Buffalo Sabres

Goalie nods: Stars go with Lehtonen versus Florida, Enroth ‘likely’ to play tomorrow

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News and notes from around the crease…

His name is Jhonas

Kari Lehtonen will begin life on a short leash tonight against Florida — he’ll start against the Panthers, but will have newly acquired backup Jhonas Enroth on the bench for the first time since GM Jim Nill acquired him from Buffalo on Wednesday.

Lehtonen, who has been criticized this year for his uneven play, is 4-2-1 with a 2.70 GAA and .916 save percentage since the All-Star break — decent numbers, but hardly the type Dallas needs as it looks to get back into a playoff position.

Per Stars head coach Lindy Ruff, Enroth will “likely” play at some point this weekend. Based on that, he’ll probably be in goal tomorrow when Dallas takes on the Avs in Colorado.

For Florida, sounds like Al Montoya is likely for tonight’s affair.


Flyers at Jackets: Ray Emery vs. Curtis McElhinney

Devils at ‘Hawks: Cory Schneider vs. Corey Crawford

Sharks at Coyotes: Antti Niemi vs. Mike Smith

Bruins at Canucks: Ryan Miller for Vancouver, no word yet on a Bruins starter.

Report: The Jets have received calls on Myers


Defenseman Tyler Myers made his Winnipeg Jets debut Thursday night playing 21:23 and registering a minus-1 rating in Winnipeg’s 3-1 loss to the Nashville Predators.

However, following Wednesday’s blockbuster deal with the Buffalo Sabres, GM Kevin Cheveldayoff has already received calls on Myers.

According to hockey insider Darren Dreger, the Jets would like to add another top nine forward to their lineup. As a result, teams have called asking whether Cheveldayoff would be willing to part with Myers for a top forward.

Dreger says a deal invlovling Myers won’t happen before the deadline as the Jets would like to see how the blueliner fits in Winnipeg before making any further moves.

Jets lose in Myers’ debut, Weber shot leaves him limping


Tyler Myers made his debut for the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday, and it … could have gone better.

For one thing, the Nashville Predators beat his new team 3-1 tonight. Even worse, Nashville’s own really large, hard-shooting defenseman Shea Weber sent a shot that connected with Myers’ knee, leaving him in obvious pain late in the third period.

On the bright side, it might not be the absolute worst-case scenario. Puck Daddy’s Josh Cooper sheds a little light on his situation right after the contest:

So, maybe a bullet was dodged, although Myers would probably say that Weber’s shot didn’t feel a lot better.

While there were flashes of brilliance – or at least Winnipeg taking advantage of Myers’ powerful shot on a team that already boasts Dustin Byfuglien’s bomb – it had to be a bit of an empty feeling tonight.

The Jets are probably just hoping they only lost the game and not their shiny new defenseman, though.

(Even if they were considering shopping him anyway.)

Myers paired with Enstrom as Jets visit Preds


Tonight in Nashville, Tyler Myers is expected to begin his Winnipeg Jets career on a defensive pairing with veteran puck-mover Tobias Enstrom.

Myers, traded yesterday from Buffalo, is unlikely to log the 25 or so minutes he typically did with the Sabres. That won’t be necessary with two other capable pairings in Winnipeg, Dustin Byfuglien with Ben Chiarot and Mark Stuart with Jacob Trouba.

In Buffalo, Myers skated mostly with Josh Gorges. Not only did those two play big minutes and face the toughest competition on a nightly basis, over 40 percent of the faceoffs they were on the ice for took place in the defensive zone.

That’s no formula for good offensive numbers, and Myers was proof, with just four goals and nine assists in 47 games.

Not that he hasn’t struggled in recent seasons; Myers is no pure victim of circumstance. But Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff believes the 25-year-old’s career can be rejuvenated if provided a better chance to succeed, in a role that’s not beyond his capabilities.

“Tyler’s got a tremendous foundation,” said Cheveldayoff. “He’s big. He can shoot. He’s going to have an opportunity to play with a deeper defense corps. He can log a lot of minutes.

“Sometimes, in this game, fresh starts are really welcome for players that have lots of expectations heaped on them, and lots of hype as young players. Because it is a hard game to play as a young player and even harder as a young defenseman.”

As for winger Drew Stafford, the other roster player the Jets picked up in the Evander Kane trade, he’ll start on a line with Mark Scheifele and Mathieu Perreault, two talented forwards enjoying fine seasons.

Ducks ‘pretty adamant about trying to add another d-man,’ says Ducks d-man


We’ve talked plenty about Anaheim’s desire to add a defenseman — see here and here and here — and now, following a stretch in which the Ducks have surrendered 30 goals in seven games, it seems those talks have trickled down to the players.

Like defenseman Cam Fowler, for example.

“[GM Bob Murray] has been pretty adamant about trying to add another d-man,” Fowler told the L.A. (which stands for Los Angeles) Times this week. “We feel comfortable with the group we have, but if there’s somebody who can be brought in to help us, that’s always good too.”

Murray’s been in search of defensive fixes for a while now, and has done some previous patchwork: Eric Brewer was acquired from Tampa Bay in November, and Stephane Robidas was acquired at last year’s deadline.

That said, both of those deals were of the low-risk, low-cost variety. Robidas, 37, came on board for the price of a fourth-round pick and played just 17 games (14 regular season, three playoff) before leaving in free agency. Brewer, 35, could end up much the same; he’s a UFA at season’s end and has only appeared in six games after breaking his foot shortly after being acquired.

But neither Robidas nor Brewer moved the needle much. One would think Murray wants to make a bigger splash this time around.

Whether or not he can make one, though, remains to be seen. Tyler Myers is off the board following Wednesday’s blockbuster move to Winnipeg and, as we’ve often seen come deadline day, there are more teams interested in capable defensemen than there are capable defensemen.

The Ducks could be in on Marc Methot. They could be in on Cody Franson. They could be in on Mike Green — assuming the playoff-bound Caps decide to move him — but Anaheim won’t be alone in any of these pursuits. Which begs two questions: 1) How much does Murray believe in a blueline featuring a top-four of Fowler, Francois Beauchemin, Hampus Lindholm and Sami Vatanen? And 2) If he doesn’t believe in it enough, how much is he willing to spend on a legitimate upgrade?