The Hockey News Daily Dish: Dec. 4

Yesterday at

In his Top Shelf column, Ryan Dixon writes that with his latest “look at me” show, Sean Avery’s act has finally worn out.

Ken Campbell writes that while Avery’s comments are unacceptable, the NHL has bigger problems to worry about on the ice.

In a THN analysis, Adam Proteau writes that the Canes will have a whole different philosophy behind their bench as Paul Maurice takes over from Peter Laviolette.

Ryan Kennedy issues an open apology to Vancouver GM Mike Gillis for writing him and his team off in the off-season.

In Sean Pronger’s first blog, he compares life in the NHL to life in the minors with humor.

The Top 10 counts down the best seasons by rookie goalies in NHL history.

In the Fantasy Mailbag: Should you keep Bertuzzi? What is Sakic’s future? And what’s up with this Joey MacDonald guy?

Player News…

Sean Avery, LW/RW, Dallas Stars
2008/12/04: In a statement released Wednesday, suspended Dallas forward Sean Avery apologized for disparaging comments he made to media Tuesday at Calgary about a former girlfriend. He said he “would like to sincerely apologize for my off-color remarks,” adding “I should not have made those comments and I recognize that they were inappropriate.” The super-pest has been suspended indefinitely by the league. reports he will faces a hearing Thursday at Noon (ET) in New York at the League’s offices.

Mathieu Garon, G, Edmonton Oilers
2008/12/04: On Wednesday Edmonton goalie Mathieu Garon made his first start since November 6 and didn’t look at all rusty. He beat Dallas in the Oilers’ 5-2 home win, allowing just two goals on 25 shots. He is 4-5-1 on the season. Garon started his first seven games of this season but struggled, eventually giving way to Dwayne Roloson and Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers. Despite the strong outing, he still has a dismal 3.24 GAA and .892 save percentage.

Sheldon Souray, D, Edmonton Oilers
2008/12/04: A three-game points streak has helped thrust Sheldon Souray into a close fourth overall in NHL defenseman scoring after notching an assist in Edmonton’s 5-2 victory at home Wednesday over the Stars. He has five points during the streak and 20 overall.

Mike Modano, C, Dallas Stars
2008/12/04: Dallas veteran forward Mike Modano scored the Stars’ only two goals in a 5-2 loss at Edmonton on Wednesday. The 38-year-old has 11 goals this season, good for second-best on his team (behind only Loui Eriksson’s 12).

Rob Schremp, W/C, Edmonton Oilers
2008/12/04: In his first NHL game of the season, rookie forward Rob Schremp picked up where he left off in the American League (where he had 17 assists in 18 games). He had an assist in the Oilers’ 5-2 home win over the Stars Wednesday. It is Schremp’s first career NHL point. Schremp, 22, has been slow to catch on with the Oilers after dominating the junior ranks, but he did see a solid 14:53 of ice-time in his season debut (including 2:38 on the power play).

Shawn Horcoff, C, Edmonton Oilers
2008/12/04: Extending his season-high points streak to four games, veteran center Shawn Horcoff put the Oilers on the board first just 1:11 into the game in a 5-2 victory over the Stars Wednesday night. He has 17 points (seven goals, ten assists) and is plus-5 over 24 games this season for Edmonton.

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Dustin Penner, LW/RW, Edmonton Oilers
2008/12/04: After being sat out for two games in mid-November by head coach Craig MacTavish, Oilers winger Dustin Penner has a hot hand. He posted a pair of assists in Wednesday’s 5-2 home win over Dallas, giving him six points in as many games (as well as a plus-3 rating).

Injury News…

T.J. Oshie, C/RW, St. Louis Blues
2008/12/03: Out 13 games now with an ankle injury, Blues forward T.J. Oshie was not on the ice for Wednesday’s 4-0 loss in Minnesota, but he did travel with the team, according to the Associated Press.

Joe Sakic, C, Colorado Avalanche
2008/12/03: Colorado forward Joe Sakic will be out for at least six more weeks after re-aggravating his back injury, the Associated Press reports. The 39-year-old will receive treatment on a herniated disc that’s limited him to only 15 games so far in the 2008-09 season.

Daniel Briere, C/RW, Philadelphia Flyers
2008/12/03: Flyers center Daniel Briere is set to miss 4-5 weeks with what GM Paul Holmgren told the Philadelphia Inquirer is “a significant groin strain.” Briere aggravated the groin Tuesday in Philly’s 4-3 O-T win over visiting Tampa Bay. He missed the previous nine games due to the problem, and was out for a six-game span before that due to an abdomen problem.

John Madden, C, New Jersey Devils
2008/12/02: New Jersey veteran John Madden may return to the lineup as soon as Thursday at Philadelphia, according to the Newark Star-Ledger. The defensive-minded centerman has missed the past four games with a foot injury.

Brian Rolston, C/W, New Jersey Devils
2008/12/02: New Jersey Devils forward Brian Rolston will return to the lineup on Thursday, according to the Newark Star-Ledger. The big-shooting veteran had two points in four games before being sidelined on October 17 with an ankle injury.

Curtis Sanford, G, Vancouver Canucks
2008/12/02: The Canucks lost goaltender Curtis Sanford to back spasms in the first period of their 3-2 loss at Columbus. He stopped all 11 shots he faced but had to be replaced by rookie goalie Cory Schneider. The Vancouver Province reports Sanford believes he may be able to play Thursday at Detroit. A tough break for Sanford, who has been solid filling in for the injured Roberto Luongo (groin). If he can’t go, look for Schneider to get the nod.

Jamal Mayers, RW/LW, Toronto Maple Leafs
2008/12/02: Tough Toronto winger Jamal Mayers broke his right hand during the Maple Leafs’ 3-1 road win in L.A. The Associated Press reports head coach Ron Wilson said “You’re looking at three weeks to a month, probably.” This is an interesting development because it gives new team president and GM Brian Burke a chance to add a tough guy, as is his tendency. Mayers leads the Leafs in penalty minutes (with 42).

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