Archive for December, 2009

Around the Boards: Trade Chips for Boston, Zetterberg Back Tonight? Brunnstrom to Minors, Schneider Clears Waivers

  • Stephen Harris of the Boston Herald: More talk on that the Bruins have plenty of high picks for the next couple of NHL drafts that could bring them help at the trade deadline. No mention of plays or positions their after in this article.
  • Chris McCosky of the Detroit News: Henrik Zetterberg took part in a full practice yesterday and should be back in the lineup tonight against the Avalanche.
  • Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: Mentioned in previous rumors a few months ago after his non-productive play, Fabian Brunnstrom, has found himself sent to the Dallas Stars farm team for a conditioning stinct.
  • Botchford of the Vancouver Province: Mathieu Schneider cleared waivers and his current options will be to report of the AHL Manitoba Moose or retire. Demand for more playing time was only part of the issue for Schneider, he managed to upset almost everyone. There is a chance the Canucks would put him through re-entry waivers in hope that someone would take 1/2 of his contract, but it seems certain that he won’t be playing for Canucks ever again.

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Around the Boards: Changes coming in St. Louis and Edmonton? Schneider to be claimed off Waivers? White In, Kaberle Out?

  • Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post Dispatch: Another mention that fans in St. Louis want Eric Staal. You could go to every NHL city, and anyone that knows anything about hockey would want Eric Staal. More of a dream than a rumor I think. That said, the Blues need to do something. They have some veterans that could be moved, but salary will play a big part: Keith Tkachuk ($2.15 million, Paul Kariya ($6 million), Eric Brewer ($4.5 million), Andy McDonald ($5.2 million), Barret Jackman ($4.5 this year, $7.5 mill the next 2), Brad Boyes ($5 million). What teams are more interested in would be: David Perron, Patrick Berglund, TJ Oshie, David Backes, and prospects Philip McRae, Jake Allen, Ian Cole, and Alex Pietrangelo. When you look at the young talent the Blues have, they could make a push for Staal, but I just don’t see it happening.
  • Dan Barnes of the Edmonton Journal: Time to blow it up in Edmonton? Players that they like or have contracts that will be tough to move: Ales Hemsky, Dustin Penner, Gilbert Brule, Sam Gagner, Ladislav Smid, Lubomir Visnovsky, Sheldon Souray, Nikolai Khabibulin, Jeff Deslauriers and Shawn Horcoff. Players who they might be able to get something for: Ethan Moreau, Steve Staios and maybe Fernando Pisani.
  • Jim Jamieson of the Vancouver Province: The Canucks were unable to trade Mathieu Schnieder, and have placed him on waivers. If he clears waivers, he’ll be assigned to the AHL and will still collect his $1.55 million salary ($1.2 million in potential bonuses, $2.75 million cap hit this year). The Canucks think there was enough interest in Schnieder that he might be claimed by someone.
  • Jonas Siegel of AM 640 Toronto: Ian White will be a RFA this off-season and should be looking for a contract around $3 million a season. With White’s solid play this season and last, and with the off-season addition of Komisarek and Beauchemin, the trading of Kaberle will be all over the rumors as long as Kaberle is in the blue and white.

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Around the Boards: Semin resigning for 1 year, Rangers need some size, Who will captain the Capitals and Leafs?

  • Dmitry Chesnokov of Yahoo’s Puck Daddy: Though it’s not official yet, all signs are that the Capitals have signed Alex Semin to a 1 year, $6 million deal. After next season, Semin would become an unrestricted free agent. It has been mentioned that Semin could be bolting for the KHL in the next couple years. Chesnokov interviews Semin in this article.
  • Larry Brooks of the NY Post: The Rangers have been searching from some scoring, and now have Prospal out for 10-21 days, but Brooks thinks they have another issue. “It is imperative that GM Glen Sather acquire big bodies who will use them, even if it means sacrificing some of the skill level that coach John Tortorella covets in his athletes.”
  • Botchford of the Vancouver Province: Both the Canucks and Mathieu Schneider deal a trade is the best interests of all sides. He signed with the club this past offseason as they both felt he could fit will on the power play, but the acquisition that brought in Christian Ehrhoff changed that.
  • Tarik El-Bashir of the Washington Post: With the trade of Chris Clark yesterday by the Capitals, the team captaincy opened up. Most people will calling for Ovechkin to get the ‘C’, but Mike Knuble or Brooks Laich could be other options.
  • Mark Zwolinski of the Toronto Star: Ian White has added his name to the list of candidates to be next Maple Leafs captain.  White joins current alternate captains Francois Beauchemin, Mike Komisarek, Tomas Kaberle, and possibly Matt Stajan and Phil Kessel.

