-Sidney Crosby will be a little busy this calendar year.
-How much does Sergei Gonchar's (above) age figure into the Penguins future plans with him?
-According to the Washington Post, the NHL is informally discussing a potential Winter Classic between the Penguins and Capitals at a Pittsburgh venue.
-Matt Cooke talks about his day with the Stanley Cup last year (That's sobering to say):
-Chris Capraro had two goals for the Wheeling Nailers who edged the Tolledo Walleye, 3-2. The Nailers have won four consecutive games.
-Happy 52nd birthday to former Penguins forward Dave Hunter. Hunter came to Pittsburgh along with Paul Coffey and Wayne Van Dorp in a 1987 trade that sent Craig Simpson, Dave Hannan, Moe Mantha and Chris Joseph to Edmonton. He finished the 1987-88 season with the Penguins appearing in 59 games and recording 29 points.
-Former Penguin Erik Christensen had a goal and an assist for the Rangers in a 2-1 win at Carolina. Fire Ray Shero. Teammate Marian Gaborik added two assists while Henrik Lundqvist (above) made all of 17 saves in the win. The Hurricanes have lost three out of their past four games.
-Say... You don't suppose these two might be related?
-The Flyers will start goaltender Michael Leighton in today's Winter Classic. He has spurred on their four-game winning streak.
-Philadelphia forward Daniel Carcillo and Jeff Carter spearheaded a snowball attack on teammate Scott Hartnell during yesterday's practice.
-Shootout goals by former Penguin Alex Kovalev, Mike Fisher and Ryan Shannon (above, beating New York's Dwayne Roloson) gave the Islanders a 3-2 win against the Islanders. Fire Craig Patrick. Pascal Leclaire made 25 saves in the victory. The Senators have won three out of their past four games.
-New York's Andy Sutton tagged Ottawa's Nick Foligno here:
-Islanders captain Doug Weight returned to the lineup after being sidelined since Nov. 6 due to a "lower-body" injury.
-Andrei Markov had three assists and helped the Canadiens beat the Panthers, 5-4. Teammates Brian Gionta and Scott Gomez each had two assists for Montreal while Jaroslav Halak made 32 saves in the win. The Canadiens have won six out of their past seven games. Nathan Horton led Florida with a goal and an assist. The Panthers have lost three consecutive games.
-Check out this goal by Montreal's Benoit Pouliot:
-Check out this goal by Florida's Keith Ballard:
-Happy times for Pouliot:
-Montreal's Maxim Lapierre had issues with Ballard:
-The Canadiens played in Florida, but you would've never have guessed it based on this photo of Canadiens coach Jacque Martin. Check out all the jerseys behind him:
-The weather is expected to be nearly perfect for the Winter Classic in Boston. Snow showers and a high of 32 degrees.
-It pretty much snowed all day yesterday during the Bruins' and Flyers' practices.
-"It was surreal. It was really cool." - Bruins defenseman Dennis Wideman on the conditions.
-"It’s still going to be fun, but we know there are two points in hand, and we want to grab those."- Bruins forward Marc Savard on remembering that the Winter Classic is still a regular season game.
-"I’d rather score a goal than to be in the first fight in a Winter Classic. But if it happens, it happens. It’s another game to me." - Bruins tough guy Shawn Thornton on the possiblity of rough stuff in today's game.
-Bruins goaltenders Tuukka Rask and Tim Thomas each had special masks made up for today's game. Rask's has a bear ripping apart a Yankees jersey apart.
-The Boston Globe has a pretty cool photo gallery of Fenway Park up.
-Speaking of photos... Fenway Park:
-The Flyers getting their skate guards checked:
-The Bruins taking some photos:
-The Flyers take their photo:
-Chris Pronger bring Scott Hartnell his morning feeding:
-Brian Boucher keeping his head toasty:
-Tim Thomas is a happy camper:
-Thomas taking a skate in the snow:
-Mark Recchi getting in some work with a snow shovel:
-Savard catching some snow flakes with his tounge:
-The Bruins meeting during a practice:
-The 2000s were bumpy for the Sabres.
-Canadiens forward Sergei Kostitsyn is dealing with a "lower-body" injury.
-Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau went all Herb Brooks on his team in practice yesterday a day after they were spanked in san Jose.
-Scoreboard Watch for the Penguins: Jonathan Toews had a goal and an assist for the Blackhawks in a 5-1 defeat of the Devils. Cristobal Huet (above) made 26 saves in the victory which was Chicago's fourth out of five games. The Devils are in first place in the Eastern Conference and Atlantic Division with 57 points, four more than the Penguins who are in fourth and second place respectively.
-Blackhawks forward John Madden got a goal against his former team.
