PHT Morning Skate: Bruins, Flames will play in China; Stamkos the underrated superstar

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• The Boston Bruins and Calgary Flames will play a pair of preseason games in China as part of the O.R.G. NHL China Games. (

• Bruce Cassidy only put the line of Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak together because his team was down 3-0 t0 Columbus in the first half of a game played on Oct. 30. That worked out pretty well. (Sportsnet)

Steven Stamkos consistently seems to be one of the more underrated superstars in the NHL, but taking a deeper look at the numbers proves that he’s among the league’s elite. (Sporting News)

• Jets forward Blake Wheeler took a bit of a shot at the crowd at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville. (Nashville Post)

• Jets fans at the MTS Center were booing P.K. Subban in Game 3, but that really should be considered a compliment for the superstar blue liner. (Winnipeg Free Press)

• As you probably realized in the first two Games of the series between Washington and Pittsburgh, not having Evgeni Malkin proved to be critical. As good as a lot of their forwards are, Malkin is the team’s MVP. (The Sports Daily)

• The Washington Nationals have been huge supporters of the Capitals’ playoff run. “It’s really important to these guys,” Nationals GM Mike Rizzo said. “They really want to support the Caps and D.C., and I think it’s pretty fun. I think it’s pretty cool. There was a big shoutout when Ovi knocked that one in and they kind of clinched the win with a couple seconds left.” (Washington Post)

• How does the NHL decide whether or not a a goal being reviewed should actually count or not? Well, they use a Hawk-Eye system, but the fact that decisions have to be made quickly makes things a little more complex. (USA Today)

• NHLers talk to ESPN about the best beards in the league, the worst team in the league and more. Jets forward Patrik Laine got called out by one of his teammates (rightfully so). (ESPN)

• John Tortorella shared an interesting story from his playing days in Sweden. Let’s just say that being stuck in Germany with no clothes and no money doesn’t sound fun. (

• Take a behind-the-scenes look at what life in the minor leagues is like. This writer chronicled his journey with the AHL’s Iowa Wild, and let’s just say that life in pro hockey isn’t always glamorous. (Iowa Wild)

• Teams trading outside of the lottery hasn’t happened very often, but the Hurricanes might be one of those teams that looks into doing that this year. (Section 328)

• The timing of the draft lottery is great for TV consumption, but it makes life a little more difficult for a lot of the scouts. (The Hockey News)

• Yesterday, the Edmonton Oilers signed goalie Mikko Koskinen to a contract, but the signing just seems to make the goalie depth chart more confusing. (Oilers Nation)

Joey Alfieri is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @joeyalfieri.

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