Patrick Roy

Who will be the next Habs GM? — Here are 10 candidates

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With this morning’s news that Pierre Gauthier has been fired as general manager of the Montreal Canadiens, here’s a list of 10 possible candidates to replace him:

Patrick Roy

The former Habs goalie great is a legend in Montreal and he recently had to deny he’d been offered the job. But given he’s spent his post-retirement career in junior hockey, does he have the requisite experience to be a GM in the NHL? Plus there’s the possibility he’s holding out to join the Nordiques, if they do indeed return to Quebec City via Phoenix.

Julien Brisebois

The assistant GM under Steve Yzerman in Tampa Bay. Brisebois spent a number of years in the Montreal organization and has AHL managing experience.

Pierre McGuire

The NBC analyst has been in the running for other GM jobs around the NHL. McGuire’s fully immersed in the league and, yes, he’s bilingual.

Claude Loiselle

The assistant GM under Brian Burke in Toronto, he’s responsible for managing the salary cap and negotiating contracts.

Pat Brisson

One of the NHL’s most prominent agents, it’ll be hard to find someone more familiar with the inner workings of the league. Former agent Mike Gillis won GM of the year in Vancouver last season, which the Habs might note.

Jim Nill

The assistant GM under Ken Holland in Detroit, is there a better organization in which to learn the craft?

Vincent Damphousse

The former Habs captain and NHLPA executive, he’d be a popular choice with the fans.

Marc Bergevin

The assistant GM under Stan Bowman in Chicago, it’s always helpful to flash a newish Stanley Cup ring at interviews.

Craig Button

Current TV analyst and former Flames GM, his name often comes up when there are openings around the league.

Paul Fenton

The assistant GM in Nashville under David Poile, the Predators’ success with a limited budget is a feather in his cap.

PHT Related

Timeline: Pierre Gauthier’s GM tenure in Montreal

Crosby, Karlsson and Trocheck are NHL’s three stars of the week

Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby celebrates his goal during the second period of an NHL hockey game against the Carolina Hurricanes in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
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Penguins center Sidney Crosby, Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson, and Panthers center Vincent Trocheck have been named the NHL’s three stars for the past week.

From the NHL:

Crosby led the League in goals and points (5-3-8) in three games as the Penguins (26-18-7, 59 points) earned four of a possible six points to secure the second Wild Card position in the Eastern Conference.

Karlsson led the League in assists and ranked second in points (0-7-7) in three games as the Senators (24-23-6, 54 points) won one of three starts for the week.

Trocheck notched six points (3-3—6) in three games, helping the Panthers (31-15-6, 68 points) widen their lead atop the Atlantic Division to six points.

Related: Red-hot Crosby could make Pens a flawed (but dangerous) dark horse

Malkin to miss third straight game with lower-body injury

Evgeni Malkin
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Evgeni Malkin‘s “nagging” lower-body injury will keep him out at least one more game.

Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said this morning that the star center will sit out tonight at home against the Ducks. Malkin already missed two contests this weekend in Florida. His status is day-to-day.

The Penguins lost, 6-3, in Tampa on Friday, but rebounded Saturday with a 3-2 OT win over the Panthers.

Pittsburgh’s next game after tonight’s is Wednesday at home versus the Rangers.

McDonagh out with concussion after Saturday’s altercation with Simmonds

Ryan McDonagh
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The New York Rangers will be without Ryan McDonagh tonight at home to New Jersey, the club announcing this morning that the defenseman is out with a concussion.

McDonagh left Saturday’s game in Philadelphia following an altercation with the Flyers’ Wayne Simmonds that ended with McDonagh taking a punch to the face from Simmonds.

Simmonds received a match penalty and was thrown out of the game, but did not receive any supplemental discipline.

Given the standings, the Rangers can ill afford to lose McDonagh for long. They play in Pittsburgh Wednesday, followed by three home games against Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Chicago.

standings

Lucic’s plan is to ‘remain a King’ for remainder of career

Milan Lucic, Alex Burrows, Dan Hamhuis
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Tuesday night, Milan Lucic will play his first game in Boston as a member of the Los Angeles Kings.

It should be an emotional return for the big 27-year-old winger. In an interview with the L.A. Times, he recalled his time with his former club fondly, saying how great it was to be a “part of one of the best-ever eras to be a Bruin.”

A pending unrestricted free agent, Lucic also commented on his contract negotiations with the Kings.

“Nothing to get excited about,” he said. “There’s been two or three little talks here and there. My plan is to remain a King and hopefully finish off my career here. Like I said, I go day by day and you never know what tomorrow is going to bring.”

Lucic has 12 goals and 18 assists in 50 games this season. Though the Kings reportedly want to keep him, the question is whether they can find the cap space to make it happen.

Los Angeles already has Anze Kopitar, Jeff Carter, Dustin Brown, Marian Gaborik, Kyle Clifford, Drew Doughty, Jake Muzzin, Alec Martinez, and Jonathan Quick locked up long term. Plus, Tyler Toffoli and Tanner Pearson will require new deals after next season.

Related: Why Lucic is an interesting pending UFA