Aleksander Barkov and the Florida Panthers know they have a tough road if they want to make the playoffs for a second consecutive season.

Barkov helped them take a step in the right direction as he scored in the third period and added the winner in the shootout as the Panthers beat the New York Rangers 4-3 on Friday night.
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“I didn’t know what to do at first, but when I got closer to the net, I saw some space on the glove side and I tried to put it in there, but … I’m happy that it worked,” Barkov said of his shootout goal.

Age will be a consideration for the Raiders as they weigh adding Adrian Peterson or Marshawn Lynch, but both were productive last time we saw them.

EJ Manuel is expected to sign with the Raiders as a backup to Derek Carr, sources told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Under terms of his existing contract, Lynch would be in line for a $9 million salary and cap hit in 2017. In 2018, he would be due a base salary of $7 million and could potentially earn an additional $3 million roster bonus.

“We have to protect our product,” Rivers said. “It’s hard. It’s impossible, if you actually knew what went into scheduling, but the look of back-to-back ABC national games — it’s not good.”

Rivers emphasized that he has no quarrel with coaches, in consultation with their teams’ medical staffs, resting players when the schedule demands it. On Thursday, Rivers didn’t play his starting frontcourt of Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan on the second night of a back-to-back in Denver.
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