All posts by Josh Wegman

Stars’ Shore out 7-10 days with lower-body injury

The Dallas Stars can't seem to catch a break.

Forward Devin Shore will be out for seven-to-10 days after suffering a lower-body injury during Monday's game against the Columbus Blue Jackets, head coach Jim Montgomery announced postgame.

Shore's injury occurred in the same game in which Alexander Radulov made his return to the lineup after a six-game absence. The Stars recently lost defenseman John Klingberg for a month due to a hand injury.

Fellow blue-liners Marc Methot and Connor Carrick will also require more time to recover from their ailments, according to DallasStars.com's Mike Heika.

Shore isn't a household name league-wide, but he entered Monday in a tie for fourth on the team in points with 11 and had enjoyed success skating on the team's top line alongside Tyler Seguin.

The 24-year-old was Dallas' second-round pick in 2012.

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Report: Coyotes’ Chychrun to make season debut Tuesday vs. Red Wings

Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun will be activated off injured reserve and make his season debut Tuesday against the Detroit Red Wings, according to 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s John Gambadoro.

Chychrun suffered a season-ending knee injury on April 3, 2018 after he was slew-footed by Calgary Flames forward Michael Frolik.

Arizona selected Chychrun 16th overall in the 2016 NHL Draft. The 20-year-old has already logged 118 career NHL games across two seasons, scoring 11 goals and adding 23 assists.

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Fantasy: 5 moves you need to make in Week 6

Every Monday, theScore will offer a weekly fantasy hockey column detailing five moves you should make. Ownership percentages (as of Nov. 11) and position eligibility are courtesy of Yahoo.

Scoop up David Rittich

Team: Flames
Position: G
Ownership: 19 percent

David Rittich is on the verge of stealing the Calgary Flames' No. 1 job from Mike Smith, despite the latter's strong showing Sunday. Rittich owns a .935 save percentage and a 1.91 goals-against average compared to Smith's .877 save percentage and 3.51 goals-against average. At the very least, Rittich has played himself into a timeshare and needs to be owned in all leagues.

Add Miro Heiskanen

Andre Ringuette / National Hockey League / Getty

Team: Stars
Position: D
Ownership: 41 percent

John Klingberg's injury was a blow for the Dallas Stars, but Miro Heiskanen stands to benefit greatly in fantasy circles.

The smooth-skating rookie defenseman logged 29:26 in Dallas' first game without Klingberg. While that tilt did enter overtime, Heiskanen is primed for a significantly larger role with the Stars' top puck mover expected to be out of the lineup for a month. Not only will Heiskanen garner more ice time at even strength, but he's also been promoted to the team's top power-play unit.

Heiskanen was already gaining confidence prior to Klingberg's injury, tallying three points in his last four games.

Drop Kasperi Kapanen

Team: Maple Leafs
Position: RW
Ownership: 55 percent

Auston Matthews' absence from the Maple Leafs' lineup has affected Kasperi Kapanen's fantasy value more than anyone else's, and not in a good way.

Stat Pre-Matthews injury Post-Matthews injury
GP 11 6
G 6 0
A 4 2
P 10 2
SOG 25 6

It's safe to drop Kapanen for now, but he can be re-added once Matthews returns - assuming he regains his role on Matthews' wing.

Buy low on William Nylander

Claus Andersen / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Team: Maple Leafs
Position: C/RW
Ownership: 71 percent

The Maple Leafs have reportedly begun testing the trade market for unsigned forward William Nylander. If he isn't signed by Dec. 1, he will be forced to sit out the entire season, giving the Leafs a tight deadline.

Now would be the time to buy low on Nylander in fantasy. Such a move should only be made if you're comfortably near the top of your league standings given the risk that he won't play at all in 2018-19.

If Nylander's owner in your league is near the bottom of the standings, they may be willing to trade the dynamic forward for a fraction of his actual value.

Give Neal Pionk a chance

Team: Rangers
Position: D
Ownership: 26 percent

If you're looking for help on defense and Heiskanen is already owned in your league, turn to Neal Pionk. The 23-year-old has three goals in his last four games and has found himself quarterbacking the New York Rangers' top power-play unit.

