U.S. NHL Network reveals its 35-game preseason TV schedule

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Starting tomorrow (Tuesday, September 21), the U.S. version of the NHL Network will begin televising 35 preseasons games, according to the network’s press release. For picture quality snobs like myself, you’ll be happy to find out that 33 out of those 35 contests will be in fancy pants HD. (Hopefully the other two will be in at-least-better-than-Center-Ice quality feeds, which I’d say is highly likely).

Before I list the full schedule, here are some of the games:

  • Chicago will play Tampa Bay in a game at Winnipeg on Wednesday.
  • Toronto will play Philadelphia in London … Ontario on Thursday.
  • Buffalo takes on Ottawa in the “Kraft Hockeyville” game in Dundas, ONT on Tuesday, Sept. 28.
  • Calgary goes up against the New York Islanders in Saskatoon, SK the next day (Wednesday, Sept. 29).
  • That first Tuesday (Sept. 21) includes a triple-header, but the biggest serving of hockey comes on Saturday, September 25 and Friday, October 1 as four games will be televised those days.
  • Two of those Saturday September 25 games won’t be in HD (Penguins-Blue Jackets and Maple Leafs-Sabres).

Anyway, those are some of the dates that stick out to me. Here’s the full schedule, via NHL Network.

2010-11 NHL Network U.S. Pre-Season Game Schedule
(All times listed as ET)

Format: Date, Visitor, Home team, Time, Live or Not?

Tues, 9/21 New Jersey Devils Philadelphia Flyers 7:00 PM LIVE
Tues, 9/21 Ottawa Senators Toronto Maple Leafs 10:00 PM
Tues, 9/21 Vancouver Canucks Calgary Flames 2:00 AM *
Wed, 9/22 Chicago Blackhawks Tampa Bay Lightning (MTS Centre, Winnipeg) 8:00PM LIVE
Wed, 9/22 Ottawa Senators Toronto Maple Leafs 11:00 PM
Wed, 9/22 Edmonton Oilers Vancouver Canucks 2:00 AM *
Thu, 9/23 Toronto Maple Leafs Philadelphia Flyers (London, ONT) 7:00 PM LIVE
Thu, 9/23 Tampa Bay Lightning Edmonton Oilers 2:00 AM *
Fri, 9/24 Chicago Blackhawks Detroit Red Wings 7:00 PM LIVE
Fri, 9/24 Philadelphia Flyers Toronto Maple Leafs 10:00 PM
Fri, 9/24 Minnesota Wild St. Louis Blues 12:00 AM *
Sat, 9/25 Detroit Red Wings Chicago Blackhawks 8:00 PM LIVE
Sat, 9/25 Toronto Maple Leafs Buffalo Sabres 11:00 PM +
Sat, 9/25 Columbus Blue Jackets Pittsburgh Penguins 1:00 AM * +
Sat, 9/25 Anaheim Ducks Vancouver Canucks 4:00 AM *
Sun, 9/26 Vancouver Canucks Edmonton Oilers 8:00 PM LIVE
Mon, 9/27 Buffalo Sabres Toronto Maple Leafs 7:00 PM LIVE
Tue, 9/28 Buffalo Sabres Ottawa Senators (Kraft Hockeyville – Dundas, ONT) 7:00 PM LIVE
Tue, 9/28 San Jose Sharks Vancouver Canucks 10:00 PM LIVE
Tue, 9/28 Chicago Blackhawks Pittsburgh Penguins 2:00 AM *
Tue, 9/28 Phoenix Coyotes Calgary Flames 4:00 AM *
Wed, 9/29 New York Islanders Philadelphia Flyers 7:00 PM LIVE
Wed, 9/29 Vancouver Canucks San Jose Sharks 10:30 PM LIVE
Wed, 9/29 Toronto Maple Leafs Ottawa Senators 2:00 AM *
Wed, 9/29 Calgary Flames New York Islanders(Saskatoon, SK) 4:00 AM *
Wed, 9/29 Phoenix Coyotes Edmonton Oilers 6:00 AM *
Thu, 9/30 Buffalo Sabres Montreal Canadiens 7:30 PM LIVE
Thu, 9/30 Columbus Blue Jackets Minnesota Wild 11:00 PM
Fri, 10/1 Buffalo Sabres Philadelphia Flyers 7:00 PM LIVE
Fri, 10/1 Vancouver Canucks Anaheim Ducks 10:00 PM LIVE
Fri, 10/1 Toronto Maple Leafs Detroit Red Wings 1:00 AM *
Fri, 10/1 Calgary Flames Edmonton Oilers 4:00 AM *
Sat, 10/2 Detroit Red Wings Toronto Maple Leafs 7:00 PM LIVE
Sun, 10/3 St. Louis Blues Chicago Blackhawks 6:00 PM LIVE
Sun, 10/3 Edmonton Oilers Calgary Flames 12:00 AM *

* Denotes airtime is day after contest
+ Not available in HD
Schedule subject to change

It sounds like Olli Maatta won’t be ready for Game 3

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You’ve all seen it by now (if you haven’t, click the video at the top of page). Penguins defenseman Olli Maatta was forced to leave Game 2 against the Capitals after taking a late hit from Brooks Orpik. Not only was the hit late, but Orpik also caught Maatta in the head.

