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Eastern Conference

Islanders’ Jordan Eberle Excited To Play Former Team

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New York Islanders forward Jordan Eberle has a certain game circled on his calendar and it’s against his former team, the Edmonton Oilers.

“If anything, you want to beat them,” said Eberle who was traded to the Isles for forward Ryan Strome.

Eberle, 27, was the Oilers’ first-round pick in the 2008 NHL Draft and posted 5 20-goal seasons during his tenure with the team.

“If anything, you want to beat them,” said Eberle.

“It’s a team that didn’t want you, so you want to bring your best, play your best and get your teammates going so they can try and help you out for a win. I think that’s the biggest thing. Anytime you have friends on an old team, you compete a little bit harder.”

Eberle has had a decent run with the Isles thus far.

“It’s figuring out the system, figuring out the style of game that we want to play,” Eberle said on the transition to his new team.

“That all comes with time. It’s nice to score. I think you get chances, you want to put them in. It starts to frustrate you a bit, but now they’re going in. You want to just keep riding it and keep doing the things that got you to that point.”

New York coach Doug Weight believes it’s just a matter of time before Eberle gets settled in completely.

“He’s a guy that we watch a lot of with,” Weight said.

“You’ve been in an organization for seven or eight years, I wasn’t in those tunnels. We stay on him in a positive manner and support him and try to get him out there in places to succeed.

“He’s a heck of a player. It’s always good to see him get on the board and contribute. I think he’s going to get better and better for our team and be more comfortable. I learn more about him every game. It’s definitely good to see him score.”

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Detroit Red Wings

Red Wings’ Jeff Blashill Has Doubts that Henrik Zetterberg will Return this Season

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Detroit Red Wings head coach Jeff Blashill has his doubts when it comes to the potential of Henrik Zetterberg suiting up this season, uncertain that the 37-year old will be healthy enough to do so and admitting that his status is currently in the air.

“He’s had a hard summer and I don’t think his back is reacting great,” Red Wings’ head coach Jeff Blashill said earlier this week, according to Ted Kulfan of The Detroit News. “Certainly we’ll know more in a month (at training camp), but as of today, there’s a lot of doubt as to whether his back will be healthy enough to play.”

Zetterberg did play in all 82 games for Detroit last season, but it was a tough task to enable he could do so.

“As you know, Hank wasn’t able to practice for half the year,” Blashill said. “He was able to gut it out through those last two months where he wasn’t able to practice. There were nights I didn’t think he’d able to play and he did play.”

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Columbus Blue Jackets

Blue Jackets’ Zach Werenski Hoping to be Ready by Season Opener

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Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski is hoping to avoid missing the start of the 2018-19 regular season as he continues to recover from undergoing shoulder surgery earlier this year, according BlueJackets’com’s Brian Hedger.

“My goal, ultimately, is to be there for Game 1,” Werenski said. “You never want to miss time, you never want to miss games, so my goal going into training camp and into the season is to be ready for Game 1.

“If it’s later, like Game 5 or Game 10, whenever that is, I’m going to work to miss as few games as possible and be ready to help the team.”

Werenski, 21, has begun skating but hasn’t progressed to contact drills as he continues his journey back.

“I feel great out there,” Werenski said. “There’s no problems right now. I’m just kind of ramping it up here, trying to get my timing back. Everything feels good on the ice. I haven’t had any contact yet. That’s not until later. I probably won’t do that until probably halfway through training camp, but everything is good. Everything’s on pace. I actually don’t know what my timeline is, to be honest, but I’m hoping to be back toward the start of training camp – probably not Day 1, but as soon as I can be.”

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Eastern Conference

Capitals Add Scott Arniel, Reid Cashman to Coaching Staff

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The Washington Capitals have added Scott Arniel and Reid Cashman as assistants to the staff of head coach Todd Reirden, according to a team announcement made on Monday.

Arniel played in 730 NHL games with the Winnipeg JetsBuffalo Sabres, and Boston Bruins throughout the 80s and early 90s, and served as the head coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets from the 2010-2011 season until the 2011-2012 season.

Cashman, 35, was the assistant coach at Quinnipiac University, his Alma mater, for four seasons before being promoted to associate coach in his final year, and spent the last two seasons as an assistant with the Capitals’ AHL affiliate, the Hershey Bears.

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