Toronto Maple Leafs

Video: Habs’ Emelin (upper body) will not return vs. Sens


Alexei Emelin lasted just 20 seconds in Ottawa tonight.

The Habs defenseman attempted to hit Sens’ forward Mark Stone and crashed heavily into the boards in front of the Montreal bench.

He left the game left the game immediately.

The club is calling it an upper body injury.

Emelin has 13 points and a plus-10 rating in 54 games this season while averaging 19:57 in ice time.

The Canadiens are already without defenseman Sergei Gonchar who is nursing an upper body injury following a hit from Leafs’ forward David Clarkson on Saturday night.

Report: Panthers GM Tallon hasn’t talked to Leafs about Kessel


We could be watching Phil Kessel’s final days, weeks, or months in Toronto, but if he is on his way out, where will he go to? One destination that’s popped up recently is the Florida Panthers and it’s not hard to see why. Unlike the Maple Leafs, Florida is a team on the rise and Panthers GM Dale Tallon recently listed his greatest need as a “sniper or scorer with a little more speed on the wing” on The Fan 590.

All the same, Kessel might not be heading to Florida anytime soon, if at all.

“Florida general manager Dale Tallon and Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis have not had one specific conversation about Phil Kessel, and they did actually talk (Monday), but not about Kessel,” TSN’s Bob McKenzie said.

McKenzie characterized the Panthers’ interest in Kessel as general in the sense that they want a player like him and would pull the trigger under the right set of circumstances, but nothing’s likely to happen until the summer. Even then, they might not be a good fit for Toronto as the Panthers reportedly don’t want to break up their young core, which might kill any potential trade.

These rumors were also brought up when The Fan had Tallon on.

“Well I don’t want to pay any big fines. Phil Kessel’s a (heck) of a player, he can score a lot of goals, but I don’t know where that (the rumors) coming from,” Tallon said. He went on to say that he’s planning to stay the course when it comes to the trade deadline and even raised the possibility of being a seller despite the fact that the Panthers are still in the race for a playoff spot.

So perhaps nothing is imminent, but then again, nothing has been decided yet either. There’s still a week and a half before the deadline and we might be in for some surprises and blockbusters. After all, it certainly wouldn’t be the first major in-season trade to send shock waves through the league.

‘Negative energy’ surrounds Leafs, says newcomer Jokinen


The losing continues for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Change has already started with player personnel and it appears there will be more on the way.

Toronto’s struggles, which now include a 3-2 loss to the Florida Panthers on Tuesday, left newcomer Olli Jokinen, acquired in a deal with the Nashville Predators, to deliver a rather astute observation about the wayward Leafs.

“The one thing I notice here being here two days is a lot of negative energy around here,” said the 36-year-old Jokinen, as per Stephen Whyno of the Canadian Press.

“You can feel the pressure is just building and building…it’s getting to guys,” said goalie Jonathan Bernier, as per Jonas Siegel of TSN 1050.

The Leafs couldn’t get much going through two periods, and the Panthers took advantage, opening up a two-goal lead in the second period. Toronto outshot its opponent 16-1 in the third period, with Phil Kessel — read about the trade talk surrounding him here — scoring his 22nd goal of the season to get his team within one.

The Leafs couldn’t complete the comeback, and lost for the sixth time in seven games this month.

Meanwhile, the Panthers move to within two points of the struggling Boston Bruins for the final Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference.

Roundup: Grabner, Braun activated from IR; Volchenkov put on

Some news and notes as we get closer to this evening’s puck drops…

Isles activate Michael Grabner

Grabner will draw in tonight — his first action since Feb. 7 — and, in a corresponding move, New York has placed Casey Cizikas on IR. Grabner will skate with Frans Nielsen and Ryan Strome on the club’s second line; on defense, the Isles will insert Calvin de Haan at the expense of Lubomir Visnovsky, who sits.

Sharks activate Justin Braun

Braun will play for the first time since Jan. 19 when the Sharks take on the Preds in Nashville tonight. Braun, who’s missed the last 11 games with a left hand injury, will skate on a pairing with fellow blueliner Brenden Dillon, which is where he was skating before he came out of the lineup.

Nashville puts Anton Volchenkov on IR

The veteran Russian rearguard went on injured reserve today after speculation suggested he could be ready to rejoin the Preds lineup. Volchenkov, who last played in a win over Winnipeg a week ago, has appeared in 42 games for Nashville this year but could be hard pressed to get minutes in the future, especially with Cody Franson now on board and Ryan Ellis a week or two away from returning from injury.

Goalie nods: It has to be Johnson for the Isles… right? (Update: Yep)


All the latest from the crease…

Who goes for New York?

The Islanders won’t announce their starting goalie until 5 p.m. ET today, so we don’t know if it’s Chad Johnson or Jaroslav Halak in net for tonight’s affair against Carolina.

Update: It’s Johnson.

One would suspect Johnson gets the nod, given tonight is the second of a back-to-back; Halak played last night, and allowed six goals on 42 shots in an emotional loss to the Rangers.

That said, head coach Jack Capuano could possibly be persuaded to let Halak try and bounce back; the 29-year-old Slovak looked rattled and a bit shaky as the Blueshirts made a concerted effort to get into his kitchen.

Related: The Isles are surrendering too many goals

“I want to get shots,” captain Ryan McDonagh said, per Newsday. “We wanted to make it more difficult on Halak tonight than in other past games. He’s been a big difference in why we haven’t been able to beat them in the past.

“We talked about getting in front of the net and making it tough on him, make him fight through screens. We were a lot hungrier in front of him for sure.”

No word yet on who’ll start in goal for the ‘Canes.


Blue Jackets at Flyers: Curtis McElhinney vs. Ray Emery

Caps at Pens: Braden Holtby vs. Marc-Andre Fleury

Sabres at Devils: Cory Schneider for New Jersey, Michal Neuvirth likely for Buffalo.

Panthers at Leafs: Roberto Luongo vs. Jonathan Bernier

Stars at Blues: Brian Elliott for St. Louis, Kari Lehtonen likely for Dallas.

Sharks at Preds: Alex Stalock for San Jose, Pekka Rinne likely for Nashville.