NHL news and notes: February 28

NHL news and notes: February 28

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The goalies below have not been confirmed by any sources:

Cam Ward, Carolina Hurricanes - Ward is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Senators. John Grahame has started each of the last three games, including last night's loss, so we're very confident that it will be Ward tonight.

Ray Emery, Ottawa Senators - Emery is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Hurricanes.

Niklas Backstrom, Minnesota Wild
- Backstrom is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Flames.

Miikka Kiprusoff, Calgary Flames
- Kiprusoff is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Wild.

Tomas Vokoun, Nashville Predators
- Vokoun is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Sharks.

Evgeni Nabokov, San Jose Sharks - Nabokov is the probable starter for Wednesday's game against the Predators.


General goalie news:

Nolan Schaefer, Pittsburgh Penguins - Schaefer was traded by the Sharks to the Pens in exchange for a 2007 seventh round draft pick. While Schaefer was never really going to amount to much playing behind Evgeni Nabokov and Vesa Toskala, the Sharks are apparently confident in the health of those respective goalies to be able to part with Schaefer.

Ty Conklin, Buffalo Sabres - Conklin was traded by the Blue Jackets to the Sabres in exchange for a 2007 fifth round draft pick. He'll back up Ryan Miller and will have no fantasy value unless Miller goes down. The Sabres are Stanley Cup contenders and we're surprised that they parted with Martin Biron given Miller's history of suffering injuries.

Martin Biron, Philadelphia Flyers - Biron was traded to the Flyers by the Sabres in exchange for a 2007 second round draft pick. After spending at least two years toiling behind Ryan Miller and possibly being the NHL's best backup, Biron finally gets another chance to be an NHL #1. The jury is still out on whether he's up to the challenge and it will be even more difficult playing behind the Flyers. For the reason, he certainly has fantasy value as we expect him to work himself to the top of the team's depth chart, but don't expect any miracles.

Brian Boucher, Columbus Blue Jackets - Boucher was picked up off waivers by the Blue Jackets. He'll replace Ty Conklin as the team's backup and won't have much value unless Fredrik Norrena gets hurt. Long term, Boucher's days as a possible #1 goalie are over and he'll be lucky if he even catches on as a #2 next year.

Year-to-date: 1811 / 1906 = 95.0%

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Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Ryan Smyth, New York Islanders - Smyth was traded to the Islanders by the Oilers on Tuesday in exchange for Robert Nilson, Ryan O'Marra and a 2007 first round draft pick. The so called "heart and soul" of the Oilers is arguably having a career year, already topping 30 goals for the fourth time in his career.

Todd Bertuzzi, Detroit Red Wings
- Bertuzzi was acquired by the Red Wings on Tuesday in exchange for Shawn Matthias, a 2008 second round draft pick and a 2007 conditional draft pick. The big is currently injured and is technically a rental player, but this wasn't a bad price to pay for one of the NHL's potential game-breakers. It was especially important for the Wings to make this trade after the Sharks grabbed Bill Guerin earlier in the day and the Predators traded for Peter Forsberg earlier in the month.

Bill Guerin, San Jose Sharks - Guerin was traded to the Sharks by the Blues in exchange for Ville Nieminen, Jay Barriball and a 2007 first round draft pick. Another intriguing trade and one that will surely raise some eyebrows if Guerin decides to re-sign with the Blues this summer when he becomes a free agent.

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Hockey Today - February 28
Wed, Feb 28, 2007
By Associated Press


Minnesota at Calgary (10 p.m. EST). The Wild and Flames are both two points behind Northwest Division-leading Vancouver.

STARS Tuesday

-Jason Blake and Trent Hunter, Islanders. Blake had three goals and had an assist, and Hunter's second goal of the game with 30.7 seconds left in overtime gave New York a 6-5 victory over Philadelphia.

-Martin Brodeur, Devils, set a career high with his 12th shutout of the season, stopping 31 shots in New Jersey 1-0 victory over Pittsburgh.

-Doug Weight, Blues, scored twice in the third period to lead St. Louis to a 3-1 victory over Vancouver.

-Olli Jokinen, Panthers, scored three goals in Florida's 6-5 shootout victory over Washington.

-Ladislav Nagy, Stars, scored with 3:25 left in overtime to give Dallas a 2-1 victory over Tampa Bay.

TRADING PLACES

The New York Islanders acquired All-Star forward Ryan Smyth from Edmonton in the biggest deal of a busy NHL trading deadline. New York sent first-round picks Robert Nilsson (2003) and Ryan O'Marra (2005), along with its first-round choice in this year's draft to Edmonton for Smyth, who has 31 goals and 53 points in 53 games this season. In other big deals, Todd Bertuzzi was traded to Detroit after playing only seven games for Florida in an injury-plagued season. Forward Bill Guerin was moved from St. Louis to San Jose. Buffalo made four deadline-day deals, including bringing in forward Dainius Zubrus from Washington and sending backup goalie Martin Biron to Philadelphia.

