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Eastern Conference

Leafs’ Frederik Andersen Challenges Teammates To Play Better

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Toronto Maple Leafs netminder Frederik Andersen is calling for his teammates, challenging them to step up and play better ahead of their game against the Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre on Saturday.

Thursday’s loss to the Philadelphia Flyers was disheartening as Toronto blew a 2-goal lead.

The Maple Leafs have lost four straight games and seven of their past nine (2-3-4).

“He doesn’t say much, but when he says something, people listen up,” Toronto center Auston Matthews said Friday (h/t NHL.com).

“He’s absolutely within his right to be upset because we’ve left him out to dry too many times over this course of games. He’s absolutely right. We have his back. We need to be better for one another, and we need to be better for him.”

Andersen is 22-13-4 with a 2.68 goals-against average, .922 save percentage with three shutouts in an NHL-high 39 starts this season.

“He’s a great leader,” Leafs forward Tyler Bozak said. “He doesn’t talk too much, but when he does, his point means a lot. He’s a guy who sees things that are going on really well. He’s been playing unbelievable for us, so it’s probably a little frustrating when we’re not playing our best in front of him and we do have those leads. Yeah, we’ve got to be better.”

“I think a lot of guys on the bench, too, pretty frustrated with not being on the power play and seeing that kind of effort,” Andersen said. “I think we’ve got to look each other in the eyes here and determine where we want to go from here. … We got to figure this out if we want to play any meaningful hockey later.”

“It’s one thing when I say it. It’s a whole other thing when a good player on your team says it,” coach Mike Babcock said. “Now, this is just me. [The media likes] the way he did it. I would just as soon you walk in, grab the coaches, grab the staff, grab everybody, shut the door and do it in house. We had some of that going on during the game too. I thought it was a real positive thing for our team yesterday.

“I think it’s important in taking a step. I think adversity is an unbelievable thing in life for springboards for opportunity. It’s just depends how you embrace it.”

“You can’t have any complacency,” Matthews said. “A lot can change. So you can go on a tough stretch, you can go on a hot stretch. Next thing you know, you’re in another battle. We just want to stay focused, stay focused the whole season, doesn’t matter what position we’re in, we want to win every night.”

Eastern Conference

Islanders’ Waive Andrew Ladd

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The New York Islanders have placed Andrew Ladd on waivers, according to an official team announcement.

“He’s played the maximum number of conditioning games–five games” Islanders’ general manager Lou Lamoriello said.”He needs to play in games to see exactly where the strength is and where the liabilities are and so forth. So we’ll get him down, he’ll leave today to go up to Belleville and play this weekend at Belleville and Laval.

There’s no timetable. His play and physical fitness will determine that.”

Ladd, who inked a seven-year, $38.5 million contract back in 2016, has not played in a game for the Islanders this season.

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Boston Bruins

Bruins’ Zach Senyshyn Out Four Weeks With Lower-Body Injury

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Boston Bruins’ promising young forward Zach Senyshyn will miss around four weeks of action with a lower-body injury, according to a team announcement.

Senyshyn will be reevaluated in approximately four weeks.

In a corresponding move, the Bruins have recalled Trent Frederic from the AHL to take Senyshyn’s spot on the roster.

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Eastern Conference

Penguins’ Sidney Crosby Out Six Weeks Following Surgery

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Pittsburgh Penguins’ superstar Sidney Crosby will be out for a minimum of six weeks following core muscle surgery, according to an official team announcement.

Crosby has been dealing with a sports hernia since training camp, and the Penguins are hoping he can bounce back once he is again healthy.

Crosby, 32, tallied 17 points through the first 17 games of the season.

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