Injured Tampa Bay Lightning star Steven Stamkos was scheduled to practice Monday but decided to "err on the side of caution" after his right leg didn't feel right. Team reporter Missy Zielinski revealed that Stamkos briefly came out on the ice before saying his leg "didn't feel the best."
Stamkos broke that right leg in a Nov. 11 game against the Boston Bruins and underwent surgery the following day. He's seemingly made rapid progress in his comeback, which he hopes will put him back in the Lightning lineup prior to the start of the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Despite being hurt, Stamkos was named to Hockey Canada's roster for Sochi.
"Whenever it doesn't feel good, it's a little frustrating," Stamkos told the Tampa Bay Times on Monday. "But I've not gone through something like this before, so when things don't feel well, you want answers right away, and you want to know how to fix it. But it's not necessarily that easy.
"It's been tough, the days it doesn't feel good, especially after the strides that I've taken and how good I felt on the ice the other day. But you have to be smart with this. I thought today was a smart decision and we'll see how it feels tomorrow."
Without commenting specifically about spending dollars, I was not surprised by the fan response. The product is really good. The show the guys put on is really compelling. And that's especially true for hockey fans, who understand really what's going on out there and have been fans for a long time. And if the game was taken away from them for awhile you're going to see renewed interest when it comes back. That's just not, by the way, a hockey speculation. That's been the case in the other sports, too.
There were all kinds of things that were in there, all kinds of improvements in working conditions and various kinds and sorts of things. You can talk about what it had been if the union hadn't been there or the players hadn't been willing to take the stand that they did. But I will tell you the one that I think on a personal basis was very satisfying and that's the [pension plan] we have in effect. It covers last year and this year; this is the second year of it. We [think] it's quite a good thing for players for decades to come, I hope.
That's a hard one because I really don't know what's on the table in basketball and the NFL, and my baseball knowledge ?while certainly greater than that of the other two sports ?is a number of years out of date. So I can only speak about the cheap nba jerseys. All I can tell you is that as a relative newcomer ?as somebody that's really come to understand and appreciate the game ?what goes on out there, to understand and appreciate the players, not only their consummate athletic skill, drive, their dedication, their intelligence and all the rest of that, we ought to be able to figure out a way, not only to grow jointly with the cheap nhl jerseys china [but] to demonstrate why this game is so extraordinary in a fashion that will allow us to attract more and more fans as time goes on. And I'm pretty optimistic about that.
I think the question that is going to have to be examined after this year is whether the games created the kind of buzz ?not including the Winter Classic ?but the kind of buzz in the local markets which really make them good events because they are primarily local events. If indeed [the Stadium Series games interest] a lot of people to go to hockey games who otherwise wouldn't go and get exposed to the sport, if it becomes an event that people talk about and want to go to, then I think there will be interest in seeing if we should continue it. Having said that, we'll obviously have to talk to the players and see if they thought whether it was good or bad, whether they would like to continue it again. If we do continue it, you need to look at where you would want to do that. So I think this is going to be an interesting experiment and hopefully it's going to work.
I have not read the complaint in any detail yet, so I can't comment on that. Obviously I'm always disappointed where you have proceedings and you end up with litigation following those proceedings. One of the reasons you have arbitration cases is that you hope it's going to resolve all the outstanding issues and in this case it obviously has not, or at least has not as of yet. But I'm not going to comment on the merits of the case or why the particular parties are involved or anything like that for two reasons: One that I mentioned and the second one basically is it's not my job anymore. It's not that I'm ducking it, it's appropriate to let the people there respond to those inquiries. That's where the inquiries should be directed.
Following a breakout rookie season in 2010-11 when he had 23 points in 42 games, New York Rangers forward Mats Zuccarello had every reason to believe he'd be on the ice for the 2012 cheap nhl jerseys Winter Classic at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia. But after totaling three points in 10 games to start the 2011-12 season, he was sent to the American Hockey League. By the time the Rangers suited up for their 3-2 outdoor win against the Philadelphia Flyers, Zuccarello was out of the Hartford lineup nursing an ankle injury.
It was a difficult season he hasn't forgotten, especially after playing the hero with two goals in the Rangers' 7-3 win against the New Jersey Devils at Yankee Stadium in a 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series game Sunday.
"I was happy for the guys playing the  Winter Classic. It's a good experience. So obviously it was a little disappointing not being able to play that. I wasn't good enough to play," Zuccarello said after scoring the game-tying and game-winning goals against New Jersey. "But [Sunday] was probably better playing in front of our own fans in New York, so I'm happy I could play with this group here and at this stadium."
Zucarello stole the spotlight Sunday with the two big goals, each scored on odd-man rushes. But the diminutive Norwegian has been contributing at an impressive pace all season. Playing at one point on every line, Zuccarello now ranks second on the team in goals (15) and points (37). A breakout season for the 26-year-old was made even more special by his inclusion on Norway's team for the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
Before any of that, Zuccarello's disappointing 2011-12 transitioned into another tumultuous season that started with him playing with Metallurg Magnitogorsk of the Kontinental Hockey League during the 2012-13 work stoppage. Despite the return of the cheap nba jerseys china in January 2013, the Rangers didn't bring Zuccarello back to their lineup until the end of March, essentially signing him to a three-month contract.
Earning two assists in his first eight games last season didn't inspire much confidence, but Zuccarello finished the regular season with six points in seven games. That late-season surge convinced the Rangers to sign Zuccarello to a one-year contract over the summer, setting the stage for a breakout 2013-14 season and one big day at the ballpark.