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The Capitals trade Clark and Jurcina to the Jackets for Chimera

    Finally a trade in the NHL to report. The Washington Capitals have sent their captain, Chris Clark, and defenseman Milan Jurcina to the Columbus Blue Jackets for winger Jason Chimera. As noted in ‘Around the Boards’ today, Columbus has been looking to add some leadership, and Clark fits that bill.Chris Clark: In 38 games so far this season; Clark has totalled 15 points (4 goal and 11 assists), a -4, 27 PIMs and 36 hits. In 9 seasons he’s played in 518 games, 95 goals, 99 assists, and 641 penalty minutes

    Milan Jurcina: In 27 games this season he’s recorded 4 assists, is even, and has recorded 14 penalty minutes. In 302  games, he’s recorded 14 goals, 36 assists, and 210 penalty minutes.

    Jason Chimera: In 39 games this season, he’s recorded 8 goals and 9 assists, is a -7, and has 47 PIM’s. In 461 career games, he’s scored 81 goals and has 91 assists, with 465 penalty minutes.

    This trade gives the Blue Jackets some much needed leadership, and the Capitals some salary cap room for a future deal this year. Chris Clark has a cap hit of $2.633 million ($2.65 million this year, $2.5 million next season). Milan Jurcina has a cap hit of $1.375 million. This year the Blue Jackets will be on the hook for a cap number of $1.433 for Clark and $748,000 for Jurcina, $2.181 total. Jason Chimera has a cap number of $1.875 million for the next 3 seasons. His cap number for the remainder of the season is $1.02 million.

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Around the Boards: Habs keeping Halak? Hitchcock safe for now, Gonchar leaving Pens after season? Kessel almost a Blue last season

  • Bucky Gleason of the Buffalo News:
    • The starting goalie flip-flop in Montreal may have taken place again, with Jaroslav Halak winning 3 consecutive games. Carey Pirce had lost 4 straight decisions. It’s looking like the Canadiens might be keeping Halak.
    • Columbus is currently having a franchise worst stretch, 2-11-5, and coach Ken Hitchcock job is safe for at least the time being. Columbus has reportedly been looking to make a few shake-up deals, but have been unsuccessful so far. Team Leadership is something they need.
    • This season could be the last for Sergei Gonchar in Pittsburgh unless he’ll take a pay cut. The 36 year old is looking for a 3 to 4 year deal worth between $15 and $20 million. The Pens seem to be fine with the years, but not at $5 million a season. Kris Letang needs a big raise from his current $625,000 salary, and looking for between $3 and $4 million.
  • Joe Haggerty of
    • It’s no secret that the Bruins are looking for scoring, but it probably won’t happen until closer to the deadline. They don’t expect anything in the upcoming weeks, the there is the 2 week Olympic shutdown. Until the Atlanta Trashers-Ilya Kovalchuk contract talks are resolved, you’ll read/hear the Bruins are a possible destination.
    • Last season at the trade deadline, the Bruins and Blues were discussing Keith Tkachuk and David Perron for Phil Kessel.

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Justin Williams Out Indefinitely With Broken Right Leg

“Los Angeles Kings right wing Justin Williams broke his right leg early in the first period in a loss to Phoenix Coyotes on Saturday night.

Coyotes defenseman Ed Jovanovski was spinning off a check of Kings centre Anze Kopitar to hit Williams behind the Phoenix net when both players fell onto Williams.

Williams fell backward with his right leg trapped underneath his torso, dropped onto his back and remained on the ice as play continued briefly in the Kings’ end. He was taken off by stretcher after a lengthy delay at 4:27 of the first period.” (source-TSN)

You have to feel for Justin Williams. This guy has had several major injuries to set him back in the past and it appears he has been bit by the injury bug once again…

Transactions / Injuries / Suspensions   (stats chart source-TSN)

