Here are the national morning papers:
- Dave Shoalts of the Globe & Mail wonders if the Leafs can build on their impressive victory over the Senators on Saturday night.
- Andrew Lupton of the National Post has a selection of some of the best takes in Bob McCown’s new book the 100 Greatest Hockey Arguments.
- A.J. Perez of USA Today tells us that Sandis Ozolinsh is having the most fun of his NHL career in his second go-round with the San Jose Sharks.
Here are the Western Conference morning papers:
- David Staples of the Edmonton Journal takes an inside look at the Oilers blogosphere in this morning’s paper.
- The Flames got off to a bad start and it cost them last night in their 4-1 loss at Vancouver. The Flames own the worst powerplay in the league, at less than a ten percent success rate, writes Steve MacFarlane of the Calgary Sun.
- For a very young team, the Blackhawks are sitting pretty at the quarter-point of the season writes Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune. However, it’s not all good news for the Hawks as they lost Rene Bourque to a broken thumb over the weekend and he’ll be out of the lineup for 4-6 weeks.
- The Avalanche were easily defeated by the Wild 4-1 on Sunday night and, after the game, Joe Sakic said the Avs need to get back to the skating game that makes them most effective.
- The Blue Jackets were extremely satisfied with their performance last night versus the Red Wings, even if they did lose the game in a shootout writes Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch. The Jackets received a terrific performance from Nikolai Zherdev last night.
- The new two-headed GM in Dallas has begun to clear ice-time for the organization’s youngsters, starting with the waiving of veteran fighter Todd Fedoruk on Sunday.
- The Red Wings weren’t happy with their performance in their own zone, but they still found a way to pull out the win over Columbus last night.
- “He’s always doing cheap stuff like that (going after light-weight Michal Handzus). I’m kind of sick of that, seeing Pronger be that guy,” said Kings’ injured tough guy Raitis Ivanans in this morning’s L.A. Times.
- Matt Foy slept in on Sunday and was late to a team meeting, so the youngster was surprised to be in the lineup last night; however, his inclusion paid off as Foy scored once and added an assist in his team’s 4-1 victory over Colorado.
- Predators’ captain Jason Arnott believes the key to the team’s turnaround in the standings has been the team’s improved work ethic.
- With the Predators facing the Blues tonight, Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Dispatch details the Predators and their new-found identity.
- Apparently the Canucks don’t need three of their top six defensemen as they handled the Flames 4-1 on home-ice last night.
Here are the Eastern Conference morning papers:
- Thrashers’ goaltender Kari Lehtonen returned to practice with his teammates yesterday, however, coach Don Waddell doesn’t foresee Lehtonen returning to the lineup for approximately two weeks.
- Bruins’ coach Claude Julien gave his team Sunday off after their frustrating game at Montreal on Saturday night. In other Bruins’ news, it looks like Boston will be without defenseman Andrew Ference for a few weeks with a sprained knee.
- The Sabres powerplay has struggled since Tim Connolly went down to injury writes Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News.
- According to Panthers special assistant to the general manager Joe Nieuwendyk, the Panthers need to change their mentality when they have a late game lead. After getting off to a slow start, Panthers’ center Stephen Weiss is finally playing at the level he is paid to play at.
- There will be some tears in the building tonight as legendary Habs’ defenseman Larry Robinson will have his jersey raised to the Molson Centre rafters tonight. Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette opines that Robinson and Habs’ GM Bob Gainey were his two favorites Canadiens when the team was churning out Stanley Cups in the 70’s.
- Martin Brodeur continues to be his modest self, even after winning his 500th NHL game over the weekend.
- Larry Brooks says Daniel Girardi’s star is rising fast as the youngster has become a top-pair defenseman for the Rangers this season.
- Islanders’ coach Ted Nolan has switched up his lines again in an effort to increase his team’s offensive output.
- Dany Heatley is trying his best to practice his way out of his goal-scoring slump writes Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun. Meanwhile, Senators’ coach John Paddock has threatened to reduce ice-time for players who continue to give the puck away.
- Flyers’ winger Simon Gagne was on the ice yesterday for a skate, but still remains a ways away from returning to the lineup.
- Penguins’ winger Colby Armstrong is staying positive even though he has been a healthy scratch for six of his team’s last eight games. Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette wonders if coach Michel Therrien will start employing Sidney Crosby on the penalty kill more often.
- Brad Richards has had a very impressive start to the season writes Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune.
- The Leafs have discovered a reliable shutdown line writes Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star. As Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun tells us, veteran Boyd Devereaux has carved a niche for himself on the Leafs’ penalty kill.
- Alexander Semin is expected to return to the Capitals lineup tonight when they face the Florida Panthers.
For Illegal Curve, I’m Richard Pollock.