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Roundup: Flyers send Leighton to AHL

Tuesday, 11.30.2010 / 7:58 PM / Roundup


The Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday loaned goaltender Michael Leighton to their AHL affiliate, the  Adirondack Phantoms, for a six-day conditioning period.

Leighton, who led the Flyers to the Stanley Cup Final last spring and signed a two-year contract during the summer, underwent back surgery on Oct. 11, a partial discectomy, performed by Dr. Alex Vacarro at Methodist Hospital in Philadelphia.

In 103 NHL games with the Flyers, Chicago Blackhawks, Nashville Predators, and Carolina Hurricanes over parts of nine NHL seasons, Leighton has a career record of 34-40-10-4, a 2.94 GAA, .902 save percentage, and four shutouts.  He went 8-3 in last spring's playoffs with a 2.46 GAA and a .916 save percentage in 14 games, including three shutout victories against Montreal in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Price leads Canadiens past Sabres

Sunday, 11.28.2010 / 12:37 AM / Roundup


Carey Price continues to show Montreal Canadiens brass that it was the right move to keep him around.

Price made 34 saves and came within 73 seconds of his fourth shutout in his last nine starts as the Habs skated away with a 3-1 win against the Buffalo Sabres at the Bell Centre on Saturday night.

Rested for just the second time this season on Friday (a 3-0 loss at Atlanta), Price came within 1:13 of another shutout before Jordan Leopold spoiled it.

"We played pretty hard tonight," Price said. "We all wanted to bounce back from (Friday) night's game and I thought everybody came out with the right mentality and played hard the whole game."

Wild finish sees Flames top Flyers in shootout

Friday, 11.26.2010 / 6:46 PM / Roundup


A shootout goal by Rene Bourque and some big stops down the stretch by Miikka Kiprusoff helped the Calgary Flames win for the first time on their five-game road trip.

A controversial penalty call that wiped out what appeared to be the winning overtime goal by the Philadelphia Flyers didn't hurt, either.

Bourque beat Sergei Bobrovsky in the third round of the penalty-shot tiebreaker after Kiprusoff had denied Danny Briere, giving the Flames a 3-2 win over the Flyers in a Black Friday matinee at the Wells Fargo Center.

Claude Giroux of the Flyers and Niklas Hagman of the Flames had traded goals earlier in the shootout, but it didn't look like the game would even get that far after Calgary defenseman Mark Giordano was called for holding the stick 2:43 into overtime and Philadelphia captain Mike Richards appeared to net the winning power-play goal 42 seconds into the man advantage.

Capitals edge Hurricanes, end three-game skid

Thursday, 11.25.2010 / 1:28 AM / Roundup


Brooks Laich scored a power-play goal on a deflection with 7:58 left and the Caps snapped a three-game losing streak by beating the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 at the RBC Center on Wednesday night.

Alex Ovechkin set up all three Washington goals, two by Nicklas Backstrom, for the Southeast Division-leading Capitals. They blew a 2-0 lead in the third period but regrouped in time to avoid their first four-game slide in more than a year.

Laich's winner came five seconds into a slashing penalty on rookie Jeff Skinner. After the faceoff, the puck made its way to Ovechkin, who uncorked a hard wrist shot that Laich tipped past Justin Peters for his sixth goal.

Jackets keep rolling with win over Preds

Monday, 11.22.2010 / 11:44 PM / Roundup


Home, away … the Columbus Blue Jackets are winning everywhere these days.

Steve Mason made 27 saves for his first shutout of the season and 16th of his career, and Rick Nash had a second-period goal and the Blue Jackets earned their fourth straight win with a 2-0 victory against the Nashville Predators at Nationwide Arena on Monday night.

"Obviously a shutout is a total team effort and tonight, much like we have had in our past couple of games, the defensemen have been great -- a lot of big blocked shots -- and they are really making both goaltenders jobs easier," Mason said.

Kings blow big lead, beat Bruins 4-3 in shootout

Sunday, 11.21.2010 / 12:41 AM / Roundup

John Kreiser - NHL.com Columnist

Michal Handzus made sure the Los Angeles Kings' losing streak didn't last any longer than three games.