Pionk may not be a permanent fix, but New York has been red-hot lately, and the second-year blue-liner could continue to benefit.

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Oilers GM: Puljujarvi, Yamamoto need to regain confidence in AHL

The Edmonton Oilers surprised some Saturday when they sent former first-round picks Jesse Puljujarvi and Kailer Yamamoto to the AHL after the pair combined for just two goals and one assist to open the season.

Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli discussed the decision on Sunday.

"I think, broadly speaking, I'd like them to get more touches," Chiarelli told Derek Van Diest of the Edmonton Sun. "With Jesse, it's about getting his confidence back. I thought he had a strong camp and it didn't translate to the start of the season. You could see some of the frustration in his game, but having said that, there was some maturity in his game too, so we just have to build it back up a little bit. It's easier to do that down there with more minutes and a little more latitude and margin for error.

"With Yamo, I thought he played pretty well as a complementary player. He was responsible, he supported things without the puck, he was good on the PK. We took him out of the game, he sat a little bit and it was confidence. For him, it's about finishing, going down there and finishing his opportunities. He did have a lot of opportunities when he was up here and I didn't want his confidence to struggle either."

Puljujarvi, the 2016 fourth overall pick, has totaled 32 points in 49 career AHL games, compared to just 29 points in 104 NHL contests.

"He was disappointed," Chiarelli said about Puljujarvi's multiple trips between the big club and the Bakersfield Condors. "We've done it each year with him, he was disappointed."

Yamamoto, the No. 22 pick in 2017, returned to the WHL's Spokane Chiefs last year after a nine-game stint with the Oilers, so this will be his first taste of the AHL.

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Report: Maple Leafs engaging in trade dialogue involving Nylander

The Toronto Maple Leafs have asked teams to indicate what they would offer in exchange for William Nylander, according to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman.

"Word is they have asked teams to inform them who teams or interested parties would not be willing to move, and also to begin preparing formal offers for the unsigned Toronto winger," Friedman said during Hockey Night in Canada's Headlines segment on Saturday night.

Maple Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas declined to comment, Friedman added.

Nylander is a restricted free agent who's entrenched in a contract stalemate with the Maple Leafs. If the two sides can't agree on a deal by Dec. 1, Nylander will be forced to sit out the remainder of the season.

Toronto's Stanley Cup window is wide open, so going a full year without Nylander - or failing to receive assets in return for a dynamic winger - is certainly not ideal.

Both Nylander's camp and Dubas have said they'd prefer a long-term contract instead of a short-term bridge deal.

Dubas has previously stated he doesn't want to trade Nylander, but it appears that thought process might be changing because of the fast-approaching deadline.

Nylander, Toronto's eighth overall pick in 2014, is coming off back-to-back 61-point seasons with the Maple Leafs.

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Golden Knights’ Pacioretty denies asking for trade out of Montreal

Who's telling the truth?

Montreal Canadiens owner Geoff Molson and general manager Marc Bergevin both stated two months ago that Max Pacioretty requested a trade out of La Belle Province.

However, in an interview with Sportsnet's Christine Simpson that aired prior to Pacioretty's return to Montreal on Saturday, the Canadiens' former captain refuted Molson's statement.

"I don’t agree with that," Pacioretty said. "Heated conversations like that could get taken in different ways. I don’t believe that that’s what I said and I’ll just leave it at that."

The Pacioretty trade had long been rumored before he was dealt to the Vegas Golden Knights on Sept. 9 in exchange for forward Tomas Tatar, prospect Nick Suzuki, and a second-round pick. Pacioretty said he was well aware the trade was being discussed.

"I knew there was a very likely chance I was going to get traded," Pacioretty said of his awkward interactions with Bergevin and Molson at his charity golf tournament just before the trade. "You try to not let it affect you. I’m a guy though, that’s very incapable of hiding things. (I’m a) pretty honest person where if something is bothering me, most people around me know, and maybe that led to that awkwardness."

Pacioretty's tenure in Sin City is off to a slow start, as he had recorded just two goals and zero assists in 12 games entering Saturday night.

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Oilers send former 1st-rounders Puljujarvi, Yamamoto to AHL

The Edmonton Oilers have assigned forwards Jesse Puljujarvi and Kailer Yamamoto to the AHL, the team announced on Saturday.

