seasons. "He's so calm. He's Finnish cold."

Sharks forward Ward adjusting after leaving Capitals

Tuesday, 10.13.2015 / 4:04 PM / NHL Insider

Katie Brown - Correspondent

WASHINGTON -- San Jose Sharks forward Joel Ward has experienced more than a few changes in his life over the past few months.

After four seasons with the Washington Capitals, Ward tested the free agent market and signed a three-year, $9.8 million contract with the San Jose Sharks on July 3.

With the Sharks set to play the Capitals at Verizon Center on Tuesday, Ward is adjusting not only to a new team, but a new way of life on the West Coast.

"[Washington] was definitely home for a while, so you're used to it, the simple drive to Kettler [Iceplex] every morning from where I was, so now it's about learning new things," Ward said. "I've got to find a new drycleaner, a new barber shop, all the little things I've got to go through now."

Red Wings' Abdelkader building off breakout season

Tuesday, 10.13.2015 / 10:25 AM / NHL Insider

Paul Harris - Correspondent

DETROIT -- Justin Abdelkader had a breakout season in 2014-15 and is off to an even better start in 2015-16.

After a career-high 23 goals and 44 points last season, the Detroit Red Wings left wing has four goals, five points and a plus-4 rating to lead them to a 2-0-0 start.

That performance, highlighted by the second hat trick of his NHL career in the season opener Friday, a 4-0 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Joe Louis Arena, earned Abdelkader, 28, the NHL's First Star of the Week.

"I'll take a star here," Abdelkader said after practice Monday. "It's two games, still a long ways to go. Our line did a lot of good things out there, created a lot of scoring chances and we had fun doing it."

The Red Wings play the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVA Sports) at Joe Louis Arena. Tampa Bay eliminated Detroit from the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs in seven games in an Eastern Conference First Round series.

Penguins begin season with familiar offensive woes

Monday, 10.12.2015 / 2:30 PM / NHL Insider

Wes Crosby - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Penguins know they must be better.

Through two games, the Penguins have looked eerily similar to the team that struggled through the final month of the 2014-15 regular season before getting eliminated from the Stanley Cup Playoffs by the New York Rangers in five games of Eastern Conference First Round. After failing to get any of their 37 shots past Dallas Stars goalie Antti Niemi in a 3-0 loss Thursday, the Penguins scored once in a 2-1 loss to the Arizona Coyotes Saturday.

Pittsburgh faced similar issues last spring, when it averaged 1.78 regulation goals over its final 18 games of the regular season. It's early, but that lack of production has at least temporarily seeped into this October, and the task won't get any easier in the home opener against the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; CITYM, RDS, ROOT).

Carey Price and the Canadiens come to Pittsburgh after winning their first three games while scoring 10 goals, tied for second in the NHL behind the Rangers. Price has made 55 saves on 58 shots through two starts, which doesn't seem to bode well for a Penguins team in need of a confidence boost.

Kings add Jack Jablonski as communications intern

Saturday, 10.10.2015 / 2:25 PM / NHL Insider

Jack Jablonski has made it to the NHL.

The 20-year-old hoped to do so as a player, but a spinal-cord injury sustained in a high school game in 2011 left him paralyzed from the chest down. This season, the Los Angeles Kings hired him to work as an intern in their communications department. Jablonski is a student at the University of Southern California studying journalism and communications.

"I definitely wanted to keep pursuing a career in hockey and that hockey lifestyle, and I’m super interested in PR and communications, so I hoped I could find an area that was a good fit," Jablonski told the Orange County Register in an article published Saturday.

Capitals D-man Orlov back in NHL after 18 months

Saturday, 10.10.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Katie Brown - Correspondent

ARLINGTON, Va. -- After the Washington Capitals' first preseason game against the Carolina Hurricanes on Sept. 21, coach Barry Trotz stopped defenseman Dmitry Orlov as he was leaving the ice.

