Maple Leafs fall to the Kings, the latest on Evander Kane, Daniel Briere, Jared Cowen, Andrew Ference and Zack Kassian, while the rebuilding Flames must work on finishing strong.

Leafs James van Riemsdyk  hits Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin.

Leafs James van Riemsdyk hits Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin.

TORONTO STAR: Though the Maple Leafs fell 3-1 to the LA Kings, they’re trying to find the positives in their improved performance.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Kings are among this season’s Cup contenders so the Leafs shouldn’t feel too badly about this loss.  While they don’t measure up well against the league’s top teams, they could beat the rest of the league by playing as well as they did against the Kings.

WINNIPEG SUN: Jets winger Evander Kane will miss the remainder of the club’s homestand (Thursday and Saturday) with a lower-body injury. He’s been sidelined for the past four games.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I believe Kane re-aggravated a lower-body injury which has hampered him since early in the season.  He’s struggled for most of this season and I think due to injury than attitude.

LA PRESSE: Montreal Canadiens coach Michel Therrien expects more from Daniel Briere.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Briere hasn’t delivered as expected in his first season with the Canadiens. Part of the reason is injury-related, but I also think age could be catching up with the 36-year-old. He’s certainly not playing like a $4 million per season player.

OTTAWA CITIZEN: Senators defenseman Jared Cowen received a two-game suspension for a hit to the head of Buffalo Sabres forward Zemgus Girgensons.

EDMONTON SUN: Oilers captain Andrew Ference sees similarities between his club and his early seasons with a rebuilding Boston Bruins team several years ago.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Difference is, those Bruins weren’t as bad for as long as the Oilers have been since 2006-07.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Canucks forward Zack Kassian is trying to shed the label of “project”.

CALGARY HERALD: Having overcome slow starts, the rebuilding Flames must now work on finishing strong.