After the Penguins’ optional skate on Sunday, Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan wasn’t optimistic about Maatta’s chances of playing in Game 3 on Monday night.

“Olli’s being evaluated as we speak, so I don’t have any real update as far as his status is concerned,” Sullivan said, per the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “He’s being evaluated today, we’ll probably have more information in the morning.

“I don’t have a lot of sense of his availability. I’m probably not optimistic, though.”

After the game, Capitals coach Barry Trotz stood up for his defenseman.

“We’ll let the league handle it,” Trotz said, per CSN Mid-Atlantic. “If you know anything about Brooks, he plays hard, he plays clean. He’s not a dirty player.”

And the league certainly did handle it, as they suspended Orpik for three games.

Related:

Penguins coach takes issue with late, high Orpik hit on Maatta

Brooks Orpik suspended three games for hit on Olli Maatta

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Brooks Orpik has been suspended for three games for his hit on Olli Maatta (top). The Caps defenseman will be forced to miss Games 3, 4 and 5 of the best-of-seven series against the Penguins.

Orpik delivered a late, high hit to Maatta in Game 2. The Penguins defenseman was wobbly getting off the ice and he was unable to return to the game.

Here’s how the Department of Players Safety saw the play:

“Orpik steps up to pressure Bonino, who quickly moves the puck to Maatta. Orpik peels off Bonino to pressure Maatta, who releases a shot from the top of the circle. The two continue on their path toward the goal line, as the puck is kicked into the slot. A full second after Maatta releases the puck, Orpik delivers a high, forceful hit making significant head contact. This is interference.”

To watch the NHL’s Department of Player Safety’s full explanation, click the video below.

This is the third time Orpik’s been suspended in his NHL career.

WATCH LIVE: Game 2 of Predators-Sharks

San Jose Sharks goalie Martin Jones (31) deflects a shot from Nashville Predators' Viktor Arvidsson (38) during the second period of Game 1 in an NHL hockey Stanley Cup Western Conference semifinal series Friday, April 29, 2016, in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Associated Press
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The Nashville Predators and San Jose Sharks will face-off in Game 2 on Sunday night. You can catch the game on NBCSN (8:00 p.m. ET) or online with the NBC Sports Live Extra app.

The Sharks used a five-goal third period to squash the Predators in the opening game of the best-of-seven series. Game 2 at the Sharks Tank should be a whole lot of fun.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH LIVE

Here’s some reading material to get you ready for the game:

Sharks swarm in the third period, take down Predators in Game 1

Black cat hits the ice before Sharks-Predators Game 1

Are there similarities between the ’14 Sharks and ’16 Ducks?

Backes scores OT goal on his birthday, Blues even up series with Stars

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The St. Louis Blues won’t be thrilled with the way they played in the third period, but in the end, they did just enough to come away with a 4-3 overtime win over the Dallas Stars in Game 2. The Blues’ win means that the series will head to St. Louis tied 1-1.

The Stars opened the scoring in the first period, but the Blues responded by scoring three unanswered goals (Patrik Berglund, Joel Edmundson, Troy Brouwer) on five shots. Stars coach Lindy Ruff had seen enough from starter Kari Lehtonen at that point. He yanked Lehtonen in favor of Antti Niemi at the start of the second period.

Neither team was able to find the back of the net in the second period, but things got crazy in the third.

With his team still trailing 3-1, Mattias Janmark split Alex Pietrangelo and Colton Parayko before scoring a great goal.

Moments after Janmark’s goal, Brian Elliott took a Jason Spezza blast off the mask. Elliott was shaken up on the play (he even lost one of his contact lenses), but he did stay in the game.

Stars captain Jamie Benn (surprise, surprise) leveled the score by burying a goal by Brian Elliott with under three minutes in regulation.

Like they did during their first round series against Chicago, the Blues took some time to regroup before finding a way to get the job done.

The Blues’ power play went back to work after Antoine Roussel took his third penalty of the game. That’s when the birthday boy, David Backes, came through.

That’s a nice way to celebrate your 32nd birthday.

Game 3 goes Tuesday night in St. Louis.