27-Dec-09 Broken right leg, sidelined indefinitely.
02-Nov-09 Missed 5 games (lower body injury).
24-Oct-09 Lower body injury, day-to-day.
22-Oct-09 Lower body injury, day-to-day.
20-Mar-09 Missed 15 games (broken hand).
04-Mar-09 Acquired from the Carolina Hurricanes.
16-Feb-09 Broken hand, sidelined indefinitely.
04-Dec-08 Missed 25 games (achilles tendon).
17-Sep-08 Achilles’ tendon, sidelined indefinitely.
05-Apr-08 Missed the last 2 games of the regular season (back injury).
02-Apr-08 Back injury, day-to-day.
01-Apr-08 Missed 43 games (torn ACL).
21-Dec-07 Torn ACL, remainder of the regular season.
30-Jun-06 Re-signed by the Carolina Hurricanes.
04-Oct-05 Shoulder injury, day-to-day.
10-Aug-05 Re-signed as a restricted free agent by the Carolina Hurricanes to a one-year contract.
21-Sep-04 NHL Lockout: Signed with the Lulea HF of the Elitserein (Sweden).
29-Jul-04 Re-signed by the Carolina Hurricanes to a one-year contract.
27-Mar-04 Missed 1 game (bruised ankle).
25-Mar-04 Bruised ankle, day-to-day.
21-Feb-04 Missed 3 games (broken left wrist).
13-Feb-04 Broken left wrist, sidelined indefinitely.
20-Jan-04 Acquired from the Philadelphia Flyers.
30-Jul-03 Re-signed by the Philadelphia Flyers to a one-year contract.
06-Apr-03 Missed 36 games (sprained left knee).
04-Apr-03 Sprained left knee, day-to-day.
20-Jan-03 Sprained left knee, remainder of the regular season.
18-Jan-03 Sprained left knee, left Saturday’s game.
27-Nov-02 Missed 5 games (strained left shoulder).
15-Nov-02 Strained left shoulder, early December.
16-Dec-01 Missed 3 games (sprained right shoulder).
10-Dec-01 Sprained right shoulder, day-to-day.
19-Mar-01 Missed 12 games (broken finger).
22-Feb-01 Broken finger, late March.   

Williams has eight goals and 16 assists in 33 games and when he’s healthy he can really be an impact player. The problem is, judging by his past record, he’s either injury prone or holiday prone.

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Around the Boards: Jeff Carter not going anywhere, Bruins looking for Scorer, Sabres still after Biron?

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Around the Boards: Schnieder MIA, Leclaire and Neil return tonight, Lucic back Jan 1, New top line in Edm.

  • Iain MacIntyre of the Vancouver Sun: The future of Mathieu Schneider is still up in the air after he left the team last week for ‘personal reasons’. Schneider has been the Canucks 6th-7th Dman this year and last Friday he was “Removed from the lineup to make way for Aaron Rome, Schneider bolted from the dressing room without talking to reporters, had an animated discussion with Canucks’ player development guru Dave Gagner, the defenceman’s contemporary, and left. He hasn’t been seen since.” I’m guessing he’s pondering retirement or if he’d like the Canucks to move him somewhere else.
  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun:  Both Pascal Leclaire and Chris Neil will return to the Senators lineup tonight against the Penguins.
  • Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star: Victor Stalberg, fresh off of his AHL recall, scoring 2 goals in 3 games, is on the shelf with a shoulder injury. Richard Wallin will be in the lineup tonight in his place. Wallin has 2 assists in 26 games, mostly on the 4th. Stalberg’s scored the 2 goals while playing on the 4th line.
  • Brandon Hall of the Boston Globe: Milan Lucic is still eying Jan. 1st Winter Classic as his return date.
  • Derek Van Diest of the Edmonton Sun:  Ryan Poultny has been promoted to the Oilers #1 line with Dustin Penner and Gilbert Brule … and why are they in last place in the Western Conference? And here I thought the Maple Leafs top line looked bad.

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Around the Boards: Ilya-Thrashers have a Snag, Vinny to Oilers? Help on the way for the Wings and Sens

  • Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Talks between Ilya Kovalchuk and the Thrashers have apparently hit a snag. “Our position is different than his position right now,” Waddell told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution before Monday night’s game with Montreal.

    “Their position is fixed years with money and we have a different side of that.”That’s what we have to work through. We’ve gotten through every thing else, now we have to make it through that.”

  • David Staples of the Edmonton Journal: It is not a true rumor, but he mentions, “Rather than dismantle the Oilers, isn’t it more likely they would place some new bet on some new aging hockey ace, such as Vincent Lecavalier? I can see a Tom Gilbert, Andrew Cogliano, Fernando Pisani and Jordan Eberle for Lecavalier trade right now.
  • Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press: Finally some good news heading the Red Wings way, Valtteri Filppula is nearing a return. Shortly after Christmas, Filppula should be back.
  • Damian Cristodero of the St. Petersberg Times: The Lightning have been shopping defenseman Lukas Krajicek without any takers so far. Krajicek was sent to the minors, but won’t be put through re-entry waivers.
  • Rachel Blount of the Minneapolis Star Tribune: Minnesota Wild’s winger, Petr Sykora, is still recovering from a concussion, but nearing a return. He’s been skating on his own since last week, and missed his 20th game last night.
  • Helene Elliott of the LA Times: Ryan Smyth returned to the Kings practice yesterday. He’s missed the last 15 games with a rib injury, and could return to the line on Saturday.
  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun: Senators goalie, Pascal Leclaire, is ready to return tomorrow after missing several weeks after taking a puck in the face. Brian Elliott will go back to being the backup.

