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PHT Morning Skate: Wheeler out for ‘weeks'; Kane says he’s NHL ready


VANCOUVER, BC - DECEMBER 10: Conor Garland #8 of the Vancouver Canucks checks Blake Wheeler #26 of the Winnipeg Jets during their NHL game at Rogers Arena December 10, 2021 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)

NHLI via Getty Images

Welcome to the PHT Morning Skate, a collection of links from the NHL and around the hockey world. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at phtblog@nbcsports.

• A lower-body injury will keep Jets captain Blake Wheeler out of the lineup for “weeks.” [Sportsnet]

• The NHL and KHL are reportedly negotiating to have the Capitals and Lightning visit next season for a series of exhibition games. [Daily Faceoff]

• There is a chance that Nicklas Backstrom returns to the Washington lineup on Wednesday. The center has not played this season after dealing with a hip injury. [Washington Hockey Now]

• Despite having a bout with COVID-19, Red Wings forward Tyler Bertuzzi says he hasn’t changed his mind about getting the vaccine. [Free Press]

• Evander Kane played for the AHL San Jose Barracuda over the weekend and believes he’s ready to help in the NHL. [San Jose Hockey Now]

• Would a trade for Kane be worth it for the Maple Leafs? [Leafs Nation]

• The Red Wings have given Robby Fabbri a three-year, $12 million extension. [Red Wings]

• The Rangers have played themselves into a position where they should go for it this season. [Gotham Sports Network]

• Sabres goalie Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen is making it hard for the team to send him back down to the AHL. [Buffalo Hockey Beat]

• Taking a look at Mike Sullivan’s tenure in Pittsburgh as he recently celebrated his sixth anniversary coaching the Penguins. [Pensburgh]

• Kings defenseman Alex Edler will be out “long term” after suffering a lower-body injury. []

• We’ll see if NHLers do end up going to Beijing for the Olympics, but Alex Ovechkin is on a tear as he hopes to end up representing Russia in February. [NBC Olympics]

• Breaking down the Lightning’s new Stadium Series jerseys. [Hockey by Design]


Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.