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Are the Senators trying to move struggling forward Mike Fisher?

Trade rumors sure can be fun sometimes. They happen all the time and they’re worth scoping out when they involve a player with some usefulness.

Entering the fray this time around is Ottawa center Mike Fisher. Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun did his part to sniff around to see if there’s interest out there in the wildly underperforming pivot and as the rumor-friendly reporter was able to discover, there’s some talk out there that the Senators are dangling Fisher.

The Senators are casting about to see what they can get for Mike Fisher.

But with the 30-year-old armed with a no-movement clause and two years left on his contract carrying a cap hit of $4.2 million, two league executives seriously doubt he’ll be going anywhere anytime soon.

“I know teams have called and I’m sure they’re just trying to shake things up a bit in Ottawa,” said a league executive. “But I don’t see it. He’s having a bad year. He’s not the only one on that team.”

While Fisher had a career year last season scoring 25 goals and 28 assists, he’s finding out that statistical regression to the mean is a real buzzkill scoring just 13 goals and eight assists good for 21 points in 49 games this year. That kind of poor production is reserved for third liners but on a bad Senators team perhaps he’s just reflecting the problems around him.

Fisher can be a capable second line center and luckily for him there are a couple of teams that could use a guy like that in Los Angeles and Washington. While those teams could certainly use a player like that, the asking price for him at the moment would likely not be be worth the hassle. The other problem with Fisher comes in the form of  a $4.2 million cap hit that goes through until 2012-2013. Giving up the sort of package the Senators would be looking for for a player with poor production and a bloated cost doesn’t likely make sense for either of those teams unless a similarly bloated deal goes back in return.

Still, if it’s a change of scenery that Fisher needs to snap out of his funk, you couldn’t ask for a better situation than either L.A. or D.C. for both him and his superstar wife Carrie Underwood. If you don’t think they’d enjoy the spotlight of either of those cities then you’re not too familiar with how tabloids work. Whether or not shining a brighter spotlight on that celebrity couple would help Fisher’s game or not would make for one heck of a trial by fire.

Stars end Capitals’ winning streak, pass Blackhawks for West lead

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For two periods, the Dallas Stars seemed to say, “Are you sure the Washington Capitals are the best team in the NHL?”

They chased Braden Holtby and built a 4-0 lead through those first 40 minutes, and that was enough … but barely. The Stars beat the Capitals 4-3 on Saturday, which accomplished the following:

  • Dallas ended Washington’s winning streak at five games. The Stars have now won three straight.
  • This win slides the Stars ahead of the Chicago Blackhawks for first place in the highly competitive Central Division. While both teams sit at 77 standings points, Dallas holds three games in hand.
  • By passing Chicago, the Stars now lead the Western Conference as a whole.

Impressive stuff. Some might even call it a statement game, although others may hold that nail-biting ending against them (possibly arguing that the Stars’ flaws may come back to haunt them in the playoffs).

Dallas’ biggest concern likely has little to do with doubters. Instead, they must monitor the statuses of forwards Tyler Seguin and Cody Eakin.

Long story short, the Stars are red-hot, yet bigger challenges likely lie ahead.

Blackhawks fall to Ducks in OT, lose Hossa to injury

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The Chicago Blackhawks are on edge on Saturday, and it’s not because of what’s currently a close game against the Anaheim Ducks.

(Not that they’re indifferent toward a match against their opponents from last year’s conference final match, mind you.)

Instead, the Blackhawks are quite concerned about the health of Marian Hossa, who needed help off of the ice following an awkward, scary-looking crash into the boards. (Hampus Lindholm delivered the hip check that sent Hossa sprawling, in case you’re wondering.)

You can see that moment in the video above, while My Regular Face’s GIF also captures that troubling moment:

It’s too early to tell if Hossa will bounce back or miss some time from this. Stay tuned for potential updates.

Update: Joel Quenneville seems optimistic about Hossa, broadly speaking:

Ryan Getzlaf scored the overtime game-winner as the Ducks won 3-2 (OT).

Understatement: Saturday was a rough night for Panthers

Nashville Predators center Colin Wilson (33) checks Florida Panthers center Jonathan Huberdeau (11) during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016, in Sunrise, Fla. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)
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If it weren’t for Mike Yeo and the Minnesota Wild, you could argue that the Florida Panthers suffered from the worst night so far.

You can see that Saturday was unpleasant merely from looking at the scoreboard: the Nashville Predators pummeled the Panthers by an unkind score of 5-0.

The pain goes beyond that … literally so.

For one thing, Quinton Howden suffered an upper-body injury and did not return. That’s no good, but if you want to feel sick to your stomach, footage of Brandon Pirri‘s likely lower-body injury (ankle maybe?) may do the trick.

(Seriously, you may be happier if you don’t look.)

The Panthers didn’t make an announcement about Pirri one way or another, so we’ll see if he somehow avoided anything significant.

Either way, it was a night this team would like to forget.

Fractured jaw from fight sidelines Chris Stewart for 4-8 weeks

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It’s unlikely that Chris Stewart will generate another 30-goal season in the NHL, but he still might be missed by the Anaheim Ducks.

The team announced that the ornery forward is expected to miss four-to-eight weeks with a fractured jaw. If that’s the recovery window, Stewart may go into the playoffs a little rusty (if he can get in any regular season games at all).

The Ducks didn’t elaborate, but the Columbus Dispatch’s Aaron Portzline believes that the injury happened during a fight with Dalton Prout of the Columbus Blue Jackets. You can see that brawl in the video above.

One bright side for Anaheim: if they believe that they need to replace what Stewart brings to the table (rugged play with a dash of offense), then at least this injury happened before the the Feb. 29 trade deadline.