League News
Team USA names Jake Gardiner to WHC roster | 04/16/2014 8:29 AM
News
Jake Gardiner will play for Team USA at the World Hockey Championships next month in Minsk, Belarus.
Toronto Star

Impact
Gardiner notched new personal bests in 2013-14 with 10 goals and 31 points in 80 games.
Morgan Rielly to play for Canada at WHC | 04/16/2014 8:26 AM
News
Morgan Rielly will suit up for Team Canada at the IIHF World Hockey Championships next month.
Toronto Star

Impact
The rookie defender recorded two goals and 27 points in 73 games this season.
Steve Stamkos ready for leadership challenge | 04/16/2014 8:14 AM
News
Steve Stamkos is back in the playoffs after he picked up 13 points in 18 games in 2011, but this time he's the captain of a young, upstart squad.
Tampa Tribune

Impact
"You're the leader of a team that's going to the Stanley Cup playoffs. It's a challenge, but it's fun, it's exciting," he said. "For me, everything that's happened this year, to get a chance to come back and play, is an unbelievable feeling. But to get a chance to be in the playoffs, and hopefully lead this team, that's a challenge. For me, you take that challenge personally, but you realize we have a great bunch of guys here." Stamkos missed 45 games this season with a broken tibia, but he still tallied 25 goals and 40 points in 37 appearances.
Would the Senators move Jason Spezza? | 04/16/2014 7:57 AM
News
Jason Spezza's future with the Ottawa Senators is uncertain.
Ottawa Citizen

Impact
"We'll see where we go with him," GM Bryan Murray said in Tuesday's post-mortem media address. His words will add more fuel to the fire that Ottawa may ask Spezza to waive his no-trade clause if they can find a deal for him.
Daniel Briere has great postseason numbers | 04/16/2014 7:47 AM
News
Daniel Briere has amassed 50 goals and 109 points in 108 career playoff games.
Montreal Gazette

Impact
"When I prepare, what I'm thinking is that I want to be the guy that makes the big play," he said. "I want the puck when the game's on the line. It's not about thinking that I'm a playoff performer or that I'm better than anyone. I wish it was clearer or that there was a better explanation, but there really isn't." However, Briere may not get a chance to make much of an impact for the Canadiens in the 2014 postseason. He could end up skating on the team's third or fourth line.
Jake McCabe will suit up for Team USA | 04/16/2014 7:32 AM
News
Jake McCabe will play for the United States in World Hockey Championships in May.
Buffalo News

Impact
He played in seven games with the Sabres at the end of the year after playing three seasons with the University of Wisconsin. McCabe was a second-round pick of the Sabres in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
Neuvirth (hip) has been seeing a specialist | 04/16/2014 7:27 AM
News
Michal Neuvirth's lower-body injury was a hip issue.
Buffalo News

Impact
Sabres GM Tim Murray said that Neuvirth has been seeing a specialist to help with the nagging problem. He sat out Buffalo's last 15 games of the season due to the ailment.
Matthew Hackett will probably need surgery | 04/16/2014 7:24 AM
News
Buffalo GM Tim Murray believes that Matthew Hackett will require surgery on his injured right knee.
Buffalo News

Impact
Hackett was hurt last Saturday against Boston when defenseman Torey Krug fell on his leg. He was taken off the ice on a stretcher. We'll keep you posted on his status during the Sabres' off-season.
Connor Hellebuyck to play for U.S. in Belarus | 04/16/2014 7:09 AM
News
Connor Hellebuyck will represent the United States at the IIHF World Hockey Championships in Minsk, Belarus.
Winnipeg Free Press

Impact
The tournament begins on May 9. He signed a pro deal with the Jets after playing the past two seasons with the University of Massachusetts-Lowell. Hellebuyck, who was chosen in the fifth round of the 2012 draft, won the inaugural Mike Richter Award as the top goaltender in NCAA hockey this season.
Jacob Trouba will play for U.S. at WHC | 04/16/2014 7:04 AM
News
Jacob Trouba will play for Team USA at the IIHF World Hockey Championships next month.
Winnipeg Free Press

Impact
He was struck in the throat by a puck in Winnipeg's last game of the season, but he said he was fine on Sunday. Trouba led all NHL rookies in average ice time per game (22:26), while scoring 10 goals and 29 points in 65 games.
Buffalo Sabres bumped to second pick in draft | 04/15/2014 10:36 PM
News
The Buffalo Sabres posted the worst 82 game season since the 2001-02 New York Islanders, but the team still could not secure top overall pick in the 2014 NHL draft.
Rotoworld.com

Impact
It's been that kind of year for Buffalo, as they lost out on the top pick during Tuesday's NHL draft lottery to the second-worst Florida Panthers. But the team will still get some much needed help, as top prospects Sam Reinhart, Sam Bennett and Aaron Ekblad appear to be a good bet to help any team with their talents. The Sabres need help everywhere, as they finished 41 points out of a playoff spot and with a goal differential of -91.
Avalanche playing way above their pay grade | 04/15/2014 9:17 PM
News
The Colorado Avalanche won a division title this season and are set for a playoff run despite having the third lowest payroll in the NHL during 2013-14.
Cap Geek

Impact
Just two teams spent less on base player salaries this season according to Cap Geek, while those two teams (the Panthers and Islanders) finished way out of the playoff contention. The Avs are fuelled by a young core with players like Gabe Landeskog still on rookie contracts. Landeskog is earning under one million dollars this season, but signed a lucrative contract extension.
James Reimer to participate in Worlds for CAN | 04/15/2014 8:32 PM
News
James Reimer confirmed he will be suiting up for Team Canada at the upcoming World Hockey Championships in Belarus next month.
TSN

Impact
Reimer joins a solid bunch of players already confirmed to be playing for Canada, including Ryan Ellis, Alex Burrows, Sean Monahan, David Perron, Kyle Turris and Kevin Bieksa. Canada's roster should be announced on Wednesday by the team's GM Rob Blake.
Florida Panthers win top pick in 2014 draft | 04/15/2014 8:23 PM
News
The Florida Panthers were awarded the first overall selection for this June's NHL Entry Draft, winning the selection lottery on Tuesday night.
NHL.com

