Vernon Fiddler, Stephane Robidas

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

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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.

Despite tough fight, Stars hand Wild their sixth straight loss

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The Minnesota Wild put together the kind of effort that would beat a lot of NHL teams on Tuesday. Unfortunately for that beleaguered group, it wasn’t enough to edge the Dallas Stars.

Despite generating 40 shots on goal and generating 1-0 and 2-1 leads, the Wild lost to the Stars 4-3 in overtime. With that, they’ve lost six straight games.

(The view doesn’t get much prettier if you pull away a little further, either, as Minnesota’s only won once in the last month, going 1-9-2 in their last 12.)

Ultimately, the Stars’ big guns were too powerful. Tyler Seguin generated two assists and so did Jamie Benn, who set up John Klingberg‘s overtime game-winning goal.

Again, the effort sure seemed to be there for the Wild, even if they’re far beyond the point of accepting moral victories.

As frustrating as this must be, Minnesota’s not that far from a playoff spot. Still, it has to sting to see “Close, but not good enough” as a prevailing theme as of late.

Royal beating: Lucic, Kings crush Bruins 9-2

As Boston Bruins' Patrice Bergeron (37) looks on Los Angeles Kings' Milan Lucic waves to the crowd after a tribute to him was played on the screen during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Boston Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
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The Boston Bruins welcomed Milan Lucic back on Tuesday. Maybe they shouldn’t have extended such a warm welcome to the Los Angeles Kings overall, however.

You won’t see many games as lopsided as this one, at least in 2015-16, as the Kings walloped the Bruins by a humbling score of 9-2.

Lucic wasn’t just there, either, as he scored a goal and an assist in his quite triumphant return to Boston.

Tuukka Rask had a short night in Boston’s net, yet it wasn’t as if Jonas Gustavsson enjoyed his time. It was a pretty sound beating by all accounts.

This dominant win is a heck of a way for the Kings to begin an imposing seven-game road trip, which continues against the New York Islanders on Thursday. The Bruins probably want to burn the tape on this one themselves, as they’re about to head on a six-game road trip.

Video: Evander Kane believes he won his fights vs. Alex Petrovic

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The Florida Panthers are beating up the Buffalo Sabres where it counts – on the scoreboard – but Evander Kane was happy to highlight his perceived victories in a couple bouts.

Buffalo’s power forward fought Alex Petrovic twice on Tuesday, and Kane wasn’t shy about holding up a “2-0.”

You can watch the second fight above, and the first one below, via Hockey Fights by way of MSG:

This GIF might just say it all, really:

Update: Apparently they fought again moments after this post went up.

Probably safe to call it a rivalry between the two, right?

The Panthers ultimately won 7-4.

Fight video: Yes, a visor-breaking punch

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Some hockey players resist the urge to wear a visor, at least if they’re given that choice.

Perhaps a few will say “Hey, Nathan Beaulieu will just punch it off anyway.”

Maybe not, but Beaulieu provided a rather unique moment in his fight with Cedric Paquette during the Montreal Canadiens – Tampa Bay Lightning game. You can watch that bout in the video above, and see a cut on the Lightning pest’s face from that blow.

Want it in GIF form? OK then: