Hammond looks for a second straight win
Andrew Hammond will make his second career start tonight when the Ottawa Senators play host to the Florida Panthers. Hammond made 42 saves in a win over the Montreal Canadiens Wednesday night in his first career start. It was the 27-year-old’s second NHL appearance. He carries a 2.96 G.A.A. and a .916 save percentage into tonight’s action.
Roberto Luongo gets the nod for the Panthers.
Ducks at Oilers: John Gibson vs. Ben Scrivens
Hurricanes at Devils: Anton Khudobin vs. Keith Kinkaid
Blue Jackets at Canadiens: Curtis McElhinney vs. Carey Price
Jets at Maple Leafs: Michael Hutchinson vs. Jonathan Bernier
Penguins at Blues: Thomas Greiss vs. Brian Elliott
Red Wings at Stars: Jimmy Howard vs. Kari Lehtonen
Lightning at Coyotes: Ben Bishop vs. Mike Smith
Kings at Sharks: Jonathan Quick vs. Antti Niemi
Ales Hemsky will return to the Dallas Stars lineup tonight after missing three games with a lower body injury.
Hemsky suffered the injury during the first period of the Stars’ 2-0 win over the Florida Panthers on Feb.13.
The 31-year-old underwent a procedure on the lower body injury last weekend.
“A good veteran guy that was going well for us,” said Lindy Ruff per The Dallas Morning News. “He was a big piece of our second power play, so I’m looking at Ales playing the way he did when he left the game for us.”
In 52 games this season Hemsky has nine goals and 23 points while averaging 13:38 in ice time.
“Lately it was way more better than in the start,” Hemsky said. “I was able to build some chemistry with a couple guys, played with them for a little while and it helps for sure. I was feeling pretty good about my game, so hopefully I can come back and keep going.”
With Hemsky returning, Brendan Ranford, who made is NHL debut on Thursday night, is expected to be a healthy scratch.
Detroit won the only other meeting between the two clubs 5-2 on Dec. 4.
Tyler Seguin continues to work back to full health after suffering a knee injury last Friday that will keep him out of the Dallas Stars lineup for three to six weeks.
Speaking on the Stars website, Seguin offered an update on his treatments with the team’s medical staff, as well as his opinion on the Dmitry Kulikov low hit that injured Seguin and landed the Florida Panthers defenseman with a four-game suspension.
The 23-year-old Seguin, who has 29 goals and 59 points in 55 games this season, admitted he expected Kulikov to get more than a four-game ban.
“I got my second knee injection of blood today. That was excruciatingly painful, but it should benefit,” Seguin told the Stars website.
“It’s only been a week, so there hasn’t been too much progress or setback. It’s just been how it is. Every night I go to sleep and in the morning I’ll wake up and see if it hurts at all, to see if I was cured overnight. Maybe I will get over that soon.
“Everyone, including him, knew it was a dirty hit. It’s a fast game. I don’t know if he intended to, but I don’t think he would. It’s really not in our game as much anymore. It’s not that league anymore. I was talking after the game to Shawn Thornton, who used to be in Boston, and he said [Kulikov] was choked up about it.”
Sean Bergenheim has practically been collecting dust as a healthy scratch lately, but it sounds like the Florida Panthers might be close to finding him a new home.
In the latest edition of TSN’s Insider Trading, Pierre LeBrun and Darren Dreger provided some interesting details, including the strong possibility that he may be moved by Monday. Let’s run them down really quick:
- The Winnipeg Jets, Vancouver Canucks and to some extent the Montreal Canadiens rank among those interested.
- The asking price may very well be a third-round pick, which LeBrun notes is something the Canucks lack in 2015.
- Winnipeg has some interesting pieces they can float in deals: some depth defenseman as well as the rights to current KHL forward Alex Burmistrov.
Interesting stuff, huh?
Bergenheim, 31, isn’t a household name by any means, obviously. Even so, his possession stats have consistently been strong, something that’s likely valued more than every in an increasingly savvy league. Those numbers argue in favor of his value more than his solid-but-unspectacular point totals, as he generally clocks in at 10-15 goals per season.
He’s an unrestricted free agent after 2014-15, so he’ll also have that added motivation to generate an eye-catching run with a new team. His agent didn’t exactly hold back when asking for a move, either.
March 2 is the trade deadline, yet we may see another noteworthy move well in advance of that.
The Florida Panthers met the Montreal Canadiens for the second time this season and once again 65 minutes of hockey wasn’t enough to settle their differences. This time around though, it was Florida that came out on top in a 3-2 shootout victory.
Panthers goaltender Roberto Luongo deserves a lot of credit for this outcome as Montreal managed to out shoot the Panthers 39-21 prior to the skills competition. Despite that, Brendan Gallagher was the only member of the Canadiens that solved Luongo in regulation time tonight, although for a time it looked like that might be enough as he gave Montreal a 2-0 lead.
Florida clawed its way back into this one with 26-year-old defenseman Steven Kampfer eventually tying the contest with his first goal of the season:
Dave Bolland accounted for the deciding goal in the shootout.
Florida’s comeback is bad news for the Boston Bruins as it magnifies their recent struggles. After losing five straight games, Boston’s edge over Florida in the battle for the second Wild Card spot has been reduced to a single point. The fight between those two squads might come down to the wire and if that’s the case then they’ll have plenty of opportunities to directly gain an edge as the Bruins and Panthers are scheduled to meet on March 21, March 31, and April 9.
Marincin scores the winner as the Oilers edge the Bruins in a 12-round shootout