James O'Brien

Don’t sleep on Ottawa’s top line

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When people discuss the NHL’s best scoring lines, the Ottawa Senators’ trio probably doesn’t come up that often.

That might change if they maintain their chemistry throughout the 2015-16 season, however.

The trio of Mike Hoffman, Kyle Turris and Mark Stone are off to a red-hot start so far, reminding people that for as fantastic as Erik Karlsson is, the Senators boast other talented young players.

Seriously, bask in the glory of Stone’s setup for Turris in the video above. It’s a jaw-dropper.

Coming into tonight’s contest against the desperate Columbus Blue Jackets, every member of that line had at least a point-per-game. That will remain the case if Hoffman can get on the board.

Even if he cannot, this trio might help to change playoff runs from Cinderella stories to the status quo.

Update: Hoffman got his goal, and Ottawa clobbered Columbus 7-3. Wow.

Get your Kleenex, Flyers fans: Video tribute for Timonen

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There was no speech from Kimmo Timonen, but maybe that’s fitting.

A short ceremony doesn’t represent his lengthy, successful career; that said, flying a bit under the radar does.

He was an excellent defenseman for the Nashville Predators and won a Stanley Cup with the Chicago Blackhawks, but for many, he’ll always be a member of the Philadelphia Flyers.

The team honored him on Wednesday night, and there was some fun interplay between Timonen and Claude Giroux during the ceremonial puck drop:

Not every eye was dry, apparently:

Scott Hartnell provided a humorous, heartfelt tribute to Timonen, which you can see here.

So, what’s next for Mike Richards?

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Los Angeles Kings GM Dean Lombardi casts himself as something of a victim – if not jilted lover – as far as Mike Richards goes, but the bottom line is that his team benefited from the situation.

They essentially were given a salary cap slap on the wrist.

What about Richards, though?

His contract was an albatross for all involved, to the point that it’s easy to forget that he’s just 30. Will he be back in the NHL, then?

As you can see in the video above, Bob McKenzie’s answer is yes … eventually.

Richards’ legal situation still needs to shake out, and the league must decide how to handle the next step for the veteran forward, whether that be discipline and/or admission to the substance abuse program.

Long story short, though … we may see a day in which Richards gets to play against the Kings.

/gathers popcorn in advance

WATCH LIVE: Blackhawks at Flyers, honoring Kimmo Timonen

Kimmo Timonen
AP
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The team Kimmo Timonen won a Stanley Cup with will visit the team Kimmo Timonen will likely most be associated with on Wednesday.

Translation: Timonen’s being honored by the Flyers in Philly while they take on the Chicago Blackhawks. It’s all a part of NBCSN’s latest edition of Wednesday Night Rivalry.

If you want to follow the action online, consult the link below.

WATCH LIVE

That stings: Blues put Fabbri on IR, recall Butler

Robby Fabbri, Mattias Janmark-Nylen
AP

The St. Louis Blues are being forced to shake off some early bumps and bruises (at least when they’re not causing them).

The team announced that Robby Fabbri was placed on IR while Chris Bulter was recalled from the AHL.

It’s a bummer about Fabbri, but not exactly a surprise. The Blues acknowledged that Fabbri suffered a concussion, and his timeline remains unclear.

Ken Hitchcock admitted to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that Kevin Shattenkirk probably won’t play against the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday. Calling up Butler makes plenty of sense with that in mind.

St. Louis is getting the job done so far early in 2015-16, yet these injuries keep expectations in check for a team with talent … but maybe a healthy portion of self-doubt.