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TORONTO - The 2014-15 NHL campaign kicks off with the leagues oldest rivalry, as the
TORONTO - The 2014-15 NHL campaign kicks off with the leagues oldest rivalry, as the Toronto Maple Leafs open the season by welcoming the Montreal Canadiens for Wednesdays clash at Air Canada Centre. The NHL regular season gets underway Wednesday with a four-game slate, beginning with another edition of the leagues signature rivalry. The historic foes met five times in 2013-14 with the Canadiens claiming three of the battles. In addition to winning the last regular-season series against Toronto, the Canadiens also made it to the Eastern Conference finals last spring while the Maple Leafs missed the playoffs for the eighth time in nine seasons. Being the most decorated franchise in NHL history, the Canadiens once deemed a season to be successful only if it ended with a Stanley Cup title. But times have changed thanks to the onset of the salary cap era, so last seasons surprising run to the conference finals made 2013-14 an unqualified success for the Habs. Montreal swept Tampa Bay in the opening round before pulling off a seven-game upset of the Boston Bruins in the East semis. The party ended, however, when the New York Rangers downed the Habs in six games to win the conference title. Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin didnt fiddle with his roster too much this summer, with his biggest move coming in the trade which sent Danny Briere to Colorado in exchange for fellow forward P.A. Parenteau, who is questionable for Wednesdays game with a lower-body injury. Bergevin pulled off another minor move right before the start of the season, acquiring bulky forward Eric Tangradi from Winnipeg on Sunday in exchange for goaltender Peter Budaj and Patrick Holland. Tangradi will begin the season with Montreals AHL affiliate, the Hamilton Bulldogs. Montreal ended last season without Carey Price, but the clubs No. 1 goaltender is ready to go for 2014-15 and expects to get the start tonight. Price went down with a knee injury in the conference finals and was sidelined for the remainder of the playoffs. The Habs core that is still relatively young, as a handful of its best players -- P.K. Subban, Max Pacioretty, Alex Galchenyuk and Brendan Gallagher, to name a few -- enter this season at 25 years old or younger. It will be interesting to see if last springs excursion to the conference finals was a sign Montreal is on the right track, or merely an illusion. Its fun to see the guys loose and excited for the start of the season, but there are 29 other teams that are also anxious to start the season, Subban said on Tuesday. Its a fresh start. Its an opportunity to see progress and have success. While Montreal hopes to prove last season was no fluke, Toronto certainly is aiming for a fresh start after ending 2013-14 with losses in 12 of its final 14 games. The late-season swoon cost the Maple Leafs a shot at the playoffs, and front office upheaval followed the disappointing campaign. Shortly after the season ended, the Leafs named Brendan Shanahan as the teams president and alternate governor. The Hall of Fame winger left behind a job as the NHLs director of player safety to try and help his hometown team get back on the right track. While the Leafs havent made major changes to the look of the team since Shanahans arrival in April, the club did hire 28-year-old advanced statistics wunderkind Kyle Dubas to serve as Torontos assistant general manager, a move that could signal the beginning of the end for current GM Dave Nonis. Head coach Randy Carlyle also could be on borrowed time. With Toronto bringing back most of its roster from last season, the 2014-15 campaign could be one of evaluation for the Leafs as the franchise tries to transition out of its recent downturn. Of course, the Eastern Conference seems wide open at the start of the season, so making the playoffs in 2015 should be within the clubs reach. High-scoring winger Phil Kessel returns for the Leafs after leading the club in both goals and points for the fifth straight season in 2013-14, notching 37 tallies and 80 points. While Toronto doesnt need to worry about Kessels production, the club absolutely needs forward David Clarkson to perform at a higher level this season. Clarkson, a 30-goal scorer with New Jersey in 2011-12, signed a seven- year, $36.75 million deal with the Leafs in the summer of 2013 only to put up an embarrassing 11 points (5G, 