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Kostin helps Russia sweep WHL leg of Super Series

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 5:00 PM / News

Russia goalie Denis Kostin went through seven rounds of the 2014 NHL Draft without being selected. But with a strong outing Tuesday in Game 2 of the 2014 Subway Super Series, he could be on the road to changing those opinions when the 2015 draft is held.

Kostin made 34 saves as Russia was outshot 36-18 but defeated the Western Hockey League 3-2.

The win, in a game played at Keystone Centre in Brandon, Manitoba, gave Russia a sweep of the two games against the WHL. Russia won 3-2 in a shootout Monday at SaskTel Centre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Pavel Kraskovsky, a 2014 sixth-round pick (No. 164) of the Winnipeg Jets, had two goals and an assist for Russia in Game 2. Andrey Alexeyev, like Kostin passed over at the 2014 draft, also scored.


Lightning forward Johnson day-to-day with injury

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 3:28 PM / News

Tampa Bay points leader Tyler Johnson is day-to-day following a hit in the third period of the Lightning's 3-2 shootout loss in Chicago.

Johnson has an upper-body injury.

The 24-year-old left Tuesday’s game in the third after getting cross-checked in the ribs by the Blackhawks' Brent Seabrook. Johnson had both arms extended in the air reaching for the puck, exposing his mid-section, when the hit occurred.


Defenseman Boyle expected back in Rangers lineup

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 1:54 PM / News

New York Rangers defenseman Dan Boyle is expected to play Thursday against the Colorado Avalanche at Madison Square Garden, coach Alain Vigneault said Wednesday.

Boyle hasn't played since breaking his hand early in the third period of the Rangers' season-opener on Oct. 9 against the St. Louis Blues. He has missed 14 games.

"I think he's going to play [Thursday]," Vigneault said.


Sharks place goalie Stalock on IR, recall Grosenick

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 1:01 PM / News

The San Jose Sharks on Wednesday placed goaltender Alex Stalock on injured reserve and recalled goaltender Troy Grosenick from the Worcester Sharks of the American Hockey League, the team announced.

Stalock is 2-2-1 with a 2.38 goals-against average and a .925 save percentage in five games. He was slated to start Tuesday against the Florida Panthers, but Antti Niemi played instead and made 26 saves in a 4-1 loss.

Grosenick, a 6-foot-1, 185-pound native of Brookfield, Wis., is 7-2-1 with a 2.73 GAA and .908 save percentage in 10 games for Worcester. He leads the AHL in wins and ranks second in minutes played (616). He signed a free-agent contract with the Sharks in April 2013.


Fantasy top 60 'D': Flames' Giordano tops rankings

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 12:00 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Brian Metzer - Correspondent

Every Wednesday during the season, fantasy hockey correspondent Brian Metzer will provide you with in-depth defensemen analysis. From updated weekly top 60 rankings to trending players and more, Metzer will be your go-to guy for fantasy blue line advice all season long.

The Calgary Flames have been one of the most interesting stories through the first month of the NHL season. They have gotten off to a 9-6-2 start and sit just three points behind the Western Conference-leading Anaheim Ducks in the Pacific Division. There have been many reasons for that success, but one of the biggest has been the play of Mark Giordano.

Giordano, who jumps to the head of the line in our rankings this week, leads all defensemen in assists (14) and points (19), and ranks second in goals (five) and points per game (1.12). He collected 10 of those points (three goals) over his past five games and is probably the hottest player in the league not named Sidney Crosby.

He might not have been the first name you thought of when drafting defensemen for your fantasy team, but he probably should have been, especially when you consider he rolled up 47 points (five goals) over the 64 games he played last season.

That production translated into .73 points per game and was good enough to rank him behind the Ottawa Senators' Erik Karlsson (.90) and the Chicago Blackhawks' Duncan Keith (.77) in that category.


Canadiens assign defenseman Tinordi to AHL

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 11:02 AM / News

The Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday assigned defenseman Jarred Tinordi to Hamilton of the American Hockey League.

The Canadiens acquired veteran defenseman Sergei Gonchar on Tuesday in a trade with the Dallas Stars, making it likely either Tinordi or another young defenseman, Nathan Beaulieu, would be sent to the AHL.

Tinordi, a first-round pick (No. 22) by the Canadiens in the 2010 NHL Draft, had two assists in nine games this season. He has six assists in 39 games over three seasons with Montreal.


