Tonight's pre-season schedule

Strap on your favorite jersey with the player on the back that hasn’t played for your team in years, it’s time for your pre-season schedule for the night and there’s another baseball spring training special on the card as two more teams do it up split-squad style. All times listed are Eastern time since we’ve got a distinct Eastern bias here. Boom.

7:00 pm

Boston @ Florida (Rochester, NY)

Seems random, right? It’s not. Rochester is the home of the Panthers AHL farm team, the Americans. Florida’s top line of David Booth-Stephen Weiss-Michael Frolik gets to start. Milan Lucic makes his pre-season debut for Boston.

Toronto @ Philadelphia (London, ON)

This game will be on NHL Network in the USA and it’s technically a home game for the Flyers. Oh.. all right. Sure. Expect both teams to drop the gloves often in this one. Truculence rides again!

New Jersey @ New York Rangers

Ilya Kovalchuk will play for New Jersey. Don’t suppose that will get too much hype now will it? Brian Rolston gets to show that he’s still got it as well playing on a line with two rookies. Speaking of rookies, Derek Stepan and Ryan McDonagh will get long looks tonight for New York.

8:00 pm

Carolina @ Nashville

And the youth shall lead them on to the ice. Former first round picks take center stage for Nashville as Ryan Ellis and Jonathon Blum suit up for Nashville tonight. The Hurricanes bring a lot of their regular thunder tonight with Eric Staal, Jussi Jokinen, Brandon Sutter, Erik Cole and Sergei Samsonov all suiting up.

9:00 pm

Tampa Bay @ Edmonton

It’s Taylor Hall time in Edmonton as this year’s #1 draft pick takes the ice for the first time, as well as Magnus Paajarvi. Nikolai Khabibulin, however, will not play.  For Tampa, their 2010 top pick Brett Connolly will play as well.Tampa’s Dan Ellis will get to play a full 60 minutes unless something crazy happens.

10:00 pm

Los Angeles @ Phoenix

Phoenix @ Los Angeles

It’s split-squad time once again and that means just about everyone you can imagine for both teams is suiting up somewhere. Phoenix’s Kyle Turris will be playing in Los Angeles looking to continue to impress.

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    Devils unveil ‘The Salute’ statue in honor of Martin Brodeur

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    The New Jersey Devils on Monday unveiled ‘The Salute’ — a statue paying homage to one of the greatest goalies in NHL history, Martin Brodeur, who will have his No. 30 uniform retired Tuesday at Prudential Center.

    “Looking at the pictures of my career and some of the events that meant a lot to me, I always saluted the fans,” Brodeur, a three-time Stanley Cup winner with the Devils, told the Fire and Ice blog.

    “That picture, at different times, in different jerseys, actually, like with Team Canada, it all came to that same pose.”

    More on the statue from the Devils:

    The 900-pound bronze statue was created by renowned sculpture and artist Jon Krawczyk, who worked with Brodeur on the design. Krawczyk, a Boonton Township, N.J. native and lifelong Devils fan, who also created the hockey statue on Championship Plaza outside of Prudential Center, personally drove “The Salute” from his Malibu, Cali. studio to the arena late last week.

    Video: Panthers furious after Abdelkader ‘cheap shot’ hit on Barkov

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    The Florida Panthers are fuming after their skilled 20-year-old forward Aleksander Barkov left Monday’s game against the Detroit Red Wings following a hit from Justin Abdelkader.

    Abdelkader caught Barkov with a hard hit near the goal line as the Panthers player tried to move the puck up ice early in the second period.

    The only call on the play was to Panthers’ blue liner Alex Petrovic for the retaliatory cross check on Abdelkader. Barkov left the game and didn’t return with an upper-body injury.

    Members of the Panthers irate with the hit, and the fact there was no call.

    “It was a cheap hit, I don’t know how the ref didn’t call it,” Nick Bjugstad told the Miami Herald. “It was frustrating, the whole bench felt that way. We’re not happy with it. It turned the game around. Barkov has tough shoes to fill. It looked pretty serious. We’ll see how the league handles it and I think they will. I just don’t know how it wasn’t handled on the ice.”

    “You hate to lose your top player, but that’s part of the game,” added Panthers’ head coach Gerard Gallant.

    “We’re disappointed to lose him. I thought it was a cheap shot but the referees didn’t see it that way and explained to me it was a clean check. It’s tough. It happens quick and we get to see the replay. I think it’ll be looked at. [Abdelkader] left his feet a little and got him in the jaw.”

    The Panthers gave up three goals in the third period in a 3-0 loss to the Red Wings.

    Penguins thump the Ducks as Crosby’s hot streak continues

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    In a meeting between two clubs enjoying hot streaks and their own subsequent climbs through the standings, the Pittsburgh Penguins bested the Anaheim Ducks courtesy another dominant Sidney Crosby performance on Monday.

    After that slow start, Crosby has put together a growing number of dominant performances of late.

    The latest, a four-point night, helped the Penguins to a 6-2 final over the Ducks, stopping Anaheim’s winning streak at six games.

    — He extended his scoring streak to a career best seven games, and did so with two beauty goals versus the Ducks.

    — From Dec. 18 to Feb. 8, he’s appeared in 21 games. In that span, he’s recorded 34 points.

    — Crosby is now into the top five among NHL players in points, with 53 in 51 games this season.

    He wasn’t the only Pittsburgh player to have a big night. Keep in mind, Evgeni Malkin wasn’t even in the lineup due to a lower-body injury.

    Ten different Penguins players recorded points. In addition to Crosby, Chris Kunitz and Kris Letang had multi-point efforts, and four players — Kunitz, Crosby, Olli Maatta and Patric Hornqvist — were plus-four.

    The Penguins now move into third in the Metropolitan Division, while the New York Islanders slip into the first Wild Card spot in the East. Pittsburgh’s lead over the Islanders, however, is only one point.

    The Islanders also have a game in hand.

    Panthers’ Barkov (upper-body injury) leaves game versus Red Wings

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    The Florida Panthers will be without Aleksander Barkov for the remainder of their game versus the Detroit Red Wings on Monday.

    As per multiple reports, Barkov will not return due to an upper-body injury suffered after a hit from Justin Abdelkader early in the second period.

    Abdelkader wasn’t given a penalty on the play. Barkov didn’t play another shift after that hit.

    In 42 games this season, the 20-year-old Barkov has 16 goals and 35 points.