6A) in 60 games. Clarksons nightmare season began with him serving a suspension for leaving the bench to join a fight in a preseason game. Although Clarkson broke an orbital bone below his right eye following a fight with Buffalos Cody McCormick during this years preseason, he could be ready to go for tonights season opener. Last year was just something I cant explain to you, Clarkson recently told his clubs official web site. It was the toughest thing and Im ready for whats ahead. Toronto forward David Booth, who was signed to a one-year, $1.1 million deal in the offseason, will not be able to make his Maple Leafs debut tonight due to a fractured foot suffered in the preseason. The injury could keep Booth sidelined until late October. Defenseman Cody Franson also will miss the season opener with a bruised left knee. The Maple Leafs expect to go with Jonathan Bernier over James Reimer in net tonight. Bernier enters 2014-15 as the clear top option in Toronto after going 26-19-7 with a 2.69 goals against average and .923 save percentage. Reimer, meanwhile, is in need of a comeback season following a campaign in which he posted a 12-16-1 record and sported a dismal 3.29 GAA. Bernier, who was acquired from Los Angeles in a trade during the summer of 2013, outplayed Reimer for the starting job early on in 2013-14 before suffering a knee injury in mid-March. Reimer and the Leafs lost the next five games and when Bernier returned on March 25, the club dropped three more in a row. Montreal has won four of six and five of the past eight encounters in the series overall and the Canadiens have taken five of the last seven meetings in Toronto. The Leafs were much better at home than on the road last season, sporting a 24-16-1 record at Air Canada Centre in 2013-14. Montreal had a solid 23-15-3 road record last season. Following tonights season opener, Toronto is off until hosting Pittsburgh on Saturday. The Habs, meanwhile, are scheduled to play the second test of a season-opening four-game road trip tomorrow night in Washington. Line Combinations Toronto Maple Leafs Forwards: van Riemsdyk - Bozak - Kessel Lupul - Kadri - Kozun Winnik - Holland - Frattin Komarov - Santorelli - Clarkson Defence: Phaneuf - Robidas Gardiner - Rielly Percy - Polak Goalies: Bernier - starting Reimer Projected Scratches: Leivo, Ashton, Booth (foot), Franson (knee) TSNs Game Notes: Canadiens at Maple Leafs - 7PM 15th all-time season opener between teams (both teams, first game of season) 6th straight year opening season match up, TOR (4-0-1) won 4 straight MTL 3-2-0 vs TOR last season (TOR 2-2-1) 3 of 5 games between teams decided by 1G in 13-14 (one other game 2G with EN) TOR: 5-0-2 last 7 season openers 3/18 on PP vs MTL last season best home PP last season, 25.2% 2-5-0 final 7 home games in 13-14 Kessel (5G, 10A) PTS in 9 of past 10GP vs MTL Bernier 17-9-1 at home last season, 2.77GAA, .917sv% MTL: Lost 2 straight openers on the road (both vs TOR) 4/16 on PP vs TOR last season 6-1-1 final 8 road games in 13-14, 1/25 on PP Pacioretty (3) tied for lead league in hat-tricks in 2013-14 Price 1-2-0 past 3 starts in TOR, 4.65GAA, .855sv% David Njoku Browns Jersey . The team sent out a press release on Friday stating Poile was resting and recovering and that he will remain in hospital for further observation. The Predators were preparing for the game against the Wild when Poile was hit by a puck that flew off the ice at him where he was standing in a tunnel behind the bench. Greedy Williams Womens Jersey .com Tours Nova Scotia Open. The 27-year-old Sloan, a former Texas-El Paso player from Calgary matched first-round leader Rodriguez at 10-under 132 on Ashburn Golf Clubs New Course. The 23-year-old Poland international is back as first choice at Arsenal after losing his regular spot in the team on occasions over the last three seasons. Ozzie Newsome Jersey . The person spoke on condition of anonymity because no announcement was made. By releasing Bailey, the Broncos would open up cap space with the 12-time Pro Bowl player scheduled to make around $10 million next season. Austin Seibert Youth Jersey . He just didnt expect them to be this good. Darrun Hilliard scored 19 points to lead No. 6 Villanova to a dominating 77-59 victory over Georgetown on Saturday, preserving the Wildcats hopes of a No. SOUTHPORT, England -- One year later, Inbee Park is still chasing history at the Womens British Open. Instead of trying to win an unprecedented fourth straight major, Park has a chance to