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  • Rangers' Desjardins suspended for 2 preseason games
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, September 25, 2017

    New York Rangers forward Andrew Desjardins was suspended by the NHL for two preseason games on Monday.

    • Desjardins was punished for an illegal check to the head of New Jersey Devils forward Miles Wood during Saturday's preseason game.

      The 31-year-old Desjardins was assessed a match penalty for an illegal check to the head. The incident occurred eight minutes into the game.

      Wood went through the concussion protocol before returning to the game. He termed the hit "dirty," per Newsday.

      Desjardins, 31, who is on a tryout with New York, received support from Rangers coach Alain Vigneault after the game.

      "Their guy has his head down and he was taking the puck to the net," Vigneault told Newsday. "I think Andrew was just playing the man, and his shoulder did hit the head and referees are told to call that. It's unfortunate. I just talked to Andrew about it, and obviously, it's not something he wanted to do, but the guy's taking the puck to the net."

  • NHL notebook: Lightning to retire Lecavalier's No. 4
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, September 25, 2017

    Vincent Lecavalier will become the second player in Tampa Bay Lightning history to have his number retired, the team announced on Monday.

    • The Lightning will retire Lecavalier's No. 4 in a ceremony prior to the team's home game against the Los Angeles Kings on Feb. 10, 2018.

      Lecavalier is the franchise's all-time leading goal scorer (383) and spent 14 years with the team. The Quebec native was named the club's captain in his second season, with the then-19-year-old becoming the youngest to wear the "C" in NHL history at the time.

      Lecavalier, who joins Martin St. Louis as the lone members of the Lightning to have their numbers retired, collected 874 points over his 1,037 games with Tampa Bay.

      --The Pittsburgh Penguins signed undrafted free agent forward Sam Miletic to a three-year, entry-level contract.

      Miletic, 20, played in two NHL preseason games with the Penguins this year, scoring the opening goal in Pittsburgh's win in Columbus on Friday. He played in all three Prospect Challenge contests in Buffalo in early September, tallying a goal and an assist in the opening game against Boston. Miletic also skated in Pittsburgh's prospect development camp in July.

      The 6-foot, 196-pound Miletic led the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League last season with 37 goals in 65 games, a total that ranked 12th in the OHL. He recorded 55 points overall with 18 assists.

      --The Los Angeles Kings signed forward Jaret Anderson-Dolan to a three-year, entry-level contract.

      The 18-year-old Anderson-Dolan was a second-round (41st overall) selection of the Kings in 2017 NHL draft.

      The 5-foot-11, 191-pound native of Calgary, Alberta, played in 142 career regular-season games with Spokane of the Western Hockey League, totaling 102 points (53 goals, 49 assists) and 43 penalty minutes. In seven postseason games, he had a goal and two assists.

  • Lightning to retire No. 4 of Lecavalier
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, September 25, 2017

    Vincent Lecavalier will become the second player in Tampa Bay Lightning history to have his number retired, the team announced on Monday.

    • The Lightning will retire Lecavalier's No. 4 in a ceremony prior to the team's home game against the Los Angeles Kings on Feb. 10, 2018.

      Lecavalier is the franchise's all-time leading goal scorer (383) and spent 14 years with the team. The Quebec native was named the club's captain in his second season, with the then-19-year-old becoming the youngest to wear the "C" in NHL history at the time.

      "It is a great honor to have my number retired and I'd like to thank the Lightning organization and (chairman) Jeff Vinik for recognizing me with this achievement," the 37-year-old Lecavalier said in a team release. "The Tampa Bay community and our fans have treated me and my family so amazingly that this honor is extra special to share it with everyone. My family and I are very excited for Feb. 10 when we can share so many memories."

      Lecavalier, who joins Martin St. Louis as the lone members of the Lightning to have their numbers retired, collected 874 points over his 1,037 games with Tampa Bay.

      "We are thrilled to retire another one of our franchise's great players, and it's extra special since this year we will be celebrating our 25th anniversary," Vinik said.

      "Vinny was a tremendous player during his 14 years with the team and a true ambassador and hero for many people in Tampa Bay for his tireless work in the community."

      Lecavalier helped the Lightning to the Stanley Cup in 2004. His best season was the 2006-07 campaign, when he won the Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy as the NHL's top goal scorer in a season in which he had 52 goals and 108 points for the Lightning.

