2014 NHL Draft - Round 1

Blue Jackets say they didn’t push Milano to choose OHL over Boston College


When word broke that Sonny Milano decided to continue his hockey career in the OHL rather than NCAA, the implications were pretty heavy that the Columbus Blue Jackets were nudging him in that direction. The organization once again denied such accusations about the franchise favoring Milano playing for the Plymouth Whalers instead of Boston College next season, as the Columbus Dispatch reports.

“We have a lot of respect for Boston College and their program, their ability to develop players,” Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen said. “We have the same kind of respect for Plymouth and their ability to develop players … which is why we didn’t get involved in (Milano’s) decision. We left it up to the kid from the get-go.”

Boston College coach Jerry York’s comments fueled such speculation the most:

Earlier in August, Milano made some flattering statements about going the NCAA route:

Whatever might be true, it’s easy to see why Kekalainen doesn’t want to burn bridges with Boston College. The Dispatch notes that he’s known York for “many years.”

Regardless, the Blue Jackets GM acknowledged that the “situation has changed” with the 18-year-old as far as the team’s ability to sign him to an entry-level contract, although Kekalainen states that a deal is not yet on the table.

Already without Eberle, the Oilers could also be missing Hall tonight

Taylor Hall
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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.

Sabres waive d-man Donovan

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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.