Impact
Florida owned the NHL's second worst record in 2013-14, compiling a 29-49-8 record while earning 62 points. The Panthers had an 18.8% chance at winning the top pick, pushing aside the league-worst Buffalo Sabres, who had a 25% chance at drawing the number one selection. GM Dale Tallon now has a lot of options going into the off-season, with around $30-million of spending money at his disposal and a choice between the top three prospects Sam Bennett, Aaron Ekblad and Sam Reinhart
Seth Jones named to Team USA for WHC | 04/15/2014 7:54 PM
News
Seth Jones will don the red, white and blue for Team USA in Belarus next month, accepting an invitation to participate in the World Hockey Championships.
Rotoworld.com

Impact
Jones joins a solid defense core that includes the Leafs' Jake Gardiner and the Jets' Jacob Trouba for Team USA. The rookie notched 25 points in 73 games this past season, but struggled defensively as demonstrated by his -23 rating.
Mark Streit hopes to build on strong finish | 04/15/2014 7:27 PM
News
Mark Streit enters the playoffs on a hot streak, as the Swiss blueliner finished with a six game points streak down the final stretch, compiling nine assists in that span and a plus-seven rating.
Rotoworld.com

Impact
The 36 year-old free agent signing has really proven his worth in the last few weeks, and the Flyers will need Streit's magic to continue come playoff time in order to get by the Rangers. Streit has nine points and 12 penalty minutes in 18 career post-season games.
Patrick Sharp practices on new line Tuesday | 04/15/2014 6:52 PM
News
Patrick Sharp practiced on a line with Michal Handzus and Marian Hossa on Tuesday in preparation for the Blackhawks playoff opener on Thursday in St. Louis.
ESPN Chicago

Impact
It was the first practice in nearly a month where the Hawks iced a completely healthy lineup. Head Coach Joel Quenneville chose to split up his three highest producing forwards in Sharp, Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane onto separate lines. Coach Q appears to be favoring a balanced attack in the playoffs, but Sharp has proven that he could excel with anyone on his line this season. Though Sharp played with Toews the majority of the year, the talented forward managed three goals and two assists without the dynamic centerman in the final seven games of the regular season.
Evgeni Malkin (Day-to-Day) practices Tuesday | 04/15/2014 6:21 PM
News
Evgeni Malkin is still questionable for Game 1, but took a step in the right direction on Tuesday by officially returning to practice for the first time since sustaining a foot injury on March 23.
NHL.com

Impact
Malkin is close to returning, but Penguins coach Dan Bylsma would like to see how the superstar center feels on Wednesday before declaring him fit to play in the Pens' playoff opener versus Columbus. "I cant say right now. but I feel great, I skated the full practice, and we'll see (how the foot feels) tomorrow," said Malkin after Tuesday's skate.
Dillon (lower body) is a game-time decision | 04/15/2014 5:46 PM
News
Brenden Dillon (lower body) is being called a game-time decision for Wednesday's contest.
Mike Heika

Impact
Dillon missed Tuesday's practice, so it would be a bit surprising if he did end up playing. He had 17 points and 86 penalty minutes in 80 games this season.
Matt Duchene (knee) out at least 2 more games | 04/15/2014 5:31 PM
News
Matt Duchene (knee) will miss the Avalanche's first two playoff games at a minimum.
Denver Post

Impact
Duchene had 23 goals and 70 points in 71 games this season. He didn't take part in Tuesday's practice and it wouldn't be shocking if he doesn't return before the end of the first round.
Ducks might start Frederik Andersen in Game 1 | 04/15/2014 5:28 PM
News
Frederik Andersen might be the Anaheim Ducks' opening game starter.
Los Angeles Times

Impact
Jonas Hiller has been struggling lately and he admitted the slump has gotten to him. Andersen is a rookie with just 28 games worth of NHL experience, but did post an impressive 2.29 GAA and .923 save percentage this season.
Dallas Eakins will stick around for 2014-15 | 04/15/2014 5:26 PM
News
It looks like Dallas Eakins will stick around as the Edmonton Oilers head coach despite a rough first season.
TSN.ca

Impact
The Oilers ended up in the Western Conference basement in a season where the expectation was that they would finally compete for a playoff spot. All the same, Oilers GM Craig MacTavish stood behind his bench boss. "I'm convinced this guy is the right coach to lead us into much more successful times ... he's relentless," MacTavish said.
Valtteri Filppula (LBI) is ready to return | 04/15/2014 5:18 PM
News
Valtteri Filppula (lower body) took part in Tuesday's practice.
Lightning.nhl.com

Impact
The stage is set for Filppula to participate in Game 1 on Wednesday. He's projected to center the second line.
TBL should get Ondrej Palat back on Wednesday | 04/15/2014 5:17 PM
News
Ondrej Palat (upper body) is ready to play in the Lightning's postseason opener on Wednesday.
Lightning.nhl.com

Impact
Palat had 23 goals and 59 points in 81 games this season. Look for him to play on Tampa Bay's top line with Steve Stamkos and Tyler Johnson.
Brenden Dillon is questionable Wednesday | 04/15/2014 4:45 PM
News
Brenden Dillon (lower body) missed Tuesday's practice.
Mike Heika on Twitter

Impact
Dillon didn't participate in Sunday's game, but the original plan was to have him skate on Tuesday in preparation for him playing in Game 1 on Wednesday. At this point, we wouldn't be surprised if he misses the Stars' playoff opener against Anaheim.
Tampa Bay won't have Ben Bishop Wednesday | 04/15/2014 4:18 PM
News
Ben Bishop (elbow) won't be available for Game 1 on Wednesday.
Chris Stevenson on Twitter

