Here are the Northwest Division morning papers:
- The coaches did a good job of lightening the mood yesterday at practice, writes Joanne Ireland. Apparently Oilers netminder Mathieu Garon is not 100%.
- Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun is not a big believer of "turning on the switch" but he wonders if the Flames are on their way to doing just that.
- The Canucks blew a chance to take the Northwest Division lead last night, with a 2-1 loss on home-ice to the Wild. Canucks captain Markus Naslund believes the team need to cut down on their penalties come playoff time.
- In Avalanche news, Paul Stastny is going to play today versus Edmonton, and Peter Forsberg remains a game-time decision.
- Not only did the Wild beat the Canucks last night but they also managed to impress their coach, writes Michael Russo.
Here are the Central Division morning papers:
- The sometimes rocky relationship between Jason Chimera and Ken Hitchcock is all about Hitchcock trying to get the best out of his speedy winger. Meanwhile, Blue Jackets winger Alexandre Picard is finally starting to feel like his knee is back to normal.
- It appears Chris Chelios will be back sporting the winged wheel next season, writes Helene St. James. Meantime, if the Red Wings don't get Mike Babcock signed to a contract extension soon, the team will wait until after the playoffs to resume negotiations.
- Barry Trotz usually is not known for a quick hook with his netminders, but this season has been different than past ones, writes John Glennon.
- Here are some news and notes about the St. Louis Blues.
- Even if the Blackhawks do not make the playoffs, the important playoff-like games they have played in the past few weeks will only serve their youth well in the long run.
Here are the Pacific Division morning papers:
- The Stars are looking forward to getting Steve Ott back in the line up, as the feisty winger returns from suspension to face-off versus the Kings.
- Here is a short preview of the Kings/Stars game today, courtesy of the L.A. Times.
- "We didn't play very good. I'll tell you that," said Ducks coach Randy Carlyle after last night's 2-1 loss at San Jose.
- Wayne Gretzky is making sure his team does not take the Ducks lightly tonight.
- The Sharks have played tremendously as of late, and they validated their recent play last night versus Anaheim.
For Illegal Curve, I'm Richard Pollock.
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