News: Curtis McElhinney signed a one-year, one-way contract with the Blue Jackets, the Columbus Dispatch's Aaron Portzline reports. Analysis: Curtis McElhinney spent the 2012-13 season with AHL Springfield, going 29-16-3 with a 2.32 goals-against average and a .923 save percentage.
News: Kris Letang followed up a four-assist Wednesday with a goal and two helpers Friday night. Analysis: With 16 points in the playoffs, Kris Letang (3G, 13A) trails David Krejci by one point for the overall league-lead in scoring. Nine of his points, including two goals and seven assists, have come on the power play. The Penguins have won their first two series in six and five games, respectively. Those numbers are good for Pittsburgh but fantasy owners would probably like to wring a few more games (and points) from the offensive juggernaut.
News: James Neal netted a hat trick and added an assist in a 6-2, series-clinching win Friday night against the Senators. Analysis: He has five goals (on 14 shots) and seven points in the last two games. Linemate Evgeni Malkin predicted a breakout for James Neal -- who totaled three points in his first seven playoff games -- prior to Wednesday's tilt and the forward has more than followed through. Surprisingly, just two of his 10 points have come courtesy of the power play.
News: Tuomo Ruutu underwent successful surgery on his hip shortly after the end of the regular season, the Raleigh News & Observer reports. Analysis: Tuomo Ruutu bypassed the procedure during the season, but the hip injury still cost him nearly the majority of the 66-game campaign, as he made his season debut March 21. With the procedure, he'll be ready to go come training camp and should be much healthier heading into this season.
News: Eric Staal (knee) plans to begin riding a stationary bike next week, the Raleigh News & Observer reports. Analysis: Hitting the bike represents the first step in what is expected to be a three-month rehab process for Eric Staal. It looks like he'll be healed in plenty of time for training camp if his rehab remains on schedule.
News: Adam Cracknell re-signed with the Blues on a one-year contract on Friday. Analysis: Adam Cracknell was a bit contributor for the Blues this season, recording a modest six points in 20 games. He doesn't figure to vault into a more impactful role in 2013-14.
News: Eric Wellwood (Achilles) recently had his cast removed from his foot and his beginning the initial stages of his rehab, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. Analysis: Eric Wellwood faces a long recovery process after severing three tendons in his right foot and cutting through 70 percent of his Achilles heel after slamming feet-first into the boards in an April 7 game with AHL Adirondack. There's a slim chance Wellwood won't be able to walk again, but doctors believe he'll surpass that milestone with a careful rehab process.
News: Brad Richards didn't practice Friday and is expected to remain a healthy scratch for Saturday's Game 5, ESPN New York reports. Analysis: The Rangers were only practicing with their anticipated active lineup for Saturday's game, with Brad Richards skating off to the side with the other players likely bound for the press box for Game 5. Coach John Tortorella seems to feel his team is best suited with the struggling Richards out of the lineup rather than as a plodder on the fourth line.
News: Mark Stone is out of the lineup for Friday's Game 5 with an undisclosed injury, TSN Ottawa reports. Analysis: It was initially thought that coach Paul MacLean was simply shaking up the lineup for the sake of offensive upside with his decision to bring back Cory Conacher while sending Mark Stone to the press box. However, it now looks like Stone's injury may have provided at least some impetus to that decision. There's no word yet on the nature of the injury or its severity.
News: Tomas Vokoun will be in the net for Friday's Game 5. Analysis: Tomas Vokoun has seemed to established himself as the team's goaltender of choice after Marc-Andre Fleury floundered in the first round. He'll make his seventh straight start in goal and has posted an impressive .942 save percentage during the postseason.