Handzus scored the only goal of the shootout in the sixth round as the Kings beat Boston 4-3 on Saturday night after blowing a three-goal lead. The victory ended L.A.'s three-game losing streak, which included a 4-2 loss at Buffalo on Friday.

"It's a big win for us, two points, and that's really, at the end of the day, all that matters," captain Dustin Brown said. "Considering the situation that we're in, with travel and back-to-backs and losing three in a row, it doesn't matter how we got it done. We got it done, and now we can focus on the next game."

It looked like the Kings would cruise when Jarret Stoll's goal 2:50 into the third period made it 3-0. But the Bruins kept pelting Jonathan Quick with pucks. They got within one by the end of the period on goals by Blake Wheeler and Gregory Campbell, then tied it on Patrice Bergeron's power-play goal, a shot from the left circle over Quick's arm, with 6:16 left in regulation.

Crosby leads Penguins past 'Canes 5-4 in shootout

Saturday, 11.20.2010 / 1:29 AM / Roundup

John Kreiser - NHL.com Columnist

Sidney Crosby just wouldn't let the Pittsburgh Penguins lose.

Crosby, off to the hottest goal-scoring start of his career, scored his 14th of the season, assisted on Pittsburgh's three other regulation goals, then scored the clincher in the shootout as the Penguins survived three blown leads to beat the Carolina Hurricanes 5-4 on Friday night.

"It was a little more open than usual, a few more mistakes than usual, but it's a long season and you've got to worry about playing well," said Crosby, whose four-point night moved him into second place in the League scoring race with 33, one behind Tampa Bay's Steven Stamkos. "If you do, the points will come, but it's always nice to have a big night."

Leafs' struggles continue in loss to Canucks

Sunday, 11.14.2010 / 1:00 AM / Roundup


The Vancouver Canucks continue to feast on the Eastern Conference. The Toronto Maple Leafs continue to struggle regardless of the opponent.

Mason Raymond scored at 13:36 of the third period Saturday as the Canucks skated away with a 5-3 win against the Leafs at the Air Canada Centre on Saturday night.

"Just before he scored, he had a great 3-on-2 opportunity and he missed the net," Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault said of Raymond. "That one, he hit the net. It's funny what can happen when you hit the net, eh? It's just a funny thing."

The winning goal came when Raymond beat Jean-Sebastien Giguere cleanly through the legs from beyond the top of the left circle, stretching Toronto's losing slide to eight games. The Leafs are 0-6-2 over that stretch.

Preds end losing streak with 3-2 shootout win

Friday, 11.12.2010 / 1:12 AM / Roundup


Marcel Goc made sure the Nashville Predators didn't go home from their five-game road trip empty-handed.

Goc scored the deciding goal in the fourth round of the shootout on Thursday, giving the Predators a 3-2 victory at St. Louis and ending Nashville's five-game losing streak. The five losses included the first four games of their road trip, including a 5-4 setback at Anaheim on Sunday in which the Ducks got the game-winner with less than 2 seconds left in regulation.

"We hadn't won in a while, so you know you're always wondering if you have much confidence," Predators coach Barry Trotz said. "I thought we did a really good job. … (We're) fortunate to win it in the shootout so will take the win. It's never easy for us and it hasn't been in this last little while."

Stamkos, Ellis too much for Maple Leafs

Wednesday, 11.10.2010 / 12:00 AM / Roundup


The combination of Steven Stamkos and Dan Ellis was more than the Toronto Maple Leafs could handle on Tuesday night.

Stamkos scored his League-leading 12th and 13th goals of the season and Ellis stopped all 28 shots he faced as the Tampa Bay Lightning beat Toronto 4-0, snapping a three-game losing streak extending the Leafs' winless slide to six games.

Stamkos opened the scoring with a power-play goal 11:10 into the game, triggering a three-goal first period by the Lightning, then capped the scoring by backhanding a rebound past Jean-Sebastien Giguere 5:46 into the third.

"Things are just going my way right now," said Stamkos, the NHL's scoring leader with 24 points. "It feels really nice to help this team win. I'm just going to keep shooting the puck and going to the net."
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