NHL-National Hockey League roundup

Nov 18 (The Sports Xchange) - Only two weeks since he underwent surgery to remove a cancerous tumor from his thyroid, defenseman Olli Maatta will return to the Pittsburgh Penguins' lineup on Tuesday night for their game against the Montreal Canadiens. The 20-year-old was not expected to be back for four weeks but accelerated his recovery and said he's feeling good. He began practicing with the team last Thursday. Maatta did not have to undergo radiation or chemotherapy and his doctors believe the cancer is gone. - - The Columbus Blue Jackets activated left winger Matt Calvert from injured reserve, claimed defenseman Kevin Connauton off waivers from the Dallas Stars and sent defenseman Frederic St-Denis to Springfield of the American Hockey Association. - - Defenseman Stephen Johns was reassigned from the Chicago Blackhawks to the Rockford IceHogs. Johns, 22, has five assists in 16 games with Rockford this season. - - The Minnesota Wild sent goaltender Josh Harding to Iowa of the American Hockey League on Tuesday. The 30-year-old Harding came off injured reserve on Monday. He has not played in an NHL game for the Wild since December 2013 while dealing with the effects of multiple sclerosis. - - The Dallas Stars added defenseman Jyrki Jokipakka to their roster from Texas of the American Hockey League on Tuesday. Jokipakka, 23, made his NHL debut for the Stars against the New Jersey Devils on Oct. 24 and has played in three games this season. - - The NHL is abandoning the dry ice scrape between the end of regulation and overtime because it takes too long. The league experimented with using Zambonis between regulation and overtime for the past seven weeks to give the players a smoother ice surface. But it found that the process took anywhere from five to 6 1/2 minutes and changed the atmosphere in arenas. (Editing by Frank Pingue)