News: Leo Komarov (shoulder) will return to the lineup Wednesday against the Devils, Terry Koshan of the Toronto Sun reports. Analysis: Leo Komarov is slated to join Nazem Kadri and Phil Kessel on the Leafs' top line after missing the previous five games with the shoulder injury. He's been a dependable complementary piece for the Leafs this season with 18 points and 124 hits across 29 games, but an inability to stay healthy has lessened some of his impact.
News: Simon Gagne (personal) was placed on unconditional waivers, likely for the purpose of his release, Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports reports. Analysis: The move doesn't change Simon Gagne's situation much, as it was announced a couple weeks earlier that he wouldn't return to the Bruins again this season following the recent death of his father. He'll put his hockey career on hold for now, but could resurface in training camp with another squad next summer.
News: Kevin Connauton skipped Wednesday's practice with an illness but is expected to play Thursday against the Panthers, Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch reports. Analysis: It appears Kevin Connauton will still be cleared to travel with the team to South Florida, with his condition likely to be revisited during Thursday's morning skate. Connauton has been a fantastic addition for the Blue Jackets since being claimed off waivers in November, notching seven goals and six assists over 26 games with his new squad.
News: Coach Todd Richards indicated that Jeremy Morin will be sidelined indefinitely by an upper-body injury. Analysis: Jeremy Morin saw 7:11 worth of ice time Tuesday against the Capitals before leaving the game with an injury that the Columbus Post-Dispatch relays is unrelated to the upper-body issue that Morin sustained last Wednesday against the Jets.
News: Artem Anisimov (triceps) was a full participant in Wednesday's practice, Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch reports. Analysis: Artem Anisimov will be examined by team doctors later Wednesday before it's determined whether or not he'll travel with the team to South Florida for Thursday's game against the Panthers. If doctors give him the green light to play, there's a good chance he'll be activated from IR following Thursday's morning skate.
News: Ryan Murray (knee) was a full participant in Wednesday's practice, Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch reports. Analysis: Ryan Murray clearly appears to be nearing the end of his recovery timetable from knee soreness, which has sidelined him since the beginning of November. The 21-year-old looked set to develop into a cornerstone on the blue line during an impressive rookie season in 2013-14, but he's had a tough time staying on the ice since undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery last March. While his upside is as intriguing as just about any defenseman who might be on the waiver wire in most leagues, it's probably best to see how he performs in his first few games after returning to action rather than investing heavily in him right away. His return to action could come as soon as Thursday's game against the Panthers.
News: Chris Stewart had Buffalo's lone tally in a 4-1 loss to Calgary on Tuesday. Analysis: Chris Stewart was on a two-game point streak prior to the break and is picking up some steam in the second half of the season. Stewart's goal came from a redirection in front of the net off a Tyler Ennis pass and gives him two goals in his past two games, both of which were scored on the power play. With the trade deadline a month away, Stewart has been a constant in the rumor mill. He should get a boost in fantasy if he leaves Buffalo. He has 16 points in 46 games this season.
News: Shawn Thornton (groin) is expected to play Thursday against the Blue Jackets, Jameson Olive of FOX Sports Florida reports. Analysis: Shawn Thornton remains on the Panthers' injured reserve list, but he should be formally activated following Thursday's morning skate. The bruising fourth-liner last played Dec. 6, but had been healthy shortly before the All-Star break. At that time, the Panthers didn't have a roster spot open to accommodate Thornton, but that's no longer an issue now that Vincent Trocheck has been returned to AHL San Antonio.
News: Braden Holtby appears on track to start Wednesday's game against the Penguins, NHL.com's Adam Vingan reports. Analysis: Per the report, Justin Peters put in a full workout during the team's morning skate Wednesday, while Braden Holtby didn't, suggesting that Holtby will get another start after allowing four goals on 30 shots in Tuesday's loss to Columbus.
News: Mark Borowiecki was a full participant in Wednesday's practice and says he is fully recovered from his leg laceration, Chris Hofley of the Ottawa Sun reports. Analysis: Mark Borowiecki suffered a severe cut to his leg while warming up for a Dec. 29 game, ultimately requiring over 40 stitches to seal the gash. He was cleared to resume skating over a week ago and doesn't seem to be feeling any restrictions with his leg, putting him on the cusp of a return to action. The blueliner, who skated with Patrick Wiercioch on the Sens' third pairing at Wednesday's practice, could be activated from IR in advance of Thursday's tilt with the Stars.