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Eastern Conference

Lightning’s Steve Yzerman Not Willing To Part With Young Talent

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Tampa Bay Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman is looking to improve the roster ahead of the NHL trade deadline, but won’t be doing so at the expense of the young players on the team.

“At the trade deadline, when you’re trying to acquire players, usually teams that are selling are looking for younger players, draft picks, and prospects,” Yzerman said, according to Joe Smith of Tampa Bay Times.

“At this stage, the young players on our team, we want to keep on our team and we want to add to that. We’re trying to keep this team together with the hope of improving it.”

That likely means that players such as Brayden Point and Mikhail Sergachev are not going to be available.

“I really don’t want to just get a player or something at all costs,” Yzerman continued.

“I don’t believe in that. Obviously if we feel we can improve our team and it gives us a better chance to be more successful in the playoffs, that would be our goal.”

“If I can’t improve the team, we’ll go with the team we have,” Yzerman said. “I’m good with that.”

Eastern Conference

Lightning Shopping Slater Koekkoek

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The Tampa Bay Lightning are shopping defenseman, and former first round pick, Slater Koekkoek, according to SportsNet’s Elliotte Friedman.

Tampa Bay is now motivated to trade away their once prized prospect, who is currently playing with the Syracuse Crunch on a conditioning stint.

Koekkoek is waiver eligible and will become a restricted free agent with arbitration rights in the summer of 2019.

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Columbus Blue Jackets

Blue Jackets’ Sergei Bobrovsky Will Not Dress Due To Team Incident

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The Columbus Blue Jackets have announced that veteran goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky will not dress for tonight’s game against the Nashville Predators due to what is being described as an “incident”.

Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen stated the following:

“There are certain expectations and values that we have established for our players that define our culture. An incident occurred in which Sergei failed to meet those expectations and values, so we made the decision that he would not be with the team for tonight’s game. This is an internal matter and we will have no further comment at this time.”

In corresponding moves, the Blue Jackets has recalled Jean-Francois Berube, and placed both Brandon Dubinsky and Markus Hannikainen on injured reserve.

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Eastern Conference

Leafs’ Frederik Andersen Targeting Saturday Return

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Toronto Maple Leafs’ goaltender Frederik Andersen said that he is eyeing the team’s upcoming game against the Boston Bruins on Saturday to make his return to the ice.

Andersen was placed on injured reserve on January 3rd, retroactive to December 23rd, and hasn’t played since December 22nd.

Despite his goal of a Saturday return, Maple Leafs’ head coach Mike Babcock is looking towards Monday’s game against the Colorado Avalanche as the best time for his return.

Babcock pours a little cold water on Andersen’s reveal, saying it might be Monday vs. Colorado. Hmmm…— luke fox (@lukefoxjukebox) January 9, 2019

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