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The Toronto Maple Leafs are counting on a coaching change to get them out of a tailspin and back on course for the NHL playoffs.

Randy Carlyle, who replaces the fired Ron Wilson, will try to get them there.

“I sense the club is very tense,” Carlyle said at a news conference in the home of the arch-rival Montreal Canadiens, against whom he was to coach his first game for Toronto on Saturday night.

Deadline sets stage for summer intrigue

The trade deadline picked up steam as 3 p.m. ET closed in but some of the biggest names in the rumor mill stayed put. It makes for a slower deadline day but sets up an interesting summer.

Nash Requested Trade

Blue Jackets captain Rick Nash asked the team to consider trading him last month, general manager Scott Howson said this afternoon.
Nash, in his ninth season with Columbus, made the request in mid- to –late January, Howson said.

“He approached us and asked us to consider trading him,” Howson said. “We agreed to accomodate his request as long as we could get a deal that would provide us with cornerstone pieces to help us compete for a Stanley Cup championship in the coming years.”

Leafs have firm offers

Quiet morning in Toronto. Leafs have firm offers on a number of players. Ton of interest in 2nd line, but nothing imminent!/DarrenDreger/statuses/174121433495117824

Last Day of Shopping

Sure the Maple Leafs are getting some nibbles.

How about a deal involving Marcel Mueller of the Marlies? Does that get your blood flowing?

If not Mueller, who has attracted some interest in a minor-type deal, maybe Nicolas Deschamps after his big day on Sunday, and given that Deschamps was acquired by the Leaf organization this season in a deal with Anaheim for Luca Caputi, well, that’s sort of trade deadline day material.

Burke sticking with Wilson

A day after yet another loss, which ignited calls for the firing of head coach Ron Wilson, Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke says a change behind the bench was not in the cards.

“I’m not contemplating a coaching change,” Burke told

The Leafs are winless in four games (0-3-1) and have won only once in nine games (1-7-1), outscored 35-17 during stretch, to slide out of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Kings try to stay focused with trade deadline looming

You could never quite call it a circus-type atmosphere for the Kings at the Toyota Sports Center, not with the Lakers occupying part of the El Segundo complex.

But it came close Friday with the departure of defenseman Jack Johnson, the looming arrival of just-acquired forward Jeff Carter from Columbus, trade rumors engulfing captain Dustin Brown and the completion of defenseman Willie Mitchell’s two-year, $7-million contract extension

Stastny still in play for Avalanche

As the Avalanche continues to battle for a playoff spot, tomorrow’s trade deadline could lead to a move that’s been long-reported involving center Paul Stastny. Stastny, 26, has been dangled as trade bait since last season, though his $6.6 million salary cap hit has been a major concern for numerous teams.

Stars listening to offers for 'almost everybody over the age of 27'

A three-game winning streak — which has given the Stars a firm grip on a playoff spot for the first time since the early weeks of the season — may not be enough to prevent management from becoming big sellers by Monday’s trade deadline.

According to a tweet by SportsNet’s John Shannon, the Stars are “listening to everything about almost everybody over the age of 27.”

Plekanec on the trade block?

As we count down to Monday’s 3 p.m. NHL trading deadline, it’s easy to pick out Montreal players who are available. But there’s one surprise among the players being offered by the Canadiens.

Tomas Plekanec, who has been with the Canadiens his entire NHL career, has been the subject of talks with several teams. While the Canadiens have dropped out of the playoff hunt and are looking forward to next season, they want an established player in return for Plekanec, preferably a winger with some size.