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2015 NHL Draft
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Senators' Hammond expected to play Thursday: report

Tuesday, 03.24.2015 / 12:08 PM / News

NHL.com

Goaltender Andrew Hammond should be available for the Ottawa Senators on Thursday against the New York Rangers, Senators coach Dave Cameron said Tuesday on TSN 1200 Radio in Ottawa.

Hammond collided with San Jose Sharks forward Logan Couture during the third period of the Senators' 5-2 win Monday against the Sharks. Hammond remained in the game and finished with 29 saves. The victory boosted the Senators past the Boston Bruins for the final wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the Eastern Conference.

The win also extended Hammond's record to 14-0-1 in 15 starts this season. He can tie the NHL record of 16 starts without a regulation loss to start a career held by Patrick Lalime, who started 14-0-2 with the 1996-97 Pittsburgh Penguins.

Fantasy top 100 forwards: Depth saving Jets' season

Tuesday, 03.24.2015 / 12:00 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Pete Jensen - NHL.com Fantasy Insider

Every Tuesday during the season, NHL.com fantasy hockey insider Pete Jensen will provide you with in-depth forward analysis. From updated weekly top 100 rankings to trending players and more, Jensen will be your go-to guy for fantasy forward advice all season long.

With Bryan Little, Dustin Byfuglien and Mathieu Perreault injured, the Winnipeg Jets appeared to be the team to write off in the jam-packed Western Conference postseason race.

But the moves the Jets made to address their forward depth leading up to the 2015 NHL Trade Deadline have allowed them to be adaptable in the face of adversity. Recent acquisition Drew Stafford has revitalized his career, center Mark Scheifele has thrived in an elevated role, and Blake Wheeler has been as consistent as ever through the adjustment period.

Hammond's historic run has Senators in playoff spot

Tuesday, 03.24.2015 / 11:14 AM / NHL Insider

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Andrew Hammond
Goalie - OTT
RECORD: 14-0-1
GAA: 1.67 | SVP: .946
The transaction line came and went Jan. 29, like so many others do during the course of an 82-game NHL season.

The Ottawa Senators summoned a goaltender from the Binghamton Senators, their American Hockey League team to hold down the backup spot behind Robin Lehner while starter Craig Anderson recovered from a hand injury.

Lehner started nine straight games; then came Feb. 16 at home against the Carolina Hurricanes. Late in the second period Lehner and forward Clarke MacArthur collided and Lehner sustained a concussion. That pressed into action the unknown minor-league goaltender; an undrafted 27-year-old with an .898 save percentage and 3.51 goals-against average in 25 AHL games. A goaltender who hadn't seen a puck in a competitive environment since allowing four goals on 37 shots in a 5-2 loss to the St. John's Ice Caps on Jan. 23.

The Senators were nine points behind the Boston Bruins for the second wild card spot into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference and were trending toward missing the postseason for a second straight season.

So expectations were pretty low when Andrew Hammond entered the net at Canadian Tire Centre.

Five weeks later, Hammond has Hamburglered his way into one of the most remarkable seasons in NHL history.

Around the League notebook for Monday, March 23

Tuesday, 03.24.2015 / 10:30 AM / News

NHL Public Relations

SURGING SENATORS REACH WILD-CARD SPOT WITH WIN AGAINST SHARKS

Facing a 2-1 deficit at the outset of the third period, the Ottawa Senators scored four straight goals, including two in a span of 1:12, to defeat the San Jose Sharks by a score of 5-2. The Senators, who have earned points in 16 of their past 17 games (15-1-1), are 37-24-11 (85 points) and leapfrogged the idle Boston Bruins to take sole possession of the final wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference.

* According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Senators have recorded points in 16 of 17 games for the first time since Feb. 20-March 24, 2007 (11-1-5). Elias also says that Ottawa have won 15 of 17 games for the first time since Oct. 3-Nov. 15, 2007 (15-2-0).

* Andrew Hammond made 29 saves and is 14-0-1 in his first 15 career starts, which includes victories in nine consecutive decisions. Through his 15 starts, Hammond has posted a 1.67 goals-against average and a .946 save percentage.

* Elias says that Hammond is the first goaltender in NHL history to earn points in each of his first 15 career starts since Patrick Lalime went 14-0-2 in his first 16 career starts with the Pittsburgh Penguins during the 1996-97 season.

Confident Kings face season-defining road trip

Tuesday, 03.24.2015 / 9:33 AM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

NEWARK, N.J. -- This is the regular season and that was the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but the Los Angeles Kings have to re-create or at least re-enact how they played with zero room for error in winning the Stanley Cup last season if they're going to have a chance to defend it this season.