Impact
Bishop is one of the main reasons the Lightning made the playoffs in the first place. He had a 2.23 GAA and .924 save percentage in 63 games this season.
Brenden Morrow might be back on Thursday | 04/15/2014 3:49 PM
News
Brenden Morrow (foot) didn't want to rule himself out for Game 1 on Thursday.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Impact
Morrow was on the ice Tuesday. "I got a couple of days to get a little better," Morrow said. "So I've got to knock the rust off." He had 25 points and 76 penalty minutes in 71 games in 2013-14.
Oshie skates, questionable Thursday | 04/15/2014 3:47 PM
News
T.J. Oshie (upper body) skated on Tuesday.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Impact
"It felt good to get around, sweat a little bit," Oshie said. "It feels like I haven't been doing anything in a long time." He didn't rule out the possibility of him playing in Game 1. Oshie had 21 goals and 60 points in 79 games this season.
Vladimir Tarasenko (hand) might return soon | 04/15/2014 3:45 PM
News
The St. Louis Blues think Vladimir Tarasenko (hand) will be available before the end of the first round.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Impact
Tarasenko had the cast on his injured hand taken off on Monday. He has been sidelined for about a month.
John Mitchell might not miss first round | 04/15/2014 3:42 PM
News
John Mitchell (concussion) might be able to return before the end of the first round.
Adrian Dater on Twitter

Impact
Of course, given that it's a concussion we're talking about, any timetable needs to be taken with a grain of salt. Mitchell wasn't able to participate in Colorado's final two games of the regular season.
Jan Hejda (upper body) is day-to-day | 04/15/2014 3:08 PM
News
Jan Hejda (upper body) didn't participate in Tuesday's practice.
Adrian Dater on Twitter

Impact
Hejda had 17 points in 78 games during the regular season. He is day-to-day, according to Avalanche coach Patrick Roy.
Martin Brodeur open to re-signing with Devils | 04/15/2014 2:54 PM
News
Martin Brodeur reiterated that he's leaning towards playing in 2014-15.
New Jersey Online

Impact
Brodeur is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent this summer. He's willing to test the open market, but he's also open to re-signing with the Devils.
AHL Abbotsford Heat will shut down | 04/15/2014 2:52 PM
News
The AHL Abbotsford Heat will end its operations this spring.
Metro News

Impact
Abbotsford was the Calgary Flames' AHL affiliate. The team is shutting down due to financial losses. The City of Abbotsford had 10-year agreement that guaranteed the team's local ownership $5.7 million in revenue regardless of whether or not the Heat were profitable. The Heat lost over $7 million over the first five years of the agreement and the city will pay $5.5 million to terminate the rest of the deal.
Tyson Strachan heads to the AHL | 04/15/2014 2:10 PM
News
Tyson Strachan has been sent to the minors.
Monumental Network

Impact
Strachan had two assists in 28 games with Washington this season. He also has 18 points and 56 penalty minutes in 57 AHL contests.
Travis Moen (concussion) skates Tuesday | 04/15/2014 2:04 PM
News
Travis Moen (concussion) skated with the Canadiens on Tuesday.
Montreal Gazette

Impact
Moen was wearing a no-contact jersey though, so we would be surprised if he played in Game 1 on Wednesday. He had 12 points and 49 penalty minutes in 65 games this season.
Brandon Prust is questionable for Game 1 | 04/15/2014 2:03 PM
News
Brandon Prust (upper body) will be a game-time decision on Wednesday.
Montreal Gazette

Impact
Prust skated alongside Tomas Plekanec and Brendan Gallagher during Tuesday's practice. He hasn't played since March 18.
Buffalo will almost certainly buy out Leino | 04/15/2014 1:47 PM
News
There's a "very good possibility" that Ville Leino will get bought out, according to Sabres GM Tim Murray.
John Vogl on Twitter

Impact
It would be shocking if Murray actually decided to keep Leino after making a statement like that. Leino inked a six-year, $27 million contract that runs through 2016-17. He had a disastrous campaign where he recorded just 15 points in 58 contests.
Nashville sends Calle Jarnkrok to Milwaukee | 04/15/2014 1:44 PM
News
Calle Jarnkrok has been sent to AHL Milwaukee.
Joshua Cooper on Twitter

Impact
Nashville's season is over, so this will give Jarnkrok a chance to extend his campaign by participating in the AHL playoffs. He had two goals and nine points in 12 games with the Predators in 2013-14.
Flyers sign prospect Shayne Gostisbehere | 04/15/2014 1:18 PM
News
Shayne Gostisbehere has agreed to an entry-level contract with the Philadelphia Flyers.
Flyers.nhl.com

Impact
Gostisbehere had nine goals and 34 points in 42 games with Union College in 2013-14. He also had a plus-seven rating in Union's 7-4 victory over Minnesota in the NCAA championship game. Philadelphia took him in the third round of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.
Paul MacLean will be back for 2014-15 | 04/15/2014 1:04 PM
News
Ottawa Senators coach Paul MacLean will return for the 2014-15 campaign.
Don Brennan on Twitter

Impact
Not much of a surprise, but there was some speculation that he might get fired after the Senators' disappointing showing this season. That would have been quite the reversal after he won the Jack Adams Award in 2013.
Henrik Zetterberg aims for Round 2 return | 04/15/2014 1:02 PM
News
Henrik Zetterberg (back) hopes to return for the second round, if the Red Wings make it that far.
RedWings.nhl.com on Twitter

Impact
It would certainly be challenging for Detroit, given that Boston is its first round opponent. That being said, Zetterberg hasn't been completely ruled out for the first round, so there's always a chance that he'll be able to help out if the series goes deep.
Steve Downie (upper body) misses practice | 04/15/2014 12:55 PM
News
Steve Downie is dealing with an upper-body injury.
Frank Seravalli on Twitter

Impact
It's not clear if it's the same problem that he attempted to return from on April 8. The Flyers are calling him day-to-day, but he wasn't able to participate in Tuesday's practice.
Manny Malhotra wants to stay with Carolina | 04/15/2014 12:25 PM
News
Manny Malhotra would like to re-sign with the Carolina Hurricanes.
Hurricanes.nhl.com on Twitter

