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Boxing Day 2017: Celebrate with Gord Downie and The Tragically Hip (Audio)

Happy Boxing Day, Canada!

NBC Sports created this tribute to its hockey-loving friends from the north. While 2017 has been another eventful year – the 100th for the NHL – it also marks the first in which the entire nation and our hockey world lost a piece of its fabric with the passing of The Tragically Hip’s front man Gord Downie. A great Canadian. A legendary wordsmith. A true fan. But an even better man.

Here’s a handpicked list of favorites as a small token to celebrate a treasured life. Cheers.

1.  At the Hundredth Meridian – The Tragically Hip
2.  Courage – The Tragically Hip
3.  Heaven is a Better Place Today – The Tragically Hip
4.  Fireworks – The Tragically Hip
5.  Locked in the Trunk of a Car – The Tragically Hip
6.  New Orleans is Sinking – The Tragically Hip
7.  Blough at High Dough – The Tragically Hip
8.  Fifty Mission Cap – The Tragically Hip
9.  Wheat Kings – The Tragically Hip
10.  Gift Shop – The Tragically Hip
11.  Scared – The Tragically Hip
12.  My Music at Work – The Tragically Hip
13.  Ahead by a Century – The Tragically Hip
14.  Fully Completely – The Tragically Hip
15.  So Hard Done By – The Tragically Hip
16.  Looking for a Place to Happen – The Tragically Hip
17.  700 Foot Ceiling – The Tragically Hip
18.  Something On – The Tragically Hip
19.  Lake Fever – The Tragically Hip
20.  Nautical Disaster – The Tragically Hip
21.  Little Bones – The Tragically Hip
22.  It’s a Good Life if You Don’t Weaken – The Tragically Hip
23.  Bobcaygeon – The Tragically Hip
24.  A Beautiful Thing – The Tragically Hip
25.  Small Town Bringdown – The Tragically Hip
26.  Thompson Girl – The Tragically Hip
27.  The Dark Canuck – The Tragically Hip
28.  Chancellor – Gord Downie
29.  Machine – The Tragically Hip
30.  Fire in the Hole – The Tragically Hip
31.  The Darkest One – The Tragically Hip
32.  Vancouver Divorce – Gordon Downie
33.  The Hard Canadian – Gordon Downie
34.  The Stranger – Gordon Downie
35.  Canada Geese – Gordon Downie
36.  Christmastime in Toronto – Gordon Downie
37.  Introduce Yourself – Gordon Downie
38.  38 Years Old – The Tragically Hip
39.  Bedtime – Gordon Downie

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    Predators place forward Viktor Arvidsson on injured reserve

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    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) The Nashville Predators have placed forward Viktor Arvidsson on injured reserve with a lower-body injury and recalled forward Frederick Gaudreau from the AHL’s Milwaukee Admirals.

    The Predators made the move Tuesday afternoon.

    Arvidsson was helped off the ice Monday during practice, and The Tennessean reports he tested himself during Tuesday morning’s skate.

    The forward ranks third on the Predators with 13 goals and fourth with 27 points. The Predators already have Filip Forsberg on injured reserve with an upper-body injury.

    Gaudreau has played 18 games with the Predators with three assists. He had 14 points in 21 games with the Admirals this season.

    More AP NHL:

    WATCH LIVE: Philadelphia Flyers at New York Rangers

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    NBCSN’s coverage of the 2017-18 season continues on Tuesday night, as the New York Rangers host the Philadelphia Flyers at 7:00 p.m. ET.




    Rick NashMika ZibanejadPavel Buchnevich
    Mats ZuccarelloJ.T. Miller – Vinni Lettieri
    Jimmy VeseyDavid DesharnaisPaul Carey
    Michael Grabner – Peter Holland – Jesper Fast

    Ryan McDonaghNick Holden
    Brady SkjeiKevin Shattenkirk
    Marc StaalSteven Kampfer

    Startling goalie: Henrik Lundqvist

    [Flyers look to push winning streak to five games against Rangers]


    Claude GirouxSean CouturierTravis Konecny
    Michael RafflValtteri FilppulaJakub Voracek
    Jordan WealNolan PatrickWayne Simmonds
    Taylor LeierScott LaughtonJori Lehtera

    Ivan ProvorovShayne Gostisbehere
    Robert HaggAndrew MacDonald
    Brandon ManningRadko Gudas

    Startling goalie: Brian Elliott


    Golden Knights’ defense coming into focus with signings

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    As the Vegas Golden Knights’ success gradually goes from shocking to accepted, there’s still the question of what this team might look like next season and beyond. Such questions are only natural when you consider all the key players who still need contract extensions.

