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Short Shifts

Lightning prospect scores incredible lacrosse-style goal in junior game

Otto Somppi delivers for Halifax in first period Sunday

NHL.com @NHL

Otto Somppi scored a goal for the ages Sunday.

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NHL Draft

Draft Diary: Joseph Veleno

Center off to fast start with Drummondville after trade from Saint John

by Joseph Veleno / Special to NHL.com

Joseph Veleno (6-foot-1, 195 pounds) of Drummondville in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League is the first player granted exceptional status to play as a 15-year-old in the league. He's in his third season in the QMJHL. Veleno had 31 points (six goals, 25 assists) in 31 games as captain with Saint John before being traded to Drummondville on Dec. 19. He has 22 points (four goals, 18 assists) in 14 games with Drummondville.

Veleno, No. 13 in NHL Central Scouting's midterm ranking of North American skaters, has offered to maintain a draft diary for NHL.com leading up to the NHL Draft in Dallas on June 22-23.

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AHL

Demko on fast track to Canucks

Vancouver goaltending prospect savoring AHL experience while priming for NHL future

by Patrick Williams / NHL.com

UTICA, N.Y. -- Earning a job with the Vancouver Canucks means making a trip across North America from this old-school American Hockey League city, but goaltender Thatcher Demko is making excellent time.

Demko turned 22 on Dec. 8, but his work with Utica has him on a fast track to Vancouver in his second pro season. In his latest performance for Utica fans, he made a diving save that helped set up a 1-0 win for the champion North Division against the Pacific Division at the AHL All-Star Challenge on Monday.

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AHL

Coyotes relying on Strome, Merkley to help reverse fortunes

Forward prospects each invited to AHL All-Star Classic after strong starts with Tucson

by Patrick Williams / NHL.com Correspondent

UTICA, N.Y. -- Multiple NHL organizations have demonstrated that long-time success starts with strong work at the NHL Draft. That work often continues through the development stage in the American Hockey League.

The Chicago Blackhawks, Nashville Predators, and Pittsburgh Penguins are among the longtime successful organizations that invested the time, patience, and resources needed to produce a steady flow of NHL-ready players from the AHL.

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prospect

5 things learned from CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

Zadina lives up to high ranking with two goals for Team Cherry, Bouchard ties record with four points

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

GUELPH, Ontario -- Halifax right wing Filip Zadina, No. 2 in NHL Central Scouting's midterm ranking of North American skaters eligible for the 2018 NHL Draft, scored two goals to help Team Don Cherry win 7-4 against Team Bobby Orr at the Sherman-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at Sleeman Centre on Thursday.

Flint center Ty Dellandrea, No. 76 in Central Scouting's midterm rankings, and Owen Sound center Aidan Dudas (No. 131) each scored twice, London defenseman Evan Bouchard (No. 5) had four assists, and Cape Breton left wing Egor Sokolov (No. 73) had a goal and an assist for Team Cherry.

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news

Svechnikov, Zadina, looking to impress for CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

Highest two-ranked North American forwards among 40 scheduled to participate

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

GUELPH, Ontario -- Forwards Andrei Svechnikov and Filip Zadina, the two top players in NHL Central Scouting's midterm rankings of North American skaters eligible for the 2018 NHL Draft, are among 40 blue chip prospects scheduled to participate in the 2018 Sherwin-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at Sleeman Centre on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, TVA Sports).

The game will feature seven of the top 10 players in NHL Central Scouting's midterm ranking of North American skaters, and 15 of the top 31 for the 2018 draft, which will be held June 22-23 at American Airlines Center in Dallas.

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AHL

What to watch for at AHL All-Star Classic

Tucson rookie Strome, goal-scoring leaders McKenzie, Zykov among forwards to have impact this season

by Patrick Williams / NHL.com Correspondent

The AHL All-Star Classic will be in Utica, New York, on Jan. 28-29. Each of the four divisions (Atlantic, North, Central, Pacific) will compete in the 3-on-3 round-robin tournament on Monday (7 p.m. NHLN, SN). The teams with the two best records after round-robin competition will play a six-minute championship game.

Here are four things to keep an eye on during the two-day event:

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prospect

5 things learned from USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game

Madden impressive for East, West forward Cotter stands out in skills testing

by Adam Kimelman @NHLAdamK / NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Tyler Madden scored two goals, including the winner with 4:08 remaining in the third period, to lead Team East to a 4-3 victory against Team West in the USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at Viaero Center in Kearney, Nebraska on Tuesday.

The game featured 40 of the top players eligible for the 2018 NHL Draft playing in the United States Hockey League. Players for the game were selected by NHL general managers and scouts, NHL Central Scouting and USHL GMs.

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AHL

Zykov, Foegele helping to boost Hurricanes' AHL affiliate

Group of forwards having strong season for Charlotte

by Patrick Williams / NHL.com Correspondent

With the midpoint of its season approaching, Charlotte of the American Hockey League is hoping to make a move in the standings.

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prospect

Predators prospect Tolvanen motivated after slipping in Draft

Forward, 18, selected No. 30 in 2017, has impressed in KHL

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

BUFFALO -- Right wing Eeli Tolvanen has always had a passion for scoring goals in different ways since the day he began playing hockey as a 3-year-old in Vihit, Finland.

"It was just working hard after every practice, and shooting pucks in my backyard," he said.

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