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Red Wings to name Blashill coach next week: report

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 6:13 PM / News

The Detroit Red Wings will name Jeff Blashill as their coach next week, reported Wednesday.

Blashill, coach of Detroit's American Hockey League affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins, led them to the Calder Cup in 2013 and to the playoffs in each of his three seasons behind the bench. Grand Rapids was eliminated by the Utica Comets in the Western Conference Finals on Tuesday, and exit meetings are scheduled for Monday. There will be a press conference at Joe Louis Arena to announce the hiring, the website said, citing an unidentified source.

Stevens interested in staying with Devils: report

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 1:44 PM / News

Scott Stevens said Wednesday he would be interested in remaining on the New Jersey Devils coaching staff as an assistant following the hiring Tuesday of John Hynes as coach, according to

"I haven't looked elsewhere," Stevens said. "The Devils are my first choice, no question about that."

Stevens, 51, was captain of the Devils' three Stanley Cup championship teams and served as an assistant coach and special assignment coach in the organization prior to taking over behind the bench along with Adam Oates and general manager Lou Lamoriello on Dec. 26 after coach Peter DeBoer was fired.

Three questions for Blackhawks, Lightning in Game 1

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 1:36 PM / Lightning vs Blackhawks - 2015 Stanley Cup Final

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

TAMPA -- The Tampa Bay Lightning and Chicago Blackhawks haven't played each other since Feb. 27, the second game Chicago played after Patrick Kane sustained a fractured clavicle that put him out for the rest of the regular season. The Lightning won 4-0. It means nothing now.

So much is different for the Lightning and Blackhawks heading into Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on Wednesday at Amalie Arena (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, TVA Sports). For starters, Kane is back in Chicago's lineup and has 20 points in 17 games in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Tampa Bay has played 20 out of a possible 21 games to reach the Cup Final for the first time since 2004, when current Blackhawks center Brad Richards won the Conn Smythe Trophy as a member of the Lightning.

Chicago played 17 games to get to the Stanley Cup Final for the third time in six seasons.

Undoubtedly we'll know a lot more about what type of Cup Final we're in once a game is finally played. Heading into it, because there is not a lot of familiarity between the teams, it's still a mystery of what to truly expect, even though many pundits have their own ideas.

So instead of having keys for each team heading into Game 1, we have questions, as in three for the Blackhawks and three for the Lightning. Here they are:

Superstars, frenetic pace promise unforgettable Final

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 1:12 PM / Lightning vs Blackhawks - 2015 Stanley Cup Final

Corey Masisak - Staff Writer

TAMPA -- The Tampa Bay Lightning and the Chicago Blackhawks are two of the deepest, fastest, most skilled teams in the NHL and typically try to engage in an entertaining style of play.

It could lead to a 2015 Stanley Cup Final filled with exciting plays, a frenetic pace and lots of goals.

"They've had a lot of players step up and it seems like they have a lot of offense and skill and speed to their team too," Chicago forward Patrick Kane said. "You look at it, it seems like it'd be a fun matchup and a fun series for the average fan to watch and a fun series to play in as well."

Riggle, Daughtry to headline 2015 NHL Awards

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 12:30 PM / 2015 NHL Awards

LAS VEGAS – The 2015 NHL Awards™ special salute to the best regular-season players and performances will be hosted by actor and comedian Rob Riggle and will feature a live musical performance from rock band Daughtry followed by a full concert on Wednesday, June 24 at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, the National Hockey League announced today. The two-hour primetime awards show will broadcast live at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT on NBCSN in the U.S. and Sportsnet in Canada. Tickets to the 2015 NHL Awards go on sale today at any MGM Resorts box office location.

Capitals extend AHL affiliation with Hershey Bears

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 11:17 AM / News

ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals and the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL) have extended their affiliation agreement through the 2015-16 season, Capitals president Dick Patrick and Hershey president and general manager Doug Yingst announced today.

