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(Page 10 of 17)
2013-2014 Season Preview

30 in 15: New faces, system will dictate Stars' fate

Saturday, 09.21.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

Few teams face more questions entering this season than the Dallas Stars. With major changes in the front office, coaching staff, roster and even their uniform, it will be intriguing to see how everything comes together for a team that was a force in the League for more than a decade but has failed to make the Stanley Cup Playoffs since 2008.

Here are three things to watch in Dallas early in the 2013-14 season:

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30 in 15: Stars seek success after major makeover

Saturday, 09.21.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Tal Pinchevsky - NHL.com Staff Writer

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

No team saw more wholesale changes over the summer than the Dallas Stars. After missing out on the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the fifth consecutive season, the team's new ownership decided to make major changes, starting with the hiring of Jim Nill as general manager. After years of serving in the front office of the Detroit Red Wings, Nill's first act as Stars GM was to hire longtime Buffalo Sabres fixture Lindy Ruff as his coach.

The changes didn't stop there, and the end result is a roster featuring a mix of young skill players and experienced veterans.

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30 in 15: Islanders face expectations after playoffs

Saturday, 09.21.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

No more excuses.

That's the mentality the New York Islanders had as they entered training camp with hopes of building off what they accomplished last season, when they ended a six-year absence from the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

With greater results come greater expectations. With new captain John Tavares leading the way, the Islanders will no longer be able to take teams by surprise. They're expected to be in the hunt for a playoff spot again, which means they need to find consistency from the moment the regular season begins Oct. 4 against the New Jersey Devils.

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30 in 15: Reinhart pushes for spot with Islanders

Saturday, 09.21.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

When the New York Islanders selected defenseman Griffin Reinhart with the fourth pick at the 2012 NHL Draft, they knew he wouldn't be ready to step into their lineup right away. It was going to take some time.

The work stoppage last fall allowed Reinhart to return to the Edmonton Oil Kings of the Western Hockey League, when he continued to hone his skills with hopes of one day anchoring New York's blue line. In 59 games last season, Reinhart (6-foot-4, 205 pounds) had eight goals, 21 assists and a plus-30 rating.

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30 in 15: Islanders bank on young players to step up

Saturday, 09.21.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

The New York Islanders are set to begin play in the new Metropolitan Division with a roster similar to the one that last season ended a six-year absence from the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Expectations will be higher for a team that boasts a talented young core, led by recently anointed captain John Tavares.

Tavares is one of six first-round picks expected to be in the lineup when the Islanders open their regular season Oct. 4 against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center. That number could grow to 10 should forwards Brock Nelson and Ryan Strome and defensemen Griffin Reinhart and Calvin de Haan make the team.

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Flames turn to new generation of veteran leadership

Friday, 09.20.2013 / 7:16 PM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Aaron Vickers - NHL.com Correspondent

CALGARY -- There's no more Jarome Iginla to score a game-winning goal, no Miikka Kiprusoff on hand to make a game-saving stop.

Instead, the Calgary Flames are embarking on a new era, one that doesn't include their longtime captain, who was traded in late March, and the winningest goaltender in franchise history, who officially hung up his pads for good earlier this month.

A new, more youthful core is emerging in their place. Though the young players are not exactly household names, they are critical pieces to Calgary's puzzle as the Flames enter the first phase of a rebuilding project designed to end a Stanley Cup Playoff drought that dates to 2009.

"I'm not quite a leader yet, I've just got here," said Sven Baertschi, Calgary's first-round pick (No. 13) in 2011 who has 25 NHL games under his belt. "I barely made the team last year and I was only up for a few games and was sent down.

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30 in 15: Raffl fighting for spot on Flyers' third line

Friday, 09.20.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

Philadelphia Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren certainly would have liked to have added the combination of veteran knowledge, skill and grit that Daniel Cleary brings to the table. But Cleary's decision to remain with the Detroit Red Wings did little to affect Holmgren's sleep pattern.

He knew all along he had a player who could be just as ready to step into the same third-line left wing spot Cleary was going to take.

The Flyers signed Austrian-born forward Michael Raffl in May and believe the 24-year-old is ready to grab a top-nine spot in his first North American season.

"I know our guys saw him quite a bit in [Sweden] last year and at the World Championship," Holmgren said. "Both [head of pro scouting] Dave Brown and [director of scouting] Chris Pryor spent a lot of time following him around. He's a bigger, thick kid. He's got a real nose for the net. He's pretty good with the puck and he can shoot."

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30 in 15: Flyers hope changes lead to playoff return

Friday, 09.20.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

There were a number of reasons the Philadelphia Flyers missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season, the second time since 1994 they've sat out the postseason.

They attempted to address those issues in the offseason, making big changes in goal and significant additions to the defense and top-six forward groups.

Now it's a question of how the new pieces fit with the holdovers.

"I think the anger and frustration … more the disappointment at the end of the year, but now it's more excitement," Flyers coach Peter Laviolette told NHL.com. "You want to get out there and start playing again. I sense that excitement. It's been a long summer. Nobody likes the long summer. Guys are excited to get back to camp and that's what they've said. … It'll be spirited and passionate."

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30 in 15: Goalie tandem worth a watch at Flyers camp

Friday, 09.20.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

When a team misses the Stanley Cup Playoffs, there's a period of reflection and usually change that leads to more questions the following season.

When that team has missed the playoffs twice in 20 years, there are some other emotions, among them shock at an early end to the previous season and anger at what happened.

There's also determination to see that whatever problems plagued the previous season don't creep back in, and that process begins with training camp.

For the Philadelphia Flyers, who missed the postseason in 2013 for the second time since 1994, part of that process includes how these three issues are settled heading into the 2013-14 season:

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30 in 15: Oilers have intriguing prospect in Belov

Friday, 09.20.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NHL.com continues its preview of the 2013-14 season, which will include in-depth looks at all 30 teams throughout September.

When defenseman Anton Belov expressed interest in leaving the Kontinental Hockey League more than a year ago, he drew the interest of several NHL teams.

Belov first had to fulfill his deal with Omsk, which he did with 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 46 games last season. Being an undrafted player in the NHL, Belov was an unrestricted free agent and could choose the team he wanted to play for.

Much like Edmonton Oilers defenseman Justin Schultz did a year ago, Belov was intrigued by the team's plethora of young talent. Now the two are teammates after Belov signed a one-year, entry-level contract with the Oilers on May 30.

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Quote of the Day

I'm sure [my father] was going crazy up there. I hope all of my friends were celebrating in the crowd. Coming back here and all of my friends and family are here, getting a goal in front of them is special.

— Blues forward Ryan Reaves on scoring the game-winning goal Sunday against the Jets in his hometown of Winnipeg
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