New Jersey Devils’ Ilya Kovalchuk, left, skates past Buffalo Sabres goaltender Jhonas Enroth during the shootout of an NHL hockey game Wednesday, Nov. 10, 2010, in Newark, N.J. Kovalchuk lost the puck off his stick and was unable to take a shot. The Sabres won 5-4. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)
“Hearing lots of Dion Phaneuf trade chatter,” McKenzie tweeted this morning. “Starting to think he could actually be dealt before the deadline.”
Phaneuf has three goals and 21 assists in 51 games this season, while logging an average of 22:02 in ice time. The big factor in trading the 30-year-old is his contract — he’s signed through 2020-21 for a cap hit of $7 million.
In the past, Detroit has come up as a potential destination for Phaneuf, though the Wings reportedly withdrew their interest in June.
NBCSN will continue its coverage of the 2015-16 campaign tonight when the Minnesota Wild host the Dallas Stars at 8:00 p.m. ET. If you want to watch the game online, you can do so here.
If you’re a fan of the Minnesota Wild, the last few weeks probably haven’t been pleasant.
The team has been slumping badly since the beginning of the new year, and late January/early February has been no different.
The Wild come into tonight’s game having dropped five straight decisions to the Sharks, Coyotes, Islanders, Rangers and Blues.
Minnesota has just 10 goals during the losing streak, which means their top offensive players aren’t producing.
After playing their last three games on the road, Minnesota hopes to get a boost from their home crowd.
“One thing for sure, [there are] mixed feelings about coming back home,” Yeo said on Monday, per the Star-Tribune. “Right now, obviously, a little home cooking would be nice for us. But I’d be lying if I wasn’t a little nervous for tomorrow. Certainly I think our fan base is a little restless — more than a little restless right now. And they expect more from us. And they deserve more of us.”
Things haven’t been as bad in Dallas, but the Stars are coming off an embarrassing 5-1 home loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.
“It was a huge game,” forward Vernon Fiddler said, per the Morning News. “We talked about it before the game, what it means, and then we lay an egg. It’s unacceptable. There’s a lot of disappointed guys in here.
“After a big loss like that, you want to respond. We all have to be better and take a look in the mirror and expect more of ourselves.”
Prior to Saturday’s loss, the Stars had won three straight games.
Could this be a trap game for Dallas?
They won’t have to wait long to get another crack at the Blackhawks, as they’ll be shipping out to the United Center on Thursday, but they have to take care of business in Minnesota first.
The Stars are five points behind Chicago for top spot in the Central Division. Dallas has three games in hand.
The Montreal Canadiens will be without a key piece of their defense on Tuesday when they take on the Lightning.
Petry missed the last half of the third period of Montreal’s win over Carolina on Sunday, which could be related to the injury in question. He finished with just 16:03 TOI, well off the 21:21 he averages per game.
The loss could be a big one for the Habs, who’ve won two straight for the first time since November. Petry often played on a pairing with Alexei Emelin and was on the club’s second power-play unit.
With Petry out, it’s possible that Nathan Beaulieu could draw back into the lineup.
NEW YORK (AP) The New York Rangers are starting to make a stretch run, and they are doing it with a couple of key players sidelined.
Henrik Lundqvist made 27 saves and the Rangers posted their first three-game winning streak since November with a 2-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Monday night.
“The way we are playing, it’s paying off in different ways,” Lundqvist said. “Guys are playing really well and scoring big goals at the right time, and as a group, I feel like we are doing a lot of good things.”
The Rangers were exceptional with their forechecking, either pinning the Devils in their own end or making steals to set up scoring chances.
Kevin Klein, who broke a thumb last week, scored for the first time in 28 games and the streaking J.T. Miller scored for the ninth time in 10 games while the Rangers beat the Devils for the first time in three games this season.
This win was New York’s fifth straight victory at Madison Square Garden, and the Rangers are 7-3 in their last 10 overall.
“What we did tonight was everyone just kind of stepped up and ate a few more minutes out there,” veteran Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi said. “We weren’t too flashy out there. We kept is simple, kept the play in their end as long as we could. It was a good effort.”
“In the end we showed some signs of life,” Schneider said. “We made it a game when short-handed no less. We didn’t give up, but I think we waited about 50 minutes too long to have that urgency and drive.”
While the score was close, the Rangers totally outplayed New Jersey in what was a test with McDonagh and Nash out.
Zajac scored with the Rangers on their fifth fruitless power play. That and Schneider’s goaltending made the final minutes interesting.
Lundqvist had a relatively easy night before that. His best saves came late in the second period. He stopped Reid Boucher 1-on-1 after the forward was set up by Zajac. The Swede also stopped a flurry with less than six minutes left in the third, making a pad save on defenseman Andy Greene on a shot from inside the right circle.
Klein broke his right thumb late in a loss to the Devils on Tuesday and then sat out one game. He got his first goal since Nov. 3 and fourth of the season early in the second period.
“He’s a real strong guy and he is obviously playing through something right now,” Girardi said of Klein. “He shows the guys how much he wants to win and everyone follows that lead. We are all rallying around everyone here, trying to put a few wins together. It feels good.”
Mats Zuccarello did most of the work on Klein’s goal. He got between two Devils for a loose puck along the right boards, cut across the crease and found Klein in the left circle for a shot into an open net. Marc Staal got his first assist in 18 games on the play.
Miller extended his career-best goal total to 17 when he scored at 4:37 of the third period. He took a drop pass from Derick Brassard and beat Schneider.
“Tonight is one of those examples where I am just trying to get the puck on net,” Miller said. “I’m really not thinking about scoring from there and it happens to go in.”
Schneider withstood two Rangers’ power plays and 17 shots in a scoreless first period. Derek Stepan had a breakaway in the period and Keith Yandle had four of the seven shots by New York’s defensemen.
“It’s a stinker. There’s nothing you can take from this game,” Devils defenseman John Moore said.
NOTES: Rangers C Kevin Hayes was assessed a 10-minute misconduct penalty during a power play for pitch-forking a broken stick over the glass into the stands. … D Damon Severson and Fs Stefan Matteau and Tuomo Ruutu were healthy scratches for the Devils. … New Jersey will retire goaltender Marty Brodeur’s jersey on Tuesday. … D Dan Girardi skated in his 698th career game with the Rangers, tying Mark Messier and Steve Vickers for 11th place on the franchise’s career games played list. … With McDonagh missing the game, only Miller, Staal, Zuccarello and Yandle have played in all 53 games for the Rangers. … The Devils have not beaten the Rangers three times in a row since 2013.