The Bears, one of the AHL's elite franchises, recently completed their 10th season as Washington's AHL affiliate under the current agreement. Hershey has qualified for the playoffs in nine of the last 10 seasons and won the Calder Cup in back-to-back seasons as the champions of the AHL in 2009 and 2010 as well as in 2006. Hershey has reached the Calder Cup final in four of the 10 seasons it has been affiliated with Washington under the current agreement.

"We are extremely pleased to extend our affiliation with the Hershey Bears," said Patrick. "In our view, Hershey is a top franchise in the American Hockey League, and we look forward to our top prospects continuing to develop in a successful and winning culture in Hershey."

Senators owner Melnyk discharged from hospital

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 10:41 AM / News

OTTAWA – The Ottawa Senators organization is confirming that team owner, Eugene Melnyk, was discharged earlier this week from Toronto General Hospital after undergoing a successful liver transplant on May 19, 2015.

"Mr. Melnyk's recovery has been proceeding very well since undergoing his transplant," said Dr. Atul Humar, the Medical Director of the University Health Network's Multi-Organ Transplant Program. "As with all of our transplant patients, Mr. Melnyk has been monitored closely by his transplant team and his general health has improved to the point where he can begin the next phase of his recovery. In addition, we are pleased to report that the anonymous donor has also been discharged and is doing extremely well."

Strangis: Olczyk brings horse sense to Cup Final

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 10:00 AM / Lightning vs Blackhawks - 2015 Stanley Cup Final

Ralph Strangis - Special to

Horse players remember the misses more than the hits. The ones that didn't pay are the ones they talk about. Cashing tickets are part of the routine, even the big ones, and they all run together. Mostly they're just vouchers for the next play anyway.

So when Eddie Olczyk tells you about his 2015 spring, the first story he'll recite likely will concern the unprecedented daily double he missed by a nose.

When the New York Rangers lost Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final to the Tampa Bay Lightning, it took away the opportunity for Olczyk to work the Belmont Stakes and the Stanley Cup Final on the same day.

Instead, Olczyk will call only the Final between the Lightning and the Chicago Blackhawks, which starts with Game 1 at Amalie Arena on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, TVA Sports).

Coyotes considering options with third pick in draft

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 9:48 AM / 2015 NHL Draft

Mike G. Morreale - Staff Writer

BUFFALO -- The last time the Arizona Coyotes owned a top-five pick in the NHL Draft was eight years ago when center Kyle Turris was chosen third in 2007 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus.

Coyotes general manager Don Maloney, who was serving as GM at the time Turris was drafted, enters the 2015 NHL Draft, to be held June 26-27 at BB&T Center in Sunrise, Fla., with the No. 3 pick once again. Despite what many scouts claim to be as deep a prospect pool as there has been in some time, Maloney said he remains open-minded with regard to the No. 3 choice.

"There's a couple of defensemen we really like, some centermen and some dynamic wingers, but we have all kinds of options," Maloney said. "I'm not locked into anything. We do have holes to fill on our roster next season, so if we can fill a hole and get a relatively high pick in return, that's an option."

Kings GM Lombardi wants conditioning to be focus

Wednesday, 06.03.2015 / 12:06 AM / News

The Los Angeles Kings failed to qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs this season, but general manager Dean Lombardi has elected to view it as an opportunity more than a disappointment.

The Kings won the Stanley Cup in 2012 and 2014 and advanced to the Western Conference Final in 2013. But by missing the playoffs by finishing fourth in the Pacific Division, two points behind the third-place Calgary Flames, the Kings got something they haven't had in quite a while: a full offseason.

"You've heard me mention this before about the idea of the conditioning and nailing that down," Lombardi said Tuesday. "Because of what had happened in the past, it was more recovery-based offseasons than upgrading our conditioning. A lot of time was spent on evaluating that, coming up with standards now that we have that opportunity."

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Yeah, it was a pretty special moment for me. Today was my Dad's [55th] birthday. I have a lot of family in town, so it was a special moment for me to score my first one today. A win definitely would have capped it off, but you can't have everything.

— Sabres rookie Jack Eichel after scoring a goal in his National Hockey League debut
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