Author: Ryan Dadoun

Carey Price
The Canadian Press via AP

Montreal loses Carey Price to lower-body injury (Updated)


The reigning Vezina and Hart Trophy winner will not be available to the Montreal Canadiens tonight.

The Canadiens announced that goaltender Carey Price is dealing with a lower-body injury. They’ve recalled Dustin Tokarski as a result.

After a commanding 2014-15 campaign, Price picked up where he left off by posting a 2.01 GAA and .936 save percentage in eight games last month. He got Friday’s contest off, so he likely would have played tonight against the Winnipeg Jets if he was healthy.

Montreal will instead go with Mike Condon, per TSN’s John Lu. Condon is a 25-year-old rookie with only three games worth of NHL experience under his belt, but he’s won all of those contests and has only allowed a total of five goals.

The Canadiens lead the league with a 10-2-0 record going into today’s action. Winnipeg earned a 3-2 win over Columbus last night to improve to 7-3-1.

Update: Price will be out for at least a week, per the Canadiens’ Twitter feed.

Vasilevskiy (blood clot) completes conditioning stint, rejoins Lightning

Andrei Vasilevskiy
AP Photo
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After missing the first month of the season with a blood clot near his collarbone, it seems Andrei Vasilevskiy is ready to play for Tampa Bay.

The Lightning announced that Vasilevskiy has been recalled from his AHL conditioning stint. They sent down netminder Kristers Gudlevskis in a corresponding move, reinforcing the perception that Vasilevskiy is good to go.

Vasilevskiy took part in two games with the AHL’s Syracuse Crunch and posted a 1.00 GAA and .966 save percentage.

The 21-year-old is coming off of an impressive rookie campaign, which led to the expectation that he would push Ben Bishop for playing time this season. During his absence, Bishop was asked to start in 11 of 12 games, but he’ll likely get days off significantly more frequently going forward.

The Lightning also summoned forward Tye McGinn and sent Jonathan Marchessault to the AHL.

Related: Bishop or Vasilevskiy? Lightning will go with ‘both’ for now

Auston Matthews suffers back injury, to miss weeks

LAKE PLACID, NY - AUGUST 03: Auston Matthews #19 of USA White skates against Team Sweden during the 2014 USA Hockey Junior Evaluation Camp at the Lake Placid Olympic Center on August 3, 2014 in Lake Placid, New York.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
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Auston Matthews, who is the leading candidate to be taken with the top pick in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, will not be able to represent the United States in the upcoming Deutschland Cup.

As previously reported, He got hurt on Oct. 23. We now know that the injury he sustained is to his back and that he’ll be out for several weeks, courtesy of a report from Sportsnet’s Damien Cox.

Matthews has been playing for Zurich of Switzerland’s National League A, which has allowed him to work under former NHL coach Marc Crawford. He has 10 goals and 17 points in 14 Swiss games.

The 18-year-old isn’t the first top prospect to get hurt so close to his draft year. Connor McDavid suffered a fractured bone in his hand during an OHL game in Nov. 2014, but that didn’t end up changing his status as the most desirable prospect of the 2015 draft.

Of course, McDavid was dominant after returning. We’ll see if Matthews follows a similar path.

Related: Marc Crawford says Auston Matthews has been ‘phenomenal’

Oilers’ Fayne will be an expensive healthy scratch tonight

PITTSBURGH, PA - MARCH 12:  Mark Fayne #5 of the Edmonton Oilers skates during the game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Consol Energy Center on March 12, 2015 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
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The Edmonton Oilers and Mark Fayne have to hope this is just a bump in the road because they’ve made a long-term commitment to each other.

Fayne will not play tonight against Calgary despite the fact that he’s healthy. That alone is concerning, but it’s further punctuated by the fact that the 28-year-old defenseman only logged 10:04 minutes of ice time on Thursday.

“His forte has been the ability to defend and be strong positionally and read and kill plays. We’re not asking him to be overly aggressive but there’s more there. It’ll come out,” Oilers coach Todd McLellan told the Edmonton Journal.

Edmonton signed a four-year, $14.5 million contract with Fayne in the summer of 2014 that goes through the 2017-18 campaign. He’s the Oilers’ second highest defensemen this season from a cap hit perspective.

The Oilers are looking to build off of a strong performance against Montreal, where they rallied back from a 3-0 deficit. Edmonton has won four of its last seven contests.

Without Tavares, Isles fall to Devils in shootout

Jaroslav Halak, Bobby Farnham, Johnny Boychuk
AP Photo

The New York Islanders couldn’t eke out a win without John Tavares, but they did overcome a two-goal deficit to earn a consolation point.

New Jersey got off to a strong start as John Moore scored his first goal of the season and 26-year-old Bobby Farnham found the back of the net for the first time in his career. However, the Devils only managed eight shots on goal over the second and third frames.

Anders Lee cut the lead in half with a power-play marker while Frans Nielsen took advantage of a shorthanded breakaway opportunity:

The Islanders couldn’t build on their momentum though, which led to New Jersey’s Mike Cammalleri eventually scoring the deciding goal in a four-round shootout.

Going into the contest, the Islanders were vague about the reason for Tavares’ absence, but once the game ended they announced that he had an illness.

The Islanders have to play again on Sunday though, so we’ll see how he’s feeling at that point. They’ve lost two straight games, but have at least managed to get a point in both of those contests.