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PHT Morning Skate: Canada names staff for World Championship; Who should coach Rangers?

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Welcome to the PHT Morning Skate, a collection of links from around the hockey world. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at phtblog@nbcsports.com.

• The Washington Capitals have always played pretty well against the Columbus Blue Jackets. (DC Puck Drop)

• Who should replace Alain Vigneault as head coach of the Rangers? A head coach that’s currently employed and a hall of fame goalie could be on the short list. (FanSided)

Jeff Skinner could be in the playoffs as soon as next season, but it probably won’t be as a member of the Hurricanes. (Raleigh News & Observer)

Stanley Cup Playoffs streaming, schedule and more

• Avs head coach Jared Bednar believes that Nathan MacKinnon and Taylor Hall are the favorites to land the Hart Trophy. (Denver Post)

• Two of the NHL’s top four teams will be knocked out of the playoffs early because of the current format the league has adopted. (Associated Press)

• Red Wings goalie Jared Coreau really struggled during his stint in the NHL, he’s hoping to find his game in the minors, where he’s had a ton of success. (MLive)

• We all know that the captain of the team that wins the Stanley Cup is always first to raise the trophy, but who will each captain potentially pass it to if they win it this year? (NHL.com)

• Marc Bergevin seems to have a problem with the attitude his team had all year. (Habs Eyes on the Prize)

• Speaking of the Canadiens, they signed Notre Dame captain Jake Evans on a two-year, entry-level contract. (NHL.com/Canadiens)

• Hurricanes head coach Bill Peters will be the head coach of Team Canada’s squad at the World Hockey Championship next month. Blues bench boss Mike Yeo will serve as an associate coach, while Panthers coach Bob Boughner will be an assistant. (Hockey Canada)

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

Kings ride weird goal to beat Red Wings

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If you looked at the scoreboard alone, you’d think that the Los Angeles Kings played like the more desperate team in pushing the fading Detroit Red Wings to eight consecutive losses (0-7-1).

That makes sense, as the Kings did take care of business on Thursday, and they ended up winning 4-1.

Still, it wasn’t anywhere near as easy as that final score indicates. For one thing, Anze Kopitar‘s game-winning goal was a weird one, and must really bum Jared Coreau out as he had been playing well considering his recent struggles:

Tyler Toffoli and Dustin Brown scored late goals to drive up the margin, but who knows if it would have been as smooth of a ride for Los Angeles if the above bounce didn’t go the Kings’ way?

This isn’t to say that the Kings played poorly, mind you, just that it was a close, low-event game. To an extent, it was very much the type of game Los Angeles was able to grind out during the gravy days of Kopitar, Jonathan Quick, Drew Doughty, and others.

This win gives the Kings 84 points in 71 games played. This gives them a shot at catching the Sharks for the second seed (85 points in 70 GP), but first things first, the Kings strengthened their grip on the third spot in the Pacific and a playoff spot in general. The Ducks and Flames also only have 11 games left like the Kings, but Anaheim’s parked at 82 points while Calgary has 80.

From a big picture sense, this wasn’t all bad for Detroit.

At this point, they’re better off losing, at least when they can do so while “keeping their heads high.” That probably applies here, as they were able to play the Kings hard while also leaving without any standings points. With 63 points in 70 games, Detroit could conceivably sink below the Senators (61 points in 69 GP) among some other cellar dwellers.

So, really, both teams did what they needed to do on Thursday, even if it wasn’t always pretty.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.

WATCH LIVE: Red Wings at Kings

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CLICK HERE TO WATCH LIVE

PROJECTED LINES

Detroit Red Wings

Tyler BertuzziHenrik ZetterbergGustav Nyquist

Darren HelmDylan LarkinAnthony Mantha

Justin AbdelkaderFrans NielsenAndreas Athanasiou

Martin FrkLuke Glendening — Evgeny Svechnikov

Jonathan EricssonTrevor Daley

Dan DeKeyserNick Jensen

Niklas KronwallMike Green

Starting goalie: Jared Coreau

[Red Wings – Kings preview.]

Los Angeles Kings

Alex IafalloAnze KopitarDustin Brown

Tobias RiederJeff CarterTrevor Lewis

Tanner PearsonAdrian KempeTyler Toffoli

Kyle CliffordMichael AmadioNate Thompson

Derek ForbortDrew Doughty

Dion PhaneufAlec Martinez

Jake Muzzin — Paul LaDue

Starting goalie: Jonathan Quick

Krejci, Marchand trigger Bruins’ lopsided win over Red Wings

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It wasn’t just Jared Coreau.

The Boston Bruins dominated the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday night, ultimately beating them 6-1.

You could argue that the game might have already been in the bag once the Bruins chased Coreau with a 3-0 a little more than midway through the first period, but things were pretty rough for Petr Mrazek, who also allowed three goals.

David Krejci‘s strong performance might have been the most promising sign for the Bruins overall. He generated two goals and one assist with a +4 rating.

Other standouts with two-point nights included Drew Stafford, Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak and Zdeno Chara.

Stafford seems revitalized thanks to this change of scenery (and generally the opportunity to play with some talented Bruins linemates), but if Krejci can be more of a factor, Boston could be onto something interesting.

They’ve certainly played well under new head coach Bruce Cassidy, and even if they haven’t been able to climb over Montreal or Ottawa in the Atlantic, this surge makes a return to the playoffs seem increasingly likely.

Bruins bring night of woe to Coreau with three quick goals

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It had been quite some time since Jared Coreau started for the Detroit Red Wings. It might be quite a while before he does so again.

In his first appearance since Feb. 12, Coreau allowed three goals on eight shots before being pulled in 13:32 of action, making way for workhorse Petr Mrazek. Total blame can’t go to Coreau alone – Danny DeKeyser was exposed during the first two goals, depending upon who you ask – but that’s an abysmal start.

The first two tallies came in especially rapid succession.

Considering the fact that the Red Wings recalled Jimmy Howard today, you’d think that Coreau’s days (hours?) are numbered.

Drew Stafford‘s 3-0 goal ended Coreau’s night, while David Krejci and Brad Marchand started the scoring with some nifty bits of work.

Check out the Stafford goal, which was the last straw for coach Jeff Blashill (who’s sporting quite the shiner tonight):