Welcome to the new-look PHT

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So you clicked on the site today, and probably reacted something like this:

So I’m here to tell you that hey, it’s alright. Everything is going to be OK.

What you’re looking at is part of the NBCSports.com redesign, which went live this morning. It’s a pretty big and exciting endeavor — the site’s now more mobile-friendly, we’ve got a hockey-specific scoreboard on PHT and you can access all the live streams directly from our stories.

Change is a good thing. Promise.

In the past, commenters have specifically complained about mobile functionality, which is no longer an issue. The redesign features an adaptable, responsive layout for four different screen sizes (desktop, tablet portrait and landscape, mobile devices), making for an optimal experience for all devices. At this point you could probably view PHT on a Lite-Brite.

There’s also going to be much more continuity between our content and live streams.

All the games shown on NBCSports.com — including the Wednesday Night Rivalries, Winter Classic, Stanley Cup Playoffs, etc. — will be streamlined and integrated onto PHT, featuring a site-wide live streaming schedule, direct links, and a TV listings component with fixed scrolling position.

The scoreboard is a big addition, too. We’ll now feature a ticker with team- and sport-focused imagery, optimized across desktop and tablets.

There are a bunch of other cool features as well, including infinite scrolling (scroll ’til the end of time! Try it!) and a “story explorer” which makes browsing through related content faster, and easier. Best of all, there’s a drop-down menu (just below the scorebard, to the right of where it says “Pro Hockey Talk”) that lets you sort news by team.

Finally, to answer the most pressing concern — yes, the comments section will remain, meaning Philadelphia and Pittsburgh fans can continue calling each other names and spiking each others’ water supplies.

For the full release about NBCSports.com’s redesign and a full list of new features, click here.

And remember, everything is gonna be OK.

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Blackhawks’ Boris Katchouk sidelined by ankle sprain

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CHICAGO — Blackhawks forward Boris Katchouk will be sidelined for four to six weeks with a left ankle sprain, the team announced.

The 24-year-old Katchouk played almost 12 minutes during a 3-0 preseason loss to Detroit on Saturday night. He was acquired in a multiplayer trade with Tampa Bay in March.

The Blackhawks open the season on Oct. 12 at Colorado.

The team also said forward Jujhar Khaira is day to day with a right ankle injury.

Ducks’ Urho Vaakanainen crashes into boards, leaves on stretcher

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ANAHEIM, Calif. — Ducks defenseman Urho Vaakanainen was taken off the Honda Center ice on a stretcher after he crashed into the end boards in the first period of Anaheim’s preseason game against the San Jose Sharks.

The Finnish defenseman was conscious and alert with full movement in his extremities at UCI Medical Center, the Ducks said.

The frightening incident occurred midway through the opening period when Vaakanainen smashed into the boards at a dangerous speed behind the Sharks’ net. Vaakanainen appeared to be concentrating on the pass he had just made to Derek Grant, who scored the Ducks’ opening goal on the assist.

Vaakanainen’s teammates came onto the ice and gathered around him as he was taken away on the stretcher.

The Ducks acquired the 23-year-old Vaakanainen from Boston last March in the deal that sent longtime Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm to the Bruins. After recording two assists in 14 games for the Ducks last season, Vaakanainen is attempting to win a top-six role on Anaheim’s defense this fall.

Lightning donate $2 million to Hurricane Ian relief efforts

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TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning and team owner Jeff Vinik are donating $2 million toward Hurricane Ian relief efforts.

The NHL team announced that $1 million each will be donated by the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation and the Vinik Family Foundation.

“This is a tragic situation for many families and communities across the state of Florida, but especially so in the southwest region of the state,” Vinik said in a statement released by the team. “In times like these the most important thing we can do is support one another, and we hope this donation will help families recover and rebuild in the months to come.”

Ian made landfall Wednesday on Florida’s Gulf Coast, south of the Tampa Bay area. The Lightning postponed two home preseason games and moved the club’s training camp to Nashville, Tennessee, during the storm.

Maple Leafs sign defenseman Rasmus Sandin to 2-year deal

Rasmus Sandin
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TORONTO — Rasmus Sandin has signed a two-year, $2.8 million contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs, the club announced on Thursday.

The 22-year-old from Sweden was the 29th overall selection in the 2018 draft. Sandin had 16 points in 51 games with Toronto last season. He’s played in 88 career regular-season games, with six goals and 22 assists, and has one goal in five playoff games.

“Got a great set of tools,” fellow defenseman Jake Muzzin said. “With experience, I think they’re only going to get better.”

The signing comes as the Leafs’ blueliners been hit hard by injuries. Muzzin has been dealing with a back issue, and Timothy Liljegren recently had surgery for a hernia.

Toronto then lost Jamie Benn (groin) and Carl Dahlstrom (shoulder) in Wednesday’s 3-0 preseason victory over the Montreal Canadiens, pressing forwards Calle Jarnkrok and Alexander Kerfoot into defensive roles for two periods.