      The four-time All-Star retired in June 2016 after 17 seasons in the NHL, recording 421 goals and 949 points in 1,212 career games with the Philadelphia Flyers, Kings and Lightning.

      Lecavalier was the No. 1 overall pick by Tampa Bay in the 1998 NHL draft.

  • Kings sign F Anderson-Dolan to entry-level deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, September 25, 2017

    The Los Angeles Kings signed forward Jaret Anderson-Dolan to a three-year, entry-level contract on Monday.

    • The 18-year-old Anderson-Dolan was a second-round (41st overall) selection of the Kings in 2017 NHL draft.

      The 5-foot-11, 191-pound native of Calgary, Alberta, played in 142 career regular-season games with Spokane of the Western Hockey League, totaling 102 points (53 goals, 49 assists) and 43 penalty minutes. In seven postseason games, he had a goal and two assists.

      Anderson-Dolan recorded 76 points (39 goals, 37 assists) and 22 penalty minutes in 72 games last season with Spokane. Among team forwards, he ranked first in power-play goals (14), second in goals, points and game-winning goals (6) and fourth in assists.

      Anderson-Dolan appeared in the U-18 World Junior Hockey Championships, serving as the captain of Team Canada in 2017. He went scoreless with four penalty minutes in five games.

  • Penguins sign F Miletic to entry-level contract
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, September 25, 2017

    The Pittsburgh Penguins signed undrafted free agent forward Sam Miletic to a three-year, entry-level contract on Monday.

    • Miletic, 20, played in two NHL preseason games with the Penguins this year, scoring the opening goal in Pittsburgh's win in Columbus on Friday. He played in all three Prospect Challenge contests in Buffalo in early September, tallying a goal and an assist in the opening game against Boston. Miletic also skated in Pittsburgh's prospect development camp in July.

      The 6-foot, 196-pound Miletic led the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League last season with 37 goals in 65 games, a total that ranked 12th in the OHL. He recorded 55 points overall with 18 assists.

      The native of Bloomfield Township, Mich., spent the past two seasons with the Knights, skating in 100 regular-season games and compiling 69 points (40 goals, 29 assists).

      Miletic is the third undrafted free agent signed by the Penguins in training camp, joining goaltender Alex D'Orio and forward Jordy Bellerive, both of whom also participated in development camp, the Prospects Challenge and NHL training camp before returning to their junior clubs.

  • NHL champion Penguins will visit White House
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, September 24, 2017

    The Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins will visit with President Donald Trump at the White House sometime this year, the team announced Sunday.

    • "The Pittsburgh Penguins respect the institution of the Office of the President, and the long tradition of championship teams visiting the White House," the statement read. "We attended White House ceremonies after previous championships -- touring the historic building and visiting briefly with Presidents George H.W. Bush and Barack Obama -- and have accepted an invitation to attend again this year.

      "Any agreement or disagreement with a president's politics, policies or agenda can be expressed in other ways. However, we very much respect the rights of other individuals and groups to express themselves as they see fit."

      Trump later tweeted: "Please to inform that the Champion Pittsburgh Penguins of the NHL will be joining me at the White House for Ceremony. Great team!"

      On Saturday, Trump said the Golden State Warriors were not welcome to the White House to celebrate their 2017 NBA championship.

      Following his criticism of the NFL at a political rally on Friday night for allowing players to protest during the national anthem, Trump rescinded any invitation coming to the Warriors to visit the White House.

      "Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team. Stephen Curry is hesitating, therefore invitation is withdrawn!" Trump tweeted Saturday morning.

      Since taking office in January, Trump has hosted the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots and members of the World Series champion Chicago Cubs to honor their titles.

  • NHL notebook: Kings-Canucks play first exhibition game in China
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, September 21, 2017

    Tanner Pearson scored two goals in an exhibition game, which would typically be no gigantic feat. But it felt like more of an accomplishment to the Los Angeles left wing with Thursday's contest being the first NHL game played in China.

    • Standout goalie Jonathan Quick made 31 saves and the Kings posted a 5-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks before 10,088 fans in Shanghai.

      The atmosphere certainly wasn't a problem as Chinese fans were enthralled by the action. One of the biggest cheers inside Mercedes-Benz Arena came when NBA icon Kobe Bryant appeared on video to pass on a message to the Kings.

      The Kings and Canucks play again on Saturday in Beijing, host of the 2022 Winter Olympics.

      --Montreal Canadiens prospect Noah Juulsen will be sidelined at least six weeks with a fractured foot.

