Here are the national morning papers:
- Alan Maki of the Globe & Mail expects the NHL to be reactive rather than proactive after the announcement of a possible Super League being created in Europe.
- As Sean Fitz-Gerald of the National Post explains, the Ducks’ trade of Andy McDonald was all about keeping their defense together.
Here are the Eastern Conference morning papers:
- Although this article was published yesterday, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has an interesting examination of the success of two-goalie tandems in the NHL this season.
- Even though they are sitting in second place in the Eastern Conference, Bruins coach Claude Julien says there are a number of areas in which his team can improve. Meanwhile, Steve Conroy of the Boston Herald tells readers that Milan Lucic’s confidence and comfort level have increased significantly since the season began.
- After seven games in eleven nights, the Sabres were given Sunday off by coach Lindy Ruff.
- According to Luke Decock of the News-Observer, the Hurricanes are hoping to have Cory Stillman return from his knee injury on December 26th when they face the New York Rangers.
- The Panthers pulled out a 3-1 road victory at Chicago on Sunday and can thank goaltender Tomas Vokoun for the win writes Steve Gorten of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. The Panthers got Brett McLean back in their lineup last night, however, that good news was offset by the loss of Ville Peltonen for a month to a broken hand.
- Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette warns Habs fans to not get too high or too low in what will continue to be a roller-coaster season.
- The Devils were happy to record a victory over the Flyers on Sunday before heading to Western Canada on their upcoming road trip. As Mark Everson of the NY Post explains, the Devils never take intra-division games lightly.
- Larry Brooks of the NY Post thought he was watching the Rangers of the late 90’s last night when the Rangers welcomed Wayne Gretzky back to town and handed his Coyotes a 5-1 victory. “For me, I had three great years here. It was nice to come back tonight. It was an enjoyable night,” said Gretzky after the game.
- Antoine Vermette will be given an opportunity to shoulder more of offensive role on the Senators after being moved onto a line with Daniel Alfredsson. “It’s a substantial loss,” said Senators coach John Paddock about the loss of center Mike Fisher to injury.
- The Flyers continued to slump yesterday as they were defeated 4-2 by the Devils in Newark.
- Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette profiles the pleasant surprise that is Tyler Kennedy of the Penguins. Here are some notes about the Penguins.
- According to Carter Gaddis of the Tampa Tribune, a new offer to purchase the team is expected by the end of the week.
- It is going to be difficult to replace the all-around production that the Leafs have lost with Bryan McCabe’s hand injury writes Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star. “I’ve never had a serious injury like this before,” said McCabe yesterday.
Here are the Western Conference morning papers:
- While the Ducks lost to the Sharks 2-1 in a shootout last night, the team was happy to see Scott Niedermayer on the ice in game action. The Ducks finally started the season ten weeks after everyone else writes Jeff Miller of the Orange Country Register.
- After last night’s 5-3 victory over the Blues it is fair to say that Jarome Iginla and Kristian Huselius are on absolute tears right now. With Huselius and Daymond Langkow are playing alongside Iginla, that means Alex Tanguay has found a new role with the club. Overshadowed by the Flames’ road success was the fact that last night’s victory was Mike Keenan’s 600th NHL victory.
- The Blackhawks were expecting a big December but last night’s 3-1 loss to Florida was the team’s sixth loss in their last seven games.
- Adrian Dater of the Denver Post has an interesting article about relative unknown defenseman Kyle Cumiskey of the Avalanche.
- Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch has the details behind Rick Nash’s recent slump.
- In Dallas, Steve Ott is healthy and finally living up to his reputation as an all-around pest writes Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News.
- The Detroit Red Wings are very aware of what Alexander Ovechkin will be bringing to the table tonight.
- Derek Van Diest of the Edmonton Sun profiles the tremendous season of Shawn Horcoff in this morning’s paper. In other Oilers news, much of the team’s recent success can be attributed to their newfound confidence.
- It looks like Jason Labarbera will return to the Los Angeles net tonight when the Kigns face-off against the Avalanche.
- Jacques Lemaire gives Niklas Backstrom a subtle shot in this morning’s Minneapolis Star Tribune.
- Speaking of the Wild, Craig Leopold will not comment on a report that he is expected to buy into the Wild after the sale of the Predators is completed.
- The Coyotes dominated the Rangers on the back of AHL call-up Joel Perrault’s three point game.
- Joe Thornton was feeling lucky last night in Anaheim which was why he was asked to shoot in his team’s shootout victory last night over the Ducks.
- Mike Keenan and the Flames spoiled Andy McDonald’s debut as a member of the Blues last night with a 5-3 victory.
- The Canucks have finally returned home after one of the toughest travel road trips in recent memory writes Gordon McIntyre of the Vancouver Province.
For Illegal Curve, I’m Richard Pollock.