Latest on Carey Price, Nail Yakupov, Pavel Datsyuk, Mario Lemieux, Marc Bergevin and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
Check out the video highlights below of Wednesday’s NHL action, including Carey Price exiting early during the Canadiens win over the Rangers, Sidney Crosby scoring twice against the Blues, the Predators breaking their goalless drought and Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov’s three-point night against the Jets.
NHL Injury Update.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens goalie Carey Price apparently aggravated the lower-body injury that sidelined him for nine games. Backup Mike Condon will get the start on Friday against the New Jersey Devils. Canadiens coach Michel Therrien denied that Price was rushed back into the lineup, claiming the netminder wanted to play and he received medical clearance to do so.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It also sounds like the Canadiens are going to be more cautious with Price going forward this season. They’ve recalled Dustin Tokarski to be Condon’s backup on Friday. I wouldn’t be surprised if Condon or Tokarski get the call for Saturday’s return match against the Devils.
THE SPORTING NEWS: Edmonton Oilers winger Nail Yakupov suffered an leg injury during Wednesday’s game against Carolina when linesman Matt MacPherson, attempting to regain his balance, accidentally pulled Yakupov to the ice and fell on top of the Oilers forward. Yakupov left the game and didn’t return. No further word has been released yet as to his status.
THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS’ Mike Heika reports via Twitter that Stars goalie “Kari Lehtonen could be off the ice for a couple of days, according to coach Lindy Ruff. Expects Stars to call up a goalie for Friday’s game.”
Notable NHL Headlines.
TORONTO SUN: Pittsburgh Penguins owner Mario Lemieux and team captain Sidney Crosby both denied a report claiming there was a rift between the two dating back to the 2014 playoffs. Lemieux dismissed the report as “silly,” while Crosby called it “ridiculous.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Crosby’s unusually poor start and the Penguins anemic offensive play this season has given rise to considerable speculation behind his struggles and those of the team.
CBS SPORTS: Detroit Red Wings star Pavel Datsyuk netted his 300th career NHL goal in his club’s 3-2 overtime loss to the Boston Bruins.
NJ.COM: Long-time New Jersey Devils forward Patrik Elias finally made his season debut in his club’s 2-1 loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets. He was sidelined by a right knee injury.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Enjoy watching Elias while you still can, hockey fans. This is likely the 39-year-old’s final NHL season.
CALGARY HERALD: The Flames have placed goaltender Joni Ortio on waivers with the intent of demoting him to their AHL affiliate.
TSN: The Montreal Canadiens re-signed general manager Marc Bergevin to a contract extension through the end of the 2021-22 season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Under Bergevin’s tenure, the Canadiens reached the Eastern Conference Final in 2014 and finished second overall in the Eastern Conference last season. They’re currently the top club in the Conference and the league overall standings. While Bergevin inherited a team with many core pieces (notably Price, P.K. Subban, Max Pacioretty) already in place, he’s done a tremendous job re-signing those players and bolstering the roster around them. He’s also quickly garnered a reputation as one of the league’s savviest general managers. Granted, not every move he’s made has worked out (Michael Ryder, Thomas Vanek, Zack Kassian and Alex Semin), but even the busts didn’t hurt the Habs over the long term.