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NHL news and notes: February 18

NHL news and notes: February 18

Sunday, February 18, 2007

The goalies below have been confirmed by a source:

Jaroslav Halak, Montreal Canadiens - Halak is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Blue Jackets, reports the Montreal Gazette. Poor David Aebischer. When other #1 goalies go down with injury, the respective backups in question (Chris Mason, Fredrik Norrena, Niklas Backstrom, Brent Johnson, etc.) get virtually every single start. Aebischer meanwhile looks headed for a rotation with the rookie Halak in Cristobal Huet's absence. Probability of start occurring: 90%

Jocelyn Thibault, Pittsburgh Penguins - Thibault is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Capitals, reports the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Probability of start occurring: 90%

Marty Turco, Dallas Stars - Turco is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Sharks, reports the Dallas Morning News. The Stars are hoping that almost a week of practice time will mean that Turco has put his struggles behind him. While it is fully expected that Turco will go into the playoffs as the #1 goalie regardless of how poorly he plays, a few more disastrous results will surely end up getting backup Mike Smith more starts. Probability of start occurring: 90%

Sean Burke, Los Angeles Kings - Burke is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Ducks, reports the LA Times. Probability of start occurring: 90%

Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers - Lundqvist is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Blackhawks, reports the New York Newsday. Kevin Weekes is expected to be sidelined at least one week with a strained quadricep. Probability of start occurring: 90%


The goalies below have not been confirmed by any sources


Vesa Toskala, San Jose Sharks - Toskala is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Stars. Probability of start occurring: 85%

Nikolai Khabibulin, Chicago Blackhawks - Khabibulin is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Rangers. Probability of start occurring: 85%

Brent Johnson, Washington Capitals - Johnson is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Penguins. Probability of start occurring: 85%

Niklas Backstrom, Minnesota Wild - Backstrom is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Blues. Probability of start occurring: 85%

Manny Legace, St. Louis Blues - Legace is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Wild. Probability of start occurring: 85%

Fredrik Norrena, Columbus Blue Jackets - Norrena is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Canadiens. It's tough to say who will start so early this morning as Norrena is coming off a big shutout over the Sharks but at the same time, Pascal Leclaire needs work after recently returning from injury. Probability of start occurring: 65%

Ilya Bryzgalov, Anaheim Ducks - Bryzgalov is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Kings. Probability of start occurring: 65%

Jose Theodore, Colorado Avalanche - Theodore is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Canucks. Probability of start occurring: 65%

Roberto Luongo, Vancouver Canucks - Luongo is the probable starter for Sunday's game against the Avalanche. Probability of start occurring: 85%

Year-to-date: 1676 / 1766 = 94.9%

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Re: NHL news and notes: February 18

Rangers forward Shanahan hospitalized following collision with Philadelphia's Knuble
Sat, Feb 17, 2007
By Associated Press


NEW YORK -- Brendan Shanahan was hospitalized Saturday after a hard collision with Philadelphia's Mike Knuble that left the New York Rangers' forward unconscious on his back for several minutes.

Shanahan skated toward the bench as Knuble came the other way. Neither player saw the other and they slammed shoulder-to-shoulder. Shanahan went flying backward and struck his head against the ice when he fell 7:27 into the third period of the Rangers' 5-3 loss.

X-rays and a CT scan were taken on Shanahan at St. Vincent's Hospital. All the tests were negative, but Shanahan was to be kept overnight for observation. The Rangers said he was awake, alert and moving all his extremities.

''It's always hard to see any of your players go down whether it's coincidental or otherwise,'' Rangers coach Tom Renney said. ''It's tough, but we're going to have to overcome that and play in the spirit of what he's all about anyway. Hopefully he won't be out too long.''

The right side of Knuble's face was swollen, and general manager Paul Holmgren said Knuble fractured his cheekbone and orbital bone. Knuble is expected to have surgery in a few days, once the swelling goes down. There is no timetable for his return to the lineup.

Holmgren expressed concern after the game that broken bones would be revealed once Knuble had more tests at home.

''He seemed OK. He was a little woozy,'' Holmgren said.

Knuble, second on the Flyers with 22 goals and 43 points, declined to comment as he left Madison Square Garden.

Shanahan, the Rangers' leader with 28 goals, moved his left leg slightly as medical personnel attended to him, but his eyes remained closed. Shanahan, 38, appeared to also be bleeding from the mouth one day after extensive dental work. He lost a tooth Thursday night at Carolina after being struck in the mouth by a puck.

Shanahan blinked his eyes and was talking as the stretcher rolled across the ice to the Zamboni entrance, chants of ''Shanny, Shanny,'' trailed him during the ride.