Impact
Carolina gave Malhotra a chance to extend his career after the Vancouver Canucks shut him down due to an eye injury. He had 13 points and a 59.5% success rate on the draw in 69 games this season.
Tyler Gaudet will play for AHL Portland | 04/15/2014 12:23 PM
News
The Phoenix Coyotes have sent Tyler Gaudet to AHL Portland.
Coyotes.nhl.com

Impact
Gaudet didn't end up playing for Phoenix during his brief NHL stint. He had 26 goals and 61 points in 65 games with the OHL Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in 2013-14.
Mark Visentin returns to the minors | 04/15/2014 12:21 PM
News
Mark Visentin will head to AHL Portland.
Coyotes.nhl.com

Impact
Visentin kicked out 29 of 32 shots in his NHL debut on Saturday. He has a 3.30 GAA and .901 save percentage in 44 AHL games this season.
Brandon Gormley heads to AHL Portland | 04/15/2014 12:20 PM
News
The Phoenix Coyotes have sent Brandon Gormley to the minors.
Coyotes.nhl.com

Impact
Gormley played in five games with Phoenix and didn't record a point. He's worth keeping an eye on though because he does have some offensive upside.
Phoenix demotes Connor Murphy | 04/15/2014 12:19 PM
News
Connor Murphy will head to AHL Portland.
Coyotes.nhl.com on Twitter

Impact
Murphy had a goal and eight points in 30 games with Phoenix in 2013-14. He also has 11 assists in 34 AHL contests.
Boston promotes Justin Florek | 04/15/2014 12:16 PM
News
The Boston Bruins have called up Justin Florek.
Bruins.nhl.com

Impact
Florek has 19 goals and 38 points in 69 AHL games this season. He also had a goal and an assist in four contests with Boston.
Canadiens' Brandon Prust doubtful for Game 1 | 04/15/2014 11:48 AM
News
Forward Brandon Prust was back at practice for the Montreal Canadiens on Monday but coach Michel Therrien said he doubted the left winger would be able to play Wednesday in Game 1 of the first-round playoff series against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Rotoworld.com

Impact
Prust has missed the Canadiens' last 12 games with an upper body injury,
Daniel Briere vows to deliver in playoffs | 04/15/2014 11:45 AM
News
After a season in which he sat out some games, spent much of his time on the fourth line and ranked 21st on the team in average ice time per game at 12:46, Daniel Briere believes it's time to deliver for the Montreal Canadiens.
Toronto Star

Impact
"For me, the mindset going in has never been `I'm a playoff performer,'" the 36-year-old said Monday. "When I prepare, what I'm thinking is that I want to be the guy that makes the big play. I want the puck when the game's on the line. It's not about thinking that I'm a playoff performer or that I'm better than anyone. I wish it was clearer or that there was a better explanation, but there really isn't." The Canadiens, who inked Briere to a two-year contact worth $4 million a season, will need his post-season scoring touch when they face the tight-checking Tampa Bay Lightning in the first round of the playoffs, starting Wednesday. The Bolts won three of their four meetings, but three of the games went to either overtime or a shootout. Briere had 13 goals and 12 assists in 69 games this season. But Montreal scored only four regulation-time goals in four games against Tampa, and Briere had two of them.
Anders Lindback likely starter for Lightning | 04/15/2014 11:31 AM
News
With Ben Bishop doubtful to return from what Tampa Bay officials are calling an upper body injury, Anders Lindback likely will get the call in net Wednesday night for the first game of the Lightning's opening playoff series against the Montreal Canadiens.
Tampa Tribune

Impact
Lindback earned the first star of the week in the NHL for the period ending April 13. He was thrust into action after Bishop's injury. He posted a 3-0-0 record with a 0.67 GAA and .975 save percentage. Whatever doubts might have lingered when the Bolts were forced to turn to Lindback were washed away in the goalie's three appearances down the stretch. "He's playing with a lot of confidence,'' defenseman Matt Carle said. "So, it's no surprise to see how well he's doing. And it's just great for our team and we have a lot of confidence playing in front of him.'' That's a far cry from where Lindback was for most of the season. As Bishop posted franchise records with 37 wins, a 2.24 goals-against average and .924 save percentage, Lindback was relegated to backup duties, rarely seeing playing time.
If Sens deal Jason Spezza, Ales Hemsky goes | 04/15/2014 11:19 AM
News
Ottawa Senators captain Jason Spezza says "there's a lot of reflecting" to be done about his future with the team, but Ales Hemsky was prety clear.
Ottawa Citizen

Impact
If the Sens trade Spezza, which is widely speculated, Hemsky will take off as an unrestricted free agent. "I want to play with a good center," Hemsky said. "That's the most important for me. Jason been great to me. I had a blast to play with him. I would like to know what they want to do." The Spezza and his Czech Mates Line - Hemsky and Milan Michalek - had fantastic offensive numbers while playing together after Hemsky was acquired from the Edmonton Oilers before the March trade deadline. Spezza scored seven goals and 12 assists in 18 games after the deal. Hemsky had four goals and 13 assists in 20 games. Michalek netted seven goals and five assists in 20 games. But even with those point totals, the Sens still missed the playoffs, and the organization has some major decisions to make concerning its star players.
Players' fault coach is out: Patric Hornqvist | 04/15/2014 11:12 AM
News
Star forward Patric Hornqvist makes it clear why he thinks Barry Trotz's contract isn't being renewed as the coach of the Nashville Predators.
The Nashville Tennessean

Impact
"It's our fault that he left," Hornqvist said. "We didn't play good enough for him. He can't be on the ice, he just puts the right players out there. In the end this is our fault that he gets fired, and obviously that's a huge responsibility for us and we have to be better next year."
No-brainer: Carey Price to face Lightning | 04/15/2014 11:06 AM
News
Carey Price will, of course, be in goal when the Montreal Canadiens open their first-round playoff series against the Tampa Bay Lightning Wednesday night.
Montreal Gazette

Impact
Price has been strong against Tampa, with a 1.42 GAA and a .956 save percentage. "I expect Carey to be the same leader for us that he's been all season long," said Habs coach Michel Therrien. "He's matured and he's playing with a lot of confidence."
Habs aim to improve power play against Bolts | 04/15/2014 11:04 AM
News
The Montreal Canadiens failed to score a power-play goal in their final eight regular-season games, going 0-for-23.
Montreal Gazette