Five things to watch in Rivalry Night games

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Brian Compton - Deputy Managing Editor

The Toronto Maple Leafs are trying to string wins together. The Boston Bruins are thriving, not just surviving, without their captain and top defenseman, Zdeno Chara.

They're each in Stanley Cup Playoff position one month into the 2014-15 season, separated by two points in the Atlantic Division. With a handful of teams in the Eastern Conference improving their rosters during the offseason, every point, even this early in the season, is critical.

The Original Six clubs will get together in the first game of a NBCSN Wednesday Night Rivalry doubleheader at Air Canada Centre (8 p.m. ET), when the Bruins will be seeking their sixth straight win. The Maple Leafs, meanwhile, will try to make it three in a row.

On the other side of North America, the Los Angeles Kings will head down the freeway to take on the Anaheim Ducks at Honda Center (10:30 p.m. ET) in the first game between the teams since the Western Conference Second Round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs, which the Kings won in seven games.

Anaheim has lost its past three games, but it enters Wednesday with a five-game point streak (2-0-3). Los Angeles is on a three-game point streak (2-0-1).

Here are five things to watch in the Wednesday Night Rivalry games:


Quick continues to excel despite depleted Kings roster

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Curtis Zupke - Correspondent

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Every four years Dustin Brown gets a reminder of why he appreciates Jonathan Quick. It happens when Brown and Quick are playing for the U.S. Olympic team instead of the Los Angeles Kings.

Brown has been with Quick throughout the 28-year-old goalie's NHL career, so he's used to seeing Quick carry the Kings and hide their weaknesses during rough patches.

"But going to the Olympics and him making saves over there and seeing guys react on the bench that way that haven't played with him on a day-to-day basis [reminds me]," Brown said. "Just seeing guys, how they reacted when he made some saves that probably very few goalies make."


Maple Leafs seeing incremental progress from Kadri

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 3:00 AM / NHL Insider

Mike Brophy - Correspondent

TORONTO -- A work in progress.

Toronto Maple Leafs center Nazem Kadri has been called that so often it might as well be his middle name.

And yet 15 games into his third full season with the Maple Leafs, Kadri is still working toward establishing himself as a bona fide top-two center with the team. The 24-year-old London, Ontario, native who was the seventh pick in the 2009 NHL Draft started the season as Toronto's No. 2 pivot behind Tyler Bozak, who has skated the last few seasons between left wing James van Riemsdyk and right wing Phil Kessel.

When that trio failed to light it up early, Toronto coach Randy Carlyle replaced Bozak, not a prototypical top-line center, though he has been productive as well as the defensive conscience on the line, with Kadri.

"I haven't gotten too much opportunity over the past couple of years, but it is always nice to play with Phil," Kadri said. "He's a great player. The thing with this team is we need all the lines to contribute and secondary third- and fourth-line scoring is definitely going to increase our chances of winning."


Modano grew Texas hockey on way to Hall of Fame

Wednesday, 11.12.2014 / 3:00 AM / Hall of Fame

Brian Compton - Deputy Managing Editor

When Mike Modano retired in 2011 after playing 1,499 regular-season games, the Dallas Stars great had to have known he had a strong chance to one day be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

But truth be told, there was never any doubt.

Modano, the all-time leader in goals (561) and points (1,374) among players born in the United States, will enter the Hall of Fame during a ceremony in Toronto on Nov. 17. He received the call in June while driving in his car and when he saw who was on the other end, he knew he had to stop.

"Just a little disbelief. You just don't feel like there's a part of you that buys you're going in with the greats to ever play the game," Modano told "You feel like you, in some weird way, you don't belong in there with those guys. But it was quite a call. I just had to pull over to the curb to take that one."

Modano is one of four players who will enter the Hall this year, joining Dominik Hasek, Peter Forsberg and Rob Blake. Former referee Bill McCreary will also be enshrined, along with former coach Pat Burns, who was posthumously elected. Modano's thrilled to be a part of such a tremendous class; he played against Hasek when the Stars defeated the Buffalo Sabres in the 1999 Stanley Cup Final.

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Quote of the Day

It was a different game in the past, that's for sure. It's not exactly what I was expecting but I think the experience paid off for a lot of our guys that realized what it takes in a Game 7. Realistically the effort we put forward, we might not even had to put 60 [minutes], but we just couldn't get a couple bounces to go our way and we just kept pushing.

— Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby on Washington's play in Game 7 vs. the Islanders