Sunday Morning NHL Papers (Eastern Conference): Nothing seems to be changing in Philadelphia, Mike Cammalleri should be considered for Team Canada and is Eric Staal available?
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- Patrik Elias quietly surpassed the 300 goal mark in New Jersey’s win over the struggling Flyers last night. It looks like Niclas Bergfors has become another Devils gem draft pick.
- Maybe Rick DiPietro should take his time returning this season and make sure he’s healthy long term.
- The Blueshirts are puzzled as to why they keep losing games. The Rangers didn’t send Matt Gilroy down to Hartford to punish him, but instead to make him a better all-around defenseman. The Rangers have to make sure they don’t bring Brandon Dubinsky back too early from injury due to desperation. In his weekly Slap Shots column, Larry Brooks wonders why Jacques Lemaire hasn’t realized he needs to give Martin Brodeur rest?
- The Flyers are playing as if they want to see a coaching change even though one just happened, explains Sam Carchidi. The Flyers have signed John Grahame to an AHL contract to increase the team’s depth in net. For the time being though, Brian Boucher needs to play well. Times are getting desperate in Philadelphia, writes Anthony San Filippo.
- At times, the Penguins have so much talent that they make scoring goals look easy and last night was an example of that, writes Dave Molinari. Brent Johnson started last night because the Penguins don’t want to overplay Marc-Andre Fleury during the regular season. Chris Kunitz returned to the lineup last night.
- The Bruins played a very impressive road game last night, they just didn’t come out on top, explains Kevin Paul Dupont. Claude Julien doesn’t mind the healthy goaltending competition in Boston. In his weekly Hockey Notes, Brian Burke talks about his mindset when it comes to building Team USA for the Olympics.
- You know things are going well in Buffalo when Patrick Kaleta is scoring two goals in a game. Lindy Ruff wants constant movement from his players on the man advantage.
- Jack Todd has a wonderful article wondering why Mike Cammalleri’s name isn’t being tossed around a candidate for Team Canada? (Writer’s note: I agree. In fact, I wrote the same thing on Twitter a week or two ago.) Meanwhile, Red Fisher writes that the return of Andrei Markov could be the big difference between the Habs making the playoffs or missing out.
- Alexei Kovalev indeed does exist, as the super-talented winger scored a hat trick last night at home versus Carolina. In his weekly rumors column, Bruce Garrioch discusses the availability of Peter Mueller, the possibility of Jeff Carter and Eric Staal moving and Tomas Vokoun being on the block.
- The Leafs have the Capitals’ number this season, writes David Shoalts. Matt Stajan has a been a point-per-game player since Phil Kessel suited up for the Maple Leafs.
- As goes Ilya Kovalchuk, so goes the Atlanta Thrashers, writes Chris Vivlamore.
- Hurricanes netminder Michael Leighton passed through waivers and has been assigned to the AHL.
- The Panthers once again took the Penguins to overtime tied at two and once again they lost 3-2 in overtime.
- After reading this article, you’ll wonder why Todd Fedoruk ever fights. Somehow the Lightning is 26th in the NHL in goals per game.
- The Capitals had a couple built-in excuses for last night’s collapse, but it still shouldn’t have happened, writes Corey Masisak.