Impact
The Habs want that to change when they begin their playoffs Wednesday against the Tampa Bay Lightning. "I'm not too worried about it," Montreal center Lars Eller said. "Most of the game is played 5-on-5 and we've been getting more goals at even strength lately. We've had a good power play and we're going to score on the power play and the floodgates are going to open." Eller is right about the Canadiens' production at even strength. During the eight-game power-play drought, Montreal scored 24 goals at even strength and that helped the team finish the season on an 11-3-1 run. But one of the blemishes on that record was a 3-1 loss in Tampa on April 1. The Canadiens gave the Bolts nine power-play chances and they scored on two of them. Montreal went 0-for-4.
Wild expects Mikael Granlund for playoffs | 04/15/2014 10:58 AM
News
Mikael Granlund (head) is likely to be back in the Minnesota lineup when the Wild faces the Colorado Avalanche in the teams' first round of the NHL playoffs this week.
Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune

Impact
It would be the playoff debut for Granlund, a key Minnesota player who has been out since early April with a head injury. Granlund would center veteran Matt Moulson, who had 13 points in 20 games since being acquired from Buffalo on March 5, and another ex-Sabre, Jason Pominville, who led the Wild in points this season with 30 goals and 30 assists.
Sharks won't say who Game 1 starter is | 04/15/2014 10:52 AM
News
The San Jose Sharks aren't naming their starting goaltender for Game 1.
San Jose Mercury News

Impact
The fact that it's even possible that backup goalie Alex Stalock might start over Antti Niemi is telling. Niemi dropped off from his superb 2013 numbers with a 2.39 GAA and .913 save percentage in 64 games this season.
Wild counting on Jason Pominville in playoffs | 04/15/2014 10:52 AM
News
Jason Pominville tied for 16th in the NHL with 30 goals, led the Wild with 60 points and recorded three points twice in Minnesota's final three regular-season games.
Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune

Impact
So the team obviously is counting on Pominville to help out in a big way in the first round of the playoffs, when Minnesota faces the Colorado Avalanche. Pominville, 31, often is overshadowed by captain Mikko Koivu and second-leading scorer Zach Parise, but there is no doubt the Wild will be expecting production from Pominville against the Avalanche. "He can do it in so many different ways," NBC analyst Pierre McGuire said. "He's a 5-on-5 scorer, he's a power-play threat, both from the top of the circle and also up by the blue line because he's a great distributor and he can also shoot the wicked one-timer. You put it all together, and he might be the most well-rounded player on their team in terms of being a pure scorer, a really good defensive player and a special teams specialist. There are other guys that are flashier - Koivu, Parise. But Jason Pominville just does his job all the time."
Bracken Kearns is good for Game 1 | 04/15/2014 10:50 AM
News
Bracken Kearns (undisclosed) is available for Game 1 of the Sharks' first-round series.
CSN Bay Area

Impact
Kearns left Saturday's game due to the ailment. He has three goals and five points in 25 contests this season.
GM thinks G Roberto Luongo can draw stars | 04/15/2014 10:45 AM
News
Florida general manager Dale Tallon is confident that he can bring key players to the Panthers in the off-season partly because he acquired established goalie Roberto Luongo during the season.
Miami Herald

Impact
With a top-end goalie like Luongo as a key selling point, Tallon is confident players will want to come south and help put the Panthers back on track. "You sell winning, the desire to win,'' Tallon said. "We now have the ability to put the pieces together, and that's what players want. . .I was denied for two years in Chicago. We were an Original Six team, great city. No one wanted to come because the perception was we didn't want to win. That perception has gone away, and it has gone away here. We're going to get guys who want to win.''
Penguins demote Harry Zolnierczyk | 04/15/2014 10:45 AM
News
The Pittsburgh Penguins have sent Harry Zolnierczyk to the AHL.
Penguins.nhl.com

Impact
Zolnierczyk was called up to participate in the Penguins' last two regular season games. He had two goals in 13 games with Pittsburgh in 2013-14.
Chuck Kobasew will head to the minors | 04/15/2014 10:44 AM
News
Chuck Kobasew will report to AHL Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.
Penguins.nhl.com

Impact
Kobasew scored two goals in 33 games with Pittsburgh in 2013-14. He also has 11 points in 11 AHL contests.
Simon Despres heads to the AHL | 04/15/2014 10:42 AM
News
Simon Despres has been sent to the minors.
Penguins.nhl.com

Impact
Despres has five assists in 34 games with Pittsburgh in 2013-14. He'll aide AHL Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in its playoff run.
Steve Mason's status for Game 1 is unclear | 04/15/2014 10:40 AM
News
Steve Mason (upper body) is questionable for Game 1.
Philadelphia Inquirer & Daily News

Impact
"I feel he will," Flyers GM Paul Holmgren said of Mason's chances of being ready in time for the first round opener, "but you never know." Mason sustained the injury when Andrew MacDonald was pushed into him during Saturday's game against Pittsburgh.
Wings hope Riley Sheahan shines in playoffs | 04/15/2014 10:40 AM
News
Riley Sheahan has been scoring from in front of the net, giving the Detroit Red Wings net-front presence that they think will matter in their first-round playoff series against the Boston Bruins.
Detroit Free Press

Impact
"It's huge," coach Mike Babcock said. "It's something we bang on each and every day and we've just got to continue to get better at it if we're going to have success, especially against a heavy team like Boston." Sheahan netted his eight goal of the season last Friday when he was by Carolina's net. He also provides a net-front presence as part of a power play unit that usually includes Tomas Tatar and Tomas Jurco. Playing with skilled players - Gustav Nyquist is also a regular linemate - makes going to the net a natural move for Sheahan.
Andrew MacDonald signs six-year extension | 04/15/2014 10:34 AM
News
Andrew MacDonald has signed a six-year, $30 million contract extension with the Philadelphia Flyers.
Dave Isaac on Twitter

