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Puck Previews: Leafs meet Flyers; Steve Yzerman not playing in Winter Classic Alumni Game?

Sean Leahy
Puck Daddy

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.

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• It's all fun and games until Fin gnaws your entire leg off. [Getty]

Preview: St. Louis Blues at New Jersey Devils, 7 p.m. ET. The Blues have won 10 of their 12 games against the Eastern Conference this season, but their toughest test yet comes against a Devils team looking for their sixth win in a row. While former Devils Jason Arnott will be scratched tonight while dealing with a shoulder injury, Jamie Langenbrunner returns to New Jersey for the first time since being dealt in Jan. 2011.

Preview: Toronto Maple Leafs at Philadelphia Flyers, 7 p.m. ET. While members of the Detroit Red Wings were at home today to be a part of the 2013 Winter Classic press conference, their opponents in next year's outdoor game were in Philly as they try to earn some breathing room in the bottom half of the Eastern Conference playoff race. Sergei Bobrovsky will start for the Flyers as Ilya Bryzgalov missed the morning skate with an illness. Jason Bacashihua (!) will serve as the backup.

Preview: Calgary Flames at Phoenix Coyotes, 9 p.m. ET. The Coyotes stand one point ahead of the Flames as the two teams battle for one of the last playoff spots in the Western Conference. Leland Irving will give Miikka Kiprusoff, who recorded his 300th NHL win last night against San Jose, a night off in goal. Mike Smith will likely be in net for the Coyotes and given the task of slowing down Olli Jokinen who had four goals and 10 points in his last seven games.

Check out previews and updated scores for all of today's games on the Y! Sports NHL scores and scheds page. For tonight's starting goalies, check out Left Wing Lock.

Evening Reading

• Steve Yzerman on the 2013 Winter Classic Alumni Game: "At this time I don't plan on participating in the alumni game but hope to watch the (Winter) Classic on TV." Booooooo! Red Wings GM and Kris Draper both said they plan to bug Stevie Y until he changes his mind. [Detroit News]

• Good news: Minnesota high school hockey player Jenna Privette, who was hit during a game last month, remains paralyzed from the waist down, but doctors expect a full recovery. [Duluth News Tribune]

• You can get 6/1 odds that Scott Gomez doesn't score a goal the rest of this season. [Bovada]

• Ted Nolan talks about life as the head coach of the Latvian national team. [IIHF]

Puck Daddy Reader Comment of the Day: Our buddy Colin on the Winter Classic at Michigan Stadium next Jan. 1:

"Can a fan hit the Winter Classic rink in the Big House with an octopus?"

Water balloon launcher

Bold Prediction: Olli Jokinen forgets to have a Big Mac last night and goes pointless in a 3-2 loss to the Coyotes.

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