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The Daily Puck: Gagne Getting it Together

Kevin King

Kevin is a suffering Tottenham supporter living in Buffalo, New York, where also suffers from being a Buffalo Bills fan. He covers Major League Soccer and the English Premier League for Rotowire.

The Daily Puck
by Kevin King

- The Pens look punchless without Malkin and Sid. The Caps, not known for their defensive play, stone-walled Pittsburgh on Sunday afternoon.
- The All-Star Game is a week behind us now, so we can definitely start looking at the conference standings, and thinking playoffs. Six teams (Minnesota, Calgary, Chicago, Colorado, Columbus, St. Louis) in the West who are out right now have a legitimate shot at jumping into the top-8. The East will be insane if Tampa can hang on and win the Southeast division. That could feasibly set up a first round Caps/Pens match-up.

Atlanta (Ondrej Pavelec) vs. Toronto (J.S Giguere), 7:00 p.m

Atlanta injuries:

Toby Enstron (D) - Out with broken finger. Could miss up to three weeks.
Freddy Meyer (D) - Out for undetermined amount of time after what looked like a concussion last week.

Toronto injuries:

Mike Brown (LW) - Out four-to-six weeks with broken finger

N.Y Rangers (Martin Biron) vs. Detroit (Jimmy Howard), 7:00 p.m

Rangers injuries:

Chris Drury (C) - Doubtful for Monday night after having fluid drained fom his knee over the weekend.
Derek Boogaard (LW) - Out with concussion with no timetable for his return.

Detroit injuries:

Pavel Datsyuk (C) - Will play on Monday night after missing time with hand injury.
Tomas Holmstrom (LW) - Out for Mondya night's game against the Rangers.

Edmonton (Devan Dubnyk) vs. Nashville (Pekka Rinne), 8:00 p.m

Edmonton injuries:

No Significant Injury News

Nashville injuries:

No Significant Injury News

Chicago (Corey Crawford) vs. Calgary (Miikka Kiprusoff), 9:30 p.m

Chicago injuries:

John Scott (D) - Questionable for Monday night as he battles the flu

Calgary injuries:

Niklas Hagman (LW) - Doubtful for Monday night with an unknown ailment.

Colorado (Craig Anderson) vs. Phoenix (Ilya Bryzgalov), 9:30 p.m

Colorado injuries:

Ryan O'Reilly (C) - Doubtful for Monday night with shoulder injury.

Phoenix injuries:

Ed Jovanovski (D) - Highly questionable whether or not he'll play Monday night after he was supposed to return on Satrduay and did not.
Vernon Fiddler (C) - Out with upper body injury, but is getting much closer to a return.

Ottawa (Robing Lehner) vs. Vancouver (Roberto Luongo), 10:00 p.m

Ottawa injuries:

Matt Carkner (D) - Doubtful for Monday night with lower body injury

Vancouver injuries:

Aaron Volpatti (LW) - Out with rib injury but should be back this week.
Lee Sweatt (D) - Out with foot injury
Alexandre Bolduc (C) - Out for Monday night with shoulder injury, but is very close to a return.
Tanner Glass (LW) - Doubtful for Monday night as he battles an illness.
Andrew Alberts (D) - Expected to be on the ice Monday night after being out since January 16 with a shoulder injury.
Sami Salo (D) - Out for Monday night but should return by the end of the week if all goes well with his rehab stint with Manitoba (AHL)


Ray Emery (G) - Signed one-year contract with Anaheim
Lee Sweatt (D) Vancouver - Voided Sweatt's assignment to Manitoba (AHL)


Who's Hot

Corey Perry (RW) Anaheim - Perry has three goals and two assists in the last two games for the Ducks, while posting a plus-2.
Brent Seabrook (D) Chicago - Seabrook is rolling, with four assists in Chicago's last two games. Unfortunately for the Hawks, their struggles to keep pucks out of the net continue, but Seabrook's offense is doing enough offensively to help offset their shortcomings on the blue-line.
Tim Thomas (G) Boston - Timmy just keeps lighting it up for the B's. Thomas has five wins in the last seven, with a staggering 1.44 goals-against and .955 save percentage over that stretch.

Who's Cold

Kari Lehtonen (G) Dallas - Lehtonen has been flat out brutal in his last five starts. There's no nice way to put it. He has one win in the last five, while managing to only stop 88% of the shots he sees.
Rene Bourque (LW/RW) Calgary - It has been eight games since Bourque has gotten on the scoresheet for the Flames. Bourque got off to a terrific start, but that has come to a screeching halt really since January 1.

Recommended Pickup

Simon Gagne (LW) Tampa Bay - Gagne's season in Tampa Bay hasn't gone nearly as well as many had thought, but lately Gagne has stepped it up. He was injured for the first part of the season, but as he grows healthier and healthier he could be a very sneaky pick-up.