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Preds' Watson to return from suspension

(AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Forward Austin Watson has been reinstated to the Predators' roster after serving an 18-game suspension for domestic abuse, and he issued a statement apologizing to everyone for the June incident that cost him the start of the season.

Watson issued the statement Wednesday through the NHL Players' Association thanking his family, friends and the Nashville Predators for their continued support.

"It is a privilege to play in the National Hockey League, and I am grateful to be able to once again compete with my teammates," Watson said. "I apologize to Jennifer, my family, Jennifer's family, my teammates, the Nashville community, and the Nashville Predators for the negative attention that has come from the events on June 16th."

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Pens send Hagelin to Kings for Pearson

PITTSBURGH (AP) The Pittsburgh Penguins have traded forward Carl Hagelin to the Los Angeles Kings for forward Tanner Pearson.

The teams announced the trade Wednesday.

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Pens give GM Rutherford 3-year extension

PITTSBURGH (AP) General manager Jim Rutherford is sticking with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The team announced Wednesday it has extended Rutherford's contract through the 2021-22 season. His old deal was set to expire at the end of this season.

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Crosby dealing with upper-body injury

PITTSBURGH (AP) Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby has skipped practice while being evaluated Wednesday for an upper-body injury.

Coach Mike Sullivan declined to get into specifics about Crosby's injury. Crosby did not miss a shift and played more than 21 minutes during Pittsburgh's 4-2 loss to New Jersey on Tuesday night.

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Preds may have NHL's best goalie combo

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Pekka Rinne is off to an even better start than last season when he finally won the Vezina Trophy as the NHL's best goalie, and backup Juuse Saros ranks among the league's top 10 for victories.

With both goalies now signed to contract extensions, the Nashville Predators may have the best goalie situation both on and off the ice.

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Thornton scores 400th, Sharks edge Preds

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) On a night when he reached an impressive personal milestone, Joe Thornton wasn't taking stock of his career accomplishments.

The veteran San Jose Sharks center even bristled when asked about it.

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Wilson scores in return, Caps beat Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) The Washington Capitals woke up in Minnesota for the start of a four-game road trip with a pleasant surprise: Tom Wilson was back.

So was the vigor for the Stanley Cup champions, who've started their title-defense season rather slowly.

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Panthers down Flyers, extend streak to 5

PHILADELPHIA (AP) The Florida Panthers kicked off their longest road trip of the season with another victory.

Aaron Ekblad and Evgenii Dadonov scored goals, Roberto Luongo made 29 saves and the Panthers beat the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 Tuesday night for their fifth straight win.

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Wings rip Coyotes for fourth win in row

DETROIT (AP) The Detroit Red Wings are playing inspired hockey after a sluggish start to the season.

Defenseman Mike Green had a goal and two assists and the Red Wings extended their winning streak to four games with a 6-1 victory over the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday night.

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Kadri, Tavares lead Leafs past Kings

LOS ANGELES (AP) The Toronto Maple Leafs have one of the fastest teams in hockey. The Los Angeles Kings do not.

And when the Leafs hit the Staples Center ice in full flight, the Kings were caught a bit flat-footed.

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