Impact
MacDonald was acquired from the New York Islanders on March 4 in exchange for a 2015 second-round pick and 2014 third-round selection. He chips in offensively, but he's more of a defensive defenseman with a league-leading 242 blocked shots. Philadelphia now has six defensemen signed to one-way contracts in 2014-15 worth at least $3.5 million annually from a cap perspective. That doesn't include Erik Gustafsson, who is set to become a restricted free agent this summer. With that in mind, it's hard to see them re-signing Kimmo Timonen.
Lubomir Visnovsky still has symptoms | 04/15/2014 10:31 AM
News
Lubomir Visnovsky isn't out of the woods yet when it comes to his recovery from a concussion.
New York Newsday

Impact
"Sometimes I feel good, sometimes not too well," Visnovsky said. "It's a long summer, four, five months, so hopefully I will be OK . . . [Retirement] is not for me yet. Think positive." Visnovsky had 11 points in just 24 games in 2013-14. He's dealing with his second concussion since the beginning of the campaign.
John Tavares reaffirms commitment to Isles | 04/15/2014 10:29 AM
News
John Tavares denied the rumors that he wants to be traded.
New York Newsday

Impact
"I signed six years because I wanted to be here. There's no part of me that wants to leave," Tavares said. "I think [the talk] is a product of the team not winning, and the perception around here from other markets is always a lot different from what actually happens. I know we've still got some great things we can accomplish here and my mindset hasn't changed." Tavares' season was cut short due to a knee injury sustained during the Olympics. Before that happened, he had 24 goals and 66 points in 59 games with the Islanders in 2013-14.
Mat Bodie inks entry-level deal with Rangers | 04/15/2014 10:27 AM
News
Mat Bodie has signed an entry-level deal with the New York Rangers.
ESPN.com

Impact
Bodie served as Union College's captain and helped lead them to a national championship. He led the defenseman scoring race with 39 points in 40 NCAA games and also spent 57 minutes in the sin bin. Bodie plans to finish his degree, so he won't join the Rangers until their development camp over the summer.
Chris Mueller to stay with Stars in playoffs | 04/15/2014 10:25 AM
News
The Dallas Stars on Saturday recalled right winger Chris Mueller from the AHL, and the versatile forward is expected to stay with the NHL team for the playoffs.
Dallas Morning News

Impact
If Ray Whitney (lower body) is healthy for Game 1, Mueller gives the Stars two extra forwards. Mueller has been recalled and sent down various times in the last month but said the travel schedule hasn't bothered him. "The travel has all been in the south, the flights have been easy," he said. "I wouldn't complain about the travel anyway, but it hasn't been as hard as you would think."
Rangers summon J.T. Miller | 04/15/2014 10:24 AM
News
The New York Rangers have summoned J.T. Miller.
The Bergen Record

Impact
It remains to be seen if Miller will play in Game 1 of the first round on Thursday. When the Rangers sent him to the minors in early April, Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said that he needs to see an improvement in Miller's commitment level.
Jacob Josefson almost over his foot injury | 04/15/2014 10:21 AM
News
Jacob Josefson (foot) was close to being ready to play when the season ended.
The Bergen Record

Impact
At least the injury shouldn't linger through the summer. Josefson scored a goal and registered two assists in 27 games in 2013-14.
G Kari Lehtonen looking to carry Dallas Stars | 04/15/2014 10:21 AM
News
Goalie Kari Lehtonen is determined to push the Dallas Stars forward in the playoffs and is comfortable he can do so his way.
Dallas Morning News

Impact
"I'm excited for this opportunity," Lehtonen 30, said of starting the playoffs Wednesday against the Anaheim Ducks. "We've been working for this, and now we want to get in there and see what we can do. It's a great time." Lehtonen added: "I have worked all year for this moment, and I think I'm ready." Lehtonen overcame a concussion and a groin strain to play in a league-high 65 games this season. He last was in the postseason in 2007 as a member of the Atlanta Thrashers. Just 23 at the time, he had helped the Thrashers make the playoffs for the first time by forging a 34-24-9 record.
Adam Henrique (groin) was close to returning | 04/15/2014 10:20 AM
News
Adam Henrique (groin) would have been able to return soon had the Devils' made the playoffs.
The Bergen Record

Impact
All this means now is that Henrique's groin injury shouldn't significantly impact his offseason training routine. He had 25 goals and 43 points in 77 games in 2013-14.
Oilers have 14.4% shot of first overall pick | 04/15/2014 10:13 AM
News
The Edmonton Oilers have a 14.4% chance of picking first in the NHL draft for the fourth time in five years.
Edmonton Journal

Impact
It's a testament to the Oilers sustain futility. Edmonton had three straight first overall picks from 2010-12 and selected Taylor Hall, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, and Nail Yakupov. In 2013 they had the seventh overall pick and took Darnell Nurse. This time around they will at least be back in the top-five.
There's pressure on Wild captain Mikko Koivu | 04/15/2014 10:09 AM
News
Mikko Koivu, at 31, has played in 601 regular-season games over nine seasons, but he has been to the playoffs only three times and never has made it past the first round.
Denver Post

Impact
As the Minnesota Wild captain prepares for the franchise's fifth Western Conference playoff appearance, starting Thursday night at Colorado, there's great pressure on Koivu to avenge a 4-1 playoff series loss to Chicago last season. Koivu failed to earn a point offensively and finished a minus-6 matched against Chicago's do-it-all center, Jonathan Toews. Koivu certainly wasn't the only Wild player to struggle, but as the team's captain, his struggles were the most pronounced. "When you're not able to (produce), obviously you get frustrated and disappointed," Koivu said. "You have to learn from that individually. You want to be better, and this is my chance for that."
R.J. Umberger is day-to-day, out Game 1 | 04/15/2014 10:05 AM
News
The Columbus Blue Jackets think R.J. Umberger (upper body) will return before the end of the first round.
Columbus Dispatch

Impact
Umberger won't participate in Game 1 though. He had 18 goals and 34 points in 74 contests this season.
Nick Foligno (knee) is out for Game 1 | 04/15/2014 10:03 AM
News
Nick Foligno's lower-body injury is related to his knee.
Columbus Dispatch

