- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy17 mins ago
Here is the Puck Daddy Viewing Guide: Spotlighting five things to watch for during tonight's slate of games. Make sure to stop back here for the nightly Three Stars when the games are finished.
Create-a-Caption : "Matt Carkner #7 of the New York Islanders reacts against the Anaheim Ducks on December 9, 2013 at Honda Center in Anaheim, California."
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Preview: Ottawa Senators at Buffalo Sabres, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Los Angeles Kings at Montreal Canadiens, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Tampa Bay Lightning at Montreal Canadiens, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: New Jersey Devils at Columbus Blue Jackets, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Nashville Predators at New York Rangers, 7:30 p.m. ET
- Dmitry Chesnokov at Puck Daddy1 hr ago
Pavel Datsyuk is scheduled to return to the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday night against the Florida Panthers, having missed the last seven games with a concussion. Being that he was a nearly point per game player before that injury, it's a welcomed return.
In the meantime, Datsyuk sat down with Pavel Lysenkov of SovSporta few weeks ago for a wide-ranging Q&A. As usual, it's Datsyuk being as insightful and funny as we've come to expect.
Here's a translated version of that Russian interview:
Q. New Jersey Devils’ defenseman Anton Volchenkov told me one ‘Hockey in the NHL is like a war – you never know if you come back from a game in one piece.’
DATSYUK: “It is a rough comparison. But games here are like battles. Injuries happen every day. So Anton is somewhat right.”
Who were you thankful for during Thanksgiving?
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy2 hrs ago
There’s no ranking. No list. No line. No formal order of National Hockey League expansion destinations.
That’s according to NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman on Tuesday, speaking after the Board of Governors meeting in Pebble Beach.
Has there been expansion discussion? He won’t say. Will the NHL listen to pitches from potential expansion cities?
“We listen when somebody wants us to listen. That's all [I’m saying],” said Bettman.
Seattle, Quebec City and Toronto are at the forefront of the NHL expansion chatter, which wasn’t exactly tempered when the League realigned into conferences of 16 and 14 teams. Because we’re not math majors, but to balance those conferences …
What Bettman would confirm is that expansion won’t happen for the 2014-15 season – despite reports to the contrary – and that the League has talked with potential expansion cities.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
The Winter Classic Alumni Game at Comerica Park was going to feature a number of Detroit Red Wings greats. But it felt incomplete without one of the greatest: Steve Yzerman, the team’s captain from 1986-2006.
Yzerman original said he wouldn’t play in the game, telling the Detroit News on Feb. 9, 2012:
"At this time I don't plan on participating in the alumni game but hope to watch the Classic on TV."
One year later, he had been non-committal about appearing in the Dec. 31 game, telling DetroitRedWings.com in November:
“I haven’t given it really much thought,” said, Steve Yzerman, the general manager of both the Tampa Bay Lightning and Team Canada. “I’ve been pretty busy with our team and watching a lot of hockey games for the Olympics so I haven’t really looked that far ahead.”
… It’s been more than seven years since the former captain last skated in any kind of organized game.
“I’ve had skates on like three times to do something minor,” Yzerman said. “I’ve just kind of moved on a little bit. I don’t have time to skate and don’t really have a real desire to.”
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
Here are your Puck Headlines: a glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.
• How Pavel Datsyuk spent his concussion vacation. [Pavel Datsyuk]
• Shawn Thornton's in-person hearing goes Friday, unless he grows impatient and pulls Shanahan out of a meeting by his collar before then. [NHL]
• James Neal finally fesses up on going knee to nose with Brad Marchand. “It’s not the smartest decision I ever made, looking back on it. I’m glad he’s OK, but going forward, I need to learn from it." [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
He may be the interim coach, but Ted Nolan has reached a rite of passage for any bench boss for the Buffalo Sabres: Like the two men who came before him, he has made Ville Leino a healthy scratch.
The Sabres have probably been off your radar since the end of Pat LaFontaine’s press conference, so here’s what Leino’s done this season: Not much. Five assists in 18 games with nary a goal, good for a 0.28 points per game average. And he’s a minus-3 in his last two games.
So he’s a healthy scratch.
“I don’t know about losing patience. Certain players with a certain skills set, they have to bring it,” Nolan said. “Sometimes it’s better to sit and look and observe for a while and hopefully when he gets back he’ll play the way he’s capable of playing.”
Nolan said Saturday’s loss to Montreal and a bad practice led to the scratch. “It’s how you lose games. It’s not giving them away. We want to see guys with effort on a consistent basis.”
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
The Chicago Blackhawks have lost three of their last four games and now have to prepare themselves for the Antti Raanta/Kent Simpson era in goal.
Corey Crawford injured himself during the first period of Sunday's win over the Florida Panthers. It's a lower-body injury that will keep him out of the lineup for the next 2-3 weeks, head coach Joel Quenneville revealed Tuesday:
Raanta will get the start Tuesday night against the Dallas Stars, with Simpson backing up. Both began the season in the AHL with Rockford.
Raanta's played well in five appearances posting a 3-0-1 record with a 2.16 goals against average and .923 save-percentage, impressing Coach Q. Via ESPN Chicago: “He’s done a real good job. He’s played some games now. We got to see him a little bit more. He’s doing what we want him to do.”
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy5 hrs ago
It's a Tuesday edition of Marek vs. Wyshynski beginning at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT, and we're talking about the following and more: unappealing
Special Guest Star: Mark Spector hits us from the NHL Board of Governors meetings.
• Listeners punch back on Marek's fighting opinions.
• Phaneuf gets 2 games.
• Jarome Iginla heads back to Calgary.
• NHL news and notes.
Question of the Day: The salary cap will rise to $71 million next season; is this good or bad for NHL? Email at email@example.com or hit us on Twitter with the hashtag #MvsW to @wyshynski or @jeffmarek.
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy6 hrs ago
Sebastian Courcelles hopes to play this weekend.
This is, in a word, insane. That would be less than a week after the captain of the LNAH's Thetford Mines Isothermic, a team in Quebec's minor-pro Ligue Nord-Américaine de Hockey, left Saturday night's game with a severe skate cut to the face.
A photo of the injury made the rounds the following morning. If you haven't seen it yet, it's here, but be warned it's as graphic and gruesome a skate cut photo as we've ever seen. Isothermic goaltender Bobby Baril, who saw the cut up close as Courcelles left the, nearly fainted. That's not an unreasonable response.
(There's another look at it here. It's no less disgusting.)
You're looking at the less graphic but still pretty horrifying after photo, with Courcelles fully stitched up, looking less like the victim of a zombie bite and more like the front of a snowboarding jacket.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy6 hrs ago
In the latest edition of “Bruins-related NHL suspensions,” Dion Phaneuf of the Toronto Maple Leafs was given a completely appropriate two games from the NHL for a hit from behind on Kevan Miller of the Boston Bruins, a team that’s been involved in no less than three supplemental discipline incidents in the last four days.
Phaneuf was suspended for this hit on Miller in Sunday’s Bruins victory at the Leafs:
Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Dion Phaneuf has been suspended for two games, without pay, for boarding Boston Bruins defenseman Kevan Miller during NHL Game No. 450 in Toronto on Sunday, Dec. 8, the National Hockey League's Department of Player Safety announced today.
The incident occurred at 17:43 of the third period. No penalty was assessed to Phaneuf on the play.