Puljujarvi, selected fourth overall in 2016, and Yamamoto, chosen with the 22nd pick the following year, have both struggled mightily this season. They've combined for just two goals and one assist through Edmonton's first 16 games.

Yamamoto was even used briefly on the club's top line alongside Connor McDavid, but he still failed to produce. Meanwhile, Puljujarvi has been in and out of the lineup and often a healthy scratch.

It's still far too early to write off either of these 20 year olds, but it's safe to say their NHL careers haven't started the way the Oilers had hoped.

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Reliving Blake Wheeler’s spectacular 5-point night vs. Avalanche

Blake Wheeler had quite the game on Friday night.

The Winnipeg Jets captain had a hand in every one of his team's goals during a 5-2 victory over the Colorado Avalanche. He tallied three primary assists, two points on the power play, and an empty-net goal to put the icing on the cake.

Wheeler's first assist was not his prettiest of the night, but it counted.

On his second helper, he fed Mark Scheifele a quick one-touch pass, and the center beat goaltender Semyon Varlamov on the short side. If either Wheeler or Scheifele hesitates at all, Varlamov likely has enough time to get over and hug the post.

On his third point of the night - and his 400th career assist - Wheeler shows incredible patience before setting up Nikolaj Ehlers' goal. After the game, Scheifele described the feed as "dangling that dollar bill in front of the (defenseman)," according to Mike McIntyre of the Winnipeg Free Press.

Wheeler seemed to get better as the game went on, dishing a beautiful saucer pass to Patrik Laine for his third primary assist.

Wheeler then fittingly sealed the win for his team with an empty-net goal.

The Jets forward showed why he's one of the league's premier playmakers, and an underrated star, on Friday night.

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Report: Former NHL players close to $18.9M settlement in concussion lawsuit

The class-action concussion lawsuit former NHL players filed in 2016 is close to being settled for $18.9 million, according to Forbes' Mike Ozanian. The players would get $6.9 million as a group, which is $22,000 per player.

The case is about NHL players who say they suffered concussions during their playing careers, whether the league and its teams did enough to ensure player safety at the time, and what responsibility the league has today.

In an email obtained by Forbes, the law firm representing the former players recommends that its clients accept the league's settlement offer.

Dan Carcillo, who played in 429 NHL games, is one of more than 100 former players involved in the lawsuit. Carcillo led the league in penalty minutes twice and suffered numerous concussions during his career.

In March, he talked about his reasons for joining the lawsuit.

"I'm not a bitter guy looking to hurt the NHL," Carcillo said. "I'm not out for money. I'll donate anything I get to research. I just want to put pressure on the NHL and educate and advocate for guys."

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Senators ban Ottawa Citizen reporter from team charter after Uber scandal

The aftermath of the Ottawa Senators' Uber scandal has taken another turn.

The Ottawa Citizen - the newspaper that posted the video of seven Sens players trash talking assistant coach Marty Raymond while they were unknowingly being recorded during an Uber ride in Arizona - said on Friday that the club banned longtime reporter Ken Warren from the team's charter, according to the Canadian Press.

This comes after the Citizen rejected the team's request to remove the video from its website on Wednesday.

Warren had been given his usual travel itinerary, but upon arriving at the airport was told he couldn't board the team's flight to Tampa Bay.

"I can confirm it happened this morning," said the paper's editor-in-chief Michelle Richardson. "For us, it doesn’t really change our fundamentals. We’re still committed to covering the Senators, both the good and the bad. Our coverage is important to our readers and to their fans and that’s not going to change."

This isn't the first time the Senators have banned a reporter from the team's charter, according to Postmedia's Michael Traikos.

TSN's Brent Wallace also lost his seat on the plane last year after asking owner Eugene Melnyk about a report that suggested he had been withholding bonus money from his employees. Melnyk denied the allegation, but once the cameras were turned off, bystanders saw him turn to Wallace and say, "I’m going to bury you," according to Traikos.

Traikos adds that the Senators are the lone remaining NHL club to allow reporters to travel with the team, but Sylvain St-Laurent of Le Droit is one of the few who still has a seat.

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