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Sunday, 28 September 2014 17:06

NHL: League News/Injuries & Fantasy Top Picks

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With the NHL regular season just over a week away, it's business as usual as injuries and salary cap issues cause problems for teams around the league.

 

            Carolina Hurricanes center, Jordan Staal, is expected to miss three to four months after undergoing surgery to repair a fractured fibula in his right leg.

Gary Wiepert/Associated Press The procedure, which took place on Friday, went as planned and Staal can now begin the recovery process.  The injury came last Tuesday night, during the third period of the Hurricanes’ preseason game against the Buffalo Sabres.  The center was escorted off the ice after taking a hit from Josh Gorges.  Buffalo won the game 2-0.

 

            The captain of the Philadelphia Flyers, Claude Giroux, has skated with the team twice since suffering a lower body injury last week.  Though he did not participate in any team drills, he stated that he was feeling better and his injury seemed to be healing.  This is a good sign for Philadelphia, but it’s best that they use caution.  The last thing they want is to rush back their star player too soon.

 

            The New York Rangers suffered a big blow on Wednesday, when center Derek Stepan fractured his left fibula during the team’s conditioning drills.  He is expected to miss four to six weeks.  Stepan was likely to be New York’s first line center, with Rick Nash and Chris Kreider playing alongside him.  After racking up 57 points last season, Stepan was second on the team in scoring for the year.  In his four season NHL career, he has not missed one regular season game.

 

           Last Monday, Detroit Red Wings forward, Pavel Datsyuk, suffered a separated shoulder after taking a hit from Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Rob Scuderi.  While it’s hard to predict the length of Datsyuk’s absence with an injury like this, it’s likely that the team will choose to wait it out for the recommended four to five weeks so that they don’t risk any further damage to the veteran star.

Getty Images  

            

            As for the Bruins, both entry-level free agents Torey Krug and Reilly Smith remain unsigned.  The team is left with no wiggle room in the salary cap to sign the two for another year each, in hopes that they could have the chance to prove they deserve multiyear contracts.

 

 

Fantasy Hockey:

 

            Top Picks:

1.      Sidney Crosby, C – Sid ranked first in the league in points (104) and assists (68) last season, while coming in seventh for goals (36).  As long as he can stay healthy, there’s no need for concern.

2.      Steven Stamkos, C – While he only played 37 games last season due to an injury, Steven Stamkos still managed to score 25 goals.

3.      Corey Perry, RW or Ryan Getzlaf, C – Two reliable, consistent players.  Perry recorded at least one point in 52 games last season, while Getzlaf topped his teammate with at least one point in 55 games.