Goalie nods: Rask on track to return for Bruins


The Boston Bruins are one of the teams that have had some injury issues in net this season and recently had to turn to a pair of rookies, Malcolm Subban and Zane McIntyre. Playing behind an already shaky defense it hasn’t been the best combination.

Some good news could soon be coming as early as Saturday night.

All signs point to veteran goalie Tuukka Rask being ready to return to the lineup when the team plays the Detroit Red Wings.

When asked if Rask would be ready to return tonight, coach Claude Julien said, “I would suspect yes. He showed no indication that he wasn’t.”

Rask has only appeared in three games this season for the Bruins, but has a .947 save percentage and won all three starts. The Bruins have lost three games in a row without him.


— In that same game, Jimmy Howard will make his third start of the season for the Red Wings when he gets the call against the Bruins.

Marc-Andre Fleury will continue his streak of starting every game for the Pittsburgh Penguins this season when he gets the call in Philadelphia against the Flyers. Matt Murray is back and ready to go, but the Penguins are going to continue to go with Fleury who is coming off of a great game against the New York Islanders. No word yet on who will oppose him for Philadelphia.

— The Devils are going with their top guy, Cory Schneider, against Andrei Vasilevskiy from Tampa Bay.

Devan Dubnyk‘s shutout streak (back to back shutouts) is on the line against the Dallas Stars. He will be opposed by Kari Lehtonen.

— As should be expected, Carey Price gets the Saturday night start for Montreal against their rivals from Toronto. The Maple Leafs have not announced their starter.

— The Blues are going with Jake Allen against the Kings, while all signs point to Peter Budaj getting the call for Los Angeles.

— In Vancouver, the Canucks played last night with Ryan Miller in net so you can probably expect to see Jacob Markstrom get the start against Washington’s Braden Holtby.

Louis Domingue is expected to go for Arizona when the Coyotes host the Colorado Avalanche. No word yet on who the Avalanche are starting.

— Also no official word from the San Jose-Nashville game but you can probably count on a Pekka Rinne vs. Martin Jones matchup.


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    Canucks’ Ilya Mikheyev to have season-ending knee surgery

    Ilya Mikheyev
    Bob Frid/USA TODAY Sports

    VANCOUVER, British Columbia — Vancouver Canucks right wing Ilya Mikheyev is set to have season-ending surgery on his left knee.

    Canucks general manager Patrik Allvin said Friday night the 28-year-old Russian forward tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the team’s first preseason game Sept. 25. Mikheyev will undergo surgery next week and is expected to be ready for training camp in the fall.

    Mikheyev was originally listed as week-to-week with the injury and played 45 regular-season games, finishing with 13 goals and 15 assists. He scored in his final appearance Friday night, a 5-2 home victory over Columbus.

    Mikheyev signed a four-year, $19 million contract as a free agent last summer.

    Maple Leafs’ Matthews out at least 3 weeks with knee injury

    Nick Turchiaro/USA TODAY Sports

    Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews will miss at least three weeks with a sprained knee.

    The team announced the reigning MVP’s anticipated absence Friday, two days after Matthews was injured in Toronto’s victory against the New York Rangers.

    Matthews is expected to miss at least six games and could be out for a few more. The timing of the injury coinciding with the NHL All-Star break and the Maple Leafs bye week prevents this from costing Matthews more time out of the lineup.

    After being voted an All-Star by fans, Matthews is now out of the event scheduled for Feb. 3-4 in Sunrise, Florida. The league announced Aleskander Barkov from the host Florida Panthers will take Matthews’ place on the Atlantic Division All-Star roster.

    Matthews, who won the Hart Trophy last season after leading the NHL with 60 goals, has 53 points in 47 games this season.

    Caufield opted for surgery with Habs out of playoff race

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    David Kirouac/USA TODAY Sports

    MONTREAL — Montreal Canadiens winger Cole Caufield said Friday he wouldn’t be having season-ending surgery on his right shoulder if the team were in playoff contention.

    But with the Canadiens near the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings, the 22-year-old Caufield said he decided to have the surgery to protect his long-term health. The procedure is scheduled to be performed by Dr. Peter Millett on Wednesday.

    “I didn’t want to stop playing,” Caufield said. “I had a couple tests done to look at it more clearly but, in the end, like it could’ve been one more fall and it could have been even worse.”

    Caufield, who leads the Canadiens with 26 goals in 46 games, had three different medical opinions on his shoulder before concluding that his season was over.

    “I think they’ve seen a lot more than I have and they know the differences and what they like or don’t like about it,” he said about the medical opinions. “Long term, I think this is what’s best but for sure it was tough to sit out that game against Toronto on Saturday night.”

    Caufield initially felt the injury in an awkward fall during Montreal’s 4-2 loss at Dallas on Dec. 23. He said his right shoulder popped, and he replaced it himself.

    Caufield felt it again in the Habs’ 4-3 loss at Nashville on Jan. 12. The club announced on Jan. 21 that Caufield would miss the rest of the season.

    Caufield is nearing the end of his three-year, entry-level contract and will be a restricted free agent this summer.

    All-Star Matty Beniers to miss next 2 games for Kraken

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    Joe Nicholson/USA TODAY Sports

    SEATTLE — Seattle Kraken rookie All-Star Matty Beniers will miss the team’s final two games before the All-Star break after taking a big hit from Vancouver’s Tyler Myers earlier this week.

    Seattle coach Dave Hakstol said after morning skate Friday that Beniers would not play Friday night against Calgary or Saturday against Columbus. Hakstol did not speculate on Beniers’ availability for next weekend’s All-Star Game in Florida.

    The team has not specified what kind of injury Beniers sustained from the hit. He was barreled over by Myers away from the play early in the second period in Wednesday’s 6-1 victory over Vancouver. Myers was penalized for interference on the play. Beniers returned briefly for one shift later in the period but did not play in the third period.

    Beniers is Seattle’s lone All-Star selection this season. He leads all rookies in goals (17) and points (36), and is fifth in total ice time for rookies.

    Seattle also placed defenseman Justin Schultz on injured reserve and recalled forward Max McCormick from Coachella Valley of the AHL. Hakstol said Schultz is improving but there’s no timeline on his return.