Cam Tucker

‘Flat out hit from behind’ — Devils’ Moore suffers concussion from Wilson hit

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There was good and bad news for John Moore, after the New Jersey Devils defenseman was stretchered off the ice during Saturday’s game against the Washington Capitals.

The good news: Head coach John Hynes told reporters that Moore was being released from hospital.

The bad news, however, is that the Devils announced that Moore has been placed on injured reserve with a concussion — the result of a hit into the boards from Capitals’ forward Tom Wilson.

“He was flat out hit from behind,” Andy Greene told the Fire and Ice Blog. “Hopefully he’s all right. He’s a big part of our team. He’s a big part of our D corps. Hopefully, everything’s OK.”

“I wouldn’t necessarily say it was a dirty play. It looked like a hit from behind. His back was turned on the glass and he was hit pretty hard into the glass. It looked like it was a penalty. The refs felt because he didn’t get launched into the glass it wasn’t a penalty. It’s not my decision to buy or not buy [that]” said Hynes, per the Washington Post.

There was no call on the play.

“I’m going in on the forecheck, his back’s to me so I tried to let up a little bit. I wasn’t trying to finish my check and kind of rubbed him out,” said Wilson.

“Honestly, I wasn’t aware that he really had gone down until I looked back. That plays happens an awful lot in hockey, those over pucks. I don’t know if he couldn’t get his hands up to protect himself or whatever, but obviously [it was] not my intent and wishing him the best.”

Happy New Year! Blue Jackets end 2016 with 15th straight win

COLUMBUS, OH - DECEMBER 20:  Cam Atkinson #13 of the Columbus Blue Jackets celebrates after scoring a goal during the game against the Los Angeles Kings on December 20, 2016 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
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The Columbus Blue Jackets capped off 2016 in style.

In a historic New Year’s Eve match-up against the Minnesota Wild, the Blue Jackets extended their winning streak to 15 games.

I know, right?

With only two playoff appearances in franchise history, the Blue Jackets finished 27th overall in the standings to close out the 2015-16 season. John Tortorella, their coach, was at one point early this season the most likely of all NHL coaches to be fired first.

There didn’t seem to be much optimism about the Blue Jackets — a team with plenty of youth on its roster.

But this has turned into a remarkable run, and an unexpected one, too. The power play ranks as the best in the league at 28 per cent. Sergei Bobrovsky, the winning goalie versus the Wild, has been heavily relied on and he’s responded by posting a .934 save percentage coming into Saturday’s contest. Their young defenseman have been very good. Rookie Zach Werenski has continued to impress and Seth Jones is up to seven goals on the season.

On Saturday, they faced a Wild team that had won 12 in a row. The Blue Jackets and Wild. The two hottest teams in the league at the end of 2016.

This time, the Blue Jackets took the win by a final of 4-2 in a feisty one.

Among the great stories in Columbus has been the play of Cam Atkinson. He continued that against the Wild, scoring twice, giving him 17 goals on the season. The Blue Jackets, with goals from Jack Johnson and Atkinson, scored 15 seconds apart in the middle period, opening up a three-goal lead.

The Wild tried to fight back. Jason Zucker‘s breakaway goal 24 seconds into the third period appeared to give them life. But they couldn’t beat Bobrovsky after that, and the Blue Jackets held on.

They end 2016 leading the defending champion Pittsburgh Penguins for top spot in the Metropolitan Division.

What does 2017 have in store for the Blue Jackets? They are serving notice it could be a big year for them.

Video: Another night, another ridiculous Carey Price save

Carey Price was at it again — this time against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday.

The Habs netminder made two terrific blocker saves on Conor Sheary in the first period, stopping the Penguins forward’s initial shot from the slot thanks to his quick reaction, and then having the awareness to acrobatically bat the puck out of mid-air and out of his crease.

Were these two quick saves as good as his stick stop on Ondrej Palat the other night? Feel free to debate.

But against a high-scoring Penguins team, Price was very sharp early. And that’s all that matters for the Habs.

‘He’s a part of this history’ — Keith Tkachuk pays tribute to the late Pavol Demitra

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NHL alumni games are all about bringing back the memories.

During Saturday’s 2017 NHL Winter Classic Alumni Game, Keith Tkachuk paid tribute to the memory of a former St. Louis Blues player no longer with us.

Tkachuk wore the No. 38 jersey during today’s alumni game against the Chicago Blackhawks, paying tribute to the late Pavol Demitra, who lost his life at the age of 36 in the plane crash that killed the entire Lokomotiv Yaroslavl hockey team in September of 2011.

“Why not? He’s the best guy. He’s one of my closest friends. He’s a part of this history,” Tkachuk told reporters after the event. “And we miss him big time. Wish he was here.”

Demitra played for the Blues from 1997 to 2004. On three occasions during his tenure there, he scored more than 35 goals in a single season. He recorded 93 points during the 2002-03 season.

He played 847 games in the NHL, including 494 with the Blues. He ranks fifth all-time in Blues scoring with 493 points.

In September, a documentary about the life of Pavol Demitra was shown at a film festival in Vancouver.

Hurricanes equipment manager Jorge Alves will back up Cam Ward versus Bolts

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It’s an extended version of the Goalie Nods!

The Carolina Hurricanes have just announced that goalie Eddie Lack is not feeling well today and will not dress for tonight’s game against the Tampa Bay Lightning, which means that the team’s equipment manager Jorge Alves has been signed to a professional tryout contract, and will strap on the pads and serve as back-up to Cam Ward.

These situations are often interesting because there’s always the chance emergency back-ups may actually be called into action. But the 37-year-old Alves practices with the Hurricanes, the team said. He also played professionally in the East Coast Hockey League after a previous stint with North Carolina State University’s club hockey team.

The possibility of Alves being used in an emergency capacity is something the Hurricanes have planned for in the past. Now, it’s a reality.

He’ll be suiting up in style, too. Check out the goalie mask he’ll wear for tonight’s occasion:

Of course, his teammates decided to have a little bit of fun at his expense, too.

This is a big game for the Hurricanes, as they look to gain ground in the Eastern Conference Wild Card race. They’re currently five points back of Philadelphia.