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Hockey Night everywhere

by Adam Schwartz

It's Super Saturday in the NHL, and for the first time since opening day of the 2005-06 season, all 30 of the League's teams will be in action.

Among the highlights is the Battle of Ontario at 7 p.m. ET between the Ottawa Senators and the Toronto Maple Leafs (CBC, NHLN-US) and a Northwest Division showdown between the Edmonton Oilers and the Vancouver Canucks at 10 p.m. ET (CBC, NHLN-US).

The first game of the day will see the New Jersey Devils play the second half of their home-and-home series with the Philadelphia Flyers at 4 p.m. Then at 7 p.m., in addition to the Ottawa-Toronto game, the Boston Bruins host the Atlanta Thrashers, the Anaheim Ducks play their third game in a four-game road trip against the Montreal Canadiens, the Carolina Hurricanes visit the New York Islanders and the Pittsburgh Penguins battle the New York Rangers in an Atlantic Division match.

Later, the San Jose Sharks look for their seventh victory of the season against the Tampa Bay Lightning; the Los Angeles Kings play their second game in two nights, against the Nashville Predators; the Minnesota Wild look to remain the lone Western Conference without a regulation loss when they take on the Columbus Blue Jackets; the Dallas Stars return home to play the Washington Capitals after a 3-game road trip; the Detroit Red Wings play the Chicago Blackhawks in an Original 6 match; and the St. Louis Blues take on the Florida Panthers.

In addition to the Edmonton-Vancouver game, two late games see the Buffalo Sabres conclude their two-game road trip in Colorado, and the Phoenix Coyotes face the Calgary Flames.

Here's what to keep an eye out for:

* Bruins center Phil Kessel, who scored 30 goals in his first 152 games in the NHL, has 6 goals in 7 games this season. Kessel, who missed just 12 games in the 2006-07 season due to testicular cancer, won the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy for best exemplifying the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey in 2007.

* Keith Yandle, who had 7 assists and 12 points in 43 games last season, leads Coyotes defensemen with 3 assists and 4 points in 6 games this season. Yandle has 2 points at home and 2 points on the road.

* Toronto defenseman Jonas Frogren, who had a plus-2 rating in his first game this season, has a minus-5 rating in his last 5 games. Frogren, who beat the odds just by making it to the NHL after being drafted in the eighth round (No. 206) in the 1998 Entry Draft, leads the team with 20 hits.

* The Canucks, who scored 11 goals in their first 2 games of the season, have scored 11 goals in 5 games since. Vancouver, which swept a home-and-home series with Calgary to begin the season, has won just 1 of 5 games since then.

* Montreal defenseman Mike Komisarek, who was second in the League with 266 hits last season, leads the Canadiens with 30 hits and 27 blocked shots in 6 games this season.

* Flames right wing Todd Bertuzzi, who has not scored 30 goals since he was playing on the West Coast Express Line in Vancouver with Markus Naslund and Brendan Morrison in the 2002-03 season, has 5 goals in 7 games with Calgary.

* Hurricanes center Rod Brind'Amour has 50 goals and 90 points in 83 career games against the Islanders. Brind'Amour, who has scored all 3 of his goals in the second period this season, has 3 of his 4 points this season while playing away from the RBC Center.


* Colorado right wing Ian Laperriere, who led the Avalanche with 140 penalty minutes last season, leads the team with 33 penalty minutes in 7 games this season. Laperriere was 1 of just 6 players in the League last season that had at least 140 penalty minutes and at least 15 assists.

* San Jose captain Patrick Marleau, who had just 48 points last season, his lowest total since the 2001-02 season, has 9 points in his first 8 games this season, including a 4-point game Wednesday in the Sharks' 7-6 shootout victory against the Flyers.

* Predators right wing J.P. Dumont, who has had at least 40 assists in his last 2 seasons, leads the team with 7 assists in 7 games. Dumont, who has 5 of his 7 assists at the Sommet Center in Nashville, leads Predators forwards with an average ice time of 18:40 per game.

* Wild right wing Antti Miettinen, who has never had more than 34 points in a season, has 5 goals and 7 points in 5 games this season. Miettinen, who was a depth forward for the Stars last season, averaging just 13:59 of ice time per game, is playing on one of Minnesota's top lines and averaging 20:14 this season.

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