    Golden Knights management is chipping away at those questions regarding their defense in 2018-19, particularly this week.

    On Monday, the Golden Knights signed local favorite and rugged defenseman Deryk Engelland to a one-year extension worth $1.5 million. (That deal includes $1M in potential performance bonuses, according to Cap Friendly.)

    One day later, the team announced a two-year extension for Jon Merrill (pictured). The deal is for $2.75M overall, so it will make for a $1.375M cap hit in 2018-19 and 2019-20.

    The Golden Knights now have five defensemen on their current roster who are signed through 2018-19, if not longer: Engelland, Merrill, Nate Schmidt, Brayden McNabb, and Brad Hunt. McNabb is locked up the longest, with a $2.5M cap hit kicking in next season and expiring after 2020-21.

    The most interesting remaining defensemen to sort out are Colin Miller and Shea Theodore, both pending RFAs. The Golden Knights have been buying up blueliners at bargain rates, but Theodore and Miller could be tougher nuts to crack contracts-wise. (Two UFA defensemen Luca Sbisa and Clayton Stoner on IR.)

    Quick look at Engelland and Merrill

    Engelland, 35, has been one of the Golden Knights’ ice time leaders with 19:39 per night, collecting 13 points while limiting his time in the penalty box (16 PIM in 41 games) compared to his usual numbers. He’s not perfect, but it’s conceivable that he’ll be worth that minimal cost to Vegas, especially since he’s an ambassador for the still-new franchise.

    While Vegas hopes Engelland can bring that veteran presence for another year, they’re likely banking on Merrill to be more effective at a cheap rate.

    The 25-year-old has been dealing with injuries and other issues, limiting him to 14 games played.


    These defensive signings aren’t as important as locking up Jonathan Marchessault, nor is it as crucial as making the right call with the likes of James Neal and David Perron. With Malcolm Subban and Marc-Andre Fleury seeing their deals expire after 2018-19, management will need to make some goaltending decisions not that long from now.

    A little bit of greed can inspire players to go that extra mile and stay that much hungrier, yet it’s also comforting to sometimes have some answers. After this week, there’s some clarity on the blueline, even if some decisions still need to be made.

    And, hey, the Golden Knights haven’t really locked themselves into bad contracts yet. Old teams could probably learn a thing or two from these new kids.

    James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

    Johnny Gaudreau is playing best hockey of NHL career


    Maybe it’s because Johnny Gaudreau has been a productive scorer since day one. Almost literally.

    Gaudreau scored a goal in his first NHL game with the Calgary Flames, his only appearance in 2013-14. The slick, undersized forward then generated 24 goals and 64 points as a rookie in 2014-15, and really hasn’t missed a beat.

    While there were plenty of questions heading into 2017-18 for Calgary – goaltending, Jaromir Jagr, depth on defense and offense – everyone just assumed Gaudreau would keep scoring. So perhaps that explains why people aren’t making much of a deal about Gaudreau scoring even more than usual.

    As of Tuesday, Gaudreau is in a four-way tie for second in NHL scoring with 54 points.

    After scoring two goals and six assists for eight points in four games, the Flames forward was named NHL’s first star of the week, ahead of teammate Mike Smith (also red-hot). His point streak actually extends into 2017, a stretch of seven games, five of which were multi-point (two goals, 11 assists for 13 points).

    Gaudreau set career-highs in goals (30) and points (78) in 79 games back in 2015-16. While he’s at a solid goal-scoring clip of 15 so far this season, his playmaking is what might make this his best work. Gaudreau is averaging 1.2 points-per game, a pace of about 98 points during an 82-game season.

    Upon hearing about Gaudreau’s All-Star nod about a week ago, Flames head coach Glen Gulutzan did a great job summarizing what makes him so effective.

    “I think he gets the best looks in the National Hockey League,” Gulutzan said, via the Calgary Sun. “He puts himself into position every game to create and shoot. Just the way he navigates himself on the ice and can handle the puck, it’s pretty amazing. For not a big guy, he can strip guys of pucks and get those kind of opportunities, too. It’s a combination of speed, agility and high hockey I.Q. that allows him to do it. He’s our engine for generating offense.”

    This goal Gaudreau scored against the Stars on Nov. 24 is a great example of his ability to “strip guys of pucks,” and why he’s such a nightmare to defend.

    Gaudreau and the Flames are currently resting up on a bye week, and hopefully not getting too rusty, as Calgary owns the longest active winning streak in the NHL at seven games. Beginning on Saturday, the Flames will play six of their next seven games at home, so there’s a solid chance that they’ll keep their strong play going.

    If so, the Flames – and Gaudreau – will be difficult to ignore.

    James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.