-Happy times for the Blackhawks. Madden:
-Troy Brouwer and Brian Campbell:
-The Devils suffered their worst lost of the season.
-We're assuming no one with ties to the Penguins organization shot this puck:
-Two goals from Darren Helm helped the Red Wings beat the Avalanche, 4-2. Teammate Nicklas Lidstrom added two assists while Jimmy Howard made 20 saves in the victory. Brandon Yip led Colorado with two goals.
-Happy times for Lidstrom and Helm:
-David Legwand's overtime goal gave the Predators a 2-1 win against the rival Blue Jackets. Joel Ward had two assists while Dan Ellis made 31 saves in the victory. The Predators are 22-2-1 against Columbus over the past four years. The Blue Jackets have lost 11 out of their past 12 games.
-The Blackhawks signed defenseman Shawn Lalonde, a 2008 second-round pick, to a three-year entry-level contract.
-A knee injury will sideline Predators forward Martin Erat seven to 10 days.
-Christian Ehrhoff's overtime goal gave the Canucks a 4-3 win at St. Louis. Daniel and Henrik Sedin each had a goal and an assist for Vancouver while Roberto Luongo made 23 saves in the victory which was the Canucks' fourth out of their past five games. Andy McDonald had a goal and an assist for St. Louis which lost its fourth consecutive game.
-Fight of the Night: Vancouver's Rick Rypien versus St. Louis Cam Janssen:
-Rypien was actually kicked out for having a piece of tape on his hand.
-Curtis McElhinney made 21 saves for the Flames in a 2-1 defeat of the rival Oilers. Calgary has won three in a row overall and five consecutive games against Edmonton. The Oilers have lost eight of nine games.
-Cool Photo of the Night: Calgary's Olli Jokinen falling/diving in front of Edmonton's Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers:
-Ryane Clowe's shootout goal gave the Sharks a 3-2 win at Phoenix. Thomas Greiss (above, stopping Phoenix's Keith Yandle) made 34 saves in the victory which was the seventh in a row for San Jose. The Coyotes had a 10-game home winning streak snapped.
-Alexander Frolov had two goals and an assist for the Kings in a 5-2 win at Minnesota. Teammate Michael Handzus added a goal and an assist while goaltender Jonathan Quick made 27 saves in the victory which snapped a four-game losing streak.
-Happy times for Frolov and Oscar Moller:
-Minnesota's Niklas Backstrom had some issues with this puck:
-Wild forward and former Penguin Petr Sykora returned to the lineup after missing 25 games due to a concussion.
-A hat trick by Loui Eriksson led the Stars to a 5-3 defeat of the Ducks. Brad Richards added a goal and two assists for Dallas while teammate Stephane Robidas added a goal and an assist. Marty Turco made 31 saves in the victory. Saku Koivu had two goals for Anaheim which has lost three out of four games.
-There's a zen to this photo of Anaheim's Kyle Chipchura and Dallas' Steve Ott:
-Anaheim's Jonas HIller has some issues with this puck:
-Turco made this save on Anaheim's Corey Perry:
-Anaheim's Mike Brown (in white) had some issues with Dallas' Brian Sutherby:
-"He’s not the brightest guy." - Kings defenseman Sean O'Donnell on Flames defenseman Dion Phaneuf.
-Happy 93rd birthday to former Pittsburgh Hornets forward Ossie Aubuchon.
-Today would've been the 101st birthday to former Pittsburgh Yellow Jackets forward Doc Romnes.
IIHF World Championships
-Shootout goals by prospects Jordan Eberle (Oilers), Nazem Kadri (Maple Leafs) and Brandon Kozun (Kings) gave Canada a 5-4 win against the United States.
-Two goals by Devils prospect Jacob Josefson helped Sweden rout rival Finland, 7-1.
-Islanders prospect Kirill Petrov had a goal and and assist for Russia in a 5-2 defeat of the Czech Republic.
-Nino Niederreiter (what an awesome name) had two goals and an assist for Swtizerland in a 4-1 defeat of Slovakia.
(Photos: Gonchar-Rick Stewart/Getty Images; Lundqvist and Staals-Sara D. Davis/Associated Press; Shannon and Sutton-Fred Chartrand/Canadian Press; Pouliot, Lapierre and Martin-Steve Mitchell/Associated Press; Fenway Park-Elise Amendola/Associated Press and Elsa/Getty Images; Huet, Madden, Brouwer, Eager and Brodeur-Paul Beaty/Associated Press; Lidstrom-Carlos Osorio/Associated Press; Ehrhoff-Bill Boyce/Associated Press; Jokinen-Jeff McIntosh/Candian Press; Greiss-Rick Scuteri/Associated Press; Chipchura, Hiller, Turco and Brown-Brandon Wade/Associated Press; Moller and Backstrom-Andy King/Associated Press)