Around the Rink – Tuesday, December 7th

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Let’s take a look at tonight’s five game slate of NHL action. As always, the start times are according to Eastern Standard Time (ET).

7:30 pm

Ottawa @ Montreal

If the Canadiens want to take a look at their old pal Alex Kovalev, they won’t need to wait very long to do so. The Habs should prove that they are truly among the upper class in the East by bolstering their already impressive home mark (10-4-2) against the up-and-down Senators.

Colorado @ Florida

Both teams find themselves out of the playoff picture in their respective conferences, although the Avalanche are a stone’s throw away while the Panthers find themselves in a considerable hole. Then again, Florida played 15 of their first 25 games on the road, so maybe a little home cooking in Sunrise will do them a little good.

Buffalo @ Boston

To me, the Bruins seem like the Sabres plus depth. Both teams are better on the road than at home this season, sport the last two Vezina Trophy winners and employ cagey coaches in their ranks. The Bruins just seem more resilient and talented, so we’ll see if they can go above .500 in Boston with this one.

9:30 pm

Anaheim @ Edmonton

In this context, the two teams are remarkably similar; the Ducks are 4-7-2 on the road while the Oilers are 4-6-1 at home this season. The most comforting thought for Edmonton is that they’re starting to put a run together, having won four games in a row. Anaheim is the definition of hot and cold, just look at their last four streaks from the most to the least recent: two losses, three wins, six losses and six wins.

Tampa Bay @ Calgary

Both teams still employ two of the big figures from their seven-game Stanley Cup finals series (Jarome Iginla and Miikka Kiprusoff for the Flames; Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis for the Lightning), only it seems like Calgary is falling apart around them while Tampa Bay is finally moving on to bigger and better things. Tampa Bay is in solid playoff position in the East while the Flames are now at the very bottom of the West right now.

Flames release Ryan Wilson from PTO

Ryan Wilson, Sidney Crosby
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The Calgary Flames have released Ryan Wilson from his professional tryout.

The 28-year-old was trying to make a comeback after missing 79 games with a shoulder injury last season.

Even with T.J. Brodie sidelined because of a broken hand, Wilson still faced long odds to make the final roster.

The veteran will be hard-pressed to find NHL work with another team.

He hasn’t suited up in more than 12 regular season games since 2011-12.

The Stockton Heat, Calgary’s AHL affiliate, also made some news on Sunday.

The club announced that they’ve signed Colton Orr to an AHL contract.

The 33-year-old tough guy suited up in just one game for the Toronto Maple Leafs last season. He has 12 seasons of NHL experience under his belt.

‘Yotes return Dylan Strome to OHL

Dylan Strome, Nikita Nikitin

The Arizona Coyotes have returned Dylan Strome to the Erie Otters of the OHL.

Strome, 18, was the third overall pick in the 2015 NHL draft.

The 6’3, 185 pounder was hoping to stick with the Coyotes this season, but the team decided to take the conservative approach with their top prospect.

Strome will look to build off an incredible junior season that saw him score 45 goals and 129 points in 68 games.

Strome seems to be taking the demotion in stride.

The team also announced that they’ve assigned goaltender Louis Domingue and forward Matthias Plachta to their AHL affiliate in Springfield.

Domingue, 23, had a 1-2-1 record with a 2.73 goals-against-average and a .911 save percentage in seven games last season.

Plachta, a free agent signing, will begin his first pro season in North America. The 24-year-old had 14 goals and 35 points in the German League last season.