Joe Yerdon

Devils’ Brunner feeling ‘better’, unsure if he’ll play Tuesday


New Jersey’s Damien Brunner missed Saturday night’s 4-0 win over the New York Rangers, but he’s hoping that’s all he’ll miss.

As Tom Gulitti of Fire & Ice shares, Brunner is feeling better about his upper body injury on Sunday and hopes to be back soon.

“Better than yesterday,” Brunner said. “It’s a little bit better.”

As for playing on Tuesday, he said, “We’ll have to see tomorrow.”

Brunner’s absence didn’t affect the Devils negatively on Saturday night as they humbled the Rangers. On the long-term, however, they can’t afford to go without him for a long stretch.

Already this season, Brunner is tied with Michael Ryder for the team lead in goals scored with three and with New Jersey’s offense being sluggish out of the gate, losing his production is no good. On the upside, his injury doesn’t appear to be serious.

Oilers’ Hall (knee) returns to Edmonton for MRI


Taylor Hall’s exit from Saturday’s game against Ottawa has Oilers management concerned enough to send him home.

Oilers coach Dallas Eakins said they’ve sent Hall back to Edmonton to have an MRI done on his injured knee. He hurt it against Ottawa on Saturday afternoon after a knee-on-knee collision with Senators defenseman Eric Gryba. There’s no timetable for when he’ll return to action.

Hall’s absence comes at a poor time as Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had just returned from his own shoulder issues and the team is already without Sam Gagner. It doesn’t help that Edmonton is also off to a rocky 2-6-1 start that’s seen Devan Dubnyk struggle in goal.

Now the Oilers will be without, arguably, their best player for an unknown length of time. As for Gryba, there has been no word yet if he’ll be disciplined by the league for his hit.

Ducks place tough guy Staubitz on waivers

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If your favorite team is in need of a tough guy, there’s one available to be had.

The Anaheim Ducks have put forward Brad Staubitz on waivers, as TSN’s Bob McKenzie shared. The rugged five-year veteran has 521 penalty minutes in 230 career games as well as 21 points. He had yet to play a game for the Ducks this season.

Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports in Quebec suggests Staubitz could be targeted by the Montreal Canadiens if winger Brandon Prust is more seriously injured after Saturday night’s game against Nashville. He played 19 games for the Habs during the 2011-12 season amassing one goal and 48 penalty minutes in that time.

Should he clear waivers, Staubitz is likely destined for the Ducks’ AHL team in Norfolk.

Report: No suspension for Nystrom’s hit on Briere


Nashville Predators forward Eric Nystrom won’t have to schedule a date with the NHL for his hit on Montreal Canadiens forward Daniel Briere.

Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports reports Nystrom won’t face league action for his hit on Saturday night. Briere was knocked out of the game with a concussion, but the hit was ruled to be accidental.

Briere’s status at this time is up in the air as both he and Brandon Prust were put out of the game with separate injuries. Briere has had concussion issues in the past with Philadelphia and after a slow start this season, it’s the last thing Montreal was hoping for.

Martin Biron announces his retirement


After being demoted by the New York Rangers last week, Martin Biron is retiring from the game.

The New York Rangers announced Biron was hanging it up after 16 seasons in the NHL which saw him playing as a backup goalie for the better part of it.

Biron’s career began with the Buffalo Sabres at the age of 18 after being their first-round pick in 1995. Perhaps his best season as a pro came in 2001-02 with Buffalo when he played in 72 games for the Sabres winning a career-high 31 games and put up career-best 2.22 goals-against average at age 24.

He gained his most fame, however, as a Philadelphia Flyer during the 2007-08 season winning 30 games and having a career-high .918 save percentage while leading the team to the Eastern Conference Final against Pittsburgh before losing in five games.

In 508 career games played, Biron finished with 230 wins and 28 shutouts. His career came to an ignominious end this season after being scorched in relief by the San Jose Sharks including allowing a highlight-reel goal to rookie Tomas Hertl.

Biron tweeted his announcement as well.

As one of the most quotable players in the league, expect to see him on TV with someone in the near future. We’ll also remember him for his ability to hang tough in a goalie fight as well.