News: Jesse Winchester sustained a concussion in Tuesday's preseason tilt against the Kings, Adrian Dater of the Denver Post reports. Analysis: Coach Patrick Roy suggested Jesse Winchester could be out a while, as he'll be subjected to the league's concussion protocol before returning with the ice. With the regular season just over a week away, there's a good chance Winchester could land on injured reserve if he fails to make much progress.
News: Jonathan Ericsson (hip flexor) isn't certain if he'll play in the Red Wings' remaining two preseason games, MLive.com's Ansar Khan reports. Analysis: Though Jonathan Ericsson returned to practice Wednesday, he may not be operating at full speed when the Red Wings conclude their exhibition schedule Saturday. He does, however, feel that he will be 100 percent healthy for the Oct. 9 opener against the Bruins, especially after he gets in a few more hard skates. The blueliner is also returning from a broken finger that prevented him from playing in the final 14 regular-season contests and the playoffs, but that particular injury isn't expected to hinder him any further.
News: Maxim Noreau was placed on waivers by the Avalanche on Tuesday, Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports reports. Analysis: He has only played six NHL games in his career and has spent the last three years playing in Switzerland. If another NHL team does not claim him, Maxim Noreau will report to AHL Lake Erie. Noreau last appeared in the NHL during the 2010-11 season with Minnesota, where he only lasted five games with the team. There is a very low chance that he will see NHL action this season, minimizing his fantasy value.
News: Bruno Gervais was put on waivers by Colorado on Tuesday, Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports reports. Analysis: He spent all of last season in the AHL where he played 59 games, scored 10 goals, and added 16 assists. Bruno Gervais who has played over 400 games in the NHL, will report to AHL Lake Erie if he goes unclaimed on waivers. The only way he could see time with the Avalanche is if the team falls victim to a rash of injuries. Otherwise, he will have very little fantasy value even in deeper leagues.
News: Niklas Backstrom appears to be losing ground in the battle for the No. 1 goalie gig with Darcy Kuemper, Chad Graff of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. Analysis: Niklas Backstrom was the frontrunner for the starting job entering camp, but after Kuemper reported to the Wild upon agreeing to a new contract with the team, the declining veteran looks on track to eventually settle into a reserve role. The 36-year-old has performed respectably in training camp with 29 saves on 32 shots over two appearances, but the memory of last season's 5-11-2 record, 3.02 GAA and .899 save percentage will probably make the Wild somewhat reluctant to use him regularly. Though some of his struggles could be attributed to injury, the youthful Kuemper posted far better numbers as a rookie and probably gives the Wild a better chance at ascending to the Western Conference's elite in 2014-15. Expect Backstrom's long tenure in Minnesota to allow him to cut into Kuemper's workload early in the season, but Kuemper should soon separate himself as the team's clear No. 1 option.
News: Scott Laughton was assigned to AHL Lehigh Valley on Tuesday, Frank Seravalli of the Philadelphia Daily News reports. Analysis: The former first-round pick had a strong preseason thus far, but his performance was not enough to make the final roster. Scott Laughton is held in high regard as a prospect in the Flyers' system, and he's still young enough to stay in the AHL for the year to develop his skills further. Barring injury, he won't see much playing time in the NHL this year since the Flyers seem rather settled at center, but keeper league owners should still give him a look.
News: Mason Raymond (lower body) was able to get in a skate Wednesday, Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun reports. Analysis: The Flames anticipate that Mason Raymond will be ready for the beginning of the regular season, despite his recent limitations. He's expected to see most of his duty this season on either the Flames' second or third line.
News: Travis Morin was placed on waivers by the Stars on Tuesday, Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports reports. Analysis: He had very good numbers with AHL Texas last season, scoring 32 goals and 56 assists but only played four games with the Stars in 2013-14, managing only one assist in those games. If another NHL team does not claim him, Travis Morin will return to the AHL. He is now 30 and is not really considered a prospect anymore so his ceiling is not very high. He may play in a few games like he did last season, but don't expect him to be called up and have a fantasy impact.
News: Corey Potter (shoulder) skated Wednesday, Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun reports. Analysis: Corey Potter is still working his way back from offseason shoulder surgery, and it's uncertain if he'll be able to return to action before the end of the preseason. The strong camp performance of Raphael Diaz may result in Potter heading to the minors to begin his 2014-15 campaign.
News: Justin Fontaine (groin) is expected to miss "a few weeks," Chad Graff of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. Analysis: At the very least, Justin Fontaine will be out for Opening Night, and the Wild may have to consider placing him on injured reserve if his absence ends up spanning multiple games. Fontaine provided a surprising amount of offense (21 points in 66 games) despite being relegated to a fourth-line role last season. His absence could gave the way for three of Jason Zucker, Stephane Veilleux, Cody Almond and Brett Sutter to crack the Wild's 23-man roster.