The Winnipeg Jets have agreed to terms of a four-year contract extension with head coach Paul Maurice.

Carolina Hurricanes coach Kirk Muller says he has not been told by management if he will keep his job.

The Anaheim Ducks open the playoffs as the West's top seed and hope to get a quick start on Wednesday when they host the Dallas Stars at the Honda Center for Game 1 of a best-of-seven series.

The Columbus Blue Jackets begin just the second playoff run in franchise history, as they visit the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday for Game 1 of a best-of-seven series.

The Tampa Bay Lightning and Montreal Canadiens will fight for an early postseason edge on Wednesday when they Bolts host the Habs in Game 1 of a best-of-seven playoff series.

Zach Parise insists it was only a coincidence, not a magic bullet.

With three days of practice before the playoff series opener against the Los Angeles Kings, Sharks coach Todd McLellan has had time to explore his options.

The two are very different, even when it seems as if they've always been tied together.

The Dallas Stars have a winger who found the NHL before Teemu Selanne did, a goaltender who last saw the playoffs in the service of the Atlanta Thrashers and a fifth-round draft pick who led Canada into the Olympic finals.

Marian Gaborik's new teammates with the Los Angeles Kings initially wondered whether such a talented goal-scorer could fit into a defense-dominated team when he arrived in a trade last month.

Although you will be paying close attention to Nos. 87, 29 and, hopefully, 71 when the Penguins start the postseason Wednesday night, make sure you find time to check out No. 44. These playoffs could be the beginning of the end in Pittsburgh for Brooks Orpik, one of the great defensemen in franchise history. It's sad, really.

It's not the things the Anaheim Ducks do well (and there are plenty of them) that cause me concern for the Stars in this first-round playoff series. It's the things they don't do well that make them downright scary.

The Stanley Cup Finals seem so far away to Tyler Seguin, and yet, they seem like yesterday.

From the moment Stephane Robidas was traded from the Dallas Stars to the Anaheim Ducks last month, he realized he might end up facing his former teammates in the first round of the playoffs.

Maybe a man who has steered his teams to six regular-season division titles but never gotten one past a second-round playoff series is supposed to keep quiet about his longing to hold the Stanley Cup.

One season under the NHL's realigned conference setup probably was enough for Eastern teams to veto future additions from the West.

Like the robins returning and baseball opening its season, a sure sign of spring in recent years has been a preponderance of predictions that the Penguins would win the Stanley Cup.

Lace 'em up and buckle up, NHL playoff season is here.

There is intrigue surrounding whether Flyers goalie Steve Mason will play in Thursday's playoff opener against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden.

NHL draft lottery losers last year, the Florida Panthers had their number come up this year.

New York, NY (Sports Network) - The Florida Panthers will have the top overall selection in the 2014 NHL Draft, after winning the league's lottery which was held on Tuesday.

A capsule look at the first round of the NHL playoffs:

Steve Mason always promised to be something of a mystery for the Flyers in these playoffs anyway, only there are more questions now. He spent 15 minutes on the ice during Tuesday's practice, sent out a cryptic text message to the media about the cryptic upper-body injury he'd sustained on Saturday, and neither coach Craig Berube nor general manager Paul Holmgren offered anything more than murk when asked whether Mason would be healthy enough to start Thursday night against the Rangers.

St. Louis Blues head coach Ken Hitchcock said on Tuesday that he expects all of his currently injured players to return to action by the end of the first round of the playoffs.

Minnesota Wild center Mikael Granlund likely will return to action for the playoffs, after a hit to the head kept him out for the last six games of the regular season.

The NHL playoffs have arrived, which means it's time for the goalies to get going.

Patrick Roy's fiery personality was on full display in the opening game when the Colorado coach got into a heated exchange with Anaheim, banging his hands again and again on the glass partition until it tilted.

Steve Mason kept the Philadelphia Flyers afloat when they struggled early in the season. Now they may have to start the playoffs without their No. 1 goalie.

Raffi Torres is making progress but it's still unclear whether he'll play for the San Jose Sharks in their playoff opener Thursday night against the Los Angeles Kings.

Tim Murray's vision of rebuilding the Buffalo Sabres involves several things.

(Sports Network) - Heading into the final week of the regular season, the St. Louis Blues were in the running to capture the Presidents' Trophy as the league's top point-earning team.

Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper grudgingly gave up the news.

Another group of former NHL players has joined the fight for compensation for head injuries they say they incurred while playing, while at the same time targeting the violence of the game that they believe brought about those injuries.

The Columbus Blue Jackets don't mind all the doubters.

From the moment Stephane Robidas was traded from the Dallas Stars to the Anaheim Ducks last month, he realized he might end up facing his former teammates in the first round of the playoffs.

(Sports Network) - The Colorado Avalanche figured to be a team on the upswing after landing talented center Nathan MacKinnon with the top overall pick of the 2013 draft and hiring former goaltender great Patrick Roy as their head coach.

The Columbus Blue Jackets are the closest NHL team to the Pittsburgh Penguins, at least geographically. The two franchises are separated by 185 miles of highway.

The St. Louis Blues are getting closer to the lineup that set a franchise record for victories and challenged for first place overall, instead of the patchwork roster that lost six in a row to finish the regular season.

The Stanley Cup playoffs have a different look in 2014 and the NHL hopes the new formula can make the most exciting part of the season even better.

The San Jose Sharks will have a ton of familiar faces as they prepare for their 10th straight postseason appearance.

The Carolina Hurricanes have entered perhaps their most uncertain offseason since they moved to North Carolina.

Few teams looked as unbeatable as the Anaheim Ducks at the start of the season.

After losing in the second round of the playoffs to the Boston Bruins last spring, the New York Rangers felt it was time for a change.

After a two-season absence the Tampa Bay Lightning are back in the playoffs.

Pittsburgh cruised to a division title this season, taking the Metropolitan with 109 points -- 13 more than the second-place New York Rangers.

Heading into the opening round of the playoffs, the Boston Bruins are once again the team to beat in the Eastern Conference.

The Philadelphia Flyers have signed defenseman Andrew MacDonald to a multi-year contract extension.

ST. PAUL, Minn. - Darryl Sydor remembers driving to Xcel Energy Center thinking "that was it."

Exactly as advertised, Ryan Miller came to the St. Louis Blues and the goals-against number went down.

As the season went along and the Colorado Avalanche kept winning and winning, they broadened their ambitions: From simply making the playoffs to accumulating 100 points to capturing a division title.

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