Kane Returns, Lindholm Debuts & More News

Sabres’ Kane Returns

The Buffalo Sabres’ Evander Kane will make his return to the team’s lineup against the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday, according to Joe Yerdon.

Jack Eichel has not made his season debut because of an injury. (Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports)
The Sabres have also been playing without injured forward Jack Eichel. (Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports)

Kane has missed the past 11 games since suffering broken ribs in the team’s season opener against the Montreal Canadiens on Oct. 13. The injury came just days after the Sabres lost star forward Jack Eichel to a high-ankle sprain during a team practice.

Kane, 25, scored 20 goals and 15 assists in 65 games this past season and should give the Sabres some much needed offense. The Sabres enter Wednesday’s game scoring an average of just 2.1 goals per game and the team’s offensive struggles have been an issue for the club as they have battled injuries to key forwards to start 2016-17.

The team has tallied just five goals in their past four games, including a 4-0 shutout loss to the Boston Bruins on Monday. The Sabres managed to go .500 in the four-game span, but are currently in eighth place in the Atlantic Division with a 5-5-2 record on the season.

Kane will look to put off-ice distractions behind him and get back to being the healthy and productive player he has shown in the past. Kane’s best offensive season came in 2011-12 as a member of the Winnipeg Jets when he compiled 30 goals and 27 assists in 74 contests. Since that time, he has battled numerous injuries and was traded to the Buffalo Sabres in the deal that sent defenseman Tyler Myers to the Jets on Feb. 11, 2015.

Ducks’ Lindholm to Make Season Debut

Anaheim Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm will make his season debut when the team takes on the Columbus Blue Jackets on Wednesday.

Lindholm, 22, missed the first 13 games of 2016-17 as he and the Ducks negotiated a contract to keep the restricted free agent in Anaheim.

The Swedish native signed a six-year, $31.5 million contract on Oct. 27 but was unable to return to the United States as he awaited a work visa. Lindholm had been the team’s last remaining unsigned RFA after the Ducks signed forward Rickard Rakell to a six-year deal on Oct. 14.

Hampus Lindholm (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)
Hampus Lindholm (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

Lindholm is a top-pairing blueliner for the Ducks and also provides some offense. He tallied 10 goals and 18 assists in 80 games this past season. He has registered 92 points in 236 games since being drafted by the Ducks sixth overall in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. Lindholm contributes offensively for the Ducks, but is also a reliable defensive defenseman with strong puck-moving ability.

He joins a Ducks team sitting second in the Pacific Division with a 6-5-2 record after starting the season 0-3-1.

Blues and Blackhawks Reveal Jerseys for Winter Classic

The St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks revealed the sweaters each team will wear when they face-off at the 2017 NHL Winter Classic.

The Blues, who are celebrating the team’s 50th anniversary, will be wearing a jersey that brings the team back to their inaugural 1967-68 season, when the team was part of the league’s original expansion from six teams to 12.

The Blackhawks, one of the NHL’s Original Six teams, will also be wearing a jersey paying homage to the team’s rich history. The sweater is a throwback to what players like Bobby Hull wore in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

The Winter Classic will be played at Busch Stadium, the home of Major League Baseball’s St. Louis Cardinals, on Jan. 2.

Odds and Ends

— The New York Islanders have returned forward Mathew Barzal to the Western Hockey League’s Seattle Thunderbirds, the team announced on Wednesday. The 19-year-old made his NHL debut with the Islanders this season and played in two games before returning to juniors. He was drafted by the Islanders 16th overall in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.

— Calgary Flames defenseman Nicklas Grossmann cleared waivers on Wednesday and is eligible to be assigned to the American Hockey League. Grossmann, 31, was signed by Flames as a free agent in October and has played in just three games with the team in 2016-17.

— The Les Canadiennes will take on the Calgary Inferno at the Bell Centre in Montreal on Dec. 10. The Inferno won the 2015-16 Clarkson Cup title as the champions of the CWHL.

— The Minnesota Wild have placed Marco Scandella on long-term injured reserve, the team announced on Wednesday. The 26-year-old defenseman suffered a high-sprain in his right ankle in a game against the Sabres on Oct. 27. The team also recalled forwards Christoph Bertschy and Zack Mitchell and defenseman Mike Reilly from the AHL’s Iowa Wild.

— Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Mike Babcock wouldn’t let an arena’s power outage prevent his players from continuing the intense practice he put them through on Wednesday, just a day removed from a 7-0 loss to the Los Angeles Kings on home ice.

Maple Leafs defenseman Jake Gardiner thought the darkness may give he and his teammates a rest, but he was wrong.