News: Sidney Crosby (personal) will make his preseason debut Wednesday against the Red Wings, Craig Custance of the ESPN.com reports. Analysis: Sidney Crosby was limited early in camp due to an undisclosed injury, but he's since returned to full health and was away from the team the last few days to the death of a family member. Penguins coach Mike Johnston has been pleased with how Crosby has acclimated himself in camp despite the missed action, so as long as health permits in the regular season, another Hart Trophy could be in sight.
News: Sam Gagner's (upper body) status for Wednesday's pre-season game against Edmonton is unclear, according to Sarah McLellan of the Arizona Republic. Analysis: Sam Gagner's injury was previously undisclosed. The severity remains unclear, but he is day-to-day for now.
News: Antti Raanta is expected to be in goal for the entire game on Wednesday in the Blackhawks' preseason home finale, CSN Chicago reports. Analysis: While Michael Leighton is still on the preseason roster, Antti Raanta seems to be secure in his back-up role in goal for Corey Crawford when the regular season starts next week in Dallas. The Blackhawks though would like to see a nice outing against Montreal on Wednesday night.
News: Robby Fabbri, who skated just over 13 minutes of ice time in Tuesday's win over Carolina, appears to be among the last players competing for a roster spot, according to Tom Timmermann of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Analysis: Robby Fabbri continues to get praise from coach Ken Hitchcock for his play. Whether and how he slots into the Blues' roster will be determined in the next couple of days.
News: Jori Lehtera appears close to making the team, according to Tom Timmermann of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Analysis: This news is not unexpected, but it is comforting to see that Jori Lehtera is not listed among the bubble players in camp. Where he fits in the lineup remains to be seen, but he has played a regular shift (just under 16 minutes in Tuesday's pre-season game) and this is positive news for the rookie.
News: Jake Allen is lined up to start Thursday's pre-season game against Minnesota, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Analysis: Jake Allen and nominal starter Brian Elliott are alternating starts so far in the pre-season, a pattern that is likely to hold into the regular season the Blues appear poised to split their starts pretty evenly. As the rookie, Allen is likely to end up on the short end of the split, but his status as a legit top prospect (and Elliott's historical streakiness) could play into how the starts get divided up as the year goes on.
News: Brian Elliott stopped 20 of 21 shots he faced Tuesday in a win over Carolina. He played the whole game for the Blues. Analysis: Brian Elliott and Jake Allen have each played full games in consecutive starts. The alternating pattern seems likely to hold into the regular season as both goalies figure to see lots of starts. Elliott is prone to hot streaks and could end up with the greater number of starts, but he is not likely to be a 60-plus game workhorse like some of the NHL's elite goalies.
News: Vladimir Tarasenko scored and took four shots in more than 16 minutes of ice time Tuesday in a pre-season win over Carolina. Analysis: Vladimir Tarasenko now has four goals in three pre-season games as he looks to build on his 21 goal sophomore season. If he gets more ice time than he did last year (15:10 TOI/G), the young Russian could see his production jump as his all-world talent and puck possession skills continue to improve.
News: Alexander Steen, who made his pre-season debut Tuesday in a win over Carolina, had an assist and added two shots and three hits in 16:47 of ice time. Analysis: Alexander Steen looked good throughout the game and skated on the power play in addition to his regular shift. He is hoping to build off of his 33 goal breakout season and this debut is a good start.
News: Jonathan Quick (wrist) stopped 16 of 17 shots in his first appearance of the preseason Tuesday. Analysis: Jonathan Quick was able to play the first two periods Tuesday in his first appearance since wrist surgery in the offseason. He'll have a couple of more preseason games to see some action before the regular season starts but it looks like all systems are go for Quick at this point.