Stamkos will have ‘honest’ talk with Yzerman before Olympic decision


The Tampa Bay Lightning are in Toronto to play the Leafs tonight, and that meant a rather large media horde was waiting for injured superstar Steven Stamkos, who’s still questionable to play for Team Canada at the upcoming Olympics.

From Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston:

From ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun:

Stamkos also said he’ll have an “honest” talk with Team Canada executive director Steve Yzerman before making the final decision.

First and foremost, Stamkos (and Yzerman, who’s also the Lightning’s GM) will want to know that he’s not putting himself at serious risk by playing on a leg he broke just a short while ago in November. Remember, this rehab has been an aggressive one. If not for the Olympics, he probably wouldn’t be at this stage of the process.

But it’s also a matter of his effectiveness. With the likes of Claude Giroux, James Neal, and Martin St. Louis being left off Team Canada, there are more than adequate replacements available.

Flyers want to prove doubters wrong

Jakub Voracek, Claude Giroux
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Jakub Voracek totally understands why nobody’s expecting much from the Philadelphia Flyers. When a team finishes 14 points out of the playoffs the year before, that’s typically going to be the case.

“We weren’t good enough last year, let’s face it,” Voracek told CSN Philly. 

So, no, it doesn’t upset him that the Flyers aren’t considered among the Stanley Cup favorites.

That being said, “it makes you feel you want to prove them wrong.”

The Flyers get going tonight with a tough game against the Lightning in Tampa Bay. They also play Saturday in Florida against the Panthers, before a rematch with the Panthers Monday in Philadelphia.

“My biggest concern would be getting off to a good start,” GM Ron Hextall said. “That’s one thing that we need to do.”

That’s something they didn’t do last year. In fact, they won just once in their first six games. By the end of November, they were 8-12-3 and in a big hole — one that proved too deep to climb out of.

Related: Flyers to start season with seven defensemen

Coyotes place towering enforcer John Scott on waivers

John Scott, Brandon Davidson
The Canadian Press via AP

The Arizona Coyotes might not be using John Scott‘s services after all.

The team waived him this afternoon, per Craig Morgan. It’s possible that the Coyotes are simply giving themselves options as Scott clearing would allow them to send him down quickly at any point until he plays in 10 games or 30 days pass. At the same time, any team looking for a gritty fourth-line forward or third-pairing defenseman might be tempted to claim him in light of his affordable $575K cap hit for the 2015-16 campaign.

Scott is an imposing presence on the ice at 6-foot-8 and 260 pounds, but he doesn’t bring much to the table other than his physical play and willingness to drop the gloves. In terms of offensive abilities, he’s among the least capable in the league. In fact, the four points he recorded last season with the San Jose Sharks represented a career-high for the 33-year-old.

Meanwhile, Dan Cleary went unclaimed on waivers, according to Bob McKenzie, setting the stage for him to be reassigned to the AHL’s Grand Rapids Griffins.