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(Page 14 of 17)
2013-2014 Season Preview

Rangers' Kreider focused on new opportunity

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 2:45 PM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Chris Kreider has heard the talk from fans and media about his regression last season and how he was hamstrung by former New York Rangers coach John Tortorella.

He doesn't agree with any of it.

"At the end of the day maybe I'm just near-sighted, but I think I improved and I think I learned a lot," Kreider said Monday when asked if he thinks he was held back by Tortorella's shot-blocking, defense-first system. "I come away happy with the experience."

And now he's ready to build on it under new Rangers coach Alain Vigneault, who is using Kreider on a line with Brad Richards and Rick Nash early in the preseason as a way of giving him a chance to display what he's capable of when playing with offensive-minded players.

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30 in 15: Lightning short on certainty, not net potential

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 1:55 PM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Lonnie Herman - NHL.com Correspondent

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

The Tampa Bay Lightning are short on certainty at the goaltending position, but they aren't lacking in size.

Anders Lindback, who stands at 6-foot-6 and Ben Bishop, who is 6-foot-7, are likely to open the 2013-14 season with the goaltending duties split between them, and Lightning coach Jon Cooper is confident that his plan in his first full season in charge to divide the workload will produce the results the club needs.

"In the grand scope of things, do we have two goalies who have a ton of NHL experience?" Cooper said. "No, we don't. Do we have two capable NHL goalies? Yes, we do."

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30 in 15: Lightning hope Killorn can break through

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Mike G. Morreale - 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.

It's quite possible the well-rounded game showcased by left wing Alex Killorn from the moment he stepped on the ice in a Tampa Bay Lightning jersey last season made Cory Conacher an expendable commodity in the eyes of management.

Conacher was the key component in a trade with the Ottawa Senators in April that landed the Lightning goalie Ben Bishop. Alongside Steven Stamkos for much of the year, Conacher finished his rookie season with nine goals and 24 points in 35 games.

Since the day Killorn was selected in the third round (No. 77) of the 2007 NHL Draft, he has grown on and off the ice. He was 5-foot-8, 170 pounds on draft day, and when he made his professional debut with the Norfolk Admirals in the American Hockey League in April 2012, he was 6-1, 197. In 17 playoff games for the 2012 Calder Cup-winning Admirals, he had three goals and 12 points with a plus-5 rating.

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30 in 15: Lightning counting on veterans, new faces

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Mike G. Morreale - 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.

Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper is the first to admit that getting behind the bench for a handful of games last season has given him a base for managing a full season.

"In those 15 games (the team went 4-8-3), I got to know some of the NHL landscape, the players and how to adapt to life in the League," Cooper told NHL.com. "To be around it for the month-and-a-half I was here, I think I set myself farther ahead to help put our team in a better position."

Cooper's first full season as an NHL coach comes at a time when the League has undergone realignment, and the Lightning now play in the eight-team Atlantic Division.

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30 in 15: Lightning watching Drouin, Malone, goalies

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Mike G. Morreale - 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.

Steve Yzerman has hired two coaches and made some tweaks to the lineup throughout his three-plus seasons as general manager of the Tampa Bay Lightning. None compare to his first major personnel move this offseason, however, when he opted to use a compliance buyout on captain Vincent Lecavalier.

The four-time All-Star, chosen by the Lightning with the first pick of the 1998 NHL Draft, helped the team win its only Stanley Cup in 2004 and scored a franchise-high 383 goals. The decision to buy out Lecavalier will cost the Lightning $32 million during the next 14 years, but it saved more than $7.7 million in salary-cap value for the upcoming season.

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30 in 15: Health, new faces create Panthers' battles

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Mike Battaglino - 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.

The Florida Panthers entered last season as the defending Southeast Division champions. Almost every important player returned, and talented rookies were on the way. Expectations were high.

Then, one by one, key player after key player was taken by an injury. Losing streaks were common; winning streaks were not. Results were low.

"You have to acknowledge it; it happened to us; there's reasons why, we've started to talk about it, evaluate why," coach Kevin Dineen told the Panthers website during training camp.

Florida enters 2013-14 with a roster that could be in flux, a collection of role-playing veterans battling highly touted prospects for a place in the lineup.

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30 in 15: Panthers hope youth, additions lead rebound

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Mike Battaglino - 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.

It's a feeling the Florida Panthers would much rather do without. But they'll hold on to it, at least for a little while longer.

"I think if you don't remember how it feels, then that's probably not a good thing, because it didn't feel very good at any time or it wasn't acceptable," defenseman Brian Campbell said of last season's lost season.

"… So I think you think about it, but you think about, hopefully, guys have been on winning teams too, so you think about that."

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30 in 15: Panthers' Markstrom set to shed prospect tag

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Alain Poupart - NHL.com Correspondent

SUNRISE, Fla. — It’s been a while now that Jacob Markstrom has been considered the Florida Panthers’ goalie of the future.

Really, that’s been the thought ever since the Panthers made the tall Swede the first pick in the second round of the 2008 NHL Draft.

Markstrom’s time, it would appear, has arrived. And Markstrom says he’s ready for the challenge.

"Obviously, it's been my main goal since I got here and I'm really here to be the starting goalie," Markstrom said at the start of training camp. "That's nothing to be shy about. I'm here to play and I really want to play and I want to play good and help the team win."

Markstrom has had stints with the Panthers each of the past three seasons, with one appearance in 2010-11, seven in 2011-12 and 23 last year, but general manager Dale Tallon said at the start of camp, "[Markstrom] is our goalie."

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30 in 15: Butler adds veteran depth to Florida Panthers

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 3:00 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

Mike Battaglino - 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.

The Florida Panthers are holding a virtual cattle call this training camp, caused in part by the quality of their last-place finish last season, and as insurance in case the injury epidemic that infected the team debilitates again.

"Everyone here is fighting for a chance to play for the Panthers to make us win," general manager Dale Tallon said as camp opened.

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Coyotes' Klesla injured in preseason game

Monday, 09.16.2013 / 12:07 AM / 2013-2014 Season Preview

NHL.com

Phoenix Coyotes defenseman Rostislav Klesla was injured and taken from the ice on a stretcher midway through the first period of a preseason game Sunday night against the Los Angeles Kings at Jobing.com Arena.

Klesla was hit by Kings forward Jordan Nolan on the play. Klesla was alert, and waved to the crowd as he was taken from the ice. He remained at the arena but was under further evaluation in the immediate aftermath of the hit, according to multiple media reports.

Nolan was assessed four minutes in penalties after tussling with Klesla's teammate Martin Hanzal, and then another, larger fracas ensued when Nolan came out of the box. Four players, including Nolan, were given 10-minute misconducts and Coyotes forward Paul Bissonnette was assessed a game misconduct for leaving the bench.

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Quote of the Day

There's no discouragement in that room. There's no issues there at all to be honest with you. It's more about, 'Hey, it's opportunities for players.' And if we become that bad of a team because of one player, it's not a real good sign for our hockey club. So this is part of sports. It's part of hockey.

— Bruins coach Claude Julien on the loss of Zdeno Chara to injury
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