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: "Brad Marchand #63 of the Boston Bruins pretends to carry the Stanley Cup during their NHL game against the Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Arena."
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Preview: Calgary Flames at Boston Bruins, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Winnipeg Jets at Buffalo Sabres, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Tampa Bay Lightning at New York Islanders, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Florida Panthers at Toronto Maple Leafs, 7 p.m. ET
Preview: Anaheim Ducks at Detroit Red Wings, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview: Phoenix Coyotes at Montreal Canadiens, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview: Washington Capitals at Philadelphia Flyers, 7:30 p.m. ET
Preview: San Jose Sharks at ASt. Louis Blues, 8 p.m. ET
Preview: Chicago Blackhawks at Nashville Predators, 8 p.m. ET
Preview: Vancouver Canucks at Minnesota Wild, 8 p.m. ET
Preview: Colorado Avalanche at Dallas Stars, 8:30 p.m. ET
Preview: Edmonton Oilers at Los Angeles Kings, 10:30 p.m. ET
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Five things to know about tonight's NHL games ...
1. Luongo hopes to… wait for it.. Xcel. The Canucks' netminder has had his struggles in Minnesota in recent years. If John Tortorella and Luongo have their way, however, that ends tonight. From the Star Tribune:
He is 3-9-2 with a 3.56 goals-against average and .873 save percentage at the X, and that includes a 0-0 tie in his first-ever start at the X with Florida in 2000. Luongo has been pulled in his past three starts here and has just had such struggles here that former Van. coach Alain Vigneault didn't play him in Minnesota since Oct. 19, 2010. Luongo joked yesterday to ask AV if he was playing.
“He’s going to exorcise that demon, I guess, if that’s what everybody thinks this is,” Canucks coach John Tortorella said. “He’s a pro. He needs to play.”
This will also be Luongo's third game in four nights. If fatigue sets in, it's going to do wonders for this narrative.
2. Sharks bite. San Jose has lost four straight, and 5 of their last 6. But maybe the Blues will be the cure for what ails them? Most teams have trouble versus St. Louis, but the Sharks have made Ken Hitchcock's boys look downright silly this year, with 6-2 and 6-3 wins. Can they end their losing streak by sweeping the season series?
3. Silent G returns. Cody Hodgson, Buffalo's leading scorer, is back versus the Jets after missing the last two games with a lower-body injury.
4. Panthers are swaggy. The Panthers go into Toronto feeling pretty good about the way they're playing. They've won 5 of 6 and their last 3. "We're finally starting to feel confident and, so to speak, play with a little swagger," said Scottie Upshall.
5. Joe Blow. The Red Wings have been pretty mediocre at Joe Louis Arena of late, and now they're on the verge of losing five straight at home for the first time in nearly three decades, as well as six straight overall. Their main problem: they're not scoring.
Bold Prediction: Panthers win again, and their swagger increases.