Impact
Foligno won't participate in Game 1 of the Blue Jackets' first round series. However, he should be able to return before the round is over. He had 39 points and 96 penalty minutes in 70 games this season.
Mark Giordano played through a hand injury | 04/15/2014 9:59 AM
News
Mark Giordano had been playing through a hand injury.
Calgary Herald

Impact
For that reason, Giordano won't aide Canada in the 2014 World Championship. He had 14 goals and 47 points in 64 games with Calgary this season.
Mikael Backlund will represent Sweden | 04/15/2014 9:58 AM
News
Mikael Backlund (thumb) will play for Team Sweden in the 2014 World Championship.
Calgary Herald

Impact
Backlund missed the final five games of the season due to his thumb injury. He had 18 goals and 39 points in 76 contests in 2013-14.
Marian Hossa top defensive forward, Hawks say | 04/15/2014 9:58 AM
News
While the recognition he does get usually is for his offensive contributions - he reached the 30-goal plateau for the eighth time in his career - it's Marian Hossa's work without the puck that makes him such an elite player, even at 35.
Chicago Sun-Times

Impact
Hossa led the league in takeaways for much of the season, but missing 10 games with injuries and family matters dropped him to fifth overall. But in 72 games, he had 75 takeaways - the highest average per game among league leaders. There's no question Hossa is one of the best - if not the best - two-way players in the world. But he won't likely win the Frank J. Selke Trophy, awarded annually to the league's top defensive forward, because it traditionally goes to a center. Hossa is a right winger. The likely Selke winner this year will be Boston's Patrice Bergeron. "It seems like only the centers get mentioned a lot," Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. "But Hossa, two-way, is as good as any player in the league. Start getting him in that category. You have my support."
Sean Monahan will play for Team Canada | 04/15/2014 9:56 AM
News
Sean Monahan will join Team Canada for the 2014 World Championship.
Calgary Herald

Impact
It's an opportunity for Monahan to continue playing after scoring 22 goals and 34 points in 75 games as a rookie with the Calgary Flames. "I'm looking forward to that," said Monahan. "It's an honor, obviously. It's your country. I've played for Canada before and it's always a lot of fun, so it's going to be a pretty awesome experience."
Dougie Hamilton will be a top D-man, GM says | 04/15/2014 9:35 AM
News
Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli is pleased with the trajectory of the development of 20-year-old Dougie Hamilton, who has been paired mostly with superstar defenseman Zdeno Chara on defense and has played against top lines.
Boston Herald

Impact
Hamilton had 7-18-25 totals and was plus-22 in 64 games in the regular season. "You hear me talk a lot, you hear (coach Claude Julien) talk a lot about defending, and defending is so important in the playoffs. I think that's an area that Dougie's really improved, and he will continue to improve," said Chiarelli. "He's just getting stronger. . ., he's getting more confident with his body and with his strength and his play with the puck on the offensive side of the blue line has been terrific. His little in-tight plays starting the break-out. . .they've been good and they've been getting better. He can skate out of trouble. I saw him skate the other game . . . with the puck, it's the fastest I've seen him skate, so his skating's been improving. . .The biggest thing is his defending and his strength on the puck and it's gotten so much better. It still has to get better because I project him to be a top defenseman, but he's on the right track."
Burke calls season failure, but not waste | 04/15/2014 9:30 AM
News
Calgary Flames President Brian Burke was blunt in his assessment of the Calgary Flames' 2013-14 campaign.
Calgary Sun

Impact
"The conclusion of a season that doesn't include playoffs is a failure," Burke said. "But it was not a lost or wasted season, at all. There were a lot of positives. We had a major culture shift." Calgary did far better as the season went on, but by then it was too little, too late. Part of Burke's philosophy is that big, tough teams win, so that should influence the type of guys Calgary pursues over the summer.
Bruins' Patrice Bergeron never better: GM | 04/15/2014 9:27 AM
News
Patrice Bergeron should be considered for post-season awards because of his two-way play in 2013-14, according to his general manager with the Boston Bruins.
Boston Herald

Impact
Bergeron, who's shaking off a minor injury and will play Friday when the Bruins' post-season begins against Detroit, soared after the Olympics. He finished on a 13-game point streak, including 11 goals. He scored 30 for the first time since 2005-06. "It's the best I've seen him, period," Boston GM Peter Chiarelli said of Bergeron. "The Olympics helped us out on a couple of different fronts. Loui (Eriksson) was another one, his pace and his game really took off. Bergy, he started maybe as the 13th forward over there in Sochi, and everyone saw what he can do and he was basically on the top line at the end of the day. It helped his pace, it helped his tempo. You see him shoot the puck better this year. He's had a terrific year. And of course, the whole two-way component of his game is so good, it's always good. It's not by accident you hear his name in the Hart Trophy conversation. That doesn't surprise me at all. But this is the best I've seen him play."
Stephane Robidas to play against former team | 04/15/2014 9:26 AM
News
Stephane Robidas will face his former squad, the Dallas Stars, in the first round.
Orange County Register

Impact
Anaheim acquired Robidas from the Stars on March 4. Given his familiarity with Anaheim's opposition, he's been helping out his teammates ahead of Game 1. "Obviously he asked me a few questions," Robidas said. "A little bit about what I know about them. Obviously it's part of the game." On the ice, Robidas is serving as a reliable top-four defenseman for the Ducks.
Bruins' Adam McQuad doubtful for first round | 04/15/2014 9:18 AM
News
Adam McQuaid's quad injury was not expected to be such a long-term issue but it has turned out to be quite a struggle.
Boston Herald

Impact
The Bruins' defenseman has not played since Jan. 19, and, while he appeared close to coming back after the Olympics break, he had a setback and did not resume skating until last week. It does not appear as though the Bruins expect him to return for their first-round playoff series against the Detroit Red Wings, which opens Friday. "We want to be careful on it," Boston general manager Peter Chiarelli said of McQuaid's quad. "It is not a major injury, it is a soft tissue injury and we've been doing OK with the `D' we have so we want to be cautious with it."
Dont expect Dennis Seidenberg to return soon | 04/15/2014 9:14 AM
News
Don't expect veteran defenseman Dennis Seidenberg to be back in the Boston lineup for the Bruins' first-round playoff series against the Detroit Red Wings, or for any of the postseason.
Boston Herald

