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About the Canadiens - 01-22-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

A preview of the Canadiens.

When and where: 7 p.m. EST. Consol Energy Center.

TV: Root Sports, TSN, RDS.

Record: 27-15-5, 59 points. The Canadiens are in third place in the Atlantic Division.

Leading Scorer: P.K. Subban, 35 points (8 goals, 27 assists).

Last Game: 5-3 road loss to the Maple Leafs, Saturday. Carey Price made 25 saves for the Canadiens.

Last Game against the Penguins: 3-2 home win, Nov. 23. Max Pacioretty (right) scored two goals for the Canadiens.

Canadiens Player We Would Bet Money On Scoring: Pacioretty. He has a four-game point-scoring streak.

Ex-Penguins on the Canadiens: Marc Bergevin, general manager; Jean-Jacques Daigneault, assistant coach; Douglas Murray, D; Michel Therrien, head coach.

Ex-Canadiens on the Penguins: Jacques Martin, assistant coach; Tomas Vokoun, G.

Useless Canadiens Trivia Vaguely Related to the Penguins: The Czech-born Vokoun, who made his NHL debut with the Canadiens in 1996-97, was the second European-born goaltender in Canadiens history. The first was Wilf Cude, a native of Barry, Wales. Cude played for Montreal from 1934-35 until 1940-41.

Best Canadiens Video We Could Find: Former Canadiens center Jean Beliveau scoring a goal in Game 7 of the 1965 Stanley Cup Final against the Blackhawks:

Probable goaltenders: Marc-Andre Fleury (27-11-1, 2.33 GAA, .915 SV%) for the Penguins. Carey Price (22-13-4, 2.30 GAA, .924 SV%) for the Canadiens.

Injuries: For the Penguins, right wingers Beau Bennett (hand/wrist), Chris Conner (hand), Pascal Dupuis (knee), centers Andrew Ebbett (ankle), Brian Gibbons ("lower body"), Joe Vitale ("upper body") and goaltender Tomas Vokoun (blood clots) are on injured reserve. For the Canadiens, center David Desharnais (flu) is probable. Centers Alex Galchenyuk (hand), Ryan White ("upper body") and defenseman David Drewiske (shoulder) are on injured reserve.

Potential lines and defensive pairings: The Penguins primary lines and defensive pairings at today's morning skate were:

 14 Chris Kunitz - 87 Sidney Crosby - 12 Chuck Kobasew
36 Jussi Jokinen - 71 Evgeni Malkin - 18 James Neal
17 Taylor Pyatt - 16 Brandon Sutter - 15 Tanner Glass
27 Craig Adams - 46 Joe Vitale - 5 Deryk Engelland

  Rob Scuderi - 58 Kris Letang
44
Brooks Orpik - 7 Paul Martin
 3 Olli Maatta - 2 Matt Niskanen

-The Canadiens expected lines and defensive pairings at today's morning skate were:

67 Max Pacioretty - 51 David Desharnais - 11 Brendan Gallagher
81 Lars Eller - 14 Tomas Plekanec - 21 Brian Gionta
8 Brandon Prust - 48 Daniel Brière - 17 Rene Bourque
32 Travis Moen - 49 Michael Bournival - 71 Louis Leblanc

79 Andrei Markov- 76 P.K. Subban
40 Nathan Beaulieu - 26 Josh Gorges
6 Douglas Murray - 55 Francis Bouillon

Notes:

-The last time the Penguins played the Canadiens, this happened:

-Eller has 97 career points.

-Our live blog begins at approximately 6 p.m. Please tune in.

(Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

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Talented Ellwood City player Aloi transfers to Lincoln Park

Written by Mike White on .

In recent years, Lincoln Park has been the destination of a number of transfer students who happen to be talented basketball players. And it has happened again with a player from Ellwood City.

Nick Aloi, who averaged 15 points a game last season as a freshman, left Ellwood City and enrolled at Lincoln Park Tuesday. Ellwood City principal Kirk Lape confirmed Aloi's transfer.

