Puck Previews: Red Wings vs. Canucks; Brian Burke talks gay hockey players

Puck Daddy

Back by popular demand, 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: Detroit Red Wings at Vancouver Canucks, 10 p.m. As if it needed to be said: Game of the Night. The Red Wings are still trying to find their stride on the road. Roberto Luongo is rested and ready to face Jimmy Howard. Two puck-control teams will battle all night to control the puck. The teams split to first two games this season.

Preview: Montreal Canadiens at New Jersey Devils, 7 p.m. Louis Leblanc and his particular brand of whimsy are back for the Habs, but the big news isn't that he's centering the fourth line — it's that Andrei Kostitsyn is playing on his wing. On the fourth line. Andrei Kostitsyn. Wow. Marty Brodeur gets the start against the Habs, 7-3-0 with a 1.72 GAA in his last 10 against them.

Preview: Nashville Predators at Philadelphia Flyers, 7 p.m. OK, Scott Hartnell really needs to stop being so likeable: "Craig 'Partner' Baugh, the Predators locker room attendant at home games, and his boisterous and caring nature has surrounded the team in both Minnesota and Philadelphia. Former Predator and current Flyer, Scott Hartnell, requested that Baugh, who has an undisclosed learning disability, come on the trip so the two could hang out in Philadelphia the night before today's game."

Preview: Carolina Hurricanes at Boston Bruins, 7 p.m. How about this: Carolina has beaten the Bruins three times this season, "putting them in position to sweep Boston for the first time in Hartford/Carolina WhalerCanes franchise history."

Preview: Winnipeg Jets at Tampa Bay Lightning, 7:30 p.m. Big Buff is back, but he'll have his ice time monitored after missing 16 games. The Lightning have a 5-game winning streak.

Preview: Minnesota Wild at Colorado Avalanche, 9 p.m. Mile High Hockey's calling this one a must-win statement game. The Wild are coming off their epic collapse to the Predators earlier this week. "No way in 100 years should we have lost that game," said Josh Harding. Sucks for Minnesota fans in 2112.

Preview: Chicago Blackhawks at Edmonton Oilers, 9:30 p.m. The Blackhawks are returning to the scene of a 9-2 curb-stomping they suffered earlier this season, and have lost three in a row. Oh, they'll be surly.

Preview: Dallas Stars at San Jose Sharks, 10:30 p.m. Antti Niemi misses this one with an injury suffered in practice, but the Sharks will get Ryane Clowe back. The incredibly named Tyson Sexsmith was brought up "to reward him for his all-star performance in Worcester" and back-up Thomas Greiss.

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

• A full rundown of Clockgate, including the curious admission by Colin Campbell that the Dean Lombardi "coulombs" explanation "isn't the deal in this case." [Dispatch]

• Details on the Feb. 13 Dustin Penner pancake dinner. [Mayors Manor]

• Gordie Howe doesn't have dementia per se. [Malik]

• Mikael Samuelsson is starting to figure things out in Florida. [On Frozen Blog]

• Great stuff with Brian Burke on CBC regarding gay players and the NHL. [YouTube]

Puck Daddy Reader Comment of the Day: Khova Rdova on the Bud rec league Bowl ad:

"There is always a #69 in beer league hockey."

Bold Prediction: The Preds beat the Flyers in Philly on a Ryan Suter goal.

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