SHUTOUTS

Martin Brodeur set a career high with his 12th shutout of the season, stopping 31 shots in New Jersey 1-0 victory over Pittsburgh on Tuesday night. Brodeur has 92 career shutouts, third on the career list behind George Hainesworth (92) and leader Terry Sawchuk (103). ... Henrik Lundqvist made 19 saves in his third shutout this season and fifth in two seasons, leading the New York Rangers to a 4-0 win over Montreal. New York shut out the Canadiens for the first time since Oct. 12, 1990. Montreal hadn't lost on the road to the Rangers since March 11, 2002. ... Curtis Joseph made 26 saves to lead Phoenix past Edmonton 3-0.

STREAKING

Detroit is 10-2-2 in its last 14 games after a 4-1 win over Chicago on Tuesday night. The Red Wings improved to 5-0-0 against Chicago this season, and are 11-1-1 against the Blackhawks over the past two years. ... Dallas went 8-2-1 this month, its second-best February ever in terms of points, after a 2-1 overtime victory over Tampa Bay. The Stars have won eight straight at Tampa Bay. ... The New York Islanders ended their best February (9-2-2) since going 12-1-1 in 1982 with a 6-5 overtime win over Philadelphia. The Islanders improved to 5-1-0 on their seven game home stand.

FINALLY

Florida was 0-7 in shootouts before Tuesday night's 6-5 shootout win over Washington. In their first seven shootouts, the Panthers scored only four goals in 29 shots. On Tuesday, the Panthers were 2-for-3.

MESS DAY

Edmonton retired Mark Messier's No. 11 jersey on Tuesday night. Messier, the NHL's second-leading career scorer, grew up nearby in St. Albert, and was the emotional leader of talented teams that featured Wayne Gretzky, Jari Kurri, Paul Coffey, Grant Fuhr and Al Hamilton - the men who have all previously had their jerseys retired in Edmonton. Messier won six Stanley Cups - five with the Oilers - two Hart Trophies and a Conn Smythe Trophy.

STRONG IN DEFEAT

Alex Ovechkin had two goals and two assists in Washington's 6-5 shootout loss to Florida on Tuesday night. The Capitals, who have lost seven of eight, are 1-9 in shootouts this season.

MANY MOVES

The 25 trades made in the final six hours before the deadline matched last year for the most active in NHL history. The 30 clubs moved 44 players, two shy of the mark set in 2003.

SPEAKING

''(Coach) Ted (Nolan) said it's like Christmas Eve around the trading deadline. And this year, we got three big presents.'' - New York Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro. The Islanders acquired All-Star forward Ryan Smyth from Edmonton on Tuesday, following deals for Richard Zednik and Marc-Andre Bergeron. New York is tied for seventh place in the Eastern Conference after Tuesday night's 6-5 overtime win over Philadelphia.

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Blackhawks get Alexeev from Tampa Bay
Tue, Feb 27, 2007
By Associated Press

CHICAGO --The Blackhawks acquired right wing Nikita Alexeev from Tampa Bay just before Tuesday's trade deadline and sent left wing Karl Stewart and a sixth-round draft choice in 2008 to the Lightning.

The 6-foot-5 Alexeev scored 10 goals and had 11 assists in 63 games this season. He was the Lightning's first-round pick and No. 8 overall in the 2000 draft. He's appeared in 144 NHL games with 18 goals and 17 assists.

Stewart was acquired by the Blackhawks off waivers from the Pittsburgh Penguins on Oct. 26. He has two goals and three assists in 37 games.

It was the third trade completed by Chicago this week. On Monday, the Blackhawks traded center Bryan Smolinski to Vancouver for a second-round pick and were part of a three-way deal with Philadelphia and Detroit in which they ended up with center Jason Williams.

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Kings trade Norstrom to Dallas
Tue, Feb 27, 2007
By Associated Press

LOS ANGELES --The Los Angeles Kings traded defenseman Mattias Norstrom, right wing Konstantin Pushkarev and two draft picks to the Dallas Stars for defenseman Jaroslav Modry and three draft picks Tuesday.

The moves were the latest in a series by general manager Dean Lombardi to unload players before Tuesday's trade deadline as part of his efforts to rebuild the slumping Kings, who will not make the playoffs this season.

Norstrom, the Kings' captain since 2002, is the team's career leader in games played among defensemen with 780. He has two goals, seven assists and 40 penalty minutes in 62 games this season.

''Like with most trades, this was a very difficult decision to make,'' Lombardi said. ''Matty has been a tremendous player for this club for a number of a years and he has been a very respected captain as well. The ability, however, to get two high draft picks will be of great benefit for our organization as we move forward and help build our reserve list and team.''

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Legace sidelined following knee surgery
Tue, Feb 27, 2007
By Associated Press

ST. LOUIS -- St. Louis Blues goalie Manny Legace underwent arthroscopic knee surgery on Tuesday and will be sidelined at least a few weeks.

Team president John Davidson said he didn't believe the surgery to remove torn cartilage would end the season for Legace, 23-15-5 with a 2.59 goals-against average and five shutouts. Legace signed a two-year contract extension on Saturday.

''All reports were the surgery went well and it doesn't sound like it was an ordeal whatsoever,'' Davidson said.

Curtis Sanford subbed for Legace for the second straight game on Tuesday against the Canucks. His backup is Jason Bacashihua, recalled from Peoria of the AHL on Saturday.

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