Jussi Jokinen practices with Canes after brief Finnish stop

After a quick eight-game jaunt in Finland, Jussi Jokinen is back practicing with his Carolina Hurricanes teammates, according to Canes Now’s Chip Alexander.

Insurance questions expedited his return to the states, where he’s now staying in shape with the likes of Eric Staal, Jordan Staal, Joni Piktanen and Jamie McBain.

Jokinen described the challenges that come with waiting out the lockout.

“The hardest part for now is practicing and working out and no one knows the date when we will be able to play again,” Jokinen said.

“For now, it takes a lot of motivation from within. Obviously we have a lot of guys here skating and pushing each other. That helps.”

Jokinen played for Karpat, his hometown team. He told Alexander that he might return there – or somewhere else in Europe – a bit before or after Christmas if the lockout drags on even further.

In the mean time, he’ll have memories of playing back home.

“When I left there seven years ago I wasn’t sure if that was the last time I would have a chance to play there,” Jokinen said. “So obviously I tried to enjoy every minute, every moment. They have great fans there, and the fans there were excited to see me and other NHL players in that league.”

In Jets return, Burmistrov delivers headshot to Bergeron (Updated)

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Didn’t take long for Alex Burmistrov to make his presence felt — though not in a good way.

Burmistrov, playing in his first game for the Jets after a two-year stint in Russia, delivered a questionable elbow to the head of Boston’s Patrice Bergeron late in the first period of Thursday’s season-opener:

Burmistrov received a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head, while Bergeron received a matching minor for roughing (retaliating for the elbow, specifically).

The Bruins went into the intermission leading 1-0, and have yet to update Bergeron’s status.

Update: Bergeron stayed in the game, but B’s head coach Claude Julien was none too pleased with the hit. Following the game, he called for the NHL’s Department of Player Safety to look at it…

Two-for-two: Another successful coach’s challenge as Sens reverse Kane’s goal

Dave Cameron
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Coaches are quickly getting the hang of this challenge thing.

Following Mike Babcock’s successful challenge in Toronto’s opening-night loss to Montreal on Wednesday, Babcock’s provincial rival — Sens head coach Dave Cameron — got it right as well, successfully reversing Evander Kane‘s would-be equalizer in the third period.

From the league:

At 10:34 of the third period in the Senators/Sabres game, Ottawa requested a Coach’s Challenge to review whether Buffalo was off-side prior to Evander Kane’s goal.

After reviewing all available replays and consulting with NHL Hockey Operations staff, the Linesman determined that Buffalo’s Zemgus Girgensons was off-side prior to the goal. According to Rule 78.7, “The standard for overturning the call in the event of a ‘GOAL’ call on the ice is that the Linesman, after reviewing any and all available replays and consulting with the Toronto Video Room, determines that one or more Players on the attacking team preceded the puck into the attacking zone prior to the goal being scored and that, as a result, the play should have been stopped for an “Off-side” infraction; where this standard is met, the goal will be disallowed.”

Therefore the original call is overturned – no goal Buffalo Sabres.

The clock is re-set to show 9:32 (10:28 elapsed time), when the off-side infraction occurred.

As the league later noted, this was the first coach’s challenge under the offside scenario.