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Canada’s preparation for world junior hockey championship continues to face hurdles

A Canadian team already short on game reps ahead of the world junior men’s hockey championship in Edmonton must recalibrate yet again with the cancellation of one of its two pre-tournament games. Wednesday’s exhibition game against Russia is the only time Canada, limited to intrasquad games so far, will play against anyone other than themselves before the host country’s Boxing Day opener against Germany. Canada’s pre-tournament game Monday against Sweden at Rogers Place came off the schedule. Coming out of a mandatory four-day quarantine for all...

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NHL teams in new divisions with realignment for 2020-21 season

Seven based in Canada make up one of four; intradivisional games only The 31 NHL teams will be realigned in four new divisions for this season, including one for the seven teams based in Canada. "Pretty neat you get to see those other teams a little bit more and have an appreciation for what they do," Montreal Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher said in November, according to the Canadian Press. "And at the same time, there's a little bit of pride involved when you're...

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2021 World Junior Championship rosters

Kings top NHL again with nine prospects; country, NHL affiliation for all participants The Los Angeles Kings will have an NHL-best nine prospects playing in the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship. It's the second straight season the Kings will have the most prospects; they had nine at the 2020 WJC. Among the players participating in the tournament are their three most-recent first-round picks in the NHL Draft: Canada forward Quinton Byfield (No. 2, 2020), United States forward Alex Turcotte (No. 5, 2019)...

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Insider Trading: Layering impact of roster size slowing down talks between NHL, NHLPA

If the NHL season is going to start on the targeted date of Jan. 13, players will need to start quarantining this weekend. What’s holding things up as time gets scarcer and scarcer? Dreger: Well, a lot of things but to simplify it, there are so many issues around roster size, taxi squads, how that’s going to impact the American Hockey League as an example. Will waivers be required for players to clear to be placed on a taxi squad? How...

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Four NHL teams exploring possibility of playing outdoor home games

Let’s begin this quickie blog with a caveat: it’s a long shot. But…at least four NHL teams are investigating the possibility of playing home games in outdoor stadia if it will allow them to have fans in attendance. Again, there are no guarantees in COVID times, “but it is being explored,” one executive said Wednesday. None of the clubs would comment, but they are Anaheim, Boston, Los Angeles and Pittsburgh. According to multiple sources, it was the Kings who first considered the...

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Pain of Patrick Roy’s trade from Canadiens still resonates 25 years later

MONTREAL — We lived on a corner lot, in a semi-detached house on Normandy Drive — one of the widest and least travelled streets in the Town of Mount Royal, just a 15-minute car ride from the Montreal Forum. It was a street tailored for road hockey, with maple trees lining a perfectly paved, Y-shaped playing area, partitioned by a small park that served as a backstop for our net (if you missed, the ball didn't travel as far...

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Former teammates, rivals wish Guy Lafleur well in cancer battle

MONTREAL -- During his storied playing career, Guy Lafleur had a host of other superstars on his side. Now, as the Montreal Canadiens great battles lung cancer, he once again is getting support from his brethren. In a video posted to the NHL's Twitter account, numerous retired stars offered their best wishes and fond memories of Lafleur. Former Canadiens Rejean Houle, Mario Tremblay, Chris Nilan, Steve Begin, Doug Jarvis and others were joined by players from rival squads such as former...

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AHL leaning on NHL ahead of uncertain season, with questions aplenty

EDMONTON — It’s all about the money, this whole return-to-play thing. We get it: cash and pro sports go together like Kraft and Dinner, so why would the NHL be any different? While the NHL tries to put a number on just how much money they are willing to lose while pounding a rounded version of the 2020-21 season through an increasingly square hole, its primary development league is waiting patiently for a turn at Commissioner Gary Bettman’s negotiating table. And...

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HOCKEY CANADA STATEMENT ON NATIONAL JUNIOR TEAM SPORT CHEK SELECTION CAMP

Today’s Red-White game postponed due to COVID-19 RED DEER, Alta. – The following is a statement on behalf of Hockey Canada from Scott Salmond, senior vice-president of national teams, on Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Selection Camp. “Hockey Canada confirmed earlier today that two players at Canada’s National Junior Team Sport Chek Selection Camp have tested positive for COVID-19, and have been placed in quarantine at the team hotel in Red Deer. Upon learning of the positive test this morning, the decision...

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Moscow to Replace Minsk as Worlds Host

Latvia will still host the other half of the prestigious tournament, but the IIHF is reportedly moving on from controversial Belarus. The Hockey News has learned that the IIHF plans on moving part of the 2021 World Championship, leaving Belarus' capital of Minsk in favor of Moscow. Latvia, the co-host of the event, will not be affected. Belarus has been at the center of controversy both globally and in international hockey circles since an August election where longtime leader Alexander Lukashenko...

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