Impact
Seidenberg has not played since he suffered and ACL/MCL knee injury on Dec. 27. "We're not counting on Dennis to be back," Boston general manager Peter Chiarelli said. "We're going to be very cautious with this injury. He has been skating and that's pretty much all I can say on it. It really hasn't changed."
Wings play Euro-style, Dougie Hamilton says | 04/15/2014 9:08 AM
News
The Detroit Red Wings play a European style of hockey, according to Boston Bruins defenseman Dougie Hamilton.
Boston Herald

Impact
"They've got a lot of speed, a lot of skill and puck possession," Hamilton said. "It's kind of a Euro-style of game, where they don't want to dump it in. When they do, they're fast and get on you. I think we just have to push the pace against them instead of letting them take it to us. And, obviously, be physical. We should be fine." The Bruins face Red Wings in Round 1 of the NHL playoffs, beginning Friday night.
Patrik Berglund unlikely to play Thurs. night | 04/14/2014 6:21 PM
News
Patrik Berglund (upper body) isn't expected to play in Game 1 against Chicago on Thursday night.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Impact
He sat out Sunday's game with an upper-body injury after he was hurt on Friday. Consider him day-to-day for now.
Alex Pietrangelo is expected to play Thursday | 04/14/2014 6:19 PM
News
Alex Pietrangelo didn't play Sunday because of an undisclosed injury, but he's expected to play in the Blues' postseason opener.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Impact
The series begins in St. Louis on Thursday against Chicago. Pietrangelo amassed 51 points in 81 games from the back end in 2013-14.
Vladimir Sobotka should be available for Gm 1 | 04/14/2014 6:16 PM
News
Vladimir Sobotka is slated to be available for Game of the Blues' first-round series versus Chicago.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Impact
He missed the final two games of the regular season with a lower-body injury. We should know more about his status when the Blues get back to practicing.
David Backes (foot) could play in Game 1 | 04/14/2014 6:13 PM
News
David Backes (foot) should be ready to play in St. Louis' playoff opener Thursday night.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Impact
The Blues didn't skate Monday so there weren't any injury updates, but it's expected that Backes will be available. He sat out the last three games of the regular season with a foot injury.
T.J. Oshie should be back for playoff opener | 04/14/2014 6:11 PM
News
T.J. Oshie (upper body) is expected to be available for Game 1 against Chicago on Thursday night.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Impact
The Blues didn't practice on Monday, but he could be back after missing the last two games of the regular season with an upper-body injury. We should know more after the team resumes skating.
Daniel Sedin was 'scared' but he's OK now | 04/14/2014 6:07 PM
News
Daniel Sedin spoke to the media on Monday and said he was fine after he was stretchered off the ice Sunday night.
Vancouver Sun

Impact
He was checked out at the hospital and released late Sunday night after he was hit into the end boards by Calgary's Paul Byron. "I was scared because I felt something wasn't right," he said. "I hit my head into the glass and fell down and when I tried to lift my head I couldn't get it off the ice. It was scary, but I went to the hospital and everything looked good. So it feels okay today." He isn't expecting any lingering issues.
Scott Hannan feels ready to return from UBI | 04/14/2014 6:03 PM
News
Scott Hannan (upper body) practiced Monday and declared himself ready to go in Game 1 of San Jose's opening round playoff series versus Los Angeles.
San Jose Mercury News

Impact
However, it's unclear if he'll play on Thursday after he skated on the fourth defense pairing. He appeared in 56 games for the Sharks this year and can become an unrestricted free agent in the summer.
Mike Smith should be over knee injury soon | 04/14/2014 5:58 PM
News
Mike Smith sustained an MCL sprain to his right knee back on March 24 that sidelined him for the last 10 games of the regular season.
Arizona Republic/Phoenix Gazette

Impact
He was initially projected to be out of action for two to four weeks, so he should get clearance shortly. Unfortunately, his injury came at a bad time for the Coyotes, as they were battling for a playoff spot down the stretch and came up just short of earning the final wild card spot in the Western Conference.
Henrik Zetterberg set to practice Tuesday | 04/14/2014 5:06 PM
News
Henrik Zetterberg (back) is expected to skate with his teammates for the first part of practice on Tuesday.
Detroit Free Press

Impact
GM Ken Holland has already ruled out Zetterberg for the first two games of Detroit's first-round series against Boston. "He appears to be right on track for the original time frame," Holland said Monday. "He's skated a little bit on his own, and now he wants to see how he feels going up and down the ice with the guys, maybe do some light shooting." If he doesn't suffer any setbacks then he probably won't be ready to return unless the Red Wings advance into Round 2 of the postseason.
Patrick Kane eager to return for Game 1 | 04/14/2014 4:57 PM
News
Patrick Kane (lower body) skated Monday as he prepares to return to the lineup in Chicago's playoff opener on Thursday night.
Chicago Tribune

Impact
"I feel pretty good," Kane said. "I've had some time to rest my injury, obviously, the right amount of time, and with anything you want to make sure you're feeling good coming back. I think that's where I'm at right now. It'll be nice to get a couple skates with the team (Tuesday) and Wednesday and the pregame skate Thursday and get ready to go." He hasn't played since Mar. 19 because of a lower-body injury.
Jonathan Toews feels good, excited to return | 04/14/2014 4:54 PM
News
Jonathan Toews (upper body) participated in Monday's optional practice and said he felt "really good."
Chicago Tribune

Impact
"(Tuesday) I'll be out there with the boys, back to the usual routine," Toews added. "It's kind of nice. It's not fun to be on your own program for a couple of weeks. I'm looking forward to being back." He hasn't played since Mar. 30, but he's slated to return to the lineup for Game 1 against St. Louis on Thursday.
player news provided by RotoWorld

THN on Twitter