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Sean Leahy

Puck Previews: Kovalev back in Montreal; Hossa skates

Sean Leahy
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Here are your Puck Previews: Spotlighting the key games in NHL action, news and views as well as general frivolity. Make sure to stop back here for the nightly Three Stars when the games are finished.

Preview: Ottawa Senators (4-2-0) at Montreal Canadiens (2-4-0), 7 p.m. EST.

Alexei Kovalev makes his first appearance inside Bell Centre since he signed with the Senators in the off-season. Expecting a mixed reaction, Canadiens fans would likely give a few extra cheers if Kovalev fails to improve on his has season total of two goals.

Preview: Atlanta Thrashers (3-1-0) at Buffalo Sabres (4-0-1), 7 p.m. EST.

Having not lost in regulation yet, the Sabres welcome a Thrashers team that beat Martin Brodeur(notes) and the New Jersey Devils last night. Patrick Lalime(notes) will start in net for the Sabres as Maxim Afinogenov(notes) returns to Buffalo for the first time hoping to help Atlanta continue their hot start.

Preview: New York Rangers (6-1-0) at Toronto Maple Leafs (0-5-1), 7 p.m. EST.

What's a team to do when they find themselves winless through six games and play in one of the league's biggest media markets? Play dodgeball, of course. For the Leafs safe, they better hope they learned some defensive tactics to stop Marian Gaborik(notes), who has registered a point in all seven games this season for New York.

Preview: Los Angeles Kings (4-3-0) at Columbus Blue Jackets (4-1-0), 7 p.m. EST.

The life of 19-year old Ryan Salmons will be remembered tonight as the Blue Jackets host their Hockey Fights Cancer Night. Looking to extend their best start in franchise history, Columbus welcomes a Kings team who have lost their last two and currently have four players suffering from flu-like symptons.

Preview: Tampa Bay Lightning (2-2-2) at Pittsburgh Penguins (6-1-0), 7:30 p.m. EST.

Changes abound for Tampa Bay. After their 7-1 loss to Ottawa on Thursday night, Rick Tocchet has decided to move Steve Downie(notes) from the fourth line to alongside Vincent Lecavalier(notes) and Alex Tanguay(notes). Antero Niittymaki(notes) will replace Mike Smith(notes) in goal. Pittsburgh begins a five-game homestand after winning their last four on the road.

Preview: Colorado Avalanche (5-1-1) at Detroit Red Wings (3-3-0), 7 p.m. EST.

Preview: Nashville Predators (2-4-0) at Washington Capitals (3-2-2), 7 p.m. EST.

Preview: San Jose Sharks (3-3-1) at New York Islanders (0-2-3), 7 p.m. EST.

Preview: Carolina Hurricanes (2-3-1) at New Jersey Devils (3-3-0), 7 p.m. EST.

Preview: Dallas Stars (2-1-3) at Chicago Blackhawks (5-1-1), 8:30 p.m. EST.

Preview: Boston Bruins (3-3-0) at Phoenix Coyotes (4-2-0), 9 p.m. EST.

Preview: St. Louis Blues (2-2-1) at Anaheim Ducks (3-2-1), 10 p.m. EST.

Preview: Minnesota Wild (1-5-0) at Vancouver Canucks (2-4-0), 10 p.m. EST.

Evening Reading

-Red Wings general manager Ken Holland chimes in on Kyle Quincey's(notes) "snub". [Free Press]

-Marian Hossa(notes) hit the ice for the first time since he had surgery on his shoulder. [Chicago Tribune]

-To those who are anticipating Phil Kessel's(notes) return from injury to help the Toronto Maple Leafs, Ron Wilson would like you to not compare him to any biblical figure. [Faceoff.com]

-Once impossible-to-get Maple Leafs ticket can now be had at half price. [Toronto Star]

-Explaining the many faces of Jacques Martin. [Scarlett Ice]

-Tomorrow, the Atlanta Thrashers will skate at the new Dan Snyder Memorial Arena in his hometown of Elmira, Ontario. [ESPN]

-Where should the 2010 NHL Draft take place? [Scotty Wazz]

-Prepare your eyes. The Habs will wear their barber shop pole-looking jerseys on Halloween night. [Icethetics]

-Recalling the night when Guy LaFleur returned to Montreal. [Eyes on the Prize]

-Andrew Ebbett(notes), formerly of the Anaheim Ducks, has been claimed on waivers by the Blackhawks. [Inside SoCal]

-Is playing on VERSUS a jinx for the Red Wings? [Hockey Independent]

-A look at Edmonton's farm system shows that the kids are developing well. [Lowetide]

Puck Buddy Comment of the Day: From Rover who reminds us of a scene in the wonderfully terrible movie, "Semi-Pro"

"Why would he even want a ring when he didn't even play a playoff game and played only 6 reg games? That's woody harrelson showing off his championship ring in the movie Semi-Pro when he never left the bench. In otherwords, would you want to show off a ring for a championship that you did nothing to help win it?"

Bold Prediction: Jonathan Toews(notes) will finally open his goal account with a pair as the Blackhawks beat the Dallas Stars.

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