become only the seventh woman to win four of the LPGAs majors. Instead of photographers capturing her every move at St. Andrews, the 26-year-old South Korean has gone about her work without fanfare at Royal Birkdale. That changed Saturday with a remarkable start, and a late ruling that put Park in the lead. On the tough opening stretch at Royal Birkdale, she ran off three birdies that sent her to a 4-under 68. Then, Park went from a one-shot deficit to a one-shot lead when Ahn Sun-Ju was penalized two shots after her round for building a stance in the bunker on the 18th hole. "I definitely enjoyed it last year," Park said. "But this year has just been a little bit different. Last year I enjoyed it and having pressure and experiencing something I never have experienced before. If I end up winning tomorrow, Ill definitely enjoy this year better." The 18 holes remaining could be a sprint among a dozen players. Park had a one-shot lead over a pair of major champions -- Suzann Pettersen of Norway (68) and Shanshan Feng of China (69) -- along with Ahn. Julieta Granada (72) and Amelia Lewis (71) were another shot behind. Ahn appeared to be the player to catch after what she thought was a 69 for a one-shot lead. She was summoned to the rules trailer, where officials determined she used her left foot to build her stance in a pot bunker left of the 18th green. Ahn was assessed two shots for violating Rule 13-3. Her par turned into a double bogey. Her 69 became a 71. And she went from a one-shot lead in the final group to having to make up ground against Park, the LPGA Tours reigning player of the year. "Its disappointing, but its my mistake and I have to follow the rules of the game," Ahn said through an interpreter. "I still have a day to go and I have to stay focused and try my best tomorrow." The penalty also created a wide-open final round at Royal Birkdale. Park was at 4-under 212, though 12 players were within three shots of the lead. One of them was Charley Hull, the go-for-broke English teenager who made ninee birdies early Saturday for a tournament-best 66 that suddenly put her into contention to become the youngest major champion in LPGA Tour history.ddddddddddddShe was at 1-under 215. Also in the mix was Mo Martin, the 31-year-old American done in by a four-hole stretch on the back nine that sent her to a 77. She also was at 215, along with former U.S. Womens Open champion So Yeon Ryu, who made one bad decision and one bad swing, both leading to double bogey. Ryu had a 74. Defending champion Stacy Lewis had a 70 and was three shots behind. Park has been virtually ignored all week, a big difference from last year. That could be about to change. "Yeah, I start to feel a little bit of pressure from now and tomorrow," Park said. "But Id rather be having the pressure than not being in contention." Ahn took the outright lead with a 25-foot birdie putt on the 16th hole, and was poised to stretch the margin. Her penalty on the 18th actually began with a photographer who took a sequence of pictures at the top of her swing on her second shot. She caught it heavy and pulled it left, into the bunker, as she and her caddie looked back to see who was the culprit. She blasted out of the sand and over the green, and did well to get down in two putts. Only later did officials determine she had built her stance. She said the ball was on the slope of the bunker and it was hard to make a stance. "So what I was trying to do was fix a stance," she said. "But after the review, it was determined that I used my feet to try to make an even lie. My intent wasnt to break the rules. It was just to set my feet firm in the sand just to be able to make the shot. But thats the rule. There was no intent and I cant do anything about it." A one-shot lead is next to nothing in golf. Three shots can disappear quickly. And what could make this Womens British Open go down to the wire is the finish at Royal Birkdale -- three par 5s over the last four holes. "You can make a double so quick on this golf course that youve just got to keep hanging in there," Lewis said. "I you get in trouble, get out, and just stay patient. If you make a bogey, its OK because youve got some par-5 finishing holes here." Cheap Jerseys China NFL Jerseys Cheap NBA Jerseys Wholesale NHL Jerseys Wholesale MLB Jerseys Cheap Soccer Jerseys China Wholesale NCAA Jerseys Wholesale Football Jerseys Wholesale Basketball Jerseys Wholesale Baseball Jerseys ' ' '

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