SUN Hockey Pool

NHL notes: Sidney Crosby says Quebec City 'obvious choice for expansion'

Penguins forward Sidney Crosby celebrates after scoring the game-winning shootout goal against the...

Penguins forward Sidney Crosby celebrates after scoring the game-winning shootout goal against the Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ont., March 9, 2013. (FRED THORNHILL/Reuters)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:36 PM ET

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby is keen to the idea of the NHL expanding to 32 teams.

“It's only two more teams. I don't see it as that big an issue,” Crosby told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “The league's found a way to stay competitive with 30. It can do 32.”

What’s more, Crosby, who played junior in the QMJHL, thinks Quebec City would be an obvious choice for expansion.

“Quebec City is the one that sticks out for sure,” he said. “I’ve played in Quebec. I know the city, and I know how much passion they have for hockey. And obviously, with having a team there before and the rivalry with Montreal, I think it would be awesome.”

The Quebec capital was home to the Nordiques from 1972-95 before the team moved to Denver to become the Colorado Avalanche.

“I know Seattle's come up, and that would be interesting, being close to Vancouver,” Crosby added. “Toronto's always talked about having a second team. There are options.”

The NHL last added expansion teams in 2000 with the addition of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Minnesota Wild.

OUTDOOR HOCKEY ... IN L.A.?

Could the next Winter Classic be played under sunny skies and palm trees?

John Collins, the NHL’s chief operating officer, and Don Renzulli, the league's senior vice president of events, were in Los Angeles to talk to the Kings about the possibility of hosting an outdoor game next year, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Dodger Stadium would be the likely site to hold the event.

The NHL’s portable rink and refrigeration system is able to handle warm climates, but NHL commissioner Gary Bettman has up to this point rejected that idea in favour of playing the game in traditionally colder cities, the report said.

LAWSUIT DOGS OSHIE

A landlord is suing T.J. Oshie, claiming the St. Louis Blues forward’s dogs did over $12,000 in damages to a penthouse suite.

Ashley Development, doing business as Buckingham Apartments, filed the suit in St. Louis County Court.

“Defendant (Oshie), during the lease term, maintained two dogs which he customarily kept locked out onto the patio. During defendant’s tenancy, said dogs scratched and/or chewed on the custom screens, causing them to suffer irreparable damage necessitating the need for their replacement,” the complaint states, according to Courthouse News Service.

Buckingham Apartments claimed $11,026.92 worth of damages by the dogs plus another $1,000 to repaint or stain the door frames.

MATTHIAS SICK OF IT ALL

After making the playoffs last season for the first time in a decade, the Florida Panthers find themselves in last place.

It’s enough to make forward Shawn Matthias sick.

“This is unacceptable. We’ve been through this before and it's not fun. I'm sick of losing,” he said after his team’s loss to the Montreal Canadiens on Sunday.

“We need to change things, turn this ship around. It’s frustrating and it has gone on long enough. They (Montreal) were ripe for the picking and we didn't take advantage of it.”

The Panthers won the Southeast Division last season but were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by the eventual Eastern Conference champion New Jersey Devils.

Matthia has spent his entire NHL career in Florida, scoring 32 goals and 37 assists in 231 games.

BRIEFLY

Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn didn’t practice Monday and his status for Tuesday’s game against the Nashville Predators is in up the air. Meanwhile, the team called up forward Tomas Vincour and assigned forward Matt Fraser to the AHL’s Texas Stars ... The Phoenix Coyotes signed 2012 first-round pick Henrik Samuelsson, son of ex-NHLer Ulf, to a three-year entry-level contract ...The Anaheim Ducks acquired centre Kyle Wilson from the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for right winger Dan Sexton. The team also called up left winger Patrick Maroon and right winger Devante Smith-Pelly from the AHL’s Norfolk Admirals ... The Columbus Blue Jackets sent defenceman Cody Goloubef down to the AHL’s Springfield Falcons ... The Predators called up forward Matt Halischuk from his conditioning assignment with the AHL’s Milwaukee Admirals ... The San Jose Sharks assigned right winger Matt Pelech to the AHL’s Worcester Sharks ... The Vancouver Canucks called up centre Andrew Ebbett from the AHL’s Chicago Wolves while sending down centre Jordan Schroeder.


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