Lamoriello won’t ‘tear it down’ in New Jersey


Even with the oldest roster in the NHL, and even with that old roster languishing near the bottom of the league standings, Devils GM Lou Lamoriello doesn’t think a full rebuild is the right way to go in New Jersey.

“I don’t think you tear it down by any means; that’s not in the philosophy of this organization nor do I think that’s something that can be done in this day and age,” Lamoriello said, per the club’s website.

Instead, he believes the Devils are in a “transition” phase, with a young defense corps that’s going to need time to develop.

“Unfortunately one of our young defenseman [Damon Severson] gets hurt but that’s nobody’s fault,” he said. “They are growing and gaining experience and in the big picture it’s going to be something that’s a foundation. … When our young defense gets more mature, it will help us create offensively.”

That may be true. What’s more, when “transitioning” a team, it can be smart to develop the young defensemen first, then bring in the young forwards, who typically take less time to make a positive impact at the NHL level. (In Chicago, for example, Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook were drafted before Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane.)

But it’s also true that the Devils have few, if any, blue-chip forward prospects. In fact, they haven’t drafted a forward with a pick below No. 20 since Zach Parise was selected 17th overall in 2003. Surely there’s a relation between that and the Devils’ roster today. And surely it’s a concern going forward, even with the opportunity to maybe draft Connor McDavid in June.

Related: Canucks trusting rookie Horvat with some tough assignments

Goalie nods: Gibson’s struggling, but starts fourth straight for Anaheim


All the latest from the blue paint…

Ducks stick with Gibson

The Anaheim Ducks, losers in seven of their last 10, will keep rolling with John Gibson as they look to get things on track tonight in Calgary.

Gibson, forced into action with Frederik Andersen injured and Ilya Bryzgalov struggling, hasn’t played especially well of late — in four games this month, he’s allowed 13 goals on 101 shots for a .886 save percentage, and has just one win.

“My biggest worry on it is that we are allowing way too many goals,” Bruce Boudreau said following a 4-1 defeat to Tampa Bay on Wednesday, per the O.C. Register. “We’re not losing pretty.”

The Ducks are hoping Gibson, a highly-touted prospect that broke onto the scene late last year — can reclaim some of the form shown earlier this season. In a three-game stretch in late October, the 21-year-old allowed one goal in a win over Columbus, posted a 38-save shutout against the Blackhawks and stopped 27 of 29 shots in a loss to St. Louis.

For the Flames, Jonas Hiller will start in goal.


Rangers at Sabres: No word yet on starters for either team.

Canucks at Devils: Eddie Lack vs. Cory Schneider

Leafs at ‘Canes: James Reimer vs. Cam Ward

Bruins at Blues: Malcolm Subban vs. Jake Allen (more on Subban’s NHL debut here.)

Avs at ‘Hawks: Semyon Varlamov vs. Corey Crawford

Wild at Oilers: Devan Dubnyk for Minnesota, no word yet on an Edmonton starter.

Koivu nets OT winner as Wild edge Flames


Mikko Koivu scored the overtime winner 1:50 into the extra period as the Minnesota Wild edged the Calgary Flames 3-2 Wednesday night.

Justin Fontaine and Matt Dumba scored in regulation for the Wild who improved to 9-1-2 in their last 12 games.

Devan Dubnyk made 35 saves for his 11th win since the trade from Arizona.

Calgary entered the game with 10 wins on the season when trailing after two periods (10-16-1). According to a report in the Calgary Sun, the record for wins when trailing after 40 minutes is 12 held by the 2005-06 Dallas Stars.

Trailing 2-1 after two periods Lance Bouma’s 11th of the season at 10:14 of the third tied 2-2.

Jiri Hudler had Calgary’s other goal.

Jonas Hiller made 26 saves in the loss.

Jared Spurgeon took a puck to the face early in the first period and did not return. Mike Yeo did not have an update on the Wild defenseman postgame.

Minnesota has won both meetings between the two clubs this season.

With Vanek questionable, Wild recall Finnish league sniper Keranen


The Minnesota Wild have made an interesting move prior to this evening’s tilt against Calgary by recalling Michael Keranen from AHL Iowa.

Keranen, 25, was signed last summer following a banner year for Tampere of the SM-liiga in which he scored 52 points in 52 games and captured two of Finland’s biggest awards; the first was the “Golden Helmet” — the league’s top player, voted by the players — which was previously won by the likes of Tim Thomas, Ville Leino, Saku Koivu and Brian Rafalski.

The second was the Lasse Oksanen Trophy, awarded annually to the SM-liiga’s best player during the regular season. Two years ago, current Blackhawks goalie Antti Raanta captured the trophy.

This year, Keranen’s scored 32 points in 52 games for Iowa and leads the team in assists, with 23.

It’ll be interesting to see if Keranen draws in tonight and makes his NHL debut. Thomas Vanek is questionable, per the Star-Tribune, which means Keranen could draw a pretty plum assignment playing alongside some skill guys.

PHT Morning Skate: Miracle on Ice memorabilia will be auctioned


PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

Nearly 40 lots worth of items owned by the late coach Herb Brooks will be up for auction, including memorabilia related to the Miracle on Ice. (

Editor’s Note: Pro Hockey Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $50,000 Fantasy Hockey league for Wednesday’s NHL games. It’s just $25 to join and first prize is $5,000. Starts Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. ET. Here’s the FanDuel link.

Alex Ovechkin was doused in beer by a Pittsburgh Penguins fan during Tuesday’s game. Capitals coach Barry Trotz shrugged it off saying, “He was probably thirsty anyway.” (CSN Washington)

Devan Dubnyk recalls his time with AHL Hamilton last season and his return to grace. (Calgary Sun)

Here are the highlights from New Jersey’s 2-1 shootout win over Buffalo:

The argument against the Edmonton Oilers trading Jeff Petry. (Lowetide)

St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock is approaching the 700-win milestone. (Dallas Morning News)

Dave Bolland is having fun in his first season with the Florida Panthers. (Toronto Star)