News: Curtis Glencross missed Thursday's practice with an illness, Randy Sportak of the Calgary Sun reports. Analysis: Coach Bob Hartley said that he still expected Curtis Glencross to play Friday against the Predators, so it doesn't sound like the illness is anything to worry about. Glencross has tallied a goal and two assists to go along with 28 hits over 11 games.
News: Though David Booth (foot) skated Thursday morning, coach Randy Carlyle said the forward remains "a long ways from returning," Jonas Siegel of TSN Radio 1050 reports. Analysis: David Booth is about four weeks through the six-week recovery timetable he was given after suffering the injury in early October, but Carlyle's words suggest that Booth might not be a lock to return by mid-November. Until he starts taking part in full practices, the Leafs probably won't have a clear idea of when Booth might be activated.
News: Shayne Gostisbehere will be a healthy scratch Thursday against the Lightning, Sam Carchidi of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. Analysis: "Ghost" wasn't especially impressive in his first two NHL games, going a collective minus-2 with no points. Brandon Manning will take his spot in the lineup Thursday, and if he performs well, Shayne Gostisbehere may remain in the press box for further games.
News: Coach Lindy Ruff said Valeri Nichushkin (groin) is close to returning from injured reserve, NHL.com's Mark Stepneski reports. Analysis: The Stars indicated a few days ago that Valeri Nichushkin wouldn't be able to return at any point this week, so while the young winger appears to progressing well, don't expect him to suit up for either of the team's back-to-back tilts with the Ducks or Wild over the weekend. However, if he rejoins full practice and short order and no longer appears hampered by the groin injury that has bothered him since training camp, Nichushkin's activation could come in advance of Tuesday's game against the Kings.
News: Coach Bill Peters said Patrick Dwyer (lower body) is expected to return over the weekend. Analysis: Patrick Dwyer was cleared for contact earlier this week and should get in enough practice time before the weekend to be a lineup option for the Hurricanes. The winger appeared in just two games before suffering the injury Oct. 11.
News: Nathan Gerbe (lower body) is expected to return to the lineup for one or both of the Hurricanes' games over the weekend. Analysis: Nathan Gerbe began taking contact a couple of days ago and looks on track to get in enough practice time to be an option as early as Saturday against the Coyotes. Gerbe hasn't played since Oct. 16 due to the lower-body injury, but since the Hurricanes never placed him on injured reserve, the team won't need to send a player to the minors to create room for his return.
News: Roberto Luongo will be between the pipes Thursday versus the Coyotes, reports. Analysis: With four full days since the Panthers' last game, a well-rested Roberto Luongo will be searching for redemption in a rematch with the Coyotes, who handed him an overtime loss last Saturday. Luongo is 2-2-2 over six outings this season, posting a 2.57 GAA and .917 save percentage.
News: Chad Johnson will be in the crease Thursday against the Avalanche. Analysis: Jaroslav Halak's ongoing struggles (3.51 GAA, .889 save percentage over six starts) will pave the way for Chad Johnson to man the net for the third time in four games. Johnson's rate stats are only marginally better than Halak's, so he'll probably need a couple of dominant outings before having a crack at receiving a sustained run of starts.
News: Keith Ballard (illness) hasn't shown much improvement with his condition, Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. Analysis: Keith Ballard visited doctors for more blood work Wednesday with the hope of getting a better handle on how to treat the illness. He was placed on injured reserve Tuesday and has no clear timetable for a return.
News: Coach Mike Yeo said he's hopeful that Jonas Brodin (hand) can return to the lineup Saturday against the Stars, Michael Russo of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. Analysis: Though Jonas Brodin was ruled out for the second straight game Thursday, the defenseman was able to skate for about 40 minutes and get in some stick-handling work prior to the team's morning skate. Brodin appears to be bothered by a hand injury that he sustained in Monday's loss to the Rangers, but the Wild seem to be viewing the ailment as a day-to-day concern.