      Juulsen, a defenseman, sustained the injury during Monday's preseason game against the Boston Bruins in Quebec City. The 20-year-old did not practice on Tuesday due to what the team called a bruised foot.

      --Boston Bruins defenseman Torey Krug will miss the remainder of training camp with a broken jaw.

      Krug sustained the non-displaced fracture after he was hit in the face with a puck during Tuesday's preseason victory against the Detroit Red Wings. The Bruins said Krug will be re-evaluated in three weeks.

      --The St. Louis Blues named Hall of Famer and nine-time Stanley Cup champion Larry Robinson as their senior consultant to hockey operations.

      Robinson is a former NHL defenseman, coach and executive. The 66-year-old most recently served as an associate coach with the San Jose Sharks from 2012-15.

      --Forward Joffrey Lupul apologized over social media for writing in an Instagram comment that the Toronto Maple Leafs "cheat" after he failed a physical for the team on the first day of training camp.

      "I responded earlier this week to some negative comments on Instagram. It was an inappropriate response, and I deleted it, but I take full responsibility," Lupul posted.

      Lupul posted a photo on Instagram Sunday of himself snowboarding with the comments, "Haha failed physical? They cheat, everyone lets them," and "I'm ready. Just awaiting the call."

      Lupul is under contract through the end of this season but hasn't played since the 2015-16 season because of numerous injuries.

  • Kings top Canucks in 1st NHL game in China
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, September 21, 2017

    Tanner Pearson scored two goals in an exhibition game, which would typically be no gigantic feat.

    • But it felt like more of an accomplishment to the Los Angeles left wing with Thursday's contest being the first NHL game played in China.

      Standout goalie Jonathan Quick made 31 saves and the Kings posted a 5-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks before 10,088 fans in Shanghai.

      "There's definitely some significance to playing the game here," Kings coach John Stevens said afterward. "The guys were talking about it being one of the first teams to play a game here. To be quite honest we didn't know what it would be like: the crowd, the noise and the atmosphere."

      The atmosphere certainly wasn't a problem as Chinese fans were enthralled by the action. One of the biggest cheers inside Mercedes-Benz Arena came when NBA icon Kobe Bryant appeared on video to pass on a message to the Kings.

      The Kings and Canucks play again on Saturday in Beijing, host of the 2022 Winter Olympics.

      The NHL views the visit to China as a chance to grow the sport, and Canucks coach Travis Green shares that vision.

      "It's great for China itself to see the NHL live and in person, see the speed of the game, how good the players are," Green said. "But whenever you're bringing hockey to a new country, it's going to take time. I think it's great the NHL is committed to doing that."

      This is just the beginning of the NHL's preseason trips to China. The league signed a deal to play two games in China six times in an eight-year span.

      "The effort here really is to build from the grassroots up, to try to grow the appreciation for the sport, the understanding of the sport," NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said before the game. "We've certainly made the Chinese Ice Hockey Federation and the Chinese government aware that we're willing to help any way we can as they gear up and prepare for the 2022 Beijing Olympic Games."

      Defenseman Jake Muzzin contributed three assists for the Kings. Left wing Sven Baertschi and center Markus Granlund scored goals for the Canucks.

  • Canadiens D Juulsen to miss 6 weeks
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, September 21, 2017

    Montreal Canadiens prospect Noah Juulsen will be sidelined at least six weeks with a fractured foot, the team announced Thursday.

    • Juulsen, a defenseman, sustained the injury during Monday's preseason game against the Boston Bruins in Quebec City. The 20-year-old did not practice on Tuesday due to what the team called a bruised foot.

      Selected with the 26th overall pick in the 2015 draft, Juulsen collected 12 goals and 22 assists in 49 games last season with the Everett Silvertips of the Western Hockey League. The British Columbia native also played in two postseason games for St. John's of the American Hockey League last spring.

      Juulsen competed with Team Canada at the 2017 World Juniors, notching two assists in seven games.

  • Blues tab Robinson as senior consultant
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, September 21, 2017

    The St. Louis Blues named Hall of Famer and nine-time Stanley Cup champion Larry Robinson as their senior consultant to hockey operations, the team announced Thursday.

    • Robinson is a former NHL defenseman, coach and executive. The 66-year-old most recently served as an associate coach with the San Jose Sharks from 2012-15.

