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NHL on NBCSN: Wild look to put road struggles behind them in St. Louis

When you consider the early returns on moving from Claude Julien to Bruce Cassidy, the big picture with Sweeney in control – and the transition from Chiarelli, considering that fruitful 2014 draft – is looking brighter by the day.

Tags: Anders Bjork , Brad Marchand , Brandon Carlo , Charlie McAvoy , Danton Heinen , David Pastrnak , Dougie Hamilton , Jake DeBrusk , Mathew Barzal , Patrice Bergeron , Tyler Seguin When the Toronto Maple Leafs signed Patrick Marleau to a three-year, $18.75 million contract, even many of the deal’s proponents admitted that the team will probably wiggle out of that last year, somehow.

That’s a sad thought for a guy who wouldn’t be out of place in the Hockey Hall of Fame, yet the Maple Leafs must prioritize the present – not to mention the future – more than the past if they want to be a real threat in the playoffs.

The best stretch of play in his career is probably largely forgotten because it didn’t result in a Stanley Cup win, but his performance during the 2007-08 postseason was game-changing, and it would have made him a worthy Conn Smythe contender had the Penguins defeated the Detroit Red Wings that year.

Tags: Alex Ovechkin , Evgeni Malkin , Ian Cole , Jaromir Jagr , Kris Letang , Marc-Andre Fleury , Matt Murray , Sidney Crosby Considering the fact that he plays for the Edmonton Oilers, it’s probably most tempting to compare Connor McDavid to Wayne Gretzky.

The 2017-18 season might prompt McDavid to feel a little bit more like early-years Mario Lemieux: a superlative player whose sensational scoring often wasn’t enough to lift some putrid teams into the playoffs.

Thanks to last night’s dazzling four-goal, one-assist effort in a win against the Tampa Bay Lightning, McDavid is now tied for third place in scoring with 61 points, just five behind Nikita Kucherov ‘s 66 for the NHL lead.


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NHL on NBCSN: Wild look to put road struggles behind them in St. Louis


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