John Tavares of the Islanders an Art Ross Trophy dark horse, rooting for the Maple Leafs is purgatory, more NHL news links.
An annotated guide to today's must-read hockey stories:
• Ken Campbell goes rogue and makes John Tavares his favorite to win the Art Ross Trophy.
• Cathal Kelly says rooting for the Maple Leafs is like going to church and never getting to the part about redemption. Hey, there's always the hope of salvation through expansion.
• This new top line that the Devils stitched together in could be interesting.
• With fourth liners eating up more important minutes, players need to bring more than a willing set of knuckles to earn a spot on an NHL roster.
• The Oilers are looking to sign rookie camp standout Vladimir Tkachev. The tiny dynamo of a forward was passed over in the draft and will return to the pool next summer if Edmonton can't get his name on a contract.
• The Great One is about to become a grandpa. And with that, a generation of hockey fans bids goodbye to its youth.
• Even after losing three defensemen to free agency, there's a logjam of experienced talent on Pittsburgh's blueline. Still, youngsters Brian Dumoulin and Scott Harrington bring the kind of puck-moving skills that could enable them to force their way onto that crowded roster.
• The race for the Calder Trophy opened up a bit with the news that Tampa Bay forward Jonathan Drouin will be sidelined 3-4 weeks with a fractured thumb.
• The Flyers will be hard-pressed to replace Kimmo Timonen's even-strength minutes in the lineup, but Mark Streit looks like he has the power play covered.
• Philly fans have spoken: They want their Ice Girls back.Jimmy Howard has earned the right to feel good about himself
• The Anaheim Ducks are hoping that the youthful exuberance of players like Devante Smith-Pelly and Rickard Rakell will help compensate for the losses of Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu.
• A change in positioning, and in conditioning, has St. Louis Blues forward Patrik Berglund set to rebound from the crushing disappointment of 2013-14. He looked full value for his effort on Monday night with extra jump in his legs and some solid work along the boards.
• The Florida Panthers are going to change the way they do business this season even if that means leaving a few thousand more seats empty at the ol' barn. They're definitely going for the short-term pain with this plan, but full marks for doing things the right way.
• This may be the most Canadian story ever written.