Here are your Evening Puck Headlines and Previews: A glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.
• So next week is Hockey Rumors Christmas, a.k.a. the trade deadline. We sort of know what we're planning, but we're open to some genius from the readership. E-mail us if you have a killer notion on how to handle Dead-Day.
• After yesterday's news that the City of Glendale was letting the Phoenix Coyotes play virtually rent-free comes this nugget from Sportsnet: "Sources tell Sportsnet that NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and the city of Glendale have come to terms on an agreement that will see Glendale concede at least $15 million per year to the Coyotes towards a new lease deal." The team hopes to have new (non-local) ownership in place by the time the Coyotes make their lottery pick. (D'oh!) [Sportsnet]
• Meanwhile, the Coyotes have a new charity initiative: You can bid in an auction to appear in the 2008-09 team photo. Is Derek Morris eligible to enter? [Coyotes]
Preview: Los Angeles Kings at Philadelphia Flyers (7 p.m. EST; TV: FSW, CSP). The Flyers expended a lot of energy last night in DC, but the Kings traveled from Minnesota for tonight's game. Martin Biron takes on Erik Ersberg tonight after watching Niittymaki play really well in a big road win. No pressure, sir.
• Who is the best college hockey player of all-time? [College Hockey News]
The top sports headlines of the day
• Toronto Maple Leafs overlord Brian Burke believes that Tomas Kaberle is worth the same package as he gave up for Chris Pronger when the Ducks acquired him: a first-round pick, a roster player and a top prospect. Because the two players are so comparable. Oh, and just in case there's any confusion: This story is about Brian Burke, not "Brian Burke." No need to email him. [CP and audio of the Burke conference call]
Preview: San Jose Sharks at Detroit Red Wings (7:30 p.m. EST; TV: CSBA, FSD, Yahoo! Sports). Brad Stuart's back for the Wings, as both Mike Babcock and Todd McLellan discuss the importance (or lack of it) in winning the No. 1 seed in the West. Tonight on Versus: "The Contender" finale.
Preview: New York Rangers at Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m. EST; TV: TSN, NHLN). Naturally, John Tortorella's first game as the Rangers' coach occurs in the only hockey media market that makes New York look like small-town Iowa by comparison. This should be music to the ears of Rangers fans, or at least to Scott Gomez: Torts wants to attack, attack, attack. In case you missed it, the Rangers claimed former Leaf Mark Bell off of waivers.
• Five reasons why fans should make the jump from the NBA to the NHL. Somehow, "diversity" doesn't make the cut. Kidding aside, No. 1 on the list it pretty damn impressive if you think about the mainstream audience reading that blog. [Complex Blog, via KK]
• Will Brendan Witt move at the trade deadline? "If Garth Snow only receives dollar-for-dollar offers for Witt, he might as well wait until summer." [Lighthouse Hockey]
Preview: New York Islanders at Pittsburgh Penguins (7:30 p.m. EST; TV: MSG+, FSPI). Sidney Crosby is out with a wonky groin. Ryan Whitney is out, attending a family matter back in Boston. What does this all mean? It's Letang time.
• In crappy, stupid economic news, The News & Observer hasn't sent a reporter to an away Carolina Hurricanes game since early February. Boo. [Canes Country]
• An interesting look at the domino effect of Marian Gaborik's injury for the Minnesota Wild. [TwinCities.com, H/T Puck Buddy Mike Wong]
• Finally, forget the fact that Cam Janssen of the St. Louis Blues is a repeat offender under the NHL's draconian discipline policy; this hit only earned him a fine: