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Video: 24/7 Road to the Winter Classic with Dan Bylsma and Bruce Boudreau

Thanks to our friends at HBO, we’ve been able to bring you video previews of their upcoming mini-series documenting the events leading up to the 2011 Winter Classic at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh (which you can see live on NBC on January 1 at 1:00 pm).

Today’s video features the head coaches who figure to get plenty of face (and voice) time during the series. Penguins coach Dan Bylsma and Caps coach Bruce Boudreau are two of the more interesting figures in the NHL. Bylsma for being the young coach who led the Penguins to a Stanley Cup in 2009 and Boudreau being the affable leader who rose out of the AHL after years there to take over a team on the rise in Washington.

Thrusting these two into the spotlight for the Winter Classic should make for some fascinating television as you figure that both of these guys are a bit more fiery behind the scenes than what you see on the bench during a game. In Boudreau’s case that’s really saying something. Without further ado, here’s your sampler platter for 24/7 which kicks off a week from tonight December 15th at 10 pm on HBO.

Memorial Cup champion goalie Appleby signs with Devils

Ken Appleby
The Canadian Press via AP
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Ken Appleby never got drafted, but his efforts during the New Jersey Devils’ training camp have earned him an entry-level contract, per the Bergen Record.

Although no team saw it fit to take him before the preseason, the 20-year-old is coming off of a very strong season. He had a 2.08 GAA and .924 save percentage in 50 games with the OHL’s Oshawa Generals. He went on to lead them to a Memorial Cup championship and earned the the Hap Emms Memorial Trophy as the tournament’s top goalie.

Appleby is the fifth goaltender the Devils have under contract after Cory Schneider, Keith Kinkaid, Scott Wedgewood, and Yann Danis. He’ll likely begin the season in the ECHL.

Alexandre Goulet and Jacob Sweeney also participated in the Devils’ training camp on an amateur tryout basis, but both of them have been released.

PHT Morning Skate: NHL stars weigh in on McDavid

Connor McDavid
The Canadian Press via AP
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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Some of the NHL’s top players discuss Connor McDavid‘s potential and the hype surrounding him. (Toronto Sun)

While we’re on the subject, Wayne Gretzky recalls what it was like for him going into the NHL and what’s in store for McDavid. (Edmonton Sun)

Sam Gagner is about to start a key season in his career. (Philadelphia Inquirer)

It’s time for the Washington Capitals to make some tough calls, particularly when it comes to Derek Roy. (CSN Mid-Atlantic)

With Raffi Torres hearing scheduled for today, here’s a look back at his suspension history. (San Jose Mercury News)

The Chicago Blackhawks have gotten their championship rings. (NHL.com)