NHL rumors: Latest buzz around trades, coach firings, signings

Take a look at the latest news and rumors around the NHL.
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By Brian Rauf, Chat Sports

We’ve hit the mid-point of the NHL season with the league’s week-long All-Star break beginning Thursday. As some players break from regular-season play to attend the All-Star game on Jan. 31, the Washington Capitals sit atop the Eastern Conference, while the Chicago Blackhawks lead the Western.

Check out the latest NHL news and rumors below.

• The Capitals announced that forward Alex Ovechkin will miss the All-Star game with a lower body injury.

• Calgary Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman appeared to intentionally cross check linesman Don Henderson during their loss to the Nashville Predators. However, Wideman insists colliding with Henderson was unintentional and has already apologized to him, reports Pro Hockey Talk.

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• Capitals forward Marcus Johansson suffered an upper-body injury in the first period of Wednesday’s win over the Philadelphia Flyers, the team announced. The seriousness of the injury is still unknown.

• The Boston Bruinsannounced that goalie Jonas Gustavsson was pulled from their game against the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday with an elevated heart rate.

• Forward Tomas Plekanec has emerged as a likely trade chip for the Montreal Canadiens should they decide to make a trade, reports the Montreal Gazette’s Pat Hickey.

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• The Washington Capitals were voted most likely to win the Stanley Cup this season by NHL coaches.

• Legendary Los Angeles Kings broadcaster Bob Miller announced he is taking an indefinite leave of absence to have heart bypass surgery.