Top Line: Ryan Miller a goner; Alex Ovechkin mans up; more links
An annotated guide to this morning's must-read hockey stories:
• So much for yesterday's rumors. Sabres GM Tim Murray says he is "pursuing a proper trade" and that he expects to move Ryan Miller before the trade deadline. If that's the case, last night's win might have been his last for Buffalo. The smart play is to sit him out to reduce the chance of injury.
• TSN's insiders discuss the latest trade rumors here, and the names of a couple of Miller's Olympic teammates are prominently featured.
• History shows that teams should loosen their grip on first-round picks if that's the cost to obtain an impact player at the deadline.
• The Lightning are trying to manage expectations while protecting the development of Olympic hero Kristers Gudlevskis. As the kid pointed out himself, that 55-save performance against Canada was just one game, and he has a ways to go before he's ready for a regular NHL gig.
• While everyone is looking at the Flames' expiring contracts ahead of the deadline, acting GM Brian Burke says that he's open to making hockey deals, too. That means anyone -- yes, anyone -- is available for the right package.
• Kevin Lowe says that the Oilers will be involved in all deadline discussions, and that he has his sights set on a couple of players in particular.
• Could a two-year-old injury be what's behind Daniel Sedin's 19-game scoring drought?
• Dave Bolland and Nikolai Kulemin are steaming toward free agency, but both could play significant roles for the Maple Leafs over the season's final weeks. Toronto GM Dave Nonis has a tough call to make with the trade deadline approaching.
• Blackhawks back-up Antti Raanta likely won't see the ice in this weekend's Stadium Series game against Pittsburgh, so get a look now at the awesome gear he ordered up for the event. Gotta love that Ed Belfour tribute mask.this kid in next week's issue of SI.