Columbus’ Richards on Murray: ‘There’s a lot to be excited about with him’

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Sure, it was just a preseason game, but the Columbus Blue Jackets had to feel good to see Ryan Murray – the second pick of the 2012 NHL Draft – score the overtime winner against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday.

R.J. Umberger and Mark Letestu gathered assists on the 5-4 OT goal, as you can see below:

Blue Jackets head coach Todd Richards didn’t totally conceal his delight regarding the 19-year-old defenseman after the victory.

“There’s a lot to be excited about with him,” Richards said.

(The franchise obviously has to feel strongly about the offensively gifted blueliner, as they memorably rejected the New York Islanders’ enormous offer to poach him during that 2012 draft.)

Time will tell if the Columbus-Pittsburgh battle will bud into a rivalry – residing in the same division cannot hurt – but there was another interesting tidbit to that exhibition.

Chuck Kobasew’s bid to make the Penguins went off to a strong start, as the 31-year-old winger scored twice. His response was more subdued than the Blue Jackets’ praise of Murray, however.

“I got some opportunities. I was able to capitalize,” Kobasew said. “But it’s one day.”

Still, for both Kobasew and Murray, it was a very good one.

Video: Pekka Rinne’s zero-margin-of-error stick save

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Sometimes, the Nashville Predators were unlucky in November. Sometimes they were just bad.

Either way, they’re likely glad to step into December, and they’ve already gotten a big bounce. Watch how close this near-goal was into crossing the red line before Pekka Rinne barely stopped it with a well-placed goalie stick.

You can also see it up close via this GIF:

Here’s the NHL Situation Room Blog explanation for it remaining a no-goal:

At 13:06 of the first period in the Coyotes/Predators game, the Situation Room initiated a video review to further examine a play from 11:57. Video review confirmed the call on the ice that the puck did not cross the Nashville goal line. No goal Coyotes.

Alexei Emelin was ejected for this hit on Matt Calvert


Alexei Emelin has been in and out of the Montreal Canadiens lineup, but this wasn’t the way they wanted him to keep his legs fresh.

The hard-hitting defenseman received a game misconduct and five-minute major penalty for a late hit on Columbus Blue Jackets forward Matt Calvert on Tuesday.

So far, it sounds like Calvert may be OK.

You can see video of that hit above, as well as a GIF of the infraction via My Regular Face.

Many believe that Emelin should not have been ejected.

Injuries continue to dog Lupul as Leafs place him on IR

Joffrey Lupul
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Injuries have been a regular problem for Joffrey Lupul for much of his time with the Toronto Maple Leafs, and it doesn’t look like that’s changing in 2015-16.

The team placed him on injured reserve retroactive to Nov. 28, calling up Rich Clune in the process.

This IR stint means that Lupul will miss at least three games for Toronto.

From the sound of things, it’s a nagging issue, as NHL.com notes.

“He’s been having the same problem here for a bit,” Mike Babcock told media members on Sunday. “He doesn’t seem to be getting the power back that they thought, so we’re just trying to monitor it the best we can.”

Leafs Nation points out that Lupul has missed about one-third of Toronto’s contests since suffering a separated shoulder in April 2012.

At 32, there’s still time for Lupul to fight through this, although injuries generally accumulate with age.

WATCH LIVE: Wild at Blackhawks; Penguins at Sharks

Scott Darling, Charlie Coyle
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Will Ryan Suter say something foolish during tonight’s game? Is Brent Burns‘ beard so long that it’s finally starting to scrape the ice?

We’ll find out the answer to those questions and more during Tuesday’s NBCSN doubleheader.

Need to follow the two games online? Never fear.

Game 1: Minnesota Wild at Chicago Blackhawks


Game 2: Pittsburgh Penguins at San Jose Sharks