The hit came moments after New York closed its deficit to 4-2 on a play in which Rangers captain Jaromir Jagr was rattled by a late hip check against the end boards by Flyers defenseman Derian Hatcher.

New York sustained several key injuries during the game that was physical from the very start.

Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist left following the second period after a hard shot struck him in the left shoulder and sent him to the ice writhing in pain. New York defenseman Marek Malik also was knocked out of the game, favoring his shoulder, after absorbing a check from Flyers forward Simon Gagne.

Lundqvist and Renney said it was the coach's decision not to send the goalie back out for the third period, more to give him rest than because of the injury. Lundqvist was hurting, but planned to be back in the nets Sunday afternoon when the Rangers face the Chicago Blackhawks.

''I could've kept playing for sure,'' Lundqvist said, ''but they told me they wanted to make a change.''

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Re: NHL news and notes: February 18

Hockey Today - February 18
Sun, Feb 18, 2007
By Associated Press


Colorado at Vancouver (10 p.m. EST). The Northwest Division-leading Canucks have won three straight.

Oddsmakers list the Canucks as -165 favorites. The total is set at 5 1/2.

STARS

- Henrik Zetterberg, Red Wings, had his first career three-goal game and added an assist in Detroit's 4-1 win at Phoenix.

- Martin Brodeur, Devils, stopped 26 shots in his NHL-best 11th shutout of the season and third against the Islanders in leading New Jersey to a 2-0 victory over New York.

- Antero Niittymaki and Scottie Upshall, Flyers. Niittymaki made 40 saves and Upshall scored in his first game with Philadelphia to lead the Flyers to a 5-3 win over the Rangers.

- Ron Brind'Amour, Hurricanes, scored two goals, including the 400th of his career, and Carolina beat Montreal 5-3.

- Kristian Huselius, Flames, scored twice and set up the game-winner, leading Calgary past Colorado 5-2.

INJURED

Brendan Shanahan was hospitalized Saturday after a hard collision with Philadelphia's Mike Knuble that left the New York Rangers' forward unconscious on his back for several minutes. Shanahan skated toward the bench as Knuble came the other way. Neither player saw the other and they slammed shoulder-to-shoulder. Shanahan fell and struck his head against the ice 7:27 into the third period of the Rangers' 5-3 loss. X-rays and a CT scan taken at St. Vincent's Hospital were negative, but Shanahan was to be kept overnight for observation. The Rangers said he was awake, alert and moving all his extremities. The right side of Knuble's face was swollen, and general manager Paul Holmgren said Knuble fractured his cheekbone and orbital bone. Knuble is expected to have surgery in a few days, once the swelling goes down. There is no timetable for his return to the lineup.

RESIGNED

The Detroit Red Wings re-signed forward Tomas Holmstrom to a three-year contract on Saturday. Holmstrom is in his 11th NHL season, all with Detroit and has 20 goals and 20 assists this season.

TAKEOFF

Philadelphia, the NHL's worst team, beat the Rangers 5-3 on Saturday and the Flyers are now 3-1-1 in their past five games. They also won for the first time this season with Peter Forsberg, who was traded to Nashville, out of the lineup (1-14-3).

STREAKING

Ottawa won its fourth straight, 5-3 over Atlanta on Saturday. ... New Jersey won for the sixth time in eight games after a 2-0 win over the Islanders. ... Toronto's Mats Sundin scored twice, including his seventh goal in his last ten games and Toronto beat Edmonton 4-3.

SLUMPING

Atlanta lost 5-3 to Ottawa on Saturday and the Thrashers have now lost four in a row. ... Montreal lost its sixth straight, 5-3 to Carolina. ... Los Angeles, last in the conference, have lost 13 of 17, including two in a row following a 3-2 shootout loss to Anaheim.

SIDELINED

Montreal announced on Saturday that injured goalie Cristobal Huet will have surgery on his left hamstring Sunday and will be sidelined indefinitely. Huet has a 19-15-3 record and two shutouts in 40 games this season, along with a 2.74 goals-against-average and a .918 save percentage.

DEBUT

Peter Forsberg, aquired from Philadelphia for two players and two draft picks, played his first game for Nashville on Saturday, but the Predators lost 4-1 to Minnesota.

SCORE

Sheldon Souray became the first Canadiens defenseman in 13 years to reach 20 goals in Montreal's 5-3 loss to Carolina on Saturday.

SPEAKING

''If Marty can throw up 11 shutouts with a cage in front of his face, then I'm sure I can play with one in front of mine.'' - New Jersey's John Madden, who played with a protective cage on his helmet in the Devils' 2-0 win over the Islanders on Saturday. Martin Brodeur recorded his NHL-best 11 shutout of the season in the win.

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