Here are the national morning papers:
- Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky is glad to be getting Rick Tocchet back in the coaching fold starting tomorrow night, writes Eric Duhatschek of the Globe & Mail.
- Daryl Katz was finally able to close the deal to purchase the Edmonton Oilers, writes Alan Maki of the Globe & Mail.
- Fabian Brunnstrom is generating interest from all around the NHL, writes Kevin Allen of USA Today.
- Damien Cox of the Toronto Star profiles the humble Nicklas Lidstrom.
Here are the Eastern Conference morning papers:
- Even the return of Ilya Kovalchuk couldn't change the Thrashers fortunes against the Flyers, as Atlanta was defeated 3-2 at home by Philadelphia. Off the ice, Thrashers coach/GM Don Waddell maintains that his number one goal is to sign Marian Hossa.
- "Looking back at the game, it was more of one team hungrier than the other and one team playing with more desperation than the other," said Bruins coach Claude Julien about his team's 4-2 home loss to the Sabres last night. Bruins defenseman Dennis Wideman had an off game last night, but he wasn't about to avoid taking responsibility for his poor play. On the concussion front, the Bruins have looked into a new concussion therapy, and are still holding out hope for a Patrice Bergeron return this season.
- The Sabres completed their seven game road trip with a 4-2 win at Boston, and successfully finished the road trip with a 4-2-1 record. Even though he doesn't play many minutes, that does not mean that Adam Mair's contributions to the Sabres are overlooked by the coaching staff, writes Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News.
- The Hurricanes didn't play a bad road game, they just gave up one 3-on-1 chance and it ended up in the back of their net, leading to a 1-0 loss to the Predators. To make matters worse, the team lost forward Chad Larose to a broken leg.
- "We just weren't ready to go," said Rangers forward Chris Drury after his team's 4-2 home loss to the Kings. The mood in the Rangers locker room after the game was one of sheer disappointment, writes John Dellapina of the NY Daily News.
- Flyers coach John Stevens was aware of Antero Nittymaki's success versus Atlanta and Kari Lehtonen so he did not hesitate to call the Finnish netminder's number for the Flyers 3-2 victory last night in Atlanta. The Flyers are still searching for a winger to play alongside Daniel Briere and Simon Gagne. Forget the new Flyers, Sam Donnellon of the Philadelphia Daily News has an interesting piece on former Flyers netminder Ron Hextall.
- Nathan Smith is currently up with the Penguins filling-in for the team's injured players; so he is fully aware that he is on an everyday tryout. In other Penguins news, defenseman Kris Letang is making a concerted effort to shoot more.
- The Capitals dominated the second and third periods, to come from behind and defeat the Blue Jackets 4-3 at Nationwide Arena last night.
- The Panthers absolutely demolished the Maple Leafs last night in Toronto by a score of 8-0. While the dominant victory was good news for the Cats, the team did receive bad news when it heard that Jozef Stumpel will be lost to the team for 4-6 weeks.
- Unlike their game against the Rangers on Sunday, the Habs were able to hold on to their lead last night as they defeated the Senators 4-3 to move within one point of the division lead.
- The Devils hope they play well enough tonight so that they don't have to have coach Brent Sutter yell at them between periods, writes Rich Chere of the Newark Star Ledger.
- Not only did the Islanders lose 3-0 to the Ducks last night, but they also may have lost winger Miroslav Satan after he aggravated a right knee injury, writes Greg Logan of Newsday.
- The Senators lost 4-3 to the Habs last night and the team's recent play has Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun wondering if the team needs to trade for a number one netminder. Garrioch lists a number of players the team may be willing to dangle in trade offers. Meanwhile, Christopher Higgins of the Canadiens has admitted that his team has set a goal of passing the Senators for first place in the Northeast Division.
- The Lightning picked up their first victory in St. Louis in sixteen years last night, with a 5-4 win. Lightning winger Andre Roy was a healthy scratch for last night's game for disciplinary reasons.
- "Everyone should be ashamed," said Leafs captain Mats Sundin after last night's embarrassing 8-0 loss at home to Florida. Meanwhile, Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star discusses the free-fall of Kyle Wellwood from top-line projections to the press box.
Here are the Western Conference morning papers:
- While Teemu Selanne didn't score in his Ducks return, he did provide the team with a much needed boost as they defeated the Islanders 3-0 on Long Island. With a victory under their belts, the team now heads to the White House, writes Jeff Miller of the Orange County Register.
- Most people may be counting out the Blackhawks for a playoff run, but Hawks GM Dale Tallon still has faith his team can put it together for a run to the post-season, writes Chris Kuc of the Chicago Tribune.
- The Avalanche are expected to have Jose Theodore back between the pipes tonight versus San Jose, and center Paul Stastny back on Saturday versus Vancouver. Adrian Dater of the Denver Post has a great article on what a good guy Joe Sakic is.
- Jonathan Huntington of the Edmonton Sun is looking forward to getting to know new Oilers owner Daryl Katz at his press conference today. On the ice, it looks like the Oilers are considering shutting down Sheldon Souray for the season.
- The Coyotes wasted a terrific effort from rookie Peter Mueller last night by blowing a 3-0 lead in the third period and losing to Calgary 4-3 in a shootout. In more bad news for the Coyotes, the team will be without rookie Martin Hanzal for 2-4 weeks.
- Needing to put together a string of wins, the Blues instead lost to the Lightning, the worst road team in the NHL, at home last night 5-4. On the injury front, Blues forward Martin Rucinsky is close to returning to the lineup.
- The Flames, on the back of Jarome Iglinla's Gordie Howe hat-trick, came from down 3-0 to defeat the Coyotes 4-3 in a shootout last night."Up 3-0, there's no way we should lose that game," said Coyotes captain Shane Doan after the contest.
- The Stars defeated the defenseless Canucks last night 3-2 in a shootout, and extended their win streak to four straight games, writes Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News. While the team won last night, the Stars will not win the Peter Forsberg sweepstakes as he rejected the team's offer yesterday.
- The Wings got the game-winner last night from an unlikely source as defenseman Brett Lebda scored in overtime on a cross-ice pass from Henrik Zetterberg to help the Wings defeated the Wild in St. Paul. The Wings did not win last night's game without a bit of luck, writes Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press.
- "I thought we played our best game of the year," said Wild coach Jacques Lemaire after his team's heartbreaking 3-2 overtime loss to the Wings on home-ice. The Wild may have found a perfect fit for the third member of the Gaborik-Demitra line, writes Michael Russo of the Star Tribune.
- Ryan Clowe is itching to get back on the ice and help the Sharks solidify their spot in the Western Conference standings, but he's not about to rush his rehab and suffer a setback.
- The Predators are finding different ways to win, and last night was a prime example, with a 1-0 defensive victory over the visiting Hurricanes.
- Last night's shootout loss to the Stars carried with it lots of positives, writes Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province. The Vancouver Canucks may have lost last night, but they still appear to be in the running to sign Peter Forsberg.
For Illegal Curve, I'm Richard Pollock.
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