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NHL Morning Links - Nov. 8

11/8/2013

Update: Firing Kevin Dineen and his coaching staff is likely just the start of pending adjustments for the Florida Panthers. ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun suggests GM Dale Tallon hopes to make some on-ice personnel changes as well:

"... The next move for Dale Tallon will be to make a trade or two to shake up roster. He's been trying hard for a while ... Not suggesting anything is imminent, but saying Tallon has tried mighty hard to find a trade fit over last couple of weeks ..."

Peter Horachek has been named the Panthers' interim head coach.

The Calgary Flames will have to manage without forward Curtis Glencross for the next six weeks or so. Glencross suffered an MCL sprain during Tuesday’s loss to the Minnesota Wild. While Max Reinhart was inserted in the lineup for Thursday’s contest against the St. Louis Blues, forward Lance Bouma filled in for the injured winger alongside Matt Stajan and David Jones. Still no indication of when Sven Baertschi will draw back in for the Flames. The 21-year-old forward has been relegated to the press box as a healthy scratch the last two games.

The experiment of playing Nathan MacKinnon on a Colorado Avalanche line with center Paul Stastny and Gabriel Landeskog appears to have come to an end. After a couple of games skating in place of Alex Tanguay (knee injury), MacKinnon has been dropped back to center the third line with John Mitchell and Maxime Talbot. Jamie McGinn is expected to compete with Stastny and Landeskog instead.

Just because this is his last season in the NHL, doesn’t mean Teemu Selanne is done with pro hockey altogether. As relayed by Dmitry Chesnokov, there are “whispers” Selanne will wrap up his playing career with Jokerit in the Kontinental Hockey League next season. The Helsinki club, currently competing in Finland’s SM-liiga, is set to join the KHL in 2014-15. Selanne will turn 44 years old next summer.

Young defenseman Eric Gelinas will miss some time for the New Jersey Devils. The 22-year-old was spotted on crutches after taking a shot off his left foot during Thursday’s 3-0 win over the Philadelphia Flyers. X-rays indicate the foot isn’t broken. Defenseman Mark Fayne is the top candidate to fill in for Gelinas Friday night against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Coach Alain Vigneault wants his backup goaltender, Cam Talbot, to play 15 to 22 games for the New York Rangers this season. If all goes to plan, that leaves the bulk of 60-plus contests to Henrik Lundqvist. Safe to say those 70-plus-appearance campaigns for Lundqvist of days gone by (2006-2010) are truly a thing of the past.

One day ahead of schedule, forward James Neal took part in his first practice with the Pittsburgh Penguins since suffering an unspecified injury in the season opener Oct. 3. Now, while that’s great news, coach Dan Bylsma warns Neal has a “ways” to go to get back into game shape. Neal himself says “… it’s going to take a couple of weeks to get back to feeling pretty good.”

Defenseman Matt Irwin may draw back into the lineup for the San Jose Sharks this weekend (Sunday versus the Winnipeg Jets). Coach Todd McLellan is said to be pretty cheesed off with his squad – including his blueliners – after Thursday’s 4-2 loss to the Vancouver Canucks. Irwin has been a healthy scratch the past three games.

Ken Hitchcock can’t stop messing with his top two lines. The head coach of the St. Louis Blues continues to switch forwards Chris Stewart and T.J. Oshie back and forth between a No. 1 line of Alexander Steen and David Backes, and a second unit sporting Derek Roy and Vladimir Sobotka. Don’t expect the shuffling to stop anytime soon.

Rookie defenseman Morgan Rielly is pegged to be the odd-man out once Mark Fraser (knee) re-joins the blue line for the Maple Leafs on Friday. And, barring another injury, John-Michael Liles could soon be headed back for the AHL.

Following the return of Taylor Hall, the Edmonton Oilers can expect winger David Perron (neck) back soon. The center has joined his teammates in Philadelphia ahead of Saturday’s matinee against the Flyers. In other Oilers’ news, this is how close the club allegedly came to trading for goalie Ben Bishop.

The Detroit Red Wings won’t have Johan Franzen back in the lineup until Tuesday, at the earliest. Still no definitive word on what exactly is ailing the 33-year-old winger. When asked Thursday if he’s suffering from an illness or upper-body injury, Franzen replied “I don’t know”.