"He had a big ol' smile when he was coming off the ice against Carolina," Trotz said. "He had a grin from ear to ear. I said, 'Hey, finally back.'"

It was the first NHL game in almost 18 months for Orlov, who missed last season following wrist surgery. He'll play his first regular-season game Saturday when the Capitals host the new Jersey Devils in their season-opener.

Healthy Krejci eager to lead Bruins back to playoffs

Saturday, 10.10.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Matt Kalman - Correspondent

BOSTON -- Boston Bruins center David Krejci endured an injury-riddled season after signing a six-year, $43.5 million contract extension last September. The Bruins went 16-13-6 while Krejci missed 20 games with an undisclosed injury and 15 more with a knee injury.

Krejci embarked on a workout regimen this summer to make sure his injury troubles don't come back.

"I've been working out for a long time," Krejci said before the Bruins opened their regular season Thursday, a 6-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets. "I changed my workouts a little bit this year. I've been skating a little bit longer before training camp. So I came into training camp in good shape, feeling good with my body. And so far here the games and practices have been pretty good. It's a big training camp for me and for the team. So far I'm pretty happy how things are going."

Krejci and the Bruins play the Montreal Canadiens at TD Garden on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, TVA Sports, NESN).

Canadiens long to prove they're more than Price

Saturday, 10.10.2015 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor

BROSSARD, Quebec -- All summer long, people were saying the Montreal Canadiens are a team that relies too much on goaltender Carey Price to win games for them.

In their first chance to prove those people wrong, Wednesday in the season-opener at the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Canadiens did the opposite.

They proved them right, allowing the Maple Leafs to control long stretches of the game but coming out with a 3-1 win based largely on 36 saves made by Price.

It was remarkably similar to what the Canadiens did last season.

"Obviously we'd like to score more, but as long as we're winning the games, that's what matters," Canadiens center Tomas Plekanec said Sept. 8 at the NHL Player Media Tour in Toronto. "A big part of that was [Price], which is the one thing honestly we want to get better at and play better in front of him."

Asked Friday about reverting to that problem to start this season, Plekanec got annoyed.

Islanders' traditions right at home in Brooklyn

Saturday, 10.10.2015 / 12:06 AM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

NEW YORK -- The venue might be different and state of the art, but the New York Islanders aren't kidding when they say tradition has a new home.

Everything that once brightened up Nassau Coliseum -- the energetic fans, the lively chants, and, yes, even the goal horn -- made the move to Brooklyn with the Islanders.

That much was obvious Friday when the Islanders played their first regular-season game at Barclays Center, a 3-2 overtime loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.

The people who grew up Islanders fans, in one arena, partying in the parking lot and loving their 43-year-old building like it was an old friend, streamed off the subways and Long Island Rail Road and began treating their new home with the same reverence and respect.

"The atmosphere was great," said Islanders captain John Tavares, who scored the first goal for the home team in its new building 5:22 into the second period. "Our fans were into it, behind us like they always are. Certainly they brought that tradition over from the Coliseum.

"Everything was really similar, as much as it could be."

Babcock: Red Wings made right choice with Blashill

Friday, 10.09.2015 / 2:33 PM / NHL Insider

Paul Harris - Correspondent

DETROIT -- When Mike Babcock left as coach of the Detroit Red Wings to become coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs, he felt Jeff Blashill was the right person to replace him.

Now, as Blashill prepares to make his NHL coaching debut with the Red Wings against Babcock's Maple Leafs on Friday (7:30 p.m. ET; TVA Sports, SN1), his opinion hasn't changed.

"He's the Detroit Red Wings coach and he should be the Detroit Red Wings coach," Babcock said. "He's done a lot of things to get to where he is. … He's a smart guy, presents well and he has been taught well."

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Quote of the Day

It's a big milestone for me and I'm happy to help my team with lots of good teammates. It's fun.

— Detroit's Pavel Datsyuk, who on Wednesday became the ninth Russian-born player, and ninth Red Wings player, to score 300 NHL goals
World Cup of Hockey 2016