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Rangers send prospect Tim Erixon to AHL, Flames fans cheer


In the wake of their 5-4 shootout loss to Ottawa, the New York Rangers have sent Tim Erixon and Kris Newbury to the Connecticut Whale of the American Hockey League. You may remember Newbury from his recent fight against the Leafs when Mike Brown used his face as a punching bag. Seeing him sent down isn’t the most surprising development of the day.

On the other hand, the Rangers sending Erixon down may raise a few eyebrows around the league. Erixon is the blue-chip prospect that was acquired from Calgary in the offseason because he had no intention of signing with the Flames. Calgary’s loss was the Rangers gain—or so we thought.

Erixon was expected to be an NHL-ready defenseman after spending an impressive three seasons in the Swedish Elite League. Unfortunately, that just isn’t the case. Through nine games, he’s failed to score or assist on any goals this season. Worse than that, he’s had his fair share of defensive lapses and at times has looked completely lost on the ice. Many think that he’ll still be an NHL defenseman one day, but right now it just looks like he’s a guy who is in over his head.

If you ask some Rangers fans, Erixon isn’t the only defenseman who has looked lost in the early going. The organization hopes they’ll be able to hit the reset button on Erixon’s North American career with a stint with the Connecticut Whale to regain his confidence. The Rangers fans, coaching staff, and management hope the move is the answer.

Flames fans? They’ll tell you it has nothing to do with development and everything to do with karma.

Oilers get Kronwall’d – in more ways than one

Niklas Kronwall
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When someone gets clobbered by Niklas Kronwall, they get Kronwall’d.

(His detractors may insist that the definition require the words “dirty” or “illegal,” but that’s a debate for another day.)

It’s easy to get lost in those thunderous hits and forget that the  Swedish defenseman also brings some skill to the table.

He made a big impact – literally and figuratively – in Detroit’s 4-3 overtime win against the Edmonton Oilers on Friday.

First, the Kronwalling:

Next, Kronwall’s overtime-winner:

It hasn’t always been pretty, but the Red Wings are leaning on guys like Kronwall and Dylan Larkin to stick with it.

Tonight’s win extends their point streak to six games (4-0-2), with five of those contests going to overtime.

Dubinsky – Crosby’s nemesis – gets the last laugh on Friday

Sidney Crosby, Brandon Dubinsky

Brandon Dubinsky isn’t a household name like Sidney Crosby is, yet for all the hype that Crosby vs. Alex Ovechkin gets, Dubinsky is the sort of guy who truly rankles No. 87.

It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.

To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:

The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)

That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:

They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.

Even Dubinsky kind of sort of admits that he may have been in the wrong.


More and more, the Blue Jackets are looking like a nuisance … possibly one that will grind their way to an unlikely playoff berth. They improved to 8-4-0 in November after a disastrous 2-10-0 October.

In other words, there’s at least a chance that we may see these increasingly bitter rivals butt heads in another playoff series.

Eichel’s sweet snipe helps Sabres snap six-game skid

Jack Eichel
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The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.

You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.

That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:

Call this a healthy reminder that Eichel has the ability to change games, something Buffalo fans hope to get used to.

Report: Likely no suspension for Matt Beleskey’s hit on Derek Stepan


Alain Vigneault went there in comparing Matt Beleskey‘s hit on Derek Stepan to the notorious check Aaron Rome delivered on Nathan Horton many moons ago, but the league seems to disagree.

While Rome sat through that memorable Stanley Cup Final between Boston and Vancouver, it sounds like Beleskey won’t face any further discipline, according to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun.

In the unlikely event that anything changes, PHT will make note.

The next game between the Rangers and Bruins takes place at Madison Square Garden on Jan. 11. Will these bad feelings linger?