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On the Beat

On the Beat: Jan Hejda out 4-6 weeks and who will replace Thomas Vanek’s production in Buffalo?

Team beat writers tell us the latest line combinations, goaltending starters, call-ups and injury news.

What team beat writers are saying this afternoon:

  • With James Wisniewski out of the lineup for the next few weeks, the burden of his lost ice-time shifts to a number of the Ducks’ defensemen. The team will certainly miss Wisniewski, but look for Luca Sbisa to step up and get more playing time in his absence. The youngster is more talented than the Ducks’ other defensemen listed in the piece and may take well to added responsibility.
  • Here are the Thrashers’ lines from practice today. Everything stays the same.
  • Dennis Wideman did not practice with the Bruins this morning. His injury isn’t believed to be serious.
  • With Thomas Vanek lost to the Sabres for weeks, Lindy Ruff had Adam Mair skating in Vanek’s place at practice today. Don’t bet on that continuing. The Sabres boast depth in the form of Tim Kennedy and Nathan Gerbe and this injury should see one of, if not both players, take on a bigger role.
  • Tim Sassone of the Daily Herald says it is too early to give up on Cristobal Huet. I agree, but I’ve never been a big Huet fan, so I think it will be difficult, but possible, for him to change my opinion.
  • The underrated Jan Hejda has been lost to the Blue Jackets for 4-6 weeks with a sprained left knee. That’s a big injury for a team that isn’t exactly loaded on the back-end. Hejda is the team’s go-to defensive defenseman who plays against the opposing team’s best players.
  • Dave Staples of Cult of Hockey writes more about Ethan Moreau than has ever been written. I kid…well, kind of. These Oilers writers are as hardcore as they come.
  • Henrik Lundqvist gets the start for the Rangers tonight. That was assumed but just passing this along.
  • Michael Grabner has been tearing it up in the AHL, and with that production he has earned himself a promotion. Grabner is skilled, as he can skate and has good hands, this will be a good chance for him to prove himself and maybe stick with the big club.
  • It appears that John Erskine will miss the Capitals’ next game versus San Jose. The Capitals have other defenseman to plug in that bring very similar attributes to Erskine.

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