      Robinson collected 208 goals and 750 assists in 1,384 career games with the Montreal Canadiens and Los Angeles Kings. He won six Stanley Cups with the Canadiens as a player before capturing three more from a coaching standpoint in 1995, 2000 and 2003 as part of the New Jersey Devils organization.

      Robinson was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1995 and named one of the 100 Greatest Players in NHL history on Jan. 27.

  • Bruins D Krug fractures jaw, will miss rest of training camp
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, September 21, 2017

    Boston Bruins defenseman Torey Krug will miss the remainder of training camp with a broken jaw.

    • Krug sustained the non-displaced fracture after he was hit in the face with a puck during Tuesday's preseason victory against the Detroit Red Wings. The Bruins said Krug will be re-evaluated in three weeks.

      The 26-year-old Krug had eight goals, a career-high 51 points and logged 21:36 of ice time in 81 games last season. He missed the playoffs last season due to a lower-body injury.

      Krug has recorded 38 goals, 138 assists and 118 penalty minutes in 322 career games with the Bruins.

  • Leafs' Lupul reportedly to get independant physical
    By The Sports Xchange / Thursday, September 21, 2017

    Toronto Maple Leafs forward Joffrey Lupul reportedly will seek an independent medical opinion after he failed the team's physical for the second year in a row.

    • "League source confirms Joffrey Lupul will have an independent medical exam to determine his health status. Timing to be determined," James Mirtle of theathletic.com tweeted on Thursday.

      Lupul actually apologized over social media for writing in an Instagram comment that the Maple Leafs "cheat" after he failed the physical on the first day of training camp.

      "I responded earlier this week to some negative comments on Instagram. It was an inappropriate response, and I deleted it, but I take full responsibility," Lupul posted.

      "It's been extremely tough not being able to play over the past 1.5 years. I will not be seeking a second opinion, but I hope one day to be able to get back on the ice. I apologize to the media, fans, Leafs organization, and most of all my teammates for this unneeded (distraction)."

      The report by Mirtle contradicts that statement.

      Lupul posted a photo Sunday on Instagram of himself snowboarding with the comments, "Haha failed physical? They cheat, everyone lets them," and "I'm ready. Just awaiting the call."

      Lupul is under contract through the end of this season but hasn't played since the 2015-16 season because of numerous injuries. The 33-year-old has 205 goals, 215 assists and 407 penalty minutes in 701 career games with the Anaheim Ducks, Edmonton Oilers, Philadelphia Flyers and Maple Leafs.

  • Cole signs with Hurricanes, then retires
    By The Sports Xchange / Wednesday, September 20, 2017

    Former Carolina Hurricanes forward Erik Cole signed a ceremonial one-day contract with the team and announced his retirement on Wednesday.

    • Cole, who hasn't played in the NHL in two seasons, immediately was named a team ambassador by Hurricanes president Don Waddell.

      The 38-year-old Cole, who helped Carolina win the Stanley Cup in 2006, played 8 1/2 of his 13 NHL seasons with the Hurricanes.

      Cole collected 265 goals and 267 assists in 892 career games since being selected by Carolina in the third round of the 1998 draft. He also played for the Edmonton Oilers, Montreal Canadiens, Dallas Stars and Detroit Red Wings.

  • Blues F Steen to miss training camp with hand injury
    By The Sports Xchange / Wednesday, September 20, 2017

    St. Louis Blues forward Alexander Steen will miss the remainder of training camp after suffering a left hand injury in the team's preseason opener Tuesday night in Dallas.

    • Steen, 33, will be re-evaluated in three weeks, Blues general manager Doug Armstrong announced Wednesday.

      Steen, who is entering his 10th season with the Blues, recorded 51 points (16 goals, 35 assists) in 76 regular-season games in 2016-17.

      The 6-foot, 211-pound native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, also appeared in 10 postseason games, tallying three goals and four assists.

      For his career, Steen owns 532 points (213 goals, 319 assists) in 822 regular-season games over 12 NHL seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs and Blues.

      The Blues are already without forward Zach Sanford, who will miss five to six months after dislocating his left shoulder during training camp, and defenseman Jay Bouwmeester, who has a left ankle fracture and will be re-evaluated in three weeks.

      The Blues open their season at Pittsburgh against the defending Stanley Cup champion Penguins on Oct. 4.

  • NHL notebook: Devils' Boyle has leukemia
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, September 19, 2017

    New Jersey Devils forward Brian Boyle has been diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia, the team announced Tuesday.

