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Eastern Conference

Maple Leafs’ Auston Matthews Boasts NHL Top-Selling Jersey This Season

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Toronto Maple Leafs star Auston Matthews continues to grow in popularity among NHL fans, as the 20-year old had the top-selling jersey among NHL players for the 2017-18 season.

Matthews, who finished 4th in jersey sales for 2016-2017, topped last year’s top-seller, Pittsburgh Penguins superstar Sidney Crosby.

Toronto’s participation in an outdoor stadium series game against the Washington Capitals certainly contributed to his accomplishment, as Matthews was the featured player on the specially designed road sweaters and, historically, outdoor games typically increase the sales of jerseys for players who participate in them.

Top-selling NHL jerseys:

1. Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs
2. Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins
3. Connor McDavid, Edmonton Oilers
4. Marc-Andre Fleury, Vegas Golden Knights
5. Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
6. Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
7. Mats Zuccarello, New York Rangers
8. Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks
9. Jonathan Toews, Chicago Blackhawks
10. Vladimir Tarasenko, St. Louis Blues
11. Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins
12. T.J. Oshie, Washington Capitals
13. Jack Eichel, Buffalo Sabres
14. Andrei Vasilevskiy, Tampa Bay Lightning
15. Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins

Eastern Conference

Penguins Keeping Faith in Matt Murray

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The Pittsburgh Penguins continue to support goalie Matt Murray despite his struggles this season, leading the team to temporarily usurp him for Casey DeSmith.

Despite the downward fall, Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan believes that the time off the ice will help him focus on work with goaltending coach Mike Buckley, and the team is maintaining both their faith and their confidence that Murray can return to form.

“I think Matt’s mental toughness and the experiences that he’s gone through, he can certainly draw on and help him get to where we all know he’s capable of being,” Sullivan said (h/t NHL.com). “Right now, he’s got an opportunity to spend some time with [Buckley] and work on some of the aspects of his game that we think can help him improve. He can build his confidence.

“This by no means diminishes our faith and our trust in Matt Murray. We know he’s a real good goalie. He’s an accomplished goalie.”

DeSmith understands his role, as backup.

“That’s my job. Just to show up when I get the chance,” DeSmith said. “I think so far, I’ve given the team a chance to win when I’ve played. I take pride in that.”

Murray is 4-4-1 with a 3.87 GAA, .886 save percentage and one shutout in nine starts for Pittsburgh this season.

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Eastern Conference

Devils Place Brian Boyle on IR

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The New Jersey Devils have placed center Brian Boyle on injured reserve with an upper-body injury, according to an official team announcement.

During Sunday’s game against the Winnipeg Jets, Boyle was on the receiving end of a devastating hit from Dustin Byfuglien, which you can see below.

In a corresponding move, the Devils have recalled Pavel Zacha from the AHL.

 

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Boston Bruins

Bruins’ Tuukka Rask Rejoins Team, Jakub Zboril Recalled

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The Boston Bruins will see the return of netminder Tuukka Rask, who took a few days away from the team for a personal leave.

In corresponding moves, Dan Vlader is on his way back to the Providence Bruins while Jakub Zboril will be recalled. Additionally, the team officially announced that both Jeremy Lauzon and Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson will stay on regular recall.

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