Wednesday Morning NHL Papers (Western Conference): Alain Vigneault is very unhappy with Canucks, Mikko Koivu’s leadership in Minnesota and Brenden Morrow unhappy with Stars’ loss
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- If this is just Marian Hossa’s adjustment period, it will be scary to see what he can do at full steam, writes Chris Kuc. “I think we can learn off some of the things he does with and going into puck areas. A lot of good things happen when he’s on the ice,” said coach Joel Quenneville about Hossa’s presence.
- Derick Brassard lacks a bit of confidence so far this season, explains Tom Reed. One of Derek MacKenzie or Mike Blunden could find themselves going through waivers this week. Here are the Blue Jackets’ projected lines for tonight’s game.
- Valtteri Filppula had his cast removed on Tuesday and is slated to return later this month. With many injuries on the team, Justin Abdelkader has been given more responsibility and coach Mike Babcock has been happy with his play.
- Martin Erat recorded a hat trick last night, which prompted Barry Trotz to talk about the value of getting shots on net, as the Predators defeated the visiting Canucks. Meanwhile, the Predators are hoping Jerred Smithson’s penalty on Alexandre Burrows is rescinded.
- Many Blues have had scoring trouble this season, so coach Andy Murray had his team practice hitting the goalie and going to the net on Tuesday.
- Playing without Robyn Regehr has been the Flames’ downfall in the past, so Flames fans have to be hoping that his injury isn’t serious. Colby Armstrong will have many family members in the Saddledome tonight when the Thrashers visit the Flames.
- Joe Sacco was happy enough with his club on Tuesday that he gave them the day off, explains Terry Frei.
- Jim Matheson answers reader’s questions in the Edmonton Journal. Lubomir Visnovky and Ladislav Smid have developed some nice chemistry on the Oilers’ back-end. Jeff Deslauriers has played well enough that he’s made people stop asking when Nikolai Khabibulin is returning to the lineup.
- Mikko Koivu was many people’s pick for Wild captain prior to the season and he is sure proving his worth in that position, explains Michael Russo.
- “Right now we have guys who can play a lot better, who have to play a lot better,” said an angry Alain Vigneault after yesterday’s loss to Nashville. Mikael Samuelsson was so unhappy after the game that he refused to talk to the media. When is Cody Hodgson going to return from a back injury?
- Just when you had the Ducks written off, the team stormed back from a three-goal deficit and pulled out an important overtime victory at home against Dallas, writes Eric Stephens. With Teemu Selanne injured, both Bobby Ryan and Joffrey Lupul will be counted on to carry the load.
- “That can’t happen, it just can’t happen,” said Stars captain Brenden Morrow after the team blew a 3-0 road lead to Anaheim. Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News likes what he’s seen from youngster Ivan Vishnevskiy.
- Wayne Simmonds has taken advantage of the opportunities that coach Terry Murray has provided for him this season in Los Angeles.
- There are a number of reasons why the Coyotes are surprising the NHL, but strong penalty killing is definitely one of them.
- After some early season struggles, Ryane Clowe has found his game in the Bay Area.
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