Vernon Fiddler, Stephane Robidas

The loss of Robidas is a ‘huge loss’ for the Ducks


Normally, you wouldn’t think the loss of a 37-year-old stay-at-home defenseman who missed half the season with a broken leg would hurt a team too badly. Especially not a team that earned the top seed in the Western Conference, most of the work done without his help.

But the loss of Stephane Robidas (again with a broken leg) will be a challenge for the Anaheim Ducks. To say otherwise would be to downplay how well he performed after joining the club in a late-in-the-season trade with Dallas Stars, who just so happen to be the Ducks’ first-round opponents.

“It’s a huge loss because he was playing great,” Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said.

Indeed. Robidas suited up in 14 games for the Ducks during the regular season, scoring once with four assists while logging just over 20 minutes per contest.

On Apr. 9, in an important game against the San Jose Sharks, Robidas played a team-high 22:49, including 5:49 while shorthanded. The Ducks won 5-2, clinching the Pacific Division in the process.

A “real steady force back there,” according to Boudreau, Robidas will now have to replaced, possibly by Luca Sbisa or Mark Fistric, neither of whom played much this season.

Game 4 of the Anaheim-Dallas series goes tonight at American Airlines Center, and it comes on the heels of a 3-0 victory for the Stars that cut the Ducks’ series lead to 2-1.

Boudreau, though, remains confident.

“The thing about this team is we’ve rebounded from injuries all year,” he said. “The first half of the year we had the most injuries and we just kept playing through it because we had good depth.”

That depth is about to be tested again.

Video: Mike Fisher ends Nashville’s nasty goal drought

Leave a comment

No, the Nashville Predators did not forget how to score goals … or at least they were lifted from that amnesia on Wednesday.

Mike Fisher lifted the curse 13:52 into the first period of tonight’s game against the Buffalo Sabres. You can watch that rare beast in the video above.

They had been shut out for three straight games and pretty close to four in pure game time.

On this subject, PHT’s Jason Brough asked Predators GM David Poile if he was considering moving a defenseman to improve in another area earlier today.

Struggling Sabre Tyler Ennis out with upper-body injury

Tyler Ennis, James Wisniewski
Leave a comment

Tyler Ennis can probably relate with the Buffalo Sabres’ opponent on Wednesday, as he’s struggling almost as much as the Nashville Predators.

Perhaps some of that has to do with health?

Whether that’s the case or not, Ennis is out for the Sabres tonight, as the team announced that he’s dealing with an upper-body injury.

The Buffalo News discussed Ennis’ struggles in this article.

“I’d say he’s pressing too much. You can’t make those plays in every situation and in every point you touch the puck,” Dan Bylsma said to the Buffalo News. “ … He’s just got to simplify his game. He is a special player who can make those plays, but he can’t be trying to do it every time he touches the puck.”

He’ll need to wait a while to start getting things together, anyway.

WATCH LIVE: Wednesday Night Rivalry (Flyers-Islanders; Blackhawks-Sharks)

Ryan White, Matt Martin
Leave a comment

You can check out tonight’s Wednesday Night Rivalry doubleheader on NBCSN, and you can also stream them online.

Here are the handy links for the two contests.

First, the New York Islanders host the Philadelphia Flyers.


After that, the Chicago Blackhawks visit the San Jose Sharks.


Braun out with upper-body injury; Zubrus to make Sharks debut

1 Comment

The San Jose Sharks will be missing a top-4 defenseman tonight when they host the defending champs from Chicago.

Justin Braun has an upper-body injury. His status is considered day-to-day.

“Brauny has been one of our unsung heroes here through the first quarter of the season,” coach Peter DeBoer told CSN Bay Area. “He’s played some outstanding hockey. So, we’re going to miss him, but it’s a great opportunity for Mueller and Tennyson and one of these guys to establish themselves. It’s a great opportunity for us to reward Dillon for how well he’s played.”

Against the Blackhawks, Brenden Dillon will take Braun’s spot on the top pairing alongside Marc-Edouard Vlasic; Paul Martin and Brent Burns will stay together on the second pairing; and 20-year-old Mirco Mueller will skate with Matt Tennyson.

Mueller has played just four games for the Sharks this season. In his last game, Thursday in Philadelphia, he received only 9:13 of ice time.

Also tonight, new Shark forward Dainius Zubrus is expected to debut on the fourth line.

Related: Sharks sign Zubrus, because DeBoer