Today’s Starting Goalies – November 10

Whether you’re interested for fantasy hockey reasons or just want to know which goalie your team is playing in a given day, we thought it might be helpful to share our best guesses (based on various previews from newspapers and Web sites plus our own instincts) on who might start each day.

7:00 PM ET games

St. Louis @ Columbus

Likely St. Louis starter: Jaroslav Halak – Can Halak keep his crazy hot streak going against the Blue Jackets? He’ll certainly get the chance to answer that question. (Source for both: Columbus Post-Dispatch.)

Likely Columbus starter: Steve Mason – The Blue Jackets really, really want Mason to be their goalie of the future. But they also really, really want to make the playoffs so expect Mathieu Garon to steal his fair share of starts. (Source for both: Columbus Post-Dispatch.)

Boston @ Pittsburgh

Likely Boston starter: Tim Thomas (Source: Joe Haggerty.)

Likely Pittsburgh starter: Brent Johnson – Sidney Crosby isn’t the Penguins’ head coach, so Johnson will get the nod. (Source: Rotoworld.)

Buffalo @ New Jersey

Likely Buffalo starter: Jhonas Enroth – Ryan Miller will be in the lineup, but just as a backup as he’s still banged up and Patrick Lalime is also on the mend. By process of elimination, that leaves Enroth, as I discussed last night.

Likely New Jersey starter: Johan Hedberg – Martin Brodeur is still dealing with his “elbow bruise” so Hedberg should get the start. (Source: Rotoworld.)

7:30 PM ET game

Toronto @ Florida

Likely Toronto starter: Jonas Gustavsson – J.S. Giguere received the start last night and lost, so it makes sense that “The Monster” will make an appearance. (Source: James Mirtle.)

Likely Florida starter: Tomas Vokoun (Source: Steve Goldstein.)

8:30 PM ET game

Phoenix @ Chicago

Likely Phoenix starter: Jason LaBarbera – The Coyotes are on a three-game losing streak, so it seems logical to give Ilya Bryzgalov’s backup a shot. (Source: Coyotes Web site.)

Likely Chicago starter: Marty Turco – Corey Crawford hasn’t had much luck this season, so the Blackhawks will turn to Turco to try to end their home slide. (Source: Chris Kuc.)

10:00 PM ET game

NY Islanders @ Anaheim

Likely NY Islanders starter: Dwayne Roloson – There’s a pretty stark contrast between Roloson’s work and Rick DiPietro’s, so don’t be surprised that Rolo gets the nod even as the team seems to collapse around him. (Source: NY Islanders Twitter page.)

Likely Anaheim starter: Jonas Hiller – I haven’t been able to confirm this – and he did have a full night of work facing 41 shots against the San Jose Sharks last night – but his backup isn’t at the Giguere/Bryzgalov level so don’t be shocked if he starts tonight too.

Report: Kings, Richards nearing settlement

Mike Richards
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The Los Angeles Kings and Mike Richards may be nearing a settlement in their dispute over Richards’ terminated contract, TSN’s Bob McKenzie is reporting.

You can read the report for all the details, but we’re sure curious about this part:

If a settlement is reached, there’s no word yet on what salary cap penalties the Kings would still face. There’s bound to be something, but not likely as onerous as the full value of Richards’ contract, which carries with it a cap hit of $5.75 million. If there’s a settlement, Richards would undoubtedly become a free agent though there’s no telling at this point what monies he would be entitled to from the Kings in a settlement.

The issue here is precedent, and what this case could set. The NHL and NHLPA can’t allow teams to escape onerous contracts through a back door, and many are adamant that that’s what the Kings were attempting to do in Richards’ case.

Bettman to players: Don’t screw up ‘once-in-a-lifetime opportunity’ with drugs

Gary Bettman
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The NHL wants to take an educational approach — not a punitive one — to deter its players from using illicit drugs like cocaine.

“My interest is not to go around punishing people,” Bettman told Sportsnet today.

“My interest is getting players to understand the consequences of doing something that could jeopardize this great, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that they’ve been given, to play in the NHL.”

While some players have expressed surprise at hearing that cocaine use is growing, the anecdotal evidence of substance abuse has been very much in the news, from Jarret Stoll‘s arrest to Mike Richards’ arrest to, more recently, Zack Kassian‘s placement in the NHL/NHLPA’s treatment program.

“We don’t have the unilateral right to do things here. We need the consent of the Players’ Association,” Bettman said. “It’s not about punishment. It’s about making sure we get it to stop.”

Related: Cocaine in the NHL: A concern, but not a crisis?