They expect they will be able to do it. Confidence remains high even though consistency has been lacking.

"We know we can do it," Kings center Anze Kopitar said. "We're confident that we will do it. There's no hope involved in that."

The Kings head into their game Tuesday against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden (7 p.m. ET, NBCSN) trailing the contenders in the Western Conference playoff race with 10 games remaining. They are two points behind the Calgary Flames for third in the Pacific Division and four points behind the Winnipeg Jets for the second wild card into the playoffs from the Western Conference.

Five Questions: Kesler on Ducks' success, depth

Tuesday, 03.24.2015 / 3:00 AM / Five Questions With…

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

NHL.com's Q&A feature called "Five Questions With …" runs every Tuesday. We talk to key figures in the game and ask them questions to gain insight into their lives, careers and the latest news.

The latest edition features Olympic silver medalist and NHL All-Star Ryan Kesler:

Ryan Kesler's first season with the Anaheim Ducks has been rejuvenating for the 30-year-old center.

After a decade with the Vancouver Canucks, including 655 regular-season games, two Presidents' Trophy-winning seasons and a trip to the 2011 Stanley Cup Final, Kesler feels his game is where it needs to be, his balance off the ice is better than ever, and his belief in the Ducks as Stanley Cup contenders is strong.

Kesler has 45 points (18 goals, 27 assists) in 74 games heading into Anaheim's game Tuesday against the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Ducks lead the Pacific Division and are in the race for the Presidents' Trophy with 99 points.

Victoria's Lowry to coach Canada at 2016 WJC

Monday, 03.23.2015 / 5:15 PM / News

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Dave Lowry was named coach of Canada for the 2016 IIHF World Junior Championship, Hockey Canada announced Monday.

Lowry, the coach of the Victoria Royals of the Western Hockey League, won a gold medal as an assistant coach for Canada at the 2015 WJC.

"We're going to continue to build on the momentum that we generated in 2015," Lowry said. "The mindset and mandate moving forward will be we're going to once again look to take the best players and we're going to make the players buy into playing the game a certain way and that'll be our way."

Blue Jackets forward Milano assigned to AHL

Monday, 03.23.2015 / 3:34 PM / News

ColumbusBlueJackets.com

The Columbus Blue Jackets have assigned forward Sonny Milano from the Ontario Hockey League’s Plymouth Whalers to the American Hockey League’s Springfield Falcons, club General Manager Jarmo Kekalainen announced today.

Milano, 18, led Plymouth in scoring with 22 goals and 46 assists for 68 points and added 24 penalty minutes in 50 games in 2014-15, his first season in the OHL. He spent the previous two campaigns with the United States National Team Development Program in Ann Arbor, Michigan, recording 39 points in 25 games played for the USNDP Juniors (USHL) in 2013-14.

Coyotes recall Szwarz, send Hodgman to AHL

Monday, 03.23.2015 / 3:20 PM / News

ArizonaCoyotes.com

GLENDALE, ARIZONAArizona Coyotes General Manager Don Maloney announced today that the Coyotes have recalled forward Jordan Szwarz and assigned forward Justin Hodgman to the Portland Pirates, the club’s American Hockey League affiliate (AHL).

The 23-year-old Szwarz has collected 9-12-21 and 58 penalty minutes (PIM) in 42 games with the Pirates this season. The 5-foot-11, 200-pound native of Burlington, Ontario has totaled 3-0-3 and 19 PIM in 26 career NHL games. Szwarz was originally drafted by the Coyotes in the fourth round (97th overall) in the 2009 Entry Draft.

Pavelec, Turris, Bishop named 'Three Stars' of week

Monday, 03.23.2015 / 12:00 PM / News

NHL Public Relations

NEW YORK – Winnipeg Jets goaltender Ondrej Pavelec, Ottawa Senators center Kyle Turris and Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop have been named the NHL's "Three Stars" for the week ending March 22.

FIRST STAR – ONDREJ PAVELEC, G, WINNIPEG JETS

Pavelec went 3-0-0 with a 0.97 goals-against average, .970 save percentage and one shutout to help the Jets (37-23-12, 86 points) pick up three straight wins and maintain the final Wild Card spot in the Western Conference. He made 38 saves in a 5-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks March 17. Pavelec then denied 32 shots – and two attempts in the shootout – in a 2-1 triumph over the St. Louis Blues March 19.

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I would definitely love to play with him. He's a skilled player and over the years he definitely has shown that he can score a lot of goals. I think it would work out well.

— Montreal Canadiens forward Alex Galchenyuk on Alexander Semin