    • The type of leukemia Boyle was diagnosed with forms in bone marrow. Team doctor Michael Farber said it was discovered early and is treatable.

      The 32-year-old Boyle doesn't plan on being sidelined long, though the team doesn't yet have a formal timetable for his return.

      Boyle signed a two-year, $5.1 million deal in the offseason with the Devils. He knows the season opens on Oct. 7 and is keeping that date in mind in case his treatments go well.

      Boyle recorded 25 points (13 goals, 12 assists) last season while splitting time with Tampa Bay and Toronto.

      --The St. Louis Blues already are dealing with two significant injuries in training camp.

      Defenseman Jay Bouwmeester will be re-evaluated in three weeks after sustaining a fractured left ankle. The team also announced that forward Zach Sanford is expected to be sidelined five-to-six months after undergoing surgery for a dislocated left shoulder.

      Bouwmeester, 33, recorded one goal and 14 assists in 81 games last season. Sanford, 22, collected two goals and three assists in 13 games after being acquired in a Feb. 27 trade with the Washington Capitals for defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk.

      --Ottawa Senators forward Colin White sustained a broken left wrist and will be sidelined six to eight weeks, the team announced.

      White was injured while blocking a shot in the third period of Ottawa's preseason victory against the provincial-rival Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday. The 20-year-old Boston native already underwent surgery.

      White, who was selected by Ottawa with the 21st overall pick of the 2015 draft, joined the Senators in April after finishing his season at Boston College. He did not record a point in two regular-season games and one playoff contest with Ottawa last season.

      --Nashville Predators defenseman Roman Josi was named as the eighth captain in franchise history, the team announced.

      Josi, who was an alternate captain last season, will wear the "C" on his jersey after Mike Fisher announced his retirement on Aug. 3. Fisher was named Nashville's captain after defenseman Shea Weber was traded to the Montreal Canadiens in June 2016.

      Josi recorded 49 points (12 goals, 37 assists) and netted a career-high seven power-play goals last season.

  • Devils F Boyle diagnosed with leukemia
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, September 19, 2017

    New Jersey Devils forward Brian Boyle has been diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia, the team announced Tuesday.

    • The type of leukemia Boyle was diagnosed with forms in bone marrow. Team doctor Michael Farber said it was discovered early and is treatable.

      The 32-year-old Boyle doesn't plan on being sidelined long, though the team doesn't yet have a formal timetable for his return.

      "I don't like missing games," Boyle said on a conference call. "I feel as close to normal as you can feel."

      Boyle signed a two-year, $5.1 million deal in the offseason with the Devils. He knows the season opens on Oct. 7 and is keeping that date in mind in case his treatments go well.

      "We have a good plan of attack and I look forward to getting on the ice and playing," Boyle said

      He owns 93 goals and 169 points in 624 NHL games with the Los Angeles Kings, New York Rangers, Tampa Bay Lightning and Toronto Maple Leafs.

      Boyle recorded 25 points (13 goals, 12 assists) last season while splitting time with Tampa Bay and Toronto.

      He plans on being a contributor again in the near future.

      "I've been blessed so many times and in so many ways," Boyle said. "This is an opportunity for me. I plan on living a normal life."

  • Senators F White out with broken wrist
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, September 19, 2017

    Ottawa Senators forward Colin White sustained a broken left wrist and will be sidelined six to eight weeks, the team announced Tuesday.

    • White was injured while blocking a shot in the third period of Ottawa's preseason victory against the provincial-rival Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday. The 20-year-old Boston native already underwent surgery and was "devastated," according to general manager Pierre Dorion.

      "With some of the injuries up front, there was a spot there or a few spots there, but obviously he will not start the year (with the Senators)," Dorion told reporters.

      White, who was selected by Ottawa with the 21st overall pick of the 2015 draft, joined the Senators in April after finishing his season at Boston College. He did not record a point in two regular-season games and one playoff contest with Ottawa last season.

  • Blues lose Bouwmeester, Sanford to injuries
    By The Sports Xchange / Tuesday, September 19, 2017

    The NHL's preseason is in its infancy and the St. Louis Blues already are dealing with two significant injuries in training camp.

    • Defenseman Jay Bouwmeester will be re-evaluated in three weeks after sustaining a fractured left ankle. The team also announced that forward Zach Sanford is expected to be sidelined five-to-six months after undergoing surgery for a dislocated left shoulder.

