The Vancouver Canucks have confirmed that Roberto Luongo is healthy enough to play between the pipes tonight against the Los Angeles Kings.
Luongo was out for three consecutive games after sustaining an injury on Dec. 22 courtesy of a shot from Winnipeg’s Evander Kane. Backup Eddie Lack filled in for Luongo with mixed results. He earned an 18-save shutout against Calgary, but was 0-1-1 in his following two games with a 3.44 GAA and .883 save percentage.
This is a great time to get their star netminder back. The Kings are on a five-game losing streak and Vancouver is in a position to wrestle third place in the Pacific Division away from them with a victory tonight.
This also comes ahead of the announcement of Team Canada’s roster. Luongo is expected to be one of the three goalies Canada carries and Martin Brodeur recently argued in favor of Luongo retaining his 2010 role as the country’s starting goaltender.
Taylor Hall is sick and reportedly “doubtful” for tonight’s game in Dallas.
Hall did not skate with the Oilers this morning. If he can’t play, Edmonton’s top two lines against the Stars could feature Ryan Nugent-Hopkins between wingers Teddy Purcell and Benoit Pouliot, followed by Connor McDavid centering Lauri Korpikoski and Nail Yakupov.
The Oilers — forced to start the season without top-six winger Jordan Eberle — have scored just once in their first two games, losing 3-1 in St. Louis and 2-0 in Nashville.
Edmonton returns home after tonight’s contest to play St. Louis on Thursday. Then it’s back out on the road for games against Calgary and Vancouver.
Buffalo has put blueliner Matt Donovan on waivers, per Sportsnet.
Donovan, 25, signed a one-year deal with the Sabres on the opening day of free agency after spending his entire professional career with the Isles organization.
The fact he’s being waived isn’t a huge shock. Donovan failed to draw into a single Sabres game this year despite a whittled-down blueline; Jake McCabe, recently called up from AHL Rochester, drew into the lineup for Monday’s win over Columbus at the expense of Carlo Colaiacovo, who played the first two games of the year.
The fact both McCabe and Colaiacovo were ahead on the depth chart didn’t bode well for Donovan. Today’s move could also suggest that Zach Bogosian, who hasn’t played this year due to injury, is ready to return.