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It sounds like Anton Belov's decision to leave Edmonton was at least partially inspired by a desire to get away from coach Dallas Eakins.

Belov signed with the KHL's SKA St. Petersburg. "There is no one reason that made it an abrupt change," said Belov, per Sovetsky Sports. "It was all building up during the season, especially more so after the Olympics. And the hire of coach (Vyacheslav) Bykov (at SKA) was also an influence. The other point is that I could have re-signed with Edmonton, but I didn't want to stay with that coach." Eakins came under fire for the Oilers' underwhelming performance in his first season as the team's bench boss, but he is still expected to return for the 2014-15 campaign.
Apr 22 - 9:48 AM

The Toronto Maple Leafs announced that Jonathan Bernier will miss Sunday's game against the Florida Panthers because of "flu-like symptoms."

The Maple Leafs say that it isn't the mumps, or at least hasn't been confirmed yet. There's no word regarding whether he's expected to miss an extended amount of time, but make adjustments for today.
Dec 28 - 3:06 PM

With Calvin Pickard demoted and Reto Berra not impressing, the Colorado Avalanche expect to lean on Semyon Varlamov very heavily.

Colorado made a big investment in Berra via a trade, but apparently he's already lost favor. Varlamov, 26, is 5-6-5 with a .913 save percentage so far this season. The Russian netminder made all 26 stops in his return to action against the St. Louis Blues on Dec. 23.
Dec 28 - 2:52 PM

It seems like Carolina Hurricanes forward Jordan Staal is just about certain to make his 2014-15 season debut on Monday, something he admitted to being "anxious" about.

This situation could be fluid, but for now, it looks like he's centering a line with his brother Eric Staal and Nathan Gerbe. That could be a line to watch if it has any staying power.
Dec 28 - 2:18 PM

Brian Elliott is in fact on the ice and taking part in the Blues' full practice Sunday.

Blues' coach Ken Hitchcock told reporters this would be the case and it has come to pass. Elliott who has been out of action for the last month with a knee injury is moving closer to a return. When he is healthy enough to play it will be interesting to see what the Blues do with Martin Brodeur.
Dec 28 - 2:17 PM

More bad health-related news for the battered Pittsburgh Penguins: Patric Hornqvist is expected to miss a "few weeks" with a lower-body injury.

The 27-year-old has already dealt with a concussion in 2014-15, his first season with the Penguins. When healthy, Hornqvist has been a revelation, generating 13 goals and 29 points in 33 games. Here's hoping he can enjoy better health once 2015 rolls around.
Dec 28 - 1:26 PM

Despite some fantastic work while Semyon Varlamov was out with an injury, the Colorado Avalanche assigned Calvin Pickard to the AHL.

Pickard's record might not have been impressive (6-6-2), yet his fantastic work kept Colorado in games. He had a fantastic .934 save percentage. It looks like Reto Berra will back up Varlamov while Pickard tries to stay sharp in the AHL.
Dec 28 - 1:15 PM

Boston Bruins head coach Claude Julien noted that both Milan Lucic and Patrice Bergeron are day-to-day, but didn't disclose their injuries.

Lucic fought Dalton Prout in a spirited bout on Saturday, so perhaps that might have something to do with it.
Dec 28 - 1:09 PM

One day after placing Jaroslav Halak on IR, the New York Islanders removed that designation on Sunday.

Halak has been masterful for the Islanders, going 18-6-0 with a .919 save percentage in 24 games played. It wouldn't be surprising if he returns to action on Monday.
Dec 28 - 12:34 PM

Derek Dorsett will see second line duty on Sunday.

Dorsett has played most of the season on the fourth line but coach Willie Desjardins had him on the second unit in practice on Saturday alongside Nick Bonino and Chris Higgins. Dorsett has also started playing on the first power play and is looking more and more like a good fantasy asset as he is third in the NHL in penalty minutes with 77. "We need net presence and we need puck recovery, and I think he’s pretty good at both of those," Desjardins stated. "It’s a tough job standing in front of the net. A lot of guys may say they want it, but when the puck’s coming in, they don’t want it. It is a tough role and only a few guys will do that." Dorsett has four goals and 11 points in 31 games. Pick him up.
Dec 28 - 10:36 AM

Olli Maatta does not need surgery on his injured shoulder.

That's the good news as Maatta will still need another month of rehab to return to the lineup. It's been a tough year physically for the young future star as he had a cancerous tumor removed earlier this season on his thyroid gland. Keep him reserved.
Dec 28 - 10:20 AM

Johnny Gaudreau netted two goals for the Flames in their 4-1 win over the Oilers on Saturday night.

With all the talk that the rookie race is two-headed with Filip Forsberg and Aaron Ekblad, Gaudreau continues to impress and should be in the discussion, too. He has goals in three straight games: 12 goals and 29 points on the season. Curtis Glencross (goal, assist) and Joe Colborne got the other goals.
Dec 28 - 12:56 AM




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