      Bouwmeester recorded one goal and 14 assists in 81 games last season. The 33-year-old averaged 22:24 of ice time per contest.

      Sanford, 22, collected two goals and three assists in 13 games after being acquired in a Feb. 27 trade with the Washington Capitals for defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk.

  • C Koivu re-ups with Wild for two years
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, September 18, 2017

    The Minnesota Wild agreed to terms on a two-year contract extension with captain Mikko Koivu on Monday.

    • The deal for the 34-year-old center is worth $11 million, Wild general manager Cliff Fletcher said in a statement. He is now under contract through 2019-20.

      Koivu has played all 12 of his NHL seasons with Minnesota after the club drafted him with the No. 6 overall pick in 2001. He had 18 goals and 40 assists last season for his highest point total since 2010-11, and he compiled a career-best plus-27 rating.

      A finalist last season for the Selke Trophy, awarded annually to the league's top defensive forward, Koivu ranks first on the Wild's all-time list in a number of categories, including games, assists, points and game-winning goals. He is also tied for first with 11 postseason goals.

      Named the Wild's first team captain in 2009, Koivu has 179 goals and 614 points in 843 regular-season games.

  • Wild sign G Baribeau to entry-level contract
    By The Sports Xchange / Monday, September 18, 2017

    The Minnesota Wild signed goaltender Dereck Baribeau to a three-year, entry-level contract on Monday.

    • Baribeau, 18, appeared in two games for Minnesota at the Traverse City Prospect Tournament, stopping 49 of 56 shots for a 3.65 goals-against average and an .875 save percentage.

      The 6-foot-6, 199-pound native of Quebec City, Quebec, was ranked 10th amongst North American goalies by NHL Central Scouting for the 2017 draft.

      Baribeau was 12-15-2 with a 3.93 goals-against average, an .881 save percentage and one shutout in 35 games with Val-D'Or and Quebec last season in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. He went 0-2 with a 3.68 GAA and a .917 save percentage in two playoff starts.

  • Coyotes acquire D Demers from Panthers for McGinn
    By The Sports Xchange / Sunday, September 17, 2017

    The Arizona Coyotes acquired defenseman Jason Demers from the Florida Panthers in exchange for forward Jamie McGinn on Sunday.

    • The 6-foot, 201-pound Demers registered nine goals and 19 assists with the Panthers last season. He ranked second among Florida defensemen in points and goals and his nine goals were a career high. Demers also finished with 106 hits and 90 blocked shots.

      "We are very pleased to add Jason to our blueline corps," Coyotes general manager John Chayka said. "Jason is a skilled right-handed shot defenseman who moves the puck well and has good offensive ability. He will be a great addition to our team."

      McGinn, 29, recorded nine goals and eight assists in 72 games with Arizona last season. The 6-foot-1, 205-pounder has 100 goals and 84 assists in 522 NHL games for Arizona (2016-17), Anaheim (2016), Buffalo (2015-16), Colorado (2012-2015) and San Jose (2008-12).

      "Jamie brings size, skill and grit to our lineup and makes us a tougher team to play against," Panthers general manager Dale Tallon said. "He's played in over 500 NHL games and possesses a strong game on both sides of the puck. Jamie will be a welcome addition to our club as we move forward through training camp and into the season."

      Demers was originally drafted in the seventh round by San Jose in 2008. McGinn was also selected by the Sharks in the second round in 2006.

  • Ducks F Kesler without a timetable for return
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, September 15, 2017

    Anaheim Ducks forward Ryan Kesler is without a timetable to return to the ice after having offseason hip surgery, general manager Bob Murray announced on Friday.

    • Murray told the Los Angeles Times that he was hopeful that Christmas could be the return date for Kesler, who underwent hip surgery after the Ducks were eliminated by the Nashville Predators in the Western Conference final on May 22.

      "As of right now, there is no timeline whatsoever for Ryan Kesler," Murray said. "Basically he had to play the second half of last year with no ... he couldn't skate. He couldn't push off his right leg whatsoever so he's got to rebuild his total glute, quad, everything, and that's what they're in the process of doing right now. So I'm hopeful to have him back before Christmas, but that's all I'm going to say for right now.

      "We'll see. You know how Kes is. He's pushing it pretty good but we're also pushing back and just taking our time."

      Kesler, who won the Selke Trophy in 2011, collected 22 goals and 36 assists in 82 games last season. The 33-year-old scored one goal and set up seven others in 17 playoff games.

