NHL RETURNS FROM OLYMPIC BREAK
The NHL returns to action following the 2014 Olympic Winter Games, during which 63 NHLers – representing 25 of the League’s 30 clubs – won a medal.
A reminder of where the NHL stands as it returns from the break:
* A wide-open playoff race features 25 teams holding a playoff berth or within four points of one.
* A close race at the top of the standings has the Ducks, Blues, Blackhawks and Penguins separated by just four points in the battle for the Presidents’ Trophy.
* Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby (28-50—78) holds an 11-point lead in the NHL scoring race; Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin already has tallied 40 goals, nine more than his closest pursuer; New Jersey Devils forward Jaromir Jagr, who is two goals shy of 700 for his NHL career, is the team’s leader in goals (17), assists (32), points (49), plus-minus (+21) and shots (151); and Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury has a League-leading 31 wins in 47 appearances, a pace that could see him challenge the single-season record of 48 held by Martin Brodeur.
OUTDOOR GAME GUIDE
The latest edition of the NHL Outdoor Game Interactive Information Guide, including updated stats from the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series, is available for download via the League’s Media site. The guide features information on the Chicago Blackhawks-Pittsburgh Penguins and Vancouver Canucks-Ottawa Senators rivalries as well as a register and records of outdoor games.
UPCOMING DATES OF NOTE
Thursday, Feb. 27 – “NHL Revealed: A Season Like No Other” returns with a special, two-hour episode from the 2014 Olympic Winter Games (8:00 p.m. ET on CBC / 10:00 p.m. ET on NBCSN). Click here for a sneak peek.
Friday, Feb. 28 – Start of USA Hockey’s Hockey Weekend Across America.
Saturday, March 1 – 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series: Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Chicago Blackhawks @ Soldier Field (7:00 p.m. CT / 8:00 p.m. ET, NBC, SiriusXM Radio). Sidney Crosby’s first regular-season game in Chicago since 2006, his rookie year.
Sunday, March 2 – 2014 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic: Ottawa Senators vs. Vancouver Canucks @ BC Place (1:00 p.m. PT / 4:00 p.m. ET, CBC, RDS, NBCSN, SiriusXM Radio).
Wednesday, March 5 – Trade Deadline (3:00 p.m. ET).
Thursday, March 6 – The Detroit Red Wings retire Nicklas Lidstrom’s number (vs. Colorado Avalanche).
Friday, March 7 – The Calgary Flames honor Joe Nieuwendyk with a “Forever a Flame” banner (vs. New York Islanders).
Saturday, March 8 – The Dallas Stars retire Mike Modano’s number (vs. Minnesota Wild).
Monday, March 10 – General Managers’ Meeting, Boca Raton, Fla. (through March 12).
Tuesday, March 18 – Former Canadiens star Patrick Roy is scheduled to bring his Colorado Avalanche to Montreal for the first time.
Thursday, March 20 – Ex-Devil Zach Parise is scheduled to return to Prudential Center for the first time as a member of the Minnesota Wild.
Thursday, March 27 – The Chicago Blackhawks and Boston Bruins are scheduled to meet in their only matchup at TD Garden of the season.
Tuesday, April 1 – Former Canucks head coach Alain Vigneault is scheduled to make his regular-season return to Vancouver as the head coach of the New York Rangers.
Sunday, April 13 – The 2013-14 regular season concludes with 10 games.
Monday, April 14 (TBC) – NHL Draft Lottery.
Wednesday, April 16 – Stanley Cup Playoffs begin.
SNEAK PEEK AT TUESDAY’S ACTION
All Times Eastern
Carolina @ Buffalo, 7:00 p.m., NHLN-US, SPSO, MSG-B, BELL TV
HURRICANES VISIT SABRES IN FIRST GAME FOLLOWING BREAK
The NHL resumes its regular season when the Carolina Hurricanes visit the Buffalo Sabres in a makeup of their Jan. 7 game that was postponed due to hazardous weather conditions in Buffalo (NHL Game No. 647). The Hurricanes are 5-0-1 in their last six games versus the Sabres, including a 5-3 victory in their first meeting of the season Jan. 23. Overall, Carolina is 6-3-0 in its past nine games, while Buffalo lost its last four outings prior to the Olympic break.
Chicago Blackhawks defensemen Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook will make a guest appearance on tonight’s episode of “Chicago Fire” (10:00 p.m. ET, NBC) . . . Milan Hejduk announced his retirement from hockey. The 38-year-old forward played 14 seasons in the NHL, all with the Colorado Avalanche, compiling 375-430—805 in 1,020 regular-season games. He also played in 112 playoff games (34-42—76), helping the team capture the Stanley Cup in 2000-01.