Prague to miss two Dmen for important game tonight

Prague 6, Athens 0 – Torey Krug has been an important member of the Prague Wolf Pack since he was drafted third overall in the Season 3 draft. He had a great rookie year and is in a slight sophomore slump, but he played 28 minutes Tuesday in a huge win for a team trying to claw its way into the playoffs. But Krug was up all night with flu-like symptoms and was left off the roster for tonight’s game against Oslo. He will have a week to get better before the Wolf Pack’s 82nd game in Berlin. Keaton Ellerby, another Prague defenseman is also out of the lineup today, suffering a back injury early in Tuesday’s game. Chances are, Prague will need all hands on deck for next week’s game because they are locked in a three-way struggle for two playoff berths. Zurich and Geneva are a point behind Prague in the standings and Zurich has two games in hand on the other two clubs. Prague is expected to beat Oslo tonight and an Outlaw upset would be a devastating blow to the Czech club. If the Wolf pack plays as they did against Athens, it should be an easy win. Prague outshot Athens 37-17 and scored twice in every period with Martin Ruzicka and Jason Spezza each hitting the 25-goal plateau in the game. Ryan Miller was in goal and earned his first shutout of the season. Thirty-two-year-old Jeff Woywitka and rookie Vladimir Roth were called up to take Krug’s and Ellerby’s place in the lineup tonight and Miller is penciled in as the starter again in goal.

Oslo 1, Milan 0 – Oslo will also be coming directly off a shutout win when they meet up with Prague tonight. Semyon Varlamov stopped all 23 Guerriero shots to earn the shutout and his counterpart at the other end of the rink, Alex Stalock, was nearly as good. He made 26 saves but allowed the only goal of the game, an Andrew Shaw rebound goal after Stalock stopped a Curtis Glencross shot in the second period. Neither team can make the playoffs and in fact they are the two teams at the bottom of the 24-team league.

Edinburgh 3, Gothenburg 2 – Jamie Benn’s 28th goal of the season might have been his most important. In the tight Northern Conference playoff race, Benn’s third-period goal gave the Capitals a win in regulation time and two points in the standings. Benn also had an assist on Rick Nash’s 29th goal of the season earlier in the third period. With three games left to play, Edinburgh now has a 5-point cushion over Gothenburg, the ninth place team. Had Gothenburg been able to beat Edinburgh in regulation time Tuesday, they would have been just one point behind the Caps.

Bratislava 4, St. Petersburg 2 – The home team outshot Bratislava 34-22 but still couldn’t salvage a point in the standings Tuesday, thereby wasting one of the games in hand the Red Stars have over the other three teams in the tight Northern Conference playoff race. Wei Yang Zhang scored Bratislava’s first two goals and reached the 20-goal plateau for the first time in his four-year EURO career. The big Chinese winger is fourth on his team in scoring this season.

Helsinki 6, Minsk 2 – Gustav Nyquist scored a pair of powerplay goals to give Minsk a 2-0 lead in Helsinki, but the home team came roaring back to earn a decisive victory. Six different players – two of them defensemen – scored for Helsinki. Defenseman Jack Johnson had 5 hits and led everyone in scoring with three points. He was voted as the game’s first star.

Belfast 5, Stockholm 2 – Zach Bogosian of Stockholm and Belfast’s Micki Dupont didn’t appear to like each other very much Tuesday in Northern Ireland. They got into two fights with other. Three Giants scored two points in the game, including Victor Hedman, Ondrej Palat and Nazem Kadri. Despite giving Stockholm 9 powerplays, Belfast dominated, outshooting the visitors 43-20. Belfast now has a three-point lead over Berlin the race for first place overall in the league.

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