      Murray told the Los Angeles Times that he's projecting Nov. 1 as the return date for defenseman Sami Vatanen and Hampus Lindholm, who each needed labrum surgery.

      "They're looking fine, they're shooting the puck fine, but that's our future. We'll be pretty careful with this," Murray said. "I don't know who's going to play first. That doesn't matter. It will be 22 weeks as of Nov. 1 and they'll play sometime around that point in time."

  • Avalanche D Zadorov signs two-year deal
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, September 15, 2017

    Restricted free-agent defenseman Nikita Zadorov signed a two-year contract extension with the Colorado Avalanche, the team announced Friday.

    • Financial terms were not disclosed, but TSN's Pierre LeBrun reported the deal was worth $4.3 million with an average annual value of $2.15 million.

      Zadorov, 22, reportedly was receiving interest from the Kontinental Hockey League prior to signing the contract. The 6-foot-5, 230-pound Russian missed the first day of training camp on Thursday as he awaited a new contract.

      "Zadorov is a big, young, physical defenseman who was starting to emerge as one of our top D before his (ankle) injury last season," Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic said in release. "He's an important part of our blueline and we expect him to log big minutes this year. We are excited to have him under contract."

      Zadorov collected 10 assists and a team-best 153 hits in 56 games last season. He has four goals, 28 points and 140 penalty minutes in 145 career contests since being selected by Buffalo with the 16th overall pick of the 2013 draft.

  • Former NHL defenseman Picard dies at 78
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, September 15, 2017

    Former NHL defenseman Noel Picard died after a long battle with cancer, according to the St. Louis Blues. He was 78.

    • The Blues said Picard died last week in Montreal.

      Picard is the St. Louis player who appears in the iconic photo in which Bobby Orr of the Boston Bruins is horizontally flying through the air after scoring the overtime goal to win the 1970 Stanley Cup.

      Picard played six seasons with the Blues from 1967-73. He also played with the Montreal Canadians and Atlanta Flames.

      He scored 75 points (12 goals, 63 assists) in 335 regular-season games and had 13 points (two goals, 11 assists) in 50 playoff contests.

  • Capitals' Ovechkin expresses Olympic disappointment
    By The Sports Xchange / Friday, September 15, 2017

    Washington Capitals star winger Alex Ovechkin released a statement through the team late Thursday describing his disappointment with the NHL not participating in the upcoming Winter Olympics.

    • The statement comes after reports that the International Ice Hockey Federation, which oversees international competitions, teamed up with the NHL to block players from defying the North American league's directive, which Ovechkin was assumed to have on his agenda.

      "The Olympics are in my blood and everybody knows how much I love my country," Ovechkin's statement read. "Ever since I was a kid and all the time I have played in the NHL, NHL players have played in the Olympic Games. We never have to make choice between our team and our country my whole career. I love the Capitals and my teammates here as much as I love my country and I know all the other NHL players feel the same for their teams. We should not have to be in position to make this choice."

      The NHL has assurance from the IIHF that NHL players under contract will not be allowed to participate in the PyeongChang Games in February, theathletic.com reported.

      "I see the news this week and I am very disappointed that IOC, IIHF and NHL put me and all NHL players in this position when some of the best players in world do not have chance to play in the Olympic Games," Ovechkin said. "This is not just about me but all the NHL players who want to play and have a chance to win Gold for their country. Our countries are now not allowed to ask us to play in the Olympics. Me, my teammates and all players who want to go all lose. So do all the fans of hockey with this decision that we are not allowed to be invited. NHL players in the Olympics is good for hockey and good for Olympics. It sucks that will we not be there to play!!

      "I said every time I was asked since last Olympics that nobody is going to tell me I can't play because my country was going to be allowed to ask me. Now the IIHF and NHL say my country is not allowed to ask anybody in the NHL to play and there is nothing to talk about anymore. I talk to Ted about this last year and he support me and have my back and understand what I want to do if I was allowed to be asked to go. Me and my family thank him for his support.

      "There is nothing like Olympic Games. It is still my dream to win an Olympic Gold medal for my country. I hope things will change and all of us will have a chance to go again in 2022. What's most important to remember is kids have lots of dreams. My focus as it always is this time of year is on my other dream as a kid, to try to win the Stanley Cup. I am excited training camp has started in Washington and the time for talking is done. We just have to go out and do it and I will try my hardest to help my teammates win like I do every year since I came to the NHL."