News: Kris Russell (lower body) took part in Saturday's morning skate, Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun reports. Analysis: It would seem to bode well for Kris Russell's chances of playing Saturday against the Devils, but the Flames could take precaution after he hadn't been practicing the past few days. Russell has been one of many productive members along the Flames' blue line, contributing eight points and 56 blocked shots over 19 games.
News: Nikita Nikitin is expected to serve as a healthy scratch Saturday against the Blackhawks, TSN's Ryan Rishaug reports. Analysis: Nikita Nikitin's poor play Friday night versus the Devils resulted in an early benching, with the blueliner finishing with just 13:59 of total ice time in the 2-0 loss. Look for Keith Aulie to replace him in Saturday's lineup.
News: Adam Burish was placed on waivers by the Sharks on Saturday, Ren Lavoie of TVA Sports reports. Analysis: Adam Burish's dismissal likely signals that the Sharks are just about ready to welcome Mike Brown (hand) back from injured reserve. Once Burish clears waivers, he's expected to be assigned to AHL Worcester, where he'll serve as organizational fourth-line depth.
News: Stephen Weiss (groin) is expected to return from his conditioning assignment at AHL Grand Rapids on Sunday, Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press reports. Analysis: Stephen Weiss suited up for Grand Rapids on Friday night and will do so again Saturday before the Red Wings recall him. Once he's back with the team, Weiss figures to be a healthy scratch most nights, but with an upcoming schedule that's chock-full of short breaks in between games, he figures to make an appearance in the near future.
News: Brooks Laich (shoulder) could possibly rejoin the lineup Wednesday against the Islanders, Alex Prewitt of the Washington Post reports. Analysis: Brooks Laich's return from injured reserve has hit numerous bumps in the road, but after the forward was able to work out with the team during the past two morning skates, coach Barry Trotz seems to have expressed more optimism about his possible return. The health-challenged Laich has played in just 66 of a possible 150 games (44 percent) over the last two and a quarter seasons.
News: Tom Gilbert will likely be a healthy scratch Saturday against the Bruins, Marc Antoine Godin of the Montreal Gazette reports. Analysis: It appears that the acquisition of Bryan Allen from the Ducks on Thursday will squeeze Tom Gilbert out of the lineup, as he skated as an extra with Nathan Beaulieu at the team's morning skate. Gilbert has shown more offensive upside in the past than Allen, but that production hasn't seemed to translate in his first season in Montreal. He's mustered just three points to accompany his plus-7 rating over 21 games.
News: Darcy Kuemper will be between the pipes Saturday against the Lightning, Chad Graff of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. Analysis: Darcy Kuemper seems to have quieted the whispers about a potential demotion to the minors with an ongoing three-game winning streak, during which he's yielded just three total goals. However, Saturday's road tilt against the prolific Bolts attack will represent a stiff test in the goalie's attempt to extend the streak. Roll with him at your own peril.
News: Kari Lehtonen is in line to man the crease Saturday versus the Kings, NHL.com's Mark Stepneski reports. Analysis: Kari Lehtonen has been incredibly inconsistent of late -- he's bookended a three-game stretch where he allowed a total of 12 goals with a shutout and an outing in which he saved 26 of 27 attempts. The shutout did come against the Kings under two weeks ago, but it still seems dicey trust Lehtonen to submit a similarly strong performance in the rematch.
News: Mikko Koivu (illness) participated in line rushes at morning skate and appears set to play Saturday against the Lightning, Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. Analysis: Held out of Friday's practice with the illness, Mikko Koivu's full participation in morning skate seems to verify his presence in the lineup Saturday night. He's set to move down from his usual top-line perch to pivot the Wild's second line, where he'll be flanked by Nino Niederreiter and Justin Fontaine.
News: Steven Stamkos (lower body) was on the ice for Saturday's optional morning skate and looks like he'll be in the lineup later in the evening against the Wild, Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Analysis: As was believed all along, the lower-body injury Steven Stamkos appeared to sustain late in Thursday's game won't cost him any action. Fantasy owners should have no qualms about keeping Stamkos in their lineup Saturday.