Aloi is not playing this season as he recovers from a torn ACL injury sustained before the season. He showed plenty of promise as a freshman.

Lape said he had no comment on Aloi's transfer. It's highly likely the WPIAL will eventually have a hearing with the Alois to determine if the transfer was for athletic intent.

Aloi's father, Frank, is a former Ellwood City basketball player and his uncle, Dan, also was a star player at the school in the 1980s. Nick Aloi's grandfather, Frank Sr., is superintendent of Ellwood City schools.

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Empty Netter Assists - 01-22-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

-Welcome back Tomas Vokoun (above) ... to skating.

-Panthers forward Tomas Fleischmann is familiar with what Vokoun is trying to recover from.

-Matt Niskanen is on pace for this best statistical season.

-Welcome back Andrew Ebbett ... to practice.

-"I'm not so worried about myself. I think the Olympic village will be pretty secure. My wife and my dad are going over so that makes makes you a little bit more uneasy. They're obviously not staying in the village. They're staying on the perimeters of the village so that makes you a little bit uncertain." - Brooks Orpik on security in Sochi for the upcoming Olympics.

-Paul Martin speaks:

-Ebbett speaks:

-“I think it’s really strange. It’s almost a full year ago that it happened. I’ve said this from the beginning and I still say it. It was a complete accident." - Wild forward and former Penguin Matt Cooke on Senators owner Eugene Melnyk presenting forensic evidence to the NHL in an attempt to prove Cooke, as a member of the Penguins, intentionally injured Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson last season. Karlsson suffered a severed Achilles tendon Feb. 13 due to a hit from Cooke in Pittsburgh.

-“If that’s something he wants to do, that’s totally up to him, but it’s not something I’m involved in.” - Karlsson on Melnyk.

-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins defenseman Philip Samuelsson has added an offensive element to his game.

-Happy 39th birthday to former Penguins forward Shean Donovan. Claimed off waivers from the Thrashers late in the 2001-02 season, Donovan spent parts of two seasons with the Penguins. He finished 2001-02 by appearing in 13 games and scoring three points. After 52 games and nine points in 2002-03, Donovan was traded to the Flames in exchange for Micki Dupont and Mathias Johansson. In 65 games with the Penguins, Donovan scored 12 points.

-After the Jump: The Jets remain undefeated under Paul Maurice and Alexander Semin heads to Sochi.

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Panthers' Fleischmann familiar with Vokoun's ailment - 01-21-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

The Penguins offered a bit of good news today when it was revealed goaltender Tomas Vokoun will resume skating tomorrow in Pittsburgh for the first time since being diagnosed with a blood clot.

Panthers forward Tomas Fleischmann, a fellow Czech, is familiar with what Vokoun has gone though in his road to recovery. Fleischmann has had to deal with blood clots in his career. While with the Capitals in 2009-10, he missed 10 games due to a blood clot in his leg. He would miss the final 36 games of 2010-11 while with the Avalanche due to a clot near his lungs. 

Prior to his team's game with the Penguins yesterday, Fleischmann talked about his experiences with this illness:

What is it like trying to recover from this illness?

"It’s an illness which is a blood problem, blood clots. You basically have a thick body [in the blood] and you have to thin it. To get rid of the blood clots from your body, it takes at least three to six months. Whenever it comes, the injury, you have to take three months off basically of doing nothing. Just light cardio. After that, you’ve just got to make sure the doctors check you every time you feel something wrong in your body and hope it doesn’t come back."

Do you have to actively work to prevent it?

"If you go on a good medicine, you can always prevent it. That’s what I’m doing. So far, it works."

What's key to maintaining your health with this illness

"It’s a lot of blood checks. You’ve got to prevent those things and thin your blood. There’s nothing you can do about it. Hopefully it goes away."

When you find out, is there fear over what it could mean to your life or your career?

"I was kind of young and didn’t really think about those things. It happened. I got through it. Vokoun’s case, he’s a little bit older guy. I don’t know how long it’s going to take for him to recover from that. It helped me because I was young and I could prepare for the rest of my career."

(Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

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New WPIAL football conferences for next season

Written by Mike White on .

The new WPIAL football conferences for the 2014 season were approved by the league's Board of Control this afternoon.

The new conferences will be for the 2014 season only. The league will realign again (probably in just Class AA and AAA) for the 2015 season because Ford City and Kittanning are closing after the 2014-15 school year and merging into one school.

Here are the new conferences for the 2014 season:

WPIALWEB0121

By Mike White

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The landscape of WPIAL football will look a lot different next season.

The WPIAL realigns its football conferences every two years, and the league released its new conferences earlier today. A total of 26 teams will change either conferences or classifications, starting with the 2014 seasons. Changes in classifications are based on school enrollments.

This alignment is only for one season, though. The league will have to realign next year because Ford City and Kittanning will merge to one high school after the 2013-14 school.

Among the major changes in the realignment are:

*Gateway drops from Class AAAA to AAA and will play in the Greater Allegheny Conference against teams from the eastern and northern suburbs.

*Jeannette and Greensburg Central Catholic drop from Class AA to A and will play in the Eastern Conference. The WPIAL created an extremely strong conference by also moving Clairton into the Eastern. Monessen will also be in the conference.

*Highlands moves from Class AAA to AA.

*Plum moves from the Southeastern Conference to the Foothills in Class AAAA.

* West Shamokin, which made the WPIAL playoffs last year for the first time in school history, moves up from Class A to AA.

*Summit Academy, which also made the playoffs last year for the first time in school history, stays in Class AA but moves from the Allegheny Conference to the Midwestern.

Here are the new conferences for the next two seasons.

CLASS AAAA

Northern Eight – Butler, Central Catholic, Fox Chapel, North Allegheny, North Hills, Pine-Richland, Seneca Valley, Shaler.

Southeastern – Baldwin, Bethel Park, Canon-McMillan, Mt. Lebanon, Penn Hills, Peters Township, Upper St. Clair, Woodland Hills.

Foothills – Altoona, Connellsville, Hempfield, Kiski Area, Latrobe, McKeesport, Norwin, Penn-Trafford, Plum.

CLASS AAA 

 Big Nine – Albert Gallatin, Belle Vernon, Elizabeth Forward, Laurel Highlands, Ringgold, Thomas Jefferson, Trinity, Uniontown, West Mifflin.

Parkway – Ambridge, Blackhawk, Central Valley, Chartiers Valley, Hopewell, Montour, Moon, New Castle, West Allegheny.

Greater Allegheny – Franklin Regional, Gateway, Greensburg Salem, Hampton, Hollidaysburg, Indiana, Knoch, Mars, Yough.

CLASS AA

Century – Carlynton, East Allegheny, Keystone Oaks, Quaker Valley, Seton-LaSalle, South Allegheny, South Fayette, South Park, Sto-Rox, Steel Valley.

Allegheny – Apollo-Ridge, Burrell, Deer Lakes, Ford City, Freeport, Highlands, Kittanning, Shady Side Academy, Valley, West Shamokin.

Midwestern – Aliquippa, Beaver, Beaver Falls, Ellwood City, Freedom, Laurel, Mohawk, New Brighton, Summit Academy.

Interstate – Brownsville, Burgettstown, Charleroi, Derry, McGuffey, Mount Pleasant, Southmoreland, Washington, Waynesburg.

CLASS A

Tri-County South – Avella, Bentworth, Beth-Center, California, Carmichaels, Frazier, Jefferson-Morgan, Mapletown, West Greene.

Eastern – Clairton, Greensburg Central Catholic, Jeannette, Leechburg, Monessen, Riverview, Serra, Springdale, Wilkinsburg.

Ohio Valley – Avonworth, Bishop Canevin, Brentwood, Chartiers-Houston, Fort Cherry, Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic, Northgate, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart.

Big Seven – Neshannock, Riverside, Rochester, Shenango, South Side Beaver, Union, Vincentian, Western Beaver.

 

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