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Around the Boards: Last chance for Redden? Liles on the Block? Whitney to Bruins?

  • Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal:
    • The Colorado Avalanche are shopping John Michael Liles around the league. Liles has 2 1/2 years on a 4 year, $4.1 million contract.
    • Jaromir Jagr will be a UFA next year, and might have an interest in heading to Edmonton.
    • The Bruins may make a push for winger Ray Whitney at the trade deadline for a 2nd round pick. Philadelphia is another possible destination.
  • Brian Costello of The Hockey News: This is not an actual trade rumor, but Costello thinks that a Jason Spezza for Dion Phaneuf could work out for both teams.
  • Larry Brooks of the NY Post: Wade Redden get another chance to impress John Tortorella after sitting out 2 games, and possibly avoid a demotion to the AHL.
  • Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch: 20 year old Blue Jackets goalie is no longer the undisputed #1 goalie on Columbus. Mason has been pulled in 5 or 28 starts and is sporting a 10-12-5 record, .887 save percentage and 3.41 goals-against average. Mathieu Garon is 4-3-2 with a .908 save percentage and 2.77 goals-against average.
  • Frank Seravalli of the Philadelphia Daily News: Players in Philadelphia that have no-trade/no-movement clauses: Simon Gagne, Danny Briere, Mike Richards, Scott Hartnell, Kimmo Timonen, and Chris Pronger.
  • Tim Sassone of the Daily Herald: Cam Barker is day-to-day with a lower body injury.

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Around the Boards: NHL Rumors from Garrioch and LeBrun

  • Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun:
    • Teams that might be interested in Kovalchuk if he becomes available: Kings, Bruins, Capitals, Rangers, Avs and Devils. Talks between his agent and Waddell were yesterday, with more scheduled.
    • Vincent Lecavalier might be moved by the trade deadline. That’s if someone will take his huge contract.
    • The Flyers are believed to be shopping Jeff Carter. Garrioch isn’t the 1st to mention this, but I just don’t see it happening. Unless he gets another young star or two in return, but even then, it doesn’t seem to make much sense.
    • The 39 year old Teemu Selanne could be moved closer to the deadline if he choose to go elsewhere.
    • Joffrey Lupul, his wonky back (out 6-8), and a $4.25 cap hit are available.
    • Edmonton is trying to shake up their roster, offering the $5 million plus contracts of Sheldon Souray, Lubomir Visnovsky and Shawn Horcoff.
    • Trade deadline time will most likely see Lee Stempniak’s and Matt Stajan’s as part of the Leafs list of who could be available.
  • Hockey Night In Canada Hotstove Video
  • Pierre LeBrun of ESPN:
    • Contract talks between Marty Turco and the Dallas Stars probably won’t happen until after the season. If they are out of the playoff race at the deadline, there is a good chance he’ll be moved.
    • Trades are becoming really hard to facilitate. ”My phone has actually been ringing more frequently lately,” said another GM on Saturday. “But it’s just so hard right now with nobody wanting to take on salary.”
    • David Booth’s recovery from a concussion has improved, he’s been on skates since Tuesday with no set backs. Mid-January would be his earlies return date.

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Around the Boards: Ilya’s Agent meeting with Waddell tomorrow, Redden Unhappy with Benching, Schenn returns, No suspension for Ruutu

  • Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Thrashers GM Don Waddell is denying reports that contract negotiations with Ilya Kovalchuk are at an impasse are “certainly false”. Kovalchuk’s agent and Waddell will be having a meeting on Saturday. A Russian paper is reporting that the Thrashers rejected a 10 year, $11.5 per season deal, and the might be talking trade with Vancouver and Los Angeles. I’m not sure how much you can believe of the Russian report as the max Ilya can receive is $11.3 million.
  • Michael Obernauer of the NY Daily News: Obernauer is reporting that Wade Redden is unhappy with being a healthy scratch last night. Gee Wade, I bet management, coaches and most players are unhappy that you are getting paid an average of $6.5 million a year, and will be for another 4 years.
  • Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star: Luke Schenn will make his way from the press box into the Maple Leafs lineup tonight, with Jeff Finger the mostly scratch. Victor Stalberg was recalled from the AHL Marlies, and Jonas Gustavsson will back up Vesa Toskala.
  • Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News: The Sens Jarkko Ruutu won’t be suspended for his hit to the head on the Sabres Patrick Kaleta. I think I heard a faint clap around the league when people saw Kaleta on the receiving end of a ‘Kaleta type hit’. You’ll hear a faint clap around the league when someone smokes Ruutu.
  • Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun: Brennan reports Jesse Winchester will be moving in to the #1 center spot between